Author Q&A With Katie McGarry

Thanks to Harlequin Teen, today I've got a Q&A session with Katie McGarry, author of Pushing the Limits, in which she talks a little bit about her new novel. Enter to win your own copy of Pushing the Limits at the bottom of this post!

About Katie McGarry
Katie McGarry was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and she remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings and reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.

Writing has given Katie an excuse to pursue her passions. Research for her books has provided her with the amazing opportunity to train with baseball players, ride along in a drag car at ninety-six miles per hour and experience boxing and mixed martial arts. Katie loves to visit schools and talk to teenagers about her research, writing and the truth that no dream is out of reach.

What was your inspiration for writing Pushing the Limits?

I had two main inspirations: One, I knew from the beginning that I wanted to write a story in which my characters felt strong enough to leave their pasts behind and create new futures for themselves. The first scene I ever saw in my mind was Echo and Noah leaving town after graduation. Two, I wanted to write two characters who were facing overwhelming issues and who, through battling these issues, found hope at the end of their journey.

How did you come up with Echo’s name?

Echo went through several name changes as I wrote the manuscript. For a while, she had a very normal name, but it always felt off. It wasn’t until I looked at Echo from her mother’s point of view that I found her name. Echo’s mother loved Greek mythology so it made perfect sense that she would name her children after the myths. I read several Greek myths and the moment I found Echo’s, I fell in love. Echo, to me, was the girl who lost her voice. Thankfully, she finds it by the end.

Which character is the most “like” you?

All of them. I gave each character a piece of me (though some have larger slices of me than others). Overall, I’d say I’m a strange combination of Echo, Lila and Beth. Echo has my need to please, Lila has my unfailing loyalty to my friends and Beth encompasses my insecurities.

Did you experience friendships with Grace types when you were in high school?

Yes. And the more people have read this story, the more this question comes up. Grace has struck a stronger nerve in people than I ever would have imagined. It seems most of us have unfortunately experienced a relationship where a person wants to “like” you and wants “be your friend,” but only if it serves their needs. In case anyone is wondering, that isn’t friendship.

Are there any parts of the story you feel particularly close to?

Yes. The relationship between Noah, Isaiah and Beth. Beyond my parents and sister, my nearest family members were over fourteen hours away. My friends became my family. The people I grew up with were more than people I watched movies with or talked to occasionally on the phone. These were people with whom I shared life’s most devastating moments, but also my hardest laughs. These were people who I would have willingly died for and I know they would have done the same for me. They shared my triumphs with smiles on their faces and congratulatory hugs. They held me when I cried and offered to beat up whoever hurt my feelings. These were also the same people who were more than happy to get in my face if they thought I was making a wrong decision.

Did anything that happens to Echo happen to you?

Sort of. I was bitten by a dog when I was in second grade and repressed the memory. It felt very strange to have no memory of an incident that other people knew about. It was even stranger to have injuries and not have an inkling where they came from. In college, I finally remembered the incident when a dog lunged at me. I relived the horrible event and sort of “woke up” a few minutes later to find myself surrounded by people I loved. Even though I “remember” the incident, I still don’t remember the whole thing. I only see still frames in my mind and there is no blood in any of the memories.

Enter below for your chance to win a copy of Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry, courtesy of Harlequin Teen. (US/Canada Only)

Find Katie on: WebsiteFacebook | Twitter
Pushing the Limits Links: Amazon | Goodreads | Trailer

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  1. I love that one of the main characters' name was influenced by Greek mythology! I ADORE mythology! Lol.

    Thanks for the giveaway! I've heard nothing but great things about this book!

  2. My daughters name is Greek and comes from Greek mythology too.
    I had a suppressed memory of one of our dogs that got ran over. One day as an adult my mom mentioned it and I was like 'no, you got that wrong, it didn't happen' but then its like a piece just snapped back into my brain and I remembered every detail. It was like removing it, it was SO clear. I cried for a long time. I don't think I ever realized how a memory can be kind of hidden away like it never happened. I mean, I had NO recollection of ANY of it until it snapped into place.
    Anyway, thanks for the giveaway! I'm reading the egalley and would love a physical copy!

    1. Whoa! That sucks about your dog but it's pretty cool how the memory just came back suddenly. I don't remember anything like that ever happening to me, but I'm sure that some of my memories (especially ones from when I was really small) are totally not how things really happened. Kinda freaky, to think about the ways our minds can fool us!


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