★MEET TAYLOR HENDERSON★
★★ Author of The Dying Game, The Sweet Secrets Series, and The Untamed Hearts Series ★★
Taylor Henderson is a twenty-year-old college student that was born and raised in Northern
Virginia. She has been an adamant reader and writer since she was young, and has always found
solace in the worlds and characters that other authors have brought to life in their works. Taylor
is currently working on the sequel to Better Than Revenge, Scarlet Awakening, as well as other
1. Who or what first inspired you to start writing?
My grandma used to say that I had a lot of ideas, and I always enjoyed reading so I wanted to write. I loved creating characters and coming up with new story lines. That is why I continue to write.
2. What is your favorite book, contemporary or classic, and why?
I love Vampire Academy, the entire series, because it was the first real fantasy I ever read, and it was unique which inspired me to expand into other genres. I also love The 9th Girl by Tami Hoag, and The Assault by Harry Mulisch.
3. Are there any struggles you face with writing?
I have a lot of trouble trying to find the motivation to sit down and write, even though I get inspired a lot. I just don’t have the drive to sit down every day and write a chapter until it’s complete. I also find it hard to manage my time when it comes to finding a time to write considering that I work and go to school.
4. You're such a young writer, do you relate to any of the characters from your novel Better Than Revenge?
I relate to all of the characters in Better Than Revenge in one way or another. These experiences that I have created for the characters are experiences that I have gone through in real life either alone, or with my friends. Each of the characters have this real aspect about them, and all of them are easy to relate to, even Brianna. They have strong feelings and emotions, and make mistakes like all teenagers do. The character that I relate the most to is Lena Snotty. Like Lena, I moved from the school where all of my friends were, to a new school where I hardly knew anyone in the middle of my high school years. When I wrote Better Than Revenge, I was 16, and had just made the move to my new school. I had to put myself out there and meet new people, just like Lena does. Lena also has a close relationship with her sister, like I do. We have a love, hate relationship that mostly centers around love. I was excited that I got to write from Lena’s point of view in the second book in the series, Scarlet Awakening.
5. What advice would you give to an aspiring writer?
Do not give up. You can't let the little things get you down. It's hard, but as a writer, you have to be your number one supporter. You will have to push yourself to continue writing, to finish a story, and then to be proud of your final work. You are your toughest critic, but go easy on yourself and have fun when you write. If you truly love writing and stick with it, then your hard work will payoff in the end.
6. Favorite quote about writing?
“I read like the ink from the book is oxygen, and I’m gasping for breath.”
7. Fun fact about yourself?
I wrote Better Than Revenge from the ages of 16-18. During that time, there was a point when I had suffered carpal tunnel in one wrist, and had surgery for a ganglion cyst in the other wrist. Despite the fact that both of my wrists were injured and in soft casts, I continued to write very slowly. Now I have a tattoo of an open book on the inside on my left wrist.
8. Did you write as a child?
I wrote a lot of fantasy and fairy tales when I was really young. I even dabbled in historical fiction. As I got older and become a teenager I switched over to young adult, fiction, and to the genres that I write today.
★★SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS★★
★★ BETTER THAN REVENGE ★★
by Taylor Henderson
Now available from Limitless Publishing…
★ SYNOPSIS ★
Ever since Violet Forrester first moved next door to Brianna, she has been tortured relentlessly…
It seems like Brianna has everything, and yet she still doesn’t have the one thing she really wants; the one thing that Violet cares about the most—Blake Edwards.
After years of letting Brianna walk all over her, Violet’s finally had enough. She’s tired of sitting back and watching Brianna flirt with her boyfriend, steal her friends, and push her around. She’s finally ready to stand up for herself. To do this, Violet and her new friend, Lena, devise a plan to make Brianna realize that not everything is hers for the taking, and Violet knows the perfect way to do it…
After all, nothing is better than revenge. That is, until someone gets hurt.
The hot summer sun was beating down on us as we sat together on the side of the pool. Leaning forward, I dipped one foot into the water and made small circles, causing the clear water to ripple and shine in the bright sunlight. I could feel the heat radiating off of his body as he snaked his arm around my waist. Despite the heat I leaned into him, resting my head on his shoulder as I breathed in his scent. The strong smell of his aftershave mixed with citrus from his shampoo enveloped me, fogging my thoughts.
"Want to take a swim?" Blake looked at me with a small smirk on his sun-tanned face that made my heart melt.
I couldn't help but notice the way his blue eyes twinkled every time he looked at me. A small breeze blew a few strands of his black hair into his eyes as I cupped his cheek with my hand.
"I dare you," I whispered as I leaned in closer to him, pressing my lips gently to his.
He kissed me back softly, allowing his lips to mold and move in sync with mine, before pulling back and smirking at me. "I never turn down a good dare!" he exclaimed with a laugh as he shoved me into the pool.
The cold water slapped against my body, folding in around me on all sides until I was completely submerged. I had just barely managed to take in a breath before I had been so rudely shoved into the pool, and I was thankful that I had. When my toes touched the bottom of the deep end I kicked off of the concrete, propelling myself back upward. Once my head broke the surface I rubbed the chlorinated water from my eyes and squinted up at where Blake had been sitting moments ago.
A chorus of giggles erupted from the opposite direction and I turned my head to see Blake walking toward the fence that separated my yard from my neighbor’s, laughing at something that Brianna, the stuck up princess who lived next door, had said. She giggled, tossing her hair lightly as she spoke again, leaning her body against the wooden fence. As Blake drew near her, she leaned her body forward and pulled him into a tight hug, pressing her chest to his body while rolling her eyes at me, and smirking. I responded with a glare that only deepened when she mouthed the word, "Mine," before she pulled away. The only word she has known ever since we were little.
Since I was younger, and even now, Brianna has been associated with some of my worst memories. As I watched her talk to my boyfriend while tossing me sly glares I remembered seventh grade when Brianna had done everything in her power to make my life miserable. Not even a month into the school year she had found a way to turn all of my friends against me. She dug a hole into my friend group, put herself in, and took me out. She had a leader quality in her, that was for sure. All of my friends followed her in spreading rumors about me, and isolating me from the main group.
I had learned at a young age how to entertain myself, and I had even gotten use to being alone. Her actions, and the actions of my so-called friends had shown me that trust shouldn’t be doled out easily. Trust is something to be given to those who deserve it. That was something that had stuck with me, and was probably the reason I had so few friends to this very day.
Logically, I knew that I was able to change that, but my trust issues ran deep, and I blamed Brianna. Even at a young age she had been conniving and evil. Nothing about her personality has really changed. She’s still conniving and evil—just more so.
That was just one of the many times that the stuck up bitch, formally known as Brianna Richardson, had taken something that was mine and made it hers, and I was tired of it. Brianna was the type of girl who had been spoiled and put on a pedestal her whole life, and I hated people like that. I wanted to rip the silver spoon from her smirking mouth and shove it where the sun doesn’t shine. It was about time that she learned other people have feelings too, and I was just the person to teach her that.
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★★ SCARLET AWAKENING ★★
by Taylor Henderson
Coming soon from Limitless Publishing…
★ SYNOPSIS ★
Summer has finally come, senior year is on the horizon, and everything from the passed year has been put behind them. A balance has returned to the school now that Brianna has been taken down a few notches, Violet and Blake are figuring out where they stand, and Lena's relationship with her sister has gotten better, but there's still one thing Lena can't move passed; not knowing about her family.Her parents have split, sending Lena and her sister, Ella, to California for the summer to visit their mother. While unpacking, Lena finds a photo of the twins with her mom and another man.
A man who she doesn't recognize.
When Lena and Ella start asking questions about the picture, the pair is sent on a search for the family they never knew, and through a past they thought they'd never have to face again.
I pulled a long sleeve sweater from deep within the confines of my suitcase, and stared at it quizzically. Wow, I really did go overboard packing. I know that I had said that I was packing in preparation for anything that came my way, but seriously, a long sleeve sweater? Did I think that sometime during my visit, San Diego was going to be hit by a blizzard?
Shaking my head, I folded the sweater neatly and tucked it away into the bottom drawer of my dresser. I had been unpacking for nearly two hours now, and so far I hadn't gotten far. I blamed my lack of progress on my short attention span, and my laziness. So far, I had managed to organize each drawer according to clothing article. I had separate drawers for bottoms, tops, bathing suits, undergarments, pajamas, and miscellaneous. The sweater was placed into the miscellaneous drawer where it was accompanied by a thin raincoat, sweat pants, and a pair of gray leg-warmers. Seriously, I had a packing problem.
My phone buzzed on the dull hardwood floor just a few inches away from my thigh. I scooped the phone up and smiled at the screen when I saw that the message was from Violet. She had been sending me cute videos of her sister, Lilly, all morning. Lilly had started taking dance lesson a few months ago, and she had her first recital coming up in a week so she would practice throughout the house, despite her mom's efforts. I unlocked the phone, which instantly opened the message to show another video. Along with the video, Violet had sent a message telling me to listen to her mom.
Smiling, I hit play on the video, and watched closely as the camera focused on a dancing, tutu-clad Lilly. She was spinning around the Forrester's living room, weaving in and out of the furniture and doing ballet-style leaps over little obstacles that littered the floor. The obstacles were little stuffed animals, and toys that Lilly had probably set up.
"Watch this, Lizzie," Lilly's voice blasted from my phone's speaker. She stopped moving and faced the camera head on, then smiled so brightly that her eyes scrunched up some. Her dark curls continued to bounce around her face from the previous motion. "I, Lilly Forrester, am going to do something that no other dancer can do." She raised her arms high over her head, and proceeded to do a cartwheel from the living room into the dining room where her mom was.
I heard Mrs. F. let out a shriek, and it soundly like she was about to have an aneurysm or something. The shriek caused Lilly to lose her footing, and fall onto her butt. "No cartwheels!" Violet's mom spoke loudly. She wasn't yelling, but she was definitely worked up. "You could break your neck!" Then the video ended, and I laughed loudly at her words. Mrs. F. was known for being an extreme worrywart. I thought that it was hilarious, while Violet thought that her mom was crazy. I was sure that if I had grown up with her as my mom, I would think she was crazy too.
I shook my head; still smiling to myself about the video as I typed back a reply about how her mom was hilarious, before setting my phone back on the ground and staring into my suitcase again. I would probably be done now if I had continuously stuck with unpacking when I first started. I had begun right after breakfast, and Ella and I had decided to have a race to see who could finish first.
It wasn't fair really. I had more to unpack than she did, so I should have gotten a head start. It had only taken her half an hour to unpack everything. How was that possible? When she finished and had come up to brag about her winning, I no longer saw the point in rushing, and began to take my sweet time. I had even taken a break to go talk to grandpa who had been doing a little organizing of his own. Apparently grandma had given him the task of cleaning out the once guest room that had been converted to a storage room. She didn’t want me to be stuck up in the attic room for my whole visit. I was fine being in the attic, but grandma disagreed.
So when I went to see grandpa, he had been in the middle of trying to figure out the most effective way to begin cleaning the room. In my opinion the most effective way to begin cleaning was to start, but he was sure that there was a certain way that he needed to tackle his task. When I left him, he was grumbling about who was the person to come up with the saying, "Happy wife, happy life." At the moment, making grandma happy by cleaning was not making his life happy.
Sighing, I shook my thoughts from my mind and reached into my bag again, pulling out a cute, red sundress that I had gotten on my last trip to the mall with Ella. I hadn't worn it yet, but I was excited to get the chance too. Red had always been my favorite color. Not only was it just a nice color in general, but also I felt like it made me look sexy, and mysterious. It probably didn't, but a girl could dream. Standing, I went to hang the dress up in my closet, along with the other dresses that I had already hung up. This unpacking thing was rapidly becoming tedious.
With a groan, I leaned my back against the foot-board of my bed that faced the closet. Maybe I could convince Ella to help me finish up? Just as I was about to stand, my eye caught a little corner of a piece of paper that was poking out from behind the dresser. I furrowed my brows at the sight of it, wondering what it could be. The rest of the room had been completely empty when I arrived, so I was curious to see what this was. It was probably nothing, but either way my interest was piqued.
Pushing myself away from the bed, I walked toward the dresser, crouching down next to it as I gripped the corner of the paper and pulled it from its hiding place. I unfolded it, seeing the back first. There was one sentence scrawled across the back. It was short, and sweet.
Keep us in your memories.
That was all that it said. There was no name signed under it, or even a date. Just that one sentence. Now I was really curious. Flipping the paper over, my jaw dropped almost instantly. It was a picture of my mom in the hospital, holding one bundle of white in each arm, with a man standing next to her. I could see now why there was no name or date listed on the back. The date was obvious. The picture had to have been taken on August 8th, the day that my mom gave birth to the twins. That was the first and last time that she had seen them. I assumed that the man in the picture was the guy who had adopted them, and probably the owner of the handwriting on the back as well.
I stood hurriedly, and took the stairs down from my room to go find Ella. Luckily, she was sitting in her room listening to music. I entered without knocking, earning a glare. I didn't care though. I knew that she would want to see this.
Moving toward where she was sprawled across her bed, I trusted the photograph out to her. She took it curiously, staring at the front in silent before flipping it over to read the back.
"Do you recognize him?" she asked me, eyebrows furrowed.
I shook my head no. "He's got to be the guy who adopted the babies. Why else would he be in the picture?"
Ella shrugged in response, staring at the front of the photo again. I stood in silence for a moment as she just sat, holding the picture and frowning down at it. Then, with a smile curving her thin lips upward, she met my eyes. "If we found him, we would probably find the babies too."
I bit my lip as realization crashed over me. "We could finally meet them."
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