Carey, I Can See Your ‘Halo’…

Sing it with me! “You know you’re my saving grace…” (Apologies to Beyoncé.)

In 2010, Carey Corp’s YA novel was a finalist in the prestigious Golden Heart Award, and today we’re celebrating the release of that book, THE HALO CHRONICLES: THE GUARDIAN. Kristi Cook, author of HAVEN, says, “Thrilling and oh-so-romantic, THE GUARDIAN will keep you up all night, turning the pages!” In this urban fantasy, an angel, Gabriel, is sent to protect Alex, a girl with a special gift that she’d do anything to return. They each have their own destinies to fulfill, but will falling for each other get in the way and tear their fragile worlds apart?

Please welcome a dynamic new talent, Carey Corp!

Carey, congrats on the release of your edgy angel YA novel, THE HALO CHRONICLES: THE GUARDIAN! It’s the first in the series. What was the inspiration behind your story?

Strangely enough, the inspiration for my YA was women I knew who were “hooking up” with their high school crushes on Facebook. I started to wonder what it was about first love that would tempt women to risk the lives they’d built and their families. I wrote this: “A woman’s first love has a special and often confusing hold over her life. As it is happening and even years after the relationship’s demise, that love can become a stumbling block to happiness, impeding the ability to move forward.”

As I explored this concept, THE GUARDIAN fell into place. I mean, what better symbolism for the idealistic perfection of first love than an angel. Don’t get me wrong, the angel is *insert swoon* HEAVENLY. But what really intrigued me about this series was the boy who comes after the angel. Does he even have a shot?

Hmm, we’ll all have to buy the book and find out if he does! 😉 Your heroine, Alex, can see goodness and evil in others by the appearance of their auras or halos. Of course, most ordinary folks can’t see halos. It’s a preternatural gift that she feels is actually a curse–why is that?

Most teens just want to fit in — be normal. Alex is sooo not normal. She sees evil and her fear triggers all kinds of unpleasant sensory reactions. Wouldn’t you think that was a curse?

I’m a scaredy-cat, Carey — I’d probably react the same way! That brings me to my next question: Do you believe there’s a guardian angel looking out for you?

Absolutely. When I was a teenager, a guardian angel named Trey saved me from some scary guys in downtown San Francisco. Honest to God!!!

Here’s the story: I went on a trip to San Francisco with the peer-counseling club. All the other kids went off together and I got left behind — I probably could’ve joined them if I’d asked — but in my ego-centric perception I’d been intentionally snubbed. So, I took off on my own, at night, down Market Street. I walked for blocks in a huff, not noticing the surroundings go from nice to shabby.

Just as I realized I was in a bad neighborhood, a couple of creepy guys — who’d been loitering on a stoop — came at me. Not fast, but deliberate. Before I could panic *much* this teenaged boy came out of nowhere to step between the creepers and me. He put his hand on my shoulder, moving me as he said, “I think you want to turn about now.” Then he linked his arm in mine and walked me the fourteen blocks back to my hotel.

What I remember most is that he really listened to me at a time when I needed an empathetic ear. Well that and after he kissed my cheek in front of my hotel, he disappeared. As I entered the building, I stopped and looked back toward Trey but he was gone.

I got chills. Love that story!  In addition to the THE GUARDIAN, you’ve co-written DOON, another YA, with Lorie Langdon. What are the challenges and benefits of writing as a duo? 

Challenges: Hair pulling, name calling, crying, and, of course, the silent treatment. And that’s on the good days. 🙂

Benefits: Lorie was my crit partner before my writing partner and she’s one of my best friends. It’s a lot of fun to write a story about bffs with your bff. As part of our co-authoring process, we’ve talked to several collaborative duos. One thing we learned is every writing partnership works differently. Kami and Margaret (BEAUTIFUL CREATURES) collaborated on each chapter and wrote over one another (no hair pulling). Lorie and I each took a character and alternated chapters. It was so much fun. We’re in an intense revision right now *can’t say more* and part of my goal for my reworked chapters is to crack Lorie up. Trust me — it’s preferable to the hair pulling.

LOL! I can imagine! Sounds like a fun process. Speaking of fun, I hear you’re a big fan of John Hughes movies (You have such good taste!). What did his films teach you about life?

Everything. John Hughes recognized that my life was important. He gave value to the lives of every geek that rode the bus to school and every misfit that cowered against the gym wall at a dance. He taught me weird is good, popular kids feel pressure too, and rich guys are douches.

So true. Your blog features a fun series called FIRST LOVE FRIDAYS where your guests open up about — you guessed it! — their first loves. But, Carey, honey, I want to know about your first love. C’mon, spill!

Yes, FLF is the first Friday of each month. In June, I’m featuring *shameless plug* RITA finalist, Tina Ferraro. Oh sorry, you asked about my *ahem*  first love.

I didn’t date in high school. I was insecure and awkward. I took a junior to prom and he danced the last dance with someone else. In high school, I read. A lot. I liked boys — but they didn’t like me back — or they did, for about a minute — or they wanted to move too fast and when I wouldn’t, they ended up going to second and a half base with my best friend.

My first kiss was easy. Third grade. Jonathan. His dad was a nurse and my dad was a nurse and that’s all the kismet we needed for an elementary smooch. Love was…confusing. I’d have to say the first person I knew I loved — not an epic Pretty in Pink Jake-like crush — was my hubby. That was years after high school…for me, at least.

Wow! Is it any wonder I write YA? Cheaper and more cathartic than therapy. Plus it’s a great way to get revenge on the mean kids. 😉

Couldn’t agree more! Thanks so much for sharing, Carey! 

Carey is giving away an e-copy of THE HALO CHRONICLES to one lucky commenter. All you have to do is tell us about your guardian angel experience and/or your favourite John Hughes movie. 

Buy THE HALO CHRONICLES: THE GUARDIAN (a 2010 RWA Golden Heart® finalist for young adult fiction) at Amazon     Barnes & Noble    Smashwords    Coming soon to iBookstore. Turn your computer into a free eReader: Kindle for PC  NOOK for PC.

More information at Visit Carey’s blog.


65 thoughts on “Carey, I Can See Your ‘Halo’…

  1. How’s this for a “Guardian Angel” experience? Driving down the road, the light is green, you’re going through when you see a tractor trailer barreling down the intersecting road right at you with no sign of slowing. You go to hit the brake, only something is pressing your foot to the gas! The tractor trailer runs the light, and cleans your tail lights as it screams its way across the intersection behind you.

    My experience? No. My son’s. He was still a teenager, and quite flabbergasted by the whole thing as he told me. (His sister was in the car, too, and just as shaken.) My first question? Did you say thank you? His answer? Oh, yeah, Mom, I sure did!

  2. Hiya Vanessa! Hiya Carey! Congratulations on the release of The Guardian. It sounds really intriguing. And what a wonderful spurt of inspiration gave you the idea – it is kinda intriguing, isn’t it? Love the Trey story. Maybe he WAS an angel!!!! Good luck with your debut – may you sell a million of ’em!

    • Thanks for swinging by, Anna! I do wonder just how many relationships Facebook has rekindled since its inception.

      My first thought was that Trey really was an angel! I mean, people don’t just disappear like that, do they???

    • Thanks Anna! In reality Trey couldn’ve been a regular kid, or homeless even. But for me he was my guardian angel and I will always imagine him as such. 🙂

  3. Carey, mega congrats on the release of The Halo Chronicles. It’s great to see the book out there at last!

    It’s so weird that you had a guardian angel experience in San Fran, because I had a similar experience there in 2008. I inadvertently wandered into the badlands (took a wrong turn in a search for Fisherman’s Wharf). Eventually, I made it to the Castro, where I hopped on a crowded cable car. The payment system utterly confused me and then I realised I didn’t have the exact change. A woman who looked exactly like my stepmother, who’d passed away earlier that year, took pity on me and gave me some coins. When it was time for me to hop off, I made my way to the woman so I could thank her again, but she’d disappeared.

    • Ooooh Vanessa, chills! And the fact that it was a SF experience has my brain spinning. I’m reminded of that Robert Downey Jr. movie with the 4 guardian angels, Heart and Souls. I can’t remember if it took place in SF or Manhattan. Anyway–what a great story.

      • You know, I didn’t see my guardian angel get off the tram. I turned to look out the window and a few minutes later, she was gone. The tram hadn’t stopped. That’s what freaked me out.

        Ooh, I adore Heart and Souls! It was indeed set in San Fran.

  4. Fabulous interview, you two! The Guardian sounds excellent.

    Favorite John Hughes? Has to be Ferris Bueller! That movie is probably the reason I ended up going to college in Chicago – though I never did dance on a parade float. 🙂

  5. Hi Carey, hi Vanessa,

    What a terrific interview. Loved your story about being walked out of danger! How terrific was that?

    I can’t think of a guardian angel story like that but I do know there have been plenty of times I’ve thanked my lucky stars I was in a particular place at a given time and not somewhere else. So much to be grateful for.

    I’m going to look out for your stories. Vanessa is so great at picking authors to read!

  6. Hi Carey and Vanessa! Firstly, congratulations to both of you – you’re obviously both really talented writers!

    Carey, my hair stood on end when I read your guardian angel experience! I haven’t had anything so graphic but I’ve certainly had instances where my instincts have been strongly against something!

    Good luck with The Guardian – it sounds like a great story. As does your inspiration behind it. Facebook is an interesting way to reach back and reconnect with people.


  7. Carey, I love the idea of first loves! The Guardian sounds amazing.

    I’ve had a lot of “Wow, that was close” moments, but I never stopped to think that it might be a guardian angel. I’ll have to pay more attention now.

    and John Hughes is the bomb, isn’t he? I would love to be serenaded by a guy holding a boom box outside my window.

    • Oh, Abigail, I’m glad you stopped by. Your comment just triggered a memory of one of my favourite ’80s movies–Say Anything!

      I’m going to pay attention to those close calls from now on, too. I wish I had a guardian angel to steer me away from a bad Italian restaurant a few years ago. :\

    • Hey Abigail!

      I wish I had a guardian angel to protect me from the stomach bug my 7-year-old passed to me. One minute I’m blogging with Vanessa’s lovely followers, the next I’m doing an Exorcist impression. 😦 24 hours later – I’m back.

      I LOVE the boom box from Say Anything. But I think my favorite JH guy is Duckie from PinP. Have you see Easy A? It’s a great JH homage.

  8. Carey and Vanessa,
    What a great post! The best guardian story is that picture I sent you of that accident. I wish I could post the picture because that’s truly a guardian angel story if I ever saw one!
    John Hughes films….hmmm. That’s a really hard one. I’m not sure if I can pick one. I loved Ferris, too, but it was just a fun movie for me. Pretty in Pink was one of my favorites back then. When she wouldn’t let him drive her home because she was embarrassed of where she lived. The peer pressure of the rich boy and even his own inner conflict was sooooo evident. I truly didn’t know who I felt sorry for. But, I think my all-time favorite would have to be The Breakfast Club. How could it not. I loved that kids of the same age, with different financial backgrounds, different families, different personalities could come to see that teens all feel the same pressures and anxieties. High school is certainly like a pressure cooker! And who can’t hear “Don’t you forget about me…..” and NOT imagine TBC? As soon as I hear that song, I feel like I’m back (wayyyy back) in high school again!
    Carey, as for my favorite guardian angel in a book, I will have to say “The Halo Chronicles.” I’m glad I was lucky enough to read it, and I loved both love interests. But, I know what you’re saying about that ideal first love. They weren’t all that perfect, but sometimes you don’t recognize it until you find the ideal. What’s depressing is the amount of times people go searching for that first love out of boredom or curiosity and then LOSE the life they were meant to have forever.
    Thanks for getting my mind moving in a positive direction this morning! This post got me thinking about twenty things at once. I’m not sure that’s a good thing…LOL.
    Good luck with the book, Carey! It’s sure to be a great series and big hit! I can’t wait to read the second one. If anyone can follow an angel as a first love, it will be Derry, that’s for sure. Love him!
    Great interview, Vanessa!

    • Hi, Kim! I’m glad Carey’s interview got your brain into gear. 🙂

      It *is* hard to pick just one John Hughes movie. No, I can’t hear Don’t You Forget About Me without thinking of the closing scene of TBC. Sixteen Candles is one of my JH favourites, though it didn’t strike me till much later that hero Jake was kind of arrogant. Maybe even a douche, as Carey would say! Pretty darn cute, though.

      • So funny Vanessa – the douche comment was about Blaine in PinP. I confess, Jake as the rich-guy-douche exception. Last week the hubby and I went to my 10-year-old’s band concert where they played the theme to Bridge on the River Kwai. Hubby turns to me and says, “Man, I really want to watch Bridge on the River Kwai.” and I’m thinking, “Boy, I really want to watch Breakfast Club!” Ha!

        Kim – So sadly true and well put. I see a lot of John Hughes in your writing. The insecurities of who you are and pretending to be something you’re not. I think your books will resonate with teenagers (young and old) and I can’t wait until they’re out.

  9. Great interview, Vanessa and Carey! Fave John Hughes movie? The Breakfast Club, hands down. That final monologue by Anthony Michael Hall is teen perfection. Tone, delivery, and message nail YA.

  10. Hey Carey! Your book sounds awesome, and I’m looking forward to reading it.

    The only angelesque story I have was when my husband was gone to war and I had three children under the age of four. I took them to an eatery and my youngest got a hold of a bite of hotdog and preceded to choke. I swung her up and tried to get the hotdog out, but I couldn’t. Then this man out of nowhere grabbed her from me, smacked her back good and out popped the hotdog. He smiled and gave her back to me. I pulled her close, gave her a kiss, and when I looked back up, he was gone. No one saw him leave.

    I don’t know if he was an angel, I believe he was placed there by God to help me when my baby needed help the most. That’s heavenly intervention in the coolest way.

    • Shea, it’s unimaginable what might’ve happened if that angelesque man hadn’t stepped in. How extraordinary! I bet you and your husband must thank him in your prayers every night. Thanks for sharing.

    • Wow! So many stories to be thankful for.

      Shea- I got teary reading your story. Whether a Seraph or mortal, that man was definitely Heaven Sent. And you’ve helped me see this stomach bug the little one shared with me as a gift. Thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks Bev. I means a lot that you like the cover. I had tons of insecurities about doing it myself, but after many rounds and tons of feedback from my inner circle, it turned out exactly the way I wanted.

  11. What a wonderful experience! So excited for you, Carey!!! And your book sounds amazing. I can’t wait to read it. I love YA. (I write it too, but that’s another story.)

    Super fab interview, Vanessa and congrats, Carey! I look forward to hearing much more about you in the future.


    • Thanks for stopping by Darynda. Your YA is on my list of eagerly anticipated books. 🙂 I am also very excited that you are going to be the July guest speaker at OVRWA. Can’t wait.

    • Excellent choice, Amanda! Isn’t it amazing how Matthew Broderick still looks pretty much the same today as he did way back then? Darlin’, danke schon for visiting.

    • Thanks Amanda. I do love Ferris! Although I connect better with John’s emotional, angsty characters. I am really excited to be doing the Kindle INDIEpendence summer promotion with you.

      I’m reading CODENAME:DANCER right now and really enjoying it! I can’t wait until my daughter is old enough to read it.

  12. Great interview, Vanessa and Carey! So glad Kim directed me to this blog. The Guardian sounds awesome, and your guardian angel moment sounds straight out of a novel! Wow!
    Favorite John Hughes movie? Breakfast Club.

  13. Lovely to see you here, P.H! I must thank lovely Kim for showing you the way. I loved the tension and the hope in the Breakfast Club. It’s a timeless movie.

  14. Hi Carey and Vanessa
    Great interview! I love the story of Trey, spooky in the most heartwarming way…
    I haven’t any angel-rescue stories to recount but I so enjoy reading them.
    THE GUARDIAN sounds wonderful, Carey, I love the cover. Good luck with it.

  15. Hey all,

    My darling daughter gave me her stomach bug and I’ve been doing my Linda Blair impression for the past 24 hours. Now that I’ve rejoined the living, I’m going to play catch up. I can’t wait to read the comments!

  16. Pingback: Carey Corp | Darkly Romantic, Lightly Enchanted: Smart Teen Fiction with a Twist

  17. Vanessa – great interview and Carey, mega congrats on your release! I LOVE John Hughes movies and Pretty in Pink is probably my favorite, though my husband is still in big trouble for throwing out the soundtrack to it (and yes, it might’ve been vinyl, which Duckie would’ve approved of!!!!!

    • Hey, Amanda! Can’t wait to see your Fairy Bad Day on the shelves–not long now, eh? I don’t blame you for being upset with hubby for losing your vinyl copy of the PinP soundtrack. 🙂 I guard my Duran Duran LP (the first one from 1981/82) with my life!

    • Amanda – I gasped when I read the part about your vinyl PinP. That’s one of my favorite all-time soundtracks. I feel your loss. And yes Duckie would have approved. 🙂

      Fairy Bad Day sounds adorable! And I LOVE the cover. I’m going to add it to my Goodreads TBR right now.

      • Vanessa – yes, keep standing over it because those pesky men with their weird musical tastes cannot be trusted around treasures!

        Carey – I know – he’s a bad, bad husband! It’s the best movie soundtrack ever! Anyway, I think I forgot to say that I’m really looking forward to reading your book (and have been ever since you mentioned it on the rwaya loop)

  18. Pingback: ‘The Halo Chronicles’ Winner! « Authorness

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