Mine #BlogTour – Q&A with Emily Merrill

Avery and Luke are solid. The love they have is the envy of her friends. So when he joins her at university, she’s pretty sure that life can’t get much better. But something is changing and when Avery makes a new friend in the brilliant writer Beckett, she starts to see a new side to the man she loves. A side that scares her.
As their relationship begins to spiral, she’s faced with a life-changing decision. Should she fight for her boyfriend? Or should she fight for herself?


Who is your perfect reader?
My hope for Mine was to reach readers who might find that Avery’s story and situation resonates with them. Beyond that, the perfect reader for Mine is anyone who is open to the question: can you care too much about someone? And when does love become a negative concept?
What books are on your bedside table?
Currently, the books on my bedside table are The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin, The Toll by Neal Shusterman, The Line Tender by Kate Allen, and Hope and Other Punchlines by Julie Buxbaum. A little bit of everything!
Where do you write best?
I write best at my desk, with a good writing playlist and a hot chocolate. I also find that sometimes a change of scenery (a cafe or the library) helps me to get past writers block. And if all else fails, I can head to my “comfy office” – aka, my bed.
Where did your inspiration for Mine come from?
The inspiration for Mine developed over time, and was influenced by a large range of observations. Snippets of conversation I overheard, research, and stories from friends and strangers opened my eyes to the vulnerability of young adults (particularly throughout university) in romantic relationships. I became aware that the discussion surrounding red flags, coercive control, and abuse had not been widened to include my age category. I wrote the book when I was 18, when so many of my peers considered a passionate and all consuming romance to be not only something to strive for, but something that we all desperately needed. I wanted to deconstruct that narrative, and write the story of a girl who learned that her independence was her biggest strength. Avery’s character was so prominent in my mind, and the journey she had to go on was so important, that I couldn’t not write it.
What are your hopes for reader’s to take away from reading Mine?
I hope that anyone who reads Mine turns the final page with their mind open to the existence of coercive control in young adults. This book was uncomfortable at times to write, but that’s the whole point. Avery is fictional, but her experiences exist in so many young people, and I hope that her story will inspire young adults to look out for their peers, be cautious in love, and to remember that they are always deserving of respect.
What are you working on next?
I’m working on two manuscripts at the moment. The first one is the only idea since Mine that has truly inspired and excited me, and it’s one with characters that I hold so close to my heart. The second is the book that I feel like I need right now. A story that perfectly describes the messiness of your early twenties – I’m having a LOT of fun writing that one!

Emily started her debut novel, Mine, when she was eighteen years old and a first year university student at Leeds. Now aged twenty-one, she lives in York with her best friend, consuming copious amounts of hot chocolate during writing sessions. Her favourite places to be include the seaside town where she grew up, a duvet fort (the best place to write a story) and sitting in the window seat of a café, just like her protagonist, Avery. Mine getting published is a dream come true, and Emily is passionate about stories following strong young women and the ups and downs of navigating your early twenties.

Outside of writing, she is an avid reader and book reviewer. You can follow her on Twitter, Instagram and YouTube @alittlewriterem. If she isn’t found writing under cosy blankets, or surrounded by a stack of books, you can probably find her dancing around to Taylor Swift or getting emotional at videos of cats on the internet.

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