Shani Michelle is here today to talk about the inspiration behind her YA thriller, You Should Have Seen This Coming! Take it away, Shani!
I’ve always loved books that have a supernatural element. When I was younger I devoured every Christopher Pike and Lois Duncan book I could find. Years later, I wrote (as Shani Petroff) a middle grade series, Bedeviled, about a girl whose dad is the devil. She inherits some of his powers, and I got to really play around with what she could do and what kind of interesting situations I could put her in. It was a blast to write.
I have a love for many different genres of books, and years later instead of sticking with the supernatural, I started writing YA rom-coms/contemporaries (again as Shani Petroff). Four of them were published by Swoon Reads at Macmillan. I still love that genre (and have some more in me), but I was ready to branch out as well.
I was gearing up to write my next novel, and my editor, the amazing Holly West, was supportive of me trying something different. She knew about my middle grade series (and we’re both fans of the TV series Supernatural) and suggested something paranormal. She said what about something with the feel of a supernatural Veronica Mars. I loved it and got to work!
The kernel of an idea kept growing and almost immediately I knew my main characters, the first act of the story, and how I wanted it to end. The middle took some more time to figure out!
Creating a mystery, coming up with twists and turns, getting to have characters with psychic abilities was really exciting for me. I’m so happy with how the book turned out, and I absolutely adore the cover!
And in some ways You Should Have Seen This Coming feels kismet for me!
Many months into the writing process, I was looking through an old document of book ideas that I’d come up with years prior. There on the list was psychic Veronica Mars! I’d totally forgotten about it—but I’m so glad I got to write it!
You Should Have Seen This Coming
Published by: Swoon Reads
Publication date: April 12th 2022
Genres: Thriller, Young Adult
A teen girl who sees visions of the past must use her gift to save a kidnapped classmate in Shani Michelle’s high-stakes YA thriller You Should Have Seen This Coming!
Hayden sees the past. Just touching an object will occasionally give her flashes of the previous owner’s memories. And if that memory happens to be a deeply hidden secret, then she has no problem making you pay for your crime, in cash.
Cassie sees the future, and it sucks. She will randomly wake up from dreams filled with disasters that she feels compelled to stop, and she would really like to stop watching her boyfriend fall in love with someone else!
But when Cassie tries to warn Hayden that her latest blackmailing scheme is a trap, she knows she’s really in trouble. All her visions warn her of the upcoming kidnapping, nothing she does stops it. And it’s all Hayden’s fault!
Can Hayden’s gift help her find Cassie before it’s too late?
Shani Michelle is the author of YOU SHOULD HAVE SEEN THIS COMING. She also works in TV news. When she’s not writing, she loves spending time with her husband, family, friends, reading, watching way too much TV, and coming up with new story ideas. (She’s also written several rom-com and middle grade novels as Shani Petroff)