For someone who’s smart and funny and nerdy in her work, the expectations (of fans) to deliver are set high. Fortunately, Robyn Schneider in person is just that, and more.
On Sunday, the author of The Beginning of Everything and Extraordinary Means (which came out last May!), together with Katie Cotugno (How to Love) and Melissa Kantor (Maybe One Day), treated their Filipino fans to an afternoon of question-and-answer and book signing, in an event hosted by National Book Store. Schneider talked about her latest novel, kissing and the inspiration behind her characters—misquoting a One Direction song along the way—as well as her House and some dream cast. If you didn’t already adore the author, here are fourteen things we learned about Robyn Schneider from #KMRinPH.
She Loves Stories About Firsts…
“Because [when I think about it in my mind] I always remember the first boy who I kissed,” the author revealed. “But, like, maybe the seventh boy? It’s like, oh that—wait, who was that? Wait wait no, you know? [It’s] not quite as impactful.”
…For the Same Reason She Loves Writing Teen Fiction
She loves the fact that someone can take a book and take away something that’s really important to them from it. “[Because you] guys are trying to figure out who you are and trying [to make] sense of the world and [I think a lot of] the answers come from stories and from songs and from things that, you know, that hit you in a big way when you’re a teenager, at least it did for me.”
Her Characters are Very Much Her in One Specific Moment
Lane (Extraordinary Means) is very much how Schneider was in her last semester of graduate school and Ezra (The Beginning of Everything) is very much who she was at twenty four. In fact, she admitted, “I have this theory though that I would’ve been like a really hot [guy, just] based on the fact that I wrote, like, Ezra’s this super emotionally autobiographical character and pulled way too much from my [own story]. And [suddenly the] internet was like, he’s so cute, and I’m like, I’ve never had that experience when I was in high school and everyone being like, you’re so cute. So, like, shame.”
The Beginning of Everything was Written When She was in Medical School
Then, she left to become a full time writer and that, for her, is the best thing she did. (Well, obviously.) “I think, having that in my head, like, it’s okay to not know where you’re going [but deciding] to leave is the first step. Like, deciding to change, you don’t have to have everything planned [out, that’s] enough for now.”
And She Wanted a Character that Doesn’t See Who He is at All
“I don’t think that people oversee themselves accurately.”
She Wrote and Produced the Book Trailer for Her Latest Novel
…Extraordinary Means, and it’s directed by Yulin Kuang. Also, I’m obsessed with it.
And Has a “Dream Cast” for the Leads
In it, two teens with a deadly disease fall in love on the brink of a cure. And she sees Chloë Grace Moretz playing Sadie and Dylan O’Brien as Lane.
She’s in the Early Stages of Writing Another Book
It’s about two very, very different girls who dated the same boy a year a part, whom many years later kills himself. And this brings them together, forming a weird, wonderful friendship where they learn you don’t have to impress this boys’s club to be true to yourself and be happy with yourself.
Writing an Authentic Guy Experience Warranted Harassing Her Guy Friends
…to dish what it’s like kissing a girl. “I was like, what kind of fireworks, but like where, but like how long,” Schneider shared. She then had to shamefully acknowledge this at the end of her book.
David Tennant is Her Favorite Doctor
But she thinks she’s Matt Smith.
Ezra was Named as an Act of Revolt
Yes, named after that Ezra from Vampire Weekend (which is also mentioned in The Beginning of Everything). She dated Ezra’s cousin and he casually informed her that she can never use the name Ezra because that’s his cousin’s name and went on to list other off-limit names, naming every single member of his extended family. So she was like, “okay. Well, not only am I not gonna listen to [you, I’m] gonna write a novel and the main character’s gonna be named Ezra. So take that.”
She is a True-Blue (Green?) Slytherin
Although she didn’t consult Pottermore’s Sorting Hat. So there’s that.
She Wants to Collaborate with Jandy Nelson…
Because she thinks The Sky is Everywhere and I’ll Give You the Sun are both amazing.
…But Also, She Wants to Do an Experiment with John Green
Where they’d write chapters together and won’t reveal who’s written which and see if people would figure it out. Just because Schneider thinks her fiction is so often accused of being similar to his. Albeit, she’s quick to recognize that she probably wouldn’t like the book; she’d just love the experiment. A very Slytherin experiment, Cotugno pointed out.
I am not you, clearly, but if I were, I’d read Robyn Schneider’s novels. (Actually, I just reread The Beginning of Everything and loved it even more.)