Introducing: YA author Keira Lea (YA Feature #2)

Hey everyone! Welcome to my weekly feature introducing new/upcoming YA authors every Friday! Up this week is author Keira Lea. I'm so excited to have Keira on Reading Away The Days. Enjoy the interview and show Keira some love by commenting and checking out her novel Replay!

*Title of book: Replay

*Release date: April 2011

*Genre: Humorous YA paranormal 

*A short description of Replay:

What if you could rewind time? Kelsee Lewis has a new school, a prima donna best friend, and one week to write a hit play. Throw in a self-obsessed mom and an absent executive dad, and it’s no wonder she has panic attacks—complete with time-warp special effects. When Kelsee meets comic book maven Quinn, she realizes the attacks give her the ability to rewind time.Replaying life seems like the best way to erase mistakes. But will second chances leave Kelsee flailing in the orchestra pit alone?

Keira's writing journey so far:

I haven't told anyone this story yet. Be warned, it's a little bizarre. When I was a kid, I didn't read much. I always wanted to watch TV instead of write. One morning (after I grew up, had a baby, and got a job), I couldn't get the voice of a character out of my head. I sat down at the computer to work, but I ended up writing all day instead. And the next day. And the next. After three days, I had the complete manuscript of Replay sitting on my computer. What, you don't believe me?
The truth is I've been a total book geek since before I could read. I would sit in a chair with my dad's copies of Reader's Digest and pretend I could read them. Yes, that makes me a reading poser. I wrote my first short story in third grade and sent my first query to a publisher when I was twelve. Authors like Madeleine L'Engle, Ursula K. Le Guin, Judy Blume, Anne Rice, and Stephen King raised me. Storytelling is the constant in my life.
*Where did you get the idea for Replay?

For the first draft of Replay, I wrote about a girl who has a mystery illness. Critique partners liked my main character's voice, but I could tell the story bored them. I started over with a new mystery illness: the ability to manipulate time.

The concept of time travel as a physical condition inspired me. One well-known example of this is The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. When I adapted the idea for Replay, I explored what it would be like to try to control an extraordinary ability like this while surviving the first year in a new high school.

*I really like the cover of Replay. How much input did you have in the cover, who designed it?

Thank you! I created the cover. Finding an image that worked so well with the book was pure luck. It was ridiculous how happy it made me.

*In Replay, Kelsee can rewind time. If you could rewind time, would you? Any time you would rewind back to?

I would rewind to my freshman year of college. When I was in high school, everyone expected you to go to college, but no one told you what to do when you got there. I ended up on the five-year bachelor's degree plan because I was clueless the first year. Some would argue I was just drunk … on the excitement of being on my own.

*Why do you write YA?

I worked on "adult" novel ideas for a long time before realizing my heart belongs to YA. What do I love about YA books? Everything: the humor, characters, emotional truth. The "anything goes" attitude.

*Do you have any advice for new or aspiring writers?

Write only the stories you want to read.

*Why should we read Replay?

You should read Replay because my mother thinks it's the best book ever written, and Mother is always right.

*Are you working on any projects at the moment?

I tend to work on several ideas at the same time. One of my current projects is a sequel to Replay.

Finally some quick fire questions:

*Summer or Winter? Winter, as long as I'm near fire.

*Night or Day? Night

*Movies or music? TV is not an option?

*Fiction or non-fiction? Fiction

*Tea or coffee? Dr Pepper

*Favourite colour? Burgundy and ice blue

*Favourite writing place? My bed

*Favourite destination? My bed

*Favourite book? A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle

*Favourite author? This is a trick question, right?

*If you were stranded on a desert island what things would you bring?

I'd bring my MacBook Pro, a generator, gasoline for the generator, a satellite connection for the Internet, and my cats. Oh, and maybe my family.

Thanks to Keira for taking the time to answer my questions!

You can buy Replay at these links:
Smashwords link:

Follow Keira on her:
Twitter: @keiraleabooks

Also check out the Replay blog tour:
Blog Tour: The Bookish Snob is hosting the Replay blog tour June 15 – July 2! The blog lineup is on my site:
*If you missed last week's YA author interview, you can check it out here: Introducing YA author Courtney Cole


  1. Awesome! And Keira, after all those years of loving TV--don't forget you need to write the screenplay adaptation of the book... ;)

  2. Great interview Keira. My jaw dropped when you said you wrote a manuscript in three days lol!

  3. Seems like a good read, and an unique idea too! Love the cover! ^_^

  4. Nice interview! Definitely checking out this book, it sounds very good! :)