When I first decided to delve into the world of New Adult stories, I was hit with the usual fear that strikes most writers: What the heck am I going to write about? But then I remembered something I once read. When we think of stalkers, the names of celebrities such as Jodi Foster, David Letterman, Selena Gomez, and Steven Spielberg come to mind. But they aren’t the only ones at risk; we all are, and even more at risk are college-aged students.
Perfect, I thought. I can write about stalking. Except in Tell Me When, I decided to focus on what happens after the stalker is caught. Even if he is caught and locked away for life, you’re still left with the memories of what happened, which can often be traumatic.
Another reason I decided to write about stalking was because it happened to me, in university, like the statistics claim.
I met the guy at a nightclub while my friends were dancing. He seemed nice enough and we started talking, but I really wasn’t into him. He was just someone to entertain me while my friends were busy. At the end of the evening, he asked for my phone number and I made my first mistake. No, I didn’t give it to him. I gave him a fake number. I figured he would get the hint that I wasn’t interested if he tried it. Recently I learned that if you give a stalker any number—fake or not—it makes him think you’re interested.
Mistake #2 was telling him where I worked. You’re probably groaning now, wondering why I did that if I wasn’t interested; I’ve often wondered the same. Apparently my mouth and my brain weren’t communicating very well that day. I don’t even remember telling him where I worked, but he showed up one day. Not only that, he applied for a job there just so he could be near me. Is there anyone here who doesn’t think that’s creepy?
While researching the topic of stalking for Tell Me When (and freaking myself out), I talked to several of my writer friends. Turns out I wasn’t the only individual with a story about how they’d been stalked in high school or college. Fortunately for most, the stalker moved on, but this isn’t always the case. For some victims, the stalking can become deadly for the victim or her loved ones. This is why prevention is the key to avoiding the situation to begin with.
Have you or someone you know ever been stalked? Do you know what to do to avoid becoming a target?
January is National Stalking Awareness Month. For more information, check out the Stalking Awareness Website.
Amber Scott should be enjoying life as a college freshman. She should be pursuing her dream of becoming a veterinarian. She should be working hard to make sense of her precalculus math class.
She shouldn’t be waking up her college roommate with screaming nightmares. She shouldn’t be flashing back, reliving the three weeks of hell she barely survived last year. And she definitely shouldn’t be spending time with sexy player Marcus Reid.
But engineering student Marcus is the only one keeping Amber from failing her math course, so she grudgingly lets him into her life. She never expects the king of hookups will share his painful past. Or that she’ll tell him her secrets in return, opening up and trusting him in a way she thought she’d never be able to again.
When their fragile future together is threatened by a stalker Amber thought was locked away for good, Marcus is determined to protect her—and Amber is determined to protect Marcus…even if that means pushing him away.
First chapter can be found on website.
Born in England, Stina Lindenblatt loves to travel and has lived in England, the US, Canada, and Finland. She spent a semester in graduate school living in central Finland, and a summer during her undergrad degree working in Helsinki. She has a Master’s of Science degree in exercise physiology and has worked with elite athletes. In her free time, Stina is a photographer, mother of three adorable kids, and devoted wife.
Giveaway: I’m giving away two Amazon gift cards ($25 and $5) and a beautiful, heart-shaped locket keychain. You get extra entries if you answer the question (in the comments). Or you can just say ‘hi’.