'Twilight' star Peter Facinelli talks co-writing new YA novel -- EXCLUSIVE

Peter-Facinelli.jpg

Image Credit: Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

Actor Peter Facinelli — better known to Twihards as vampire patriarch Dr. Carlisle Cullen — is joining the YA craze.

Facinelli has teamed up with author Barry Lyga and producer Rob DeFranco to pen After the Red Rain, a young adult novel set in a dystopian future about a boy named Rose (more on that below) who discovers inhuman powers. Those inhuman powers don’t make Rose a glittering vampire who battles wolves, but he does battle to save a ruined planet with his only friend Deirdre.

In an exclusive email interview with EW, Facinelli talked the trio’s collaborative writing process, his take on the genre, and why they chose the name “Rose” for their hero.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: First off — why YA?
PETER FACINELLI: We didn’t specifically choose the YA genre. The story is what came first. And it felt like the YA market lent itself the best for the story we wanted to tell. We felt like our story had something to say to the YA market because the characters themselves were young adults.

What inspired you to go into writing?
I love storytelling. Being an actor is a form of telling stories through characters. As a writer I get the opportunity to create the entire world that all the characters live in as opposed to focusing on one character or one part of the story. I enjoy being able to create and manipulate characters and events in order to tell a whole story. I have written two film scripts, but I have not tackled a novel before.

What was it like writing a novel with two other authors?
The task of writing a novel was overwhelming at first, and I am happy that I get to collaborate with Barry Lyga and Rob DeFranco. It makes the process less daunting when you get to bounce ideas off of others you respect, and Rob and I both feel very fortunate to work alongside Barry who has experience in this form of storytelling.

How does collaborating work between the three of you?
When writing with partners it’s important that someone takes the lead. Since Barry has the most experience in writing a novel and it is his forte, we tend to talk a lot about the story and let Barry take point creating the voices of the characters. We comb through the chapters as a team and weigh in giving notes and shaping the story. When you have a team that clicks like the three of us, it’s easier since we all see the same story. There are no egos involved. Just configuring the best way to tell the story. Since this is a collaboration, I respect that Barry and Rob both have different writing styles so I find it’s important to allow everyone to have their process in order to collaborate.

Did your experience working on Twilight contribute to your writing process at all?
I really don’t think of Twilight when working on our book. After the Red Rain is its own tale, and there really is no formula to copy the success of Twilight. Rob, Barry and I really just focus on our story and hope that the YA fans who will read the book, whether they are Twilight fans, Barry Lyga fans, or new YA readers, like the story we are telling.

The book is set on an Earth that’s overrun by 50 billion people and in danger of collapse. Why did you choose a dystopian setting?
It wasn’t so much that we chose a dystopian setting; it is integral to the story. The effects of over-population become a significant force in our story, and the challenges to deal with it from a personal and governmental level push our two main characters together.

How did you choose the names for the protagonists? “Rose” is admittedly a strange name for a boy.
It is. He is a different boy, very vulnerable in some aspects, but with a strong purpose and understanding. It is that combination of strong and weak in one person that is embodied in his name. Like all of us, he desires to find his true purpose in life, despite not knowing exactly who he is and where he comes from. He is confident but inside him he needs to come to terms with his obvious differences and understand if finding out his history will help him.

Is there anything you can tell me about his powers?
There is an element and inspiration from the Johnny Cash song, “A Boy Named Sue.”

Going forward, will you be turning this into a series?
Sure, we have thought of a series of three books, but we are focused right now on finishing the first. Because we are writing it in collaboration, it takes you in many different directions, which can affect how the second and third would look.

Much of the book’s plot has been kept under wraps. Has anyone other than the three of you read it yet?
So far we have been very discreet about the subject matter. There are many secrets that get unlocked while the story unfolds that we don’t want to give away just yet. But I do have my own YA test group at home. I’ve read some sample chapters to my 10-year-old and 16-year-old daughter. So far I’m getting thumbs up.

After the Red Rain will hit shelves in 2015.


Latest Videos in Books

Advertisement

Latest News

Most Commented

PopWatch | Entertainment Weekly's EW.com

Blog

PopWatch

Patriots coach Bill Belichick becomes Tony Montana in this Deflategate parody video

Comments +

The lead-up to tonight’s Super Bowl has been dominated by a controversy that has haunted the Patriots ever since their win over the Colts in the AFC Championship game two weeks ago: Did they intentionally deflate their footballs? 

Read Full Story

Snapchat's getting its own web series, and it's called 'Literally Can't Even'

Comments +

Sending self-destructing pictures and videos is nice and all, but Snapchat wants to do more. The popular social network is broadening its horizons and getting into the entertainment game—by making an original web series named after a rather tired Internet meme. 

Read Full Story

'Disney Infinity 2.0' Toy Box comes to iPhones, iPads

Comments +

Disney Interactive has released the Disney Infinity: Toy Box 2.0 for free on iPhones and iPads, meaning it’s now possible for you to have Aladdin and Baymax race each other in Guardians of the Galaxy-themed cars when you’re on the go. 

Read Full Story

How 'Parenthood' thrived, despite a spoiler-addicted society

Comments +

In the age of live-tweeting, the most talked-about shows on television tend to be those that give viewers (and Twitter users) plenty of big, bold moments that inspire strong, immediate reactions. Which, in turn, means that the most talked-about shows inevitably end up being labeled TV’s most successful shows. Think about it: There’s Game of Thrones, with its Red Wedding, Purple Wedding, and continuous stream of unexpected deaths. We have Shonda Rhimes, who’s arguably the queen of the WTF moment with ScandalGrey’s Anatomy, and How to Get Away With Murder. And then there’s the ever-more-popular True Detective format, which is built entirely around solving a mystery—preferably one with a surprising result. Essentially, TV’s best dramas must, on some level, be edge-of-your-seat thrillers.

That is, unless they’ve got the Bravermans.

Read Full Story

Conan O'Brien, Marshawn Lynch, and Rob Gronkowski lose their minds over 'Mortal Kombat'

Comments +

For a special Super Bowl edition of Conan O’Brien’s very funny Clueless Gamer segments, the late-night host convinced Marshawn Lynch of the Seattle Seahawks and Rob Gronkowski of the New England Patriots to face each other for a few matches of the yet-to-be-released Mortal Kombat X

Read Full Story

'Transistor,' 'Rogue Legacy' among free games for PlayStation Plus in February

Comments +

Sony is refreshing the free games available as part of PlayStation Plus next week, and the new selection will include one of 2014’s most memorable games and a brand new title.

Read Full Story

PopWatch Confessional: The thing you used to love (that now makes you cringe)

Comments +

Ahh, youth, when naivete and limitless free time conspire to form overwhelming cultural obsessions—the sort that burn bright and hot, consuming vast amounts of energy until you get a little older and realize, “Wait. What the hell was I thinking?” (This is the moment where I pause, look to the heavens, and thank whatever’s up there that I never ended up getting a Rent-inspired tattoo when I was 18.)

Which brings me to this week’s PopWatch confessional: What’s the movie/TV show/musical act/AIDS-themed rock operetta (ahem) that you were once obsessed with—to a degree that makes your present-day self want to laugh and cry simultaneously? The EW staff’s answers may surprise you. (Yeah, they probably won’t.)

Read Full Story

Chris Hardwick looks back at five years of Nerdist podcast

Comments +

Five years in, Chris Hardwick’s Nerdist podcast is only continuing to grow.

What started as three friends gathering around some microphones on Super Bowl Sunday in 2010 has turned into over 600 episodes of the flagship Nerdist podcasts, a website, and a host of other podcasts on the Nerdist Network. 

The show celebrates its fifth anniversary with episode 631, a special live show recorded at the NerdMelt Showroom. Hardwick spoke to EW about the live show, what Nerdist has meant for him over the last five years, and where he hopes to take it in the years to come.

Read Full Story

Warner Bros. to launch new Batman, Justice League animated movies based on toys

Comments +

Chances are you’ve already gotten a sneak peek at DC’s next big animated project if you’ve spent any time buying superhero toys.

Read Full Story

'Life Is Strange' Episode 1 review: 'Chrysalis'

Comments +
Life Is Strange

High school can be a daily exercise in embarrassing encounters. Stumbling through an awkward exchange with your current crush, taking a volleyball straight to the face during gym, having a teacher ask you a question while you’re daydreaming—wouldn’t it be great to rewind time and prevent these horrific moments from ever happening?

Life Is Strange allows its main character, Max Caulfield, to do just that. The episodic series from Dontnod Entertainment and Square Enix capitalizes on the collective trials of navigating teenage life. The first episode, “Chrysalis,” is not without its issues —some hokey dialogue and stilted line reading can make the centerpiece of the game, the characters, a bit unbelievable. But it also sets the stage for a relatable tale with a nice sci-fi spin and enough hanging plot threads to encourage sticking around for future episodes.

Read Full Story
Page:

More from Our Partners

From Our Partners

TV Recaps

TV Recaps | Entertainment Weekly's EW.com

TV Recaps

More from Our Partners

Powered by WordPress.com VIP