Audio Spotlight & Excerpt: Living Dead Girl + Author Interview

Title: Living Dead Girl

Author: Kelly Gunderman

Narrator: Veronica Orosco

Length: 6 hours 15 minutes

Publisher: Kelly Gunderman

Released: Dec. 11, 2020

Genre: Young Adult

In this young adult thriller perfect for fans of Pretty Little Liars, Thirteen Reasons Why, and Sadie, a teenage girl is about to find out how far would she will go to get revenge on those who have taken everything from her.

When 17 year old high school senior Kaitlyn Davis is almost raped and then brutally murdered at a party by three boys she goes to school with, she uses her dying breath to swear that they will pay for what they’ve done.

When she wakes up the next morning, she is a bit blurry on the night before and gets a big surprise – she’s alive? How?

Soon, things start getting weird – it seems as though no one can see her or hear her, and no matter what she does, she can’t seem to feel anything, such as temperature. She can still move things around and touch others, and the room suddenly drops about 30 degrees wherever she is, but why?

That’s when she is forced to accept it – she’s dead. At first, Kaitlyn grieves the loss of her short life – there are so many things that she is going to miss out on, so many things that she will never get to do. But then she gets angry, and she remembers her promise to get revenge on those who had taken her life.

Setting out to give them what they deserve, Kaitlyn has no plans to stop until she gets the revenge she desires.

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Q&A with Author Kelly Gunderman
  • Do you believe certain types of writing translate better into audiobook format?
    • Honestly, I think that any kind of writing can become an audiobook! There are some kinds, though, like with Living Dead Girl, where there are some pretty emotional parts – in this case, I find it really important to find a narrator who can convey these emotions, or it will end up feeling dull and lifeless.
  • Was a possible audiobook recording something you were conscious of while writing?
    • When I was writing Living Dead Girl, I honestly wasn’t sure I wanted to have it available as an audiobook. I thought it could be great, sure, but truth be told, I was just really focused on writing the book. The book took a really long time to complete. I thought a lot about how cool it would be as a movie, but not as an audiobook as much. After I finished it, though, I knew I wanted it to be available in all formats – especially audiobook!
  • How do you manage to avoid burn-out? What do you do to maintain your enthusiasm for writing?
    • Avoiding burn-out is really difficult, especially if you find yourself doing a lot of the same thing over and over again. For me, this is more true with editing than actual writing. When I’m writing, I can skip around to other parts of the novel, write chapters out of order, and kind of just fit everything together. However, when I’m editing, I try my hardest to stay in order so that I can see the big picture. There are times when I find myself completely tired of redoing the same parts of the book over and over again, so I will come up with new things to throw in there to keep it interesting.
  • Are you an audiobook listener? What about the audiobook format appeals to you?
    • I do like audiobooks, yes! In fact, I have a pretty huge library of audiobooks, and I find them essential for when I really want to read a book and not disturb anyone else – like at night. I do a lot of camping with my family, and sometimes if I can’t sleep, it’s kind of hard to turn on lights in our RV and not pester them, so I just slip some earbuds in and listen to audiobooks. I also like to listen to them when I’m doing other stuff, like jigsaw puzzles or sudoku puzzles.
  • Is there a particular part of this story that you feel is more resonating in the audiobook performance than in the book format?
    • Yes. There are some very, very emotional parts of Living Dead Girl that just work better in audiobook format as opposed to print. One of these is a very, very emotional chapter toward the end of the book. I was really worried about how the emotional elements of this would carry over to the audiobook, and whether or not a narrator would be able to really grasp what I was going for, but when Veronica finished that chapter, I was completely blown away by how amazing of a job she did with it. She did such an awesome job with that chapter that I have to admit – I actually teared up a bit.
  • How did you celebrate after finishing this novel?
    • Finishing this novel felt like raising a child – part of me feels like I’m forever going to be working on it to make it better, and the other part of me is like “Yay! It’s finally done!” every time I fix a new mistake or something that I missed the first thousand times around. So to answer the question – cake. There is always cake.
  • What gets you out of a writing slump? What about a reading slump?
    • Getting out of a writing slump is always more difficult for me than getting out of a reading slump. Getting out of a reading slump happens when I stumble across a novel that I’m just like “Whoa! I HAVE to read this, and I have to read it right NOW!” This usually results in me reading book after book, then. However, getting out of a writing slump is difficult for me – I can say just keep writing, but sometimes that isn’t an option for me. There are a lot of times when I just have to mull it over in my mind over and over until I can think of where I want to go with it before I even go anywhere near it again. To be honest, this can take weeks for me.
  • What’s your favorite:
    • Food – Oh gosh, definitely pizza! I absolutely love pizza.
    • Song – The Afterglow by Silverstein.
    • Book – I have so many favorite books. I have read so much throughout my life that I can’t even remember every book that I’ve said is my “favorite” over the years – there are just too many to count! I think my all-time favorite is To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, however.
    • Television show – Classic Are You Afraid of the Dark? I have my two daughters obsessed with that show, too, and we watch it together all the time. We even have our own “Midnight Society” and tell scary stories around the campfire every weekend. It is so much fun! I’m also a huge Star Trek fan (The Next Generation, Voyager, and Discovery are my favorites).
    • Movie – The Truman Show. I have loved that movie since the first time I saw it, and I have probably seen it a thousand times since then.
    • Band – Silverstein and New Found Glory. I can’t pick between the two, because I love them both!
    • Sports team – I am honestly not into sports. At all. So I don’t have any favorite sports teams!
    • City – Ocean City, Maryland will always have a special place in my heart.
  • What bits of advice would you give to aspiring authors?
    • A lot of the time when you see this question, the first thing people say is “If you want to be a writer, you have to write.” Yes, that’s true, but there are some other bits of advice to hand out, as well. The main thing I think it is important to note is that while yes, you should write, it is also important to spend time with friends and family during the whole process. Shutting everyone and everything out in order to get a chapter written isn’t really the best way to go about it – take breaks if you need to. It’s okay, I promise. Besides, when you do this, you can find more inspiration and think of new things to add to your novel. Another benefit of taking a break every now and then is that when you come back to what you’re writing, you will have more of an ability to be able to spot mistakes or things in your writing that don’t make sense, or things that just aren’t right.
  • What’s next for you?
    • I’m currently working on a few projects at the moment – one involves edits for my next YA novel, and I’m currently writing another YA novel. Also, I’m working on my very first middle grade novel, which is very meaningful to me. I can see those projects taking some time, but it will be worth every moment I’m putting into them!

Kelly Gunderman was born a child of the late eighties in small-town Pennsylvania. A bibliophile in her own right, she is hoping to one day surpass the number of pages she has turned with those she has written of her own accord.

Having recently completed her Bachelor’s in Early Childhood Development, Kelly suddenly found herself with a bit more free time than usual, and began her immediately successful foray into blogging and Freelance Writing, which subsequently led to her renewed desire to finally put her ideas and imaginings “on paper.”

Focusing primarily on the Young Adult genre, Kelly is the author of Finding Me and Living Dead Girl.

She currently resides in her original home town with her husband, their two daughters, and a few cats that constantly challenge the sanity of all with their ill-advised attempts at what can only be assumed to be world domination.

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Narrator Bio

Veronica brings both a youthful and genuine voice to commercial, narration, audio books, audio dramas, animation, eLearning courses and make-believe characters alike. A great description of her voice can be found in girl next door, wholesome, invigorating and fresh medium tone.

Her voice acting is an extension of her amazing acting skills. If you need not just a voice but an actor with that voice, look no further.

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