· When did you decide to be an author?
The writer in me has always existed. I’ve always enjoyed writing and creating stories. However, the actual ‘sit down in a chair and write’ a full novel, did not happen until eight years ago. My daughter pushed me to start the book that I’d been talking about writing for years.
· What was your first piece published?
My first published book was GRAPE BUBBLEGUM. Also available is SINCLAIR SUMMER. Later this year, my middle-grade fantasy will be released.
· What character is most like you?
I used to think I was more like Beatrice, but the more I think about it. I’m a lot like Aunt Abbey J.
· What was the first story you wrote as a child?
In the fourth grade I wrote a story called “The Mystery of Room 4” and my father illustrated. It was full of mystery and intrigue. Well, at least I thought it was. LOL!
· Do you have any advice for anyone writing a book?
Sit down and write the story. Don’t think about what you’re doing, just keep writing until you’ve reached the end. People tend to talk about it, but never actually get to the ‘doing’ part. You can fix everything during the revision process. Believe in your story. Have fun writing. Let your imagination run wild and tune out the naysayers!
· Who is your favorite author?
I can’t name a favorite. It changes frequently.
· What technique do use write (make it up as you go, plan it)?
I just make it up as I go. No plotting or planning it’s like a movie reel starts rolling and I just write what I see in my mind.
· What piece are you working on now?
Another middle-grade fantasy with a light sprinkle of sci-fi.
· What is your favorite book?
All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot.
· Did you receive any awards for a book of yours?
Not yet…but I’ve won several in my dreams J
Beth Bowland, a native Ohioan, has always enjoyed reading and making up stories of her own. She writes picture books and middle grade fiction. When she’s not writing, she loves watching HGTV. She has one daughter and resides in Arlington, Texas, with her husband, Phillip, and feisty 5lb Maltese, Rocky.
Musa Publishing, Amazon, Barnes & Noble
When hair dye goes wrong, falsies escape during pep rallies, and friends turn to the dark side, Beatrice’s 8th-grade year can only be saved by grape bubblegum kisses.
13-year-old Beatrice Peppercorn’s heart’s desires are to finish her final year in middle school, win the heart of her cutie pie crush and take home the trophy for the spelling competition. Simple, right? Not when Beatrice’s arch nemesis gets in her way and a new kid arrives–turning her world upside down.
Oh man,” I whispered, staring at myself in the mirror. “What was I thinking?” Strands of wet, purple hair covered my trembling hands, and more lay in the sink. I closed my eyes and prayed for this to be a bad dream, then slowly opened them. “Oh. My. Gawd. Mom’s going to kill me!”
It had seemed so easy: mix chemicals, apply, wait, and then rinse. Four steps, only four steps. How’d I mess up?
I leaned against the sink, knocking a hand mirror onto the floor. The sound of shattering glass ricocheted against the tile floor. “Crap!”
“Bea,” Mom yelled. My heart stopped beating. “Beatrice, what did you break?”
I grabbed the hair color box and stuffed the gloves and empty bottles inside. My mother’s footsteps pounded up the stairs. The bathroom air thickened around me.
“Uh…I knocked over the hand mirror.” I leaned against the closed door.
“Be careful cleaning it up.”
At the sound of her heels tapping down the wood stairs, I breathed a sigh of relief.
After carefully picking up the broken glass, I conditioned and rinsed my hair. I surveyed the damage. Gawd, I’d qualified for Idiot of the Year. My eyes watered as I gently removed the clumps of hair from the sink, wrapped them up in a paper towel, and discreetly stuffed them in an empty tissue box. Choking back a sob, I stomped it all down with my foot, squishing my failure deeper into the trashcan.
First, I should’ve known not to put anything in my hair that smelled like the ammonia Mom used to mop the kitchen floor. Secondly, the “For Professional Use Only” typed in bold letters should’ve warned me.
The doorbell rang as I continued to glare back at my reflection.
“Bea,” Mom hollered, “Shannan’s here.”
I cracked the bathroom door. “Tell her to come on up.” My yell was followed by her footsteps on the stairs.
“Hey, Bebe, where are you?” Shannan said in the hallway.
“I’m in the bathroom. Get in here, hurry.”
“Ew! No way, girl.”
“I’m not using it.” I opened the door. “I have to show you my hair,” I whispered.
Shannan saw me, and her eyes got three times bigger. “Whoa!”
“Shh, before my mom comes up here.”
“What did you do to your hair?”
“I tried to color it.”
“Why would you try to do it yourself?”
As my best friend since sixth grade, she should know why. “Because I’m a dork,” I said. “Yesterday, while Mom and I were out shopping at the mall, I saw Mitzie in that really expensive salon getting highlights, and I got jealous.”
Shannan slapped her forehead and sighed.
“When we left the mall, we went to the grocery store, and I noticed a beauty supply place next to it. So, while
mom shopped, I snuck over and bought the kits.”
Shannan straightened up. “Kits.” She glanced into the trashcan, stared at the two smashed boxes and then glared at me. “Why did you buy two?”
“I couldn’t decide which color I wanted. After I tried the first one, it was too light. So I used the second one, and that’s when disaster struck. It turned purple and started falling out.”
Shannan’s mouth formed an O as her eyes glazed over. “All of this because of Mitzie.”
I nodded, and my bottom lip quivered.