On the Bright Side by S.R. Johannes: a YA book of heavenly drama

Today is January 31st and the sale date for S.R. Johannes new On the Bright Side, in e-book format. I haven’t personally read this book yet (I am still catching up) but she is someone an author friend of mine is acquainted with so I’ll give her a shot and a little free promotion.  I sat down with her via email and we discussed her new book that is an “angelic” tale for young adults. You’ll also get to know a little about the author as a person.  Read on past the book promotion for that original and exclusive interview.  If you read her book soon, be sure to come back and tell me what you think.

About the book, On the Bright Side, by S.R. Johannes (book promo via the author)

On the Bright Side is a hilarious road to guardian angeldom paved with so much drama and due-paying that it makes middle school look painless.

As if the devil’s food cake at her wake and the white fat pants she’s stuck wearing for eternity weren’t bad enough, fourteen year-old Gabby is quick to discover that Cirrus, the main rung of Heaven, is a far cry from the Pearly Gates. Here, Skyphones and InnerNets are all the rage. Until Gabby finds out she has to protect Angela, her school nemesis, in order to move up through the training levels of heaven. Problem is, Angela is now hitting on Gabby’s should-have-been boyfriend. (awkward!)

Instead of protecting Angela, Gabby pranks her (like tripping is a sin?) at the hopes of cooling off the new couple. At first, they seem harmless until the school dance sabotage gets completely out of control. Then, her Celestial Sky Agent, who happens to have anger management issues of his own, puts Gabby on probation, threatening her eternal future. 

Determined to right her wrongs, Gabby steals an ancient artifact that allows her to return to Earth for just one day. Without knowing, she kicks off a series of events and learns what can happen when you hate someone to death. 

“S.R. Johannes delivers a cute paranormal thrill ride for middle graders! Even in death there is a BRIGHT SIDE!” Addison Moore, author of the bestselling Celestra series and soon to be TV show

Book Trailer:  http://faeriality.blogspot.com/2010/01/on-bright-side-trailer.html

Interview with S.R. Johannes

Hi Shelli (or otherwise known as S.R. Johannes), I am happy to do an interview to hear about your new teen paranormal novel, On the Bright Side! I’m sure my readers and I would love to also hear more about you in the process.

Q:  Could you tell us more about what readers can expect from On the Bright Side?

A: OTBS is about a disgruntled angel BRIGHT. Not only is she cursed wearing her white fat pants for eternity but she is also forced to protect her school nemesis. Instead she pranks her and is put on probation. To right her wrongs, she steals an ancient artifact to return to Earth one time. However, she unknowingly unleashes a dark side.

Q: What feelings and emotions do you hope this book emits for teens (and adults) alike?

A: We always seem to want what someone else wants. But we never truly see what someone else has.

Q: What prompted your story idea?

A: Xmas 2008, I had just finished Lisa Schroeder’s I Love You,You Haunt Me. I thought it would be nice to see the other side of the coin. What the dead person was going through. But I didn’t want to do another Lovely Bones type book. I started with YA but when angel books started selling (Hush Hush, Fallen) – I decided to change the book’s direction and audience. So in the spring, I started writing a funny story about death and a disgruntled angel in her own Afterlife world. But instead of utopia, I created a NYC in the sky.

Q: Who was your favorite character to create, and why?

A: They are all fun for different reason. Lawrence was fun. He is Gabby’s SKYagent and is cursed to taking anger management classes. Jessica was fun because she is one of those people who are always happy and positive, which is so not me.  I love the banter between Jessica and Gabby. They are hilarious.

Q: Who is your favorite character in ANY book of all time, and why?

A: Oh gosh. I have no clue. Maybe Pippy in Pippy Longstocking. I like how strong and rebellious she was. She was creative and didn’t care what anyone thought.

(Erin note: Yea, one of mine too. I dressed up like her one year for Halloween.)

Q:   I found this statement in your bio quite familiar to me personally: “She started out writing for her local school paper, winning a state Nutrition essay contest for “Be a Smart Cookie”, and singing in a local Jazz band. Somewhere along the way, she earned an MBA in Marketing and embarked on an 18-year marketing career in Corporate America working as a marketing and communications consultant.”

This sounds almost like me! From an essay win young to a marketing and public relations career to working from home while juggling being a mom and writer.

What do you find is most rewarding?

A: Being with my kids. Corny but true. I have the best of both worlds.

What do you find are your struggles?

A: I have ADHD. So focusing on one project is hard for me. It can be good in multi-tasking but hard in writing.

What advice do you give to others who are trying to manage life with a dream of writing?

A: Never give up. It’s easy to do when you are getting rejection. They say everyone has a book inside of them but if you are truly in your heart a writer – you could not give up writing if you tried.

Q:  As a writer, what is the best moment of your life?

A: I love reading all reviews. The good ones make me smile and the bad ones make me better.

Q: What is your favorite television show at the moment?

A: Walking Dead

Q: Tell me something most people might not know about you.

A: I used to sing in a band.

Q: Where is your new book, On the Bright Side, available at or from?

A: At first it is e-book(Amazon, B&N etc). Paperback comes out in February.

Q: What is the best way for readers to connect with you? (website, FB, Twitter…list any and all you want)

A: I always answer email. I have a blog too.

Email: shelli@srjohannes.com

Blog: http://faeriality.blogspot.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/srjohannes

Author Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/SRJohannes/249888602550

Author Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5235537.S_R_Johannes

Thank you so much your time with us, Shelli. Hope you’ll visit again and I wish you much success with your book.

Author Biography: S.R. Johannes

S.R. Johannes is the author of Untraceable (a teen wilderness thriller) and On The Bright Side ( a tween paranormal). She lives in Atlanta, Georgia with her dog, British-accented husband, and the huge imaginations of their little prince and princess, which she hopes- someday- will change the world. After earning an MBA and working in corporate america, S.R. Johannes traded in her expensive suits, high heels, and corporate lingo for a family, flip-flops, and her love of writing.


Filed under New Books I've Found, Q and A with Authors

2 responses to “On the Bright Side by S.R. Johannes: a YA book of heavenly drama

  1. Nice writing style. I look forward to reading more in the future.


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