10 Things You Didn’t Know about Running Against Traffic
by Gaelen VanDenbergh
1) I am an avid runner, and have been for many years. Running changed my life, and I always knew I wanted to incorporate that theme – the empowerment and new outlook that running can create when you truly need it most – into a novel. I wanted it to change the life of one of my characters. Or many!
2) The original premise for the plot of this novel came to me when my now ex-husband tried to pressure me to leave Philadelphia. He kept dragging me to visit dilapidated, crumbling houses in very small towns in the middle of nowhere. We were having problems, and so I began imagining (and believing) that he was secretly plotting to move me to one of these houses, in one of these towns, to dump me there. I became quite paranoid about it. Needless to say, we didn’t move.
3) I’m in love with Al. Don’t tell my husband. Okay, you can tell him…Al’s fictional, after all.
4) Al is fictional, but the relationship that develops between Al and Paige, and what stymies the relationship, from his end, is inspired by a relationship of mine from years ago.
5) Bryce may be fictional, but his struggles are not. I know and love people who have gone through much of what he goes through in this novel.
6) Section II, The Useless Flirtation, was very difficult to write. It made me feel wretched for Paige.
7) I didn’t know what the ending of Running Against Traffic was going to be, literally until I was writing it. Then I decided I wasn’t satisfied with leaving it at that, so I started writing a sequel.
8) Many scenes between Al and Paige hit the cutting room floor. Scenes that I once thought were important, but then didn’t fit who the characters became. I wrote more about their relationship than anything else, for a while! But this was Paige’s journey, not the journey of Paige and Al. Some scenes will resurface, I think, when the relationship resurfaces.
9) I spent a lot of time getting mad at Bryce, during the writing process, then feeling hypocritical. I’m no angel.
10) Running in Circles, the sequel to Running Against Traffic, will be out (hopefully) late this summer/early fall.
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Genre – Contemporary Fiction
Rating – PG13