Meep! A 4-Star Review for STARS!

From the upcoming December issue of RT Book Reviews magazine!

All the pain, passion and consequences of first love, told from the heart of a bold, feisty heroine make this a hard-to-put-down read. Ferrer elegantly captures both the certainty and doubt of young love and combines it with the lessons of growing up and coping with change.

Soledad’s life revolves around dance. She spends every waking moment practicing or dreaming about spending her summer working in a studio and then auditioning in New York come fall. Then Jonathan Crandall, a talented musician who also attends the Biscayne High School for the Performing Arts, approaches her for the first time. He offers what seems like a crazy proposition: Would she spend the summer traveling and dancing with a competitive drum and bugle corps? Soledad agrees, and as the summer progresses her feelings for Jonathan grow, but there is also another guy competing for her attention. Tension builds until one terrifying, fateful night threatens to destroy their relationship — and their careers.

Now, isn’t that sweet!

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We’re at T -9 weeks…

Augh!

So, we’re at T-9 weeks until the official release of When the Stars Go Blue and while part me is all, “Hey, that’s like, two months, dude,” the other part of me is starting to go into chicken without a head mode.

I’m making lists of things I need/should be doing and at the top is “Pimp yourself out, yo.”

AUGH!

This is where it gets hard for me. Mind you, I love doing interviews and blog posts and the like, I just have the hardest time putting myself out there and saying, “Hey, wanna talk to meeeeee?”

So… wanna talk to me?

Book bloggers, librarians, reviewers, fellow authors—if you would like me to come visit your blog, loop, or website for an interview or Q&A, I am available. The book releases on November 23 (i.e. the Tuesday before Black Friday), so let’s take that into account. But starting two weeks before that—November 9th—I’ll make myself available for all manner of public shenanigans.

Seriously, pass the word—I’d love to visit with y’all.

P.S. I’ll be creating a contact page for the website, hopefully in the next week or so, but you can reach me either by responding to this post or emailing me directly at barbaracaridadferrer@gmail.com

Interview with Drum Corps World magazine

From Drum Corps to Published Author: What a Long, Strange Trip it’s Been…

Once upon a time, there was this young girl who loved music. She sang, she played piano from the age of four, and when she hit junior high age, she joined band. By high school, she loved band so much that when instructors from The Florida Wave Drum and Bugle Corps stopped by her high school to talk up their organization, she was immediately fascinated.

Fast-forward a… lot of years and that young girl who loved drum corps and music is now an award-winning author. Seriously. And she’s written a young adult novel—WHEN THE STARS GO BLUE—that’s a contemporary retelling of Bizet’s Carmen and to bring things full circle, is set within the world of drum corps. So, that young corps member, Barbara Ferrer, is going to have a chat with author, Caridad Ferrer, about how she went from fifteen-hour rehearsals and peanut butter sandwiches to fifteen-hour writing days and pretzel M&Ms.

Barbara Ferrer: So. You were in corps?

Caridad Ferrer: Yep. From 1983-85 the late, lamented Florida Wave which actually had evolved out of the former Florida Vanguard. During my tenure, we were what was known as A-class (Division II); we were small, perpetually broke, lived off a lot of PB&J and Kool-Aid, and we played our butts off. In 1984 we actually made history as the first corps to perform during every night of Championship Week since we competed (and won) in A-Class, then turned around and made it to semi-finals of Open Class. As the A-Class champs, we then opened the show on Finals night. I was never so exhausted my entire life. I had hoped to age out with Wave, but Real Life sort of got in the way.

BF: These days, though, you’re a writer. How’d that happen?

CF: Well, I went off to college thinking I was going to become a band (and corps) director. I spent a lot of years as a music major, then realized that while I loved teaching, I didn’t play well with administrations. I loved music, I loved teaching, but in the end, I might have wound up hating both. Writing, however, is something I’ve done almost as long as I’ve done music and that came just about as naturally. Maybe even more so. Even during my corps days, if I ran out of books to read, I’d just make up stories and write them down. Best thing, though, is that I can incorporate my love of music in writing—I always listen to music while I’m working and it often informs what I’m doing on a deep level.

Continue reading

An interview with moi!

Lovely Librarian Sarah (as she will forever be known in my mind, had asked, in the wake of reading Stars, if she could conduct an interview with me. I told her to have her people talk to my people… not. Come on, anyone who could believe I’m that addle-brained must have me confused with some other diva. Actually, I love interviews. Maybe it’s because I haven’t done all that many of them, by and large. Maybe it’s because it’s been a while since my last release, so it all feels fun and new again, especially since I’m talking about a project near and dear to my heart. At any rate, I was more than happy to answer her questions (at length, even!) and now you can read the finished result. Along with see one of the recent shots I’ve taken in pursuit of my new photography hobby.

If you’d like a peek at what I see through the lens of a camera…

New Review! (Or, in which Barb announces that she’s likely to be a pain for the next three months)

So, what should my bleary eyes fall upon this morning before the coffee had even had a chance to kick in? This absolutely lovely review of Stars by equally lovely YA librarian Sarah.

Your heart always winds up somewhere in the vicinity of your throat when faced with any review, but when it’s first thing in the morning? But I shouldn’t have worried, because Lovely Librarian Sarah really and truly-o got it. She got the nuances I was going for, she got the parallels, she loved what I loved about the characters and felt their pain. In other words, she basically told me that I got it.

Absolute favorite line (among many, many favorites): “Caridad Ferrer does an absolutely exquisite job of interpreting Carmen for a YA crowd. “

I mean, YAY! How awesome is that, right?

Another big sigh of relief came when I read this:

“Also, I really enjoyed the drum and bugle corps. I really learned quite a bit in this book, without it being information dumping at all. Ferrer obviously knows her stuff when it comes to the corps and it shows as Soledad and Jonathan face the pressure of performances and training. Honestly, sometimes I felt like I was sweating with Soledad as she worked on her routine yet again, trying to find that perfect balance for the very top deck of the bleachers to understand her passion for Don Jose.”

Because, as always, since I’m writing with such passion about something with which I’m so familiar, I worry that I’m just being a big ol’ dork and infodumping all over the place. It’s nice to know I really hit the right balance, because the last thing I’d want to do is shortchange the activity for which I have such love and respect.

So… thank you so much Lovely Librarian Sarah—you totally made my Thursday.

And for the rest of you, let this serve as warning: I’m in all likelihood going to be a twitching, neurotic, crazy mess for the next few months. *glares at those of you with the “and this is different how” expressions* (Y’all know who you are…)

Oh, and the gender bias post is still percolating. With added Oprah goodness. I mean, really, O? A guy, again? I suppose we should just be grateful this one’s still alive.