Perfectly Invisible, Universally Misunderstood Series #2Perfectly Invisible, Universally Misunderstood Series #2
Kristin Billerbeck
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It's Daisy Crispin's final trimester of high school, and she plans to make it count. Her long-awaited freedom is mere months away, and her big plans for college loom in the future. Everything is under control. Or is it? Her boyfriend is treating her like she's invisible, and her best friend is selling bad costume jewelry in the school quad--and hanging out with her boyfriend. To top it off, Daisy's major humiliation for the year will be remembered in the yearbook for all eternity. It's enough to make her wonder if maybe being invisible isn't so bad after all.
     

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Kristin BillerbeckKristin Billerbeck is the bestselling, award-winning author of several novels, including What a Girl Wants and Perfectly Dateless. A Christy Award finalist and two-time winner of the American Christian Fiction Writers Book of the Year, Billerbeck has appeared on The Today Show and has been featured in the New York Times. She lives with her family in northern California.

Favorite Verse: Proverbs 16:2 - "All of man’s ways seem innocent to him but motives are weighed by the Lord."   We can do all the right things, but if we’re not doing them out of a heart for the Lord they’re just rags.


 

 Our Interview with Kristin Billerbeck


 

Would you please tell us a bit about yourself?

Although I still feel like a teen myself, I have three of them, and one tween.  I am a fourth generation Californian and have lived here all my life and love it.  I am naturally curious about the world and people different from me, so it turns out this was a perfect place to live.  The world came to me.

How did you come up with the concept for the Universally Misunderstood Series?
 
Originally, it was a stand-alone, but Daisy Crispin had more to say.  I wanted to write a book as not only an outcast, but an outcast in a Christian environment.  Sadly, it happens more than we’d like to admit.

What draws you to write contemporary, fun fiction?

My nature is sunny and to make the best of a situation – though I have always been that person that strange things happen to.  I didn’t have a lot of guidance in my younger years, and I’m sure I wouldn’t have listened to it, if I had.  Watching a character endure what we don’t have to makes these truths simpler to follow and motivates me.

How many books will be in this series?  Are they stand-alone or should they be read in order?

They are stand-alone, but the progression of the character will be more apparent if read in order.  Really, I just want the reader to enjoy her time with Daisy and maybe ask some questions of herself at the end.

Do you have a favorite character in Perfectly Invisible? Why?

It’s Daisy, because she wants to do the right thing, but somehow ends up in incredible messes by trying to be a good friend, a good employee and a good daughter.

 

How much research did Perfectly Invisible take?

Daisy was originally based on a friend’s daughter in a very wealthy Christian school.  I couldn’t help but wonder what it would be like to be at that school in bad clothes with last year’s backpack.  A travesty here, ridiculous anywhere else in the world.

What are the most interesting facts that you learned while researching and writing Perfectly Invisible?

Just how high school never changes.  It doesn’t matter if it’s Christian or it’s secular, high school and that transition to adult is a very hard time in the life of our youth, and it’s more difficult now in an era where the world tries to make us believe the Kardashian sisters represent any kind of normal.
 
I also enjoyed learning about the different cultures represented in the book.

What are some of the challenges you face as an author?
 
I have four children and their schedules never remain constant, nor can they be depended upon to be healthy when mom is on a deadline.  This is Silicon Valley and men work a lot.  Most mothers are like single moms and I’m no different, so working amidst chaos is definitely my biggest obstacle.

What aspects of being a writer do you enjoy the most?

When I have done all the research, when I know who the character is and I just get to be alone with creating the words.

What clubs or organizations are you involved with helping with your writing?

Definitely ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) because the connection and learning keeps me as a work in progress and then my friends from GirlsWriteOut.Blogspot.com – We have been together since the very beginning and we know the trials of rejection and the triumphs of being a best-seller.  No one will ever understand like another writer and those connections are crucial.

 

What do you do to keep your writing fresh and improve on it each time you write a book?

Naturally, I read constantly.  I see what’s out there and I really feel like my gift is taking what’s relevant in today’s world and making it palatable for today’s Christian.

What were your favorite books as a child?

Truthfully, I was not a big reader until I was in high school and then, it was the classics: Dickens, Austen, Hardy.  I was a closet nerd and a cheerleader by day.

Are there any other new projects on the horizon?

There is a new devotional called “Delight Yourself in the Lord, Even on Bad Hair Days” A novella with my Girls called “Smitten” about a romantic destination town in Vermont and finally, I’m working on a new adult novel about a “nose” – a woman in the perfume business.

What message would you like your readers to take from Perfectly Invisible?

That they are never invisible in God’s eyes, but the apple of His eye.  Always.

What is your greatest achievement?

Being on the “Today Show” and not for reasons you might think.  I am painfully shy, and that event marked my freedom from fear.  Seriously, I got on a plane for NYC (both fears) and I overcame my fear of being in the public eye.  I’m not afraid of speaking, only to be the center of attention.  This was a crowning achievement because I felt like I could honestly tell my kids, get past your fear and DO IT!

What do you do to get away from it all?

I hike up the hills near my home.  Once you climb to the top of the path, the entire Bay Area, up to San Francisco, can be seen from that vantage point. The view reminds me of all the blessings in my life.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

Teenagers have it so hard today.  Encourage them to be honest, even if it is difficult to hear.

 

 

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