Ask the Author: S.C. Megale

What would you like readers to know about you? 

Hello! I’m honored to be interviewed. And I am sending love and strength to all who may need it after a difficult year.  

My name is Shea C. Megale, and I’m a 25-year-old YA author. I’d like to make a career out of writing, but in case that doesn’t work out I have promising connections in the mall train industry. I’m an historian, a Master Naturalist, a Lion, a Knight, and recently a saltwater aquarist caring for an anemone that’s an absolute asshole.  

What is your book about for those who haven’t read it? 

This is Not a Love Scene (2019), St. Martin’s Press 

Lights, camera―all Maeve needs is action. But at eighteen, a rare form of muscular dystrophy usually stands in the way of romance. She’s got her friends, her humor, and a passion for filmmaking to keep her focus off consistent rejection…and the hot older guy starring in her senior film project. 

 
Tall, bearded, and always swaying, Cole Stone is everything Maeve can’t be. And she likes it. Between takes, their chemistry is shockingly electric. 
 

Suddenly, Maeve gets a taste of typical teenage dating life, but girls in wheelchairs don’t get the hot guy―right? Cole’s attention challenges everything she once believed about her self-image and hopes for love. But figuring this out, both emotionally and physically, won’t be easy for either of them. Maeve must choose between what she needs and what she wants, while Cole has a tendency to avoid decisions altogether. And the future might not wait for either 
 

What has been your inspiration for writing it? 

*Gestures vaguely to my wheelchair* 

What was your favorite scene or part of your book to write? 

My favorite scene takes place when Dad drives Maeve home from the movie theater. She had just watched a film wherein a disabled character dies by suicide because he believed he was a burden on his loved ones. This of course deeply disturbs Maeve and makes her think: 

I sighed and clicked my phone to darkness. “Dad, if you were a burden on your family, would you want to die?” 

            Dad was silent as he held the wheel. 

            “Like, for your family,” I emphasized. “Like to free them.” 

            “Maybe, if I felt I was really hurting quality of life for you and Mom.”       

            My stomach knotted. “Yeah,” I said. 

            “Why?” 

            “I don’t know,” I said. I didn’t feel like admitting to myself that the movie might have bothered me. 

            “What made you think of that?” 

            I hesitated. “Maybe I could make the same argument. About myself.” 

            Dad’s brow pulled together. Concern clouded his face. I think he gripped the wheel harder because his knuckles whitened. 

            “Don’t.” 

            “What?” I said. 

            “You’re not a burden.” 

            I gazed out the window and tried to breathe against the weight in my chest. 

            “What would you do?” I said. A pause. “What would you do if I decided to commit assisted-suicide, in a hospital bed and everything?” 

            Dad’s answer was immediate. It even shook. “Then I’d be lying down with you.” 

            “To comfort me?” 

            “No,” said Dad. “Taking the same injection.” 

What books or authors inspired you to become a writer? 

I adopted the appallingly cliché initials-then-surname trend when I decided to publish as S.C. Megale. Part of that choice I attribute to one of my spiritual muses, C.S. Lewis. Other writers who have inspired me I also have the fortune of calling personal mentors: Suzanne Collins, John Flanagan, John Grisham, and David Baldacci are all dear friends with whom I’ve shared letters, lunches, phone calls, and occasional tears. I could not be luckier.  

What advice would you give to aspiring authors who want to write a book? 

My catch phrase these days is that I had to write one million words before I got a traditional publishing book deal. It’s true. I added together all the words of the manuscripts I’ve completed (fourteen!) up until the point of my contract and the sum was over a million. So, my advice is that you need to write if you want a book. Astounding, right? But it doesn’t stop there. You also can’t keep writing and editing the SAME thing. The only way to improve your first book is to write your second book.  

More about me and contact info can be found at www.scmegale.com 

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