Monday, 7 February 2011

Sequins, Stars and Spotlights Blog Tour: Guest post by Sophia Bennett

Hellooo my wonderful readers! I've got a big treat for you today...Sophia Bennett has written a guest post for the blog as part of her Sequins, Stars and Spotlights blog tour!! Yay! This is the 5th stop on her blog tour, and guess what? Today is also the day that Sequins, Stars and Spotlights comes out in the shops, so get over to your local bookshop now and buy a copy! Pleeease? You won't regret it! :) Meanwhile, though, Sophia Bennett has written an awesome guest post on her favourite scenes from her fabulous books...

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My top 5 favourite scenes across the series 

These are some of my favourite scenes. I couldn’t possibly include them all. But I hope they give a flavour of what I enjoy writing … 

Edie and Jenny argue about fashion vs saving the world 

I love it when my characters argue. I know it sounds mean, but their grumpiness always highlights what’s sweet about them, as well as their weaknesses and flaws. In Threads, Jenny loves her new-found fame, and ability to do good by visiting children’s hospital wards in Louboutins. It makes Edie sick. Especially when her blog posts about Jenny’s shoes get more hits than her posts about raising awareness for African issues. Poor Edie. But although she doesn’t know it yet, the seeds of what she’s going to do to make the catwalk show so special are here. I love it when my characters don’t know what’s really happening either! 

The catwalk show at the end of Threads 

This is an obvious one to choose, and it still makes me cry. I was shocked when I first heard it had made someone else cry, though – especially when that person was the head of my publishers in America. Now I’m slightly disappointed if it doesn’t have that effect. I can’t tell you how hard I worked, or how many drafts it took to set it up that way.  

I love the way this scene includes lots of my favourite themes – doing something together, creating a show, making something magical happen by sheer hard work and talent, and yes, at the end, saving the world. Just one little, tiny piece of it, but a very precious piece. This is when Crow finally shows what she’s made of, and just how emotional she can be when it really matters. Which is very! 

The cricket match in Beads, Boys and Bangles 

I love the cricket scene because it’s where the girls from England (and boy) meet the children from India they’ve come to save. It’s based around a cricket match because my brother played exactly such a match with street kids in Mumbai and suggested the idea to me. I even copied the packing-tape ball. 

Sanjay, with his close friendship with Walt Disney, is a favourite character of mine. And Nonie gradually discovers that she can protect someone. Normally, she feels very vulnerable, but here she turns into a mummy tiger. 

The Miss Teen negotiations in Beads, Boys and Bangles 

There are two big boardroom scenes in the second book – one early on, when Edie’s blog becomes a problem for the bigwigs at Miss Teen, and one near the end, when the girls decide to do whatever they can to stop child exploitation for the sake of fashion.  

In the first scene, I knew that Nonie was going to get into trouble, but not how she was going to get out of it. When Crow took charge, I couldn’t write fast enough to keep up with her. I love it when my characters surprise me.  

In the second scene, Crow’s willing to give up the use of her own name on the clothes she designs, if that’s what it takes. My characters have girl power and really do change the world by sticking up for each other and doing what they believe in. Consider them frilly or fluffy at your peril. 

I was shocked when I read about two famous designers – Jimmy Choo and Roland Mouret – who lost the right to their own names. It happens in fashion. Of course, this scene ends slightly differently …  

Jenny’s first night party in Sequins, Stars and Spotlights 

In the new book, there are so many scenes to choose from. The Dior show; the meeting with Joan Burstein, who founded Browns boutique; the day Nonie comes face to face with Liam in Starbucks while wearing a fringed tablecloth and a bicycle belt (see the sneak peek on this blog tour); the trip to New York; Nonie explaining the reason she’s never been very self-confident; the final scene when THAT GIRL ends up with her head on THAT BOY’s shoulder …  

But the scene I’ve chosen is actually very short. It’s Nonie describing Jenny’s first night party after her new musical opens in Chicago. Nonie wasn’t there, and she’s very worried about Jenny – because things have gone wrong for Jenny in the past and she always worries. This time, when she reads about the party on the Internet. she’s more stunned than ever. 

It was very a enjoyable scene to write, and features guest appearances by Elton John and Alicia Keys. Or, as Nonie would put it ELTON JOHN and ALICIA KEYS. I was listening to ‘Empire State of Mind’ as I wrote and I had a wonderful time with this one.  

Yet again, the girls aren’t really listening to each other. From that point of view, I base them on myself and … anyone who tries to have a conversation with me while I’m thinking about a book. My poor children. Oh dear.
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Thanks, Sophia!! :) I hope you enjoyed that everyone. The next stop on the blog tour is at Writing From the Tub tomorrow, where there will be an interview with Sophia. Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. I loved the scene at the end of Threads and Jenny's first night party in Sequins Stars and Spotlights too! Great post, Sophia. : )

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