You Asked for Perfect is one of those books which perfectly bridges the gap between teenage me and current me. Silverman’s writing is emotional, tender, and moving. I am so pleased to be able to host an interview with Laura Silverman so you can all get a little glimpse into the behind the scenes!
You Asked for Perfect
Senior Ariel Stone is the perfect college applicant: first chair violin, dedicated community volunteer, and expected valedictorian. He works hard – really hard – to make his life look effortless. A failed Calculus quiz is not part of that plan. Not when he’s number one. Not when his peers can smell weakness like a freshman’s body spray.
Figuring a few all-nighters will preserve his class rank, Ariel throws himself into studying. His friends will understand if he skips a few plans, and he can sleep when he graduates. Except Ariel’s grade continues to slide. Reluctantly, he gets a tutor. Amir and Ariel have never gotten along, but Amir excels in Calculus, and Ariel is out of options.
Ariel may not like Calc, but he might like Amir. Except adding a new relationship to his long list of commitments may just push him past his limit.
A big part of this book is the need for us to have support systems and some of the trouble and stress your characters go through is when they isolate themselves. Can you talk about why it is so important for you to have this theme in your book?
Oh gosh I think this is something so many people struggle with — myself included. When I’m going through a difficult time, I tend to turn inward and keep it all to myself. Sometimes this does work, and I’m able to sort out the problem on my own. But sometimes you need your support system. However your support system is often dealing with their own internal battles and might not realizing you’re struggling as well. It’s so important to reach out to the people you care about and who care about you so you can help each other through difficult times.
Ariel has got to be one of my favorite characters in all of time, if Ariel made friends with other YA characters in other books, who would his friend circle be?
Ariel would definitely be best friends with Hermione Granger, and he would probably roll his eyes at Harry Potter all the time, thinking the guy is way too into himself.
I am so excited for your next upcoming project It’s a Whole Spiel, can you talk about what is has been like to be an anthology editor and how it has either changed, or not, your own writing process? Is it strange to be on the editing side of the table? Does it make you want to be a part of more anthologies in the future?
I have LOVED working on Spiel. It’s definitely been one of the highlights of my career. Every part of the process (except for tax forms) has been wonderful, from working with my co-editor Katherine Locke to editing stories by incredible writers to reading a beautifully crafted forward by a very talented Jewish woman who’s name we’ll be able to reveal soon! It’s an incredible privilege to work with writers I admire, so I one hundred percent want to work on another anthology in the future.
Can you tell me about a time in literature growing up, or in pop culture, where you felt seen or represented? Part of what I love about more of the upcoming YA is the different identities and stories being told that just didn’t exist when I was growing up.
What recent books have you been reading that you absolutely need to recommend?
Lili here, I’d like to let you know about Laura’s great pre-order campaign for You Asked for Perfect where you can win a cute little magnetic bookmark of one of the main characters, find out more!
About the Author
Hello! I’m a writer and freelance editor. I currently split my time between Atlanta, Georgia and Brooklyn, New York. Thankfully both cities have good bagels.
My first novel, GIRL OUT OF WATER, debuted in 2017. It’s a summery coming-of-age story about a California surfer girl sent to landlocked Nebraska to care for her younger cousins. My second novel, YOU ASKED FOR PERFECT, debuts March 5th, 2019. It explores the effects of intense academic pressure through the eyes of a teenage Valedictorian-to-be as he juggles school, friendships, family, and a romance with his tutor. You can order both books from most retailers or request them from your local library.
I have degrees in English and Advertising from the University of Georgia, and I have an MFA in Writing for Children from the New School. In addition to writing, I also freelance edit manuscripts and query letters. Please check out my services if you’re interested. I particularly love polishing query letters!