Q: Come As You Are is the title of a Nirvana song. What does the song have to do with the book?
Theresa: A lot. I went back and forth about mentioning Nirvana in the blurb for Come As You Are. I decided against it after reading the article going around about the twenty-something girl who'd recently written a letter to Nirvana, asking if they could play at…homecoming, maybe? And so I thought I'd better not mention Nirvana. Maybe younger readers don't know much about Nirvana. But reviewers are mentioning the band, and that's good! Yes, there's definitely a strong Nirvana…center.
The weird thing is that I had no idea In Utero was being reissued this year until the book was almost done. That was just serendipity. Molly, the heroine, even writes a story for one of her University of Minnesota classes about the recording of In Utero.
There are other musical nods in the book, some obscure and some not so obscure. There's one line in particular that I've wondered if people will get, and it's in reference to Big Star. If you pick up on it let me know.
Q: How did you happen to write this book?
Theresa: About seven or eight years ago I asked my then editor what she thought about my writing a book, not about high-school kids (she'd mentioned a YA to me), but about twenty-something college students. Because I could definitely see myself doing that. She said there was no market for books featuring people in their twenties, and those people didn't have time to read anyway.
Enter the New Adult genre.
Back when I wrote romance fulltime some readers complained that my writing was too full of angst and the characters were too wounded, so New Adult seemed a logical place for me.
Angst aside, I never went to college so I have a particular fascination with college life. I suppose a romanticized fascination. And I love that age. Plus, I recently wrote a novella called The Girl with the Cat Tattoo that got great reviews and notice. And in thinking about that book… It almost felt a bit NA even though it didn't really contain all of the elements and the main characters were a little bit too old — in their early thirties. But Melody could have easily been an NA character. And the follow-up book, The Geek with the Cat Tattoo, features people in their late twenties. So I was kind of dancing on the fringes of NA, but just didn't know it.
Q: What are you working on now?
Theresa: I hope to get the second cat book done within a few months, and I have an Anne Frasier suspense called Stay Dead (sequel to Play Dead) coming out in April. And I’m considering writing another NA, this one featuring Rose, Molly's best friend from Come As You Are. Oh, and I'm thinking about writing another suspense in my Dead series. So many ideas; not enough time.
Theresa Weir (a.k.a. Anne Frasier) is an award-winning NEW YORK TIMES AND USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR of twenty-three books and numerous short stories that have spanned the genres of suspense, mystery, thriller, romantic suspense, paranormal, and memoir. Her titles have been printed in both hardcover and paperback and translated into twenty languages. Her memoir, The Orchard, was a 2011 Oprah Magazine Fall Pick, Number Two on the Indie Next list, a featured B+ review in Entertainment Weekly, and a Librarians’ Best Books of 2011. Going back to 1988, Weir’s debut title was the cult phenomenon AMAZON LILY, initially published by Pocket Books and later reissued by Bantam Books.
Writing as Theresa Weir she won a RITA for romantic suspense (COOL SHADE), and a year later the Daphne du Maurier for paranormal romance (BAD KARMA). In her more recent Anne Frasier career, her thriller and suspense titles hit the USA Today list (HUSH, SLEEP TIGHT, PLAY DEAD) and were featured in Mystery Guild, Literary Guild, and Book of the Month Club. HUSH was both a RITA and Daphne du Maurier finalist. Well-known in the mystery community, she served as hardcover judge for the Thriller presented by International Thriller Writers, and was guest of honor at the Diversicon 16 mystery/science fiction conference held in Minneapolis in 2008. Frasier books have received high praise from print publications such as Publishers Weekly, Minneapolis Star Tribune, and Crimespree, as well as online praise from Spinetingler, Book Loons, Armchair Interviews, Sarah Weinman’s Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind, and Ali Karim’s Shots Magazine. Her books have featured cover quotes from Lisa Gardner, Jane Ann Krentz, Linda Howard, Kay Hooper, and J.A. Konrath. Her short stories and poetry can be found in DISCOUNT NOIR, ONCE UPON A CRIME, and THE LINEUP, POEMS ON CRIME. She is a member of Sisters in Crime and International Thriller Writers.