Author Interview: Shani Petroff

Bedeviled: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly DressAs an inquisitive teen, I spent many long hours contemplating the important questions of our times. Why are we here? What do I want to be when I grow up? Why are cheese fries so awesome? And… is my dad the devil? (Of course I don’t wonder that now, Dad!)

Well, in author Shani Petroff’s teen series, Angel’s dad really is the devil. The first book, BEDEVILED: DADDY’S LITTLE ANGEL, launched last summer. Shani is now celebrating the release of the second in the series, BEDEVILED: THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY DRESS, and she stopped by to answer a few questions for us. Welcome, Shani!

Tell us about Bedeviled: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly Dress

Angel Garrett knows two things for sure. The first is that she inherited her devil-dad’s powers. The second is that she wreaks havoc whenever she tries to use them. Especially when she’s trying to impress her crush, Cole. Angel’s only solution is to stay as far away as possible from him until she learns how to harness this new gift. But how do you avoid someone and get him to ask you to the school dance at the same time?

Shani, what author or book had the greatest influence or impact on you as a teen reader? Why?

Francine Pascal really left an impression with me. I read My First Love and Other Disasters, and Love and Betrayal & Hold the Mayo and fell in love with them. Then, of course, there was Sweet Valley High and Sweet Valley Twins. I grabbed them up like candy. Sometimes I would finish them on the ride home from the mall to my house. I remember thinking how cool it would be to have my own series.

I need to dig out the old Sweet Valley High books! Ahh, memories.

If you could have a dinner party with three other authors, living or dead, who would you invite and why?

There are so many amazing authors to choose from. Your first question inspired me to go with some people who really got me hooked on reading as a kid—Beverly Cleary, Judy Blume, and Christopher Pike. I loved all of their books. Beverly Cleary and Judy Blume’s books seemed to speak right to me. And Christopher Pike had that supernatural element that I loved. And one of his books, Weekend, even had a main character named Shani. And I had never seen my name anywhere (not even in those little stores that sold key chains with everyone’s name on it). Even better—the character was pretty and the hot guy was interested in her—so it made me like it all the better. An evening with the three of them would bring back all the excitement I had reading their books as a kid.

In high school, you would’ve voted yourself most likely to what? Did that prediction come true?

Most likely to be on stage. I always wanted to be an actress. Growing up I was always acting in plays and looking for auditions. I even studied theater in college and went on an acting tour after graduation. There’s still a part of me that wants to perform. So who knows? Life has surprising twists. I think there’s a pretty good chance I could end up on stage again!

The trick is to write yourself a role in your next book, so when it becomes a movie, you get first dibs!

Thanks for chatting with us, Shani, and best of luck with your new book!

Shani Petroff is a writer living in New York City. In addition to tween and teen books, Shani writes for news programs and several other venues. When she’s not locked in her apartment typing away, she spends a whole lot of time on books, boys, TV, daydreaming, and shopping online. She has no devil lineage as far as she knows. Visit Shani online.

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