Gina Damico’s Newest Novel Is a Teen Reality Show Set in Space
Space has inspired everything from unforgettable movies like Apollo and Gravity to gorgeous galaxy tattoos that honor the mystery of the cosmos. Now author Gina Damico is giving a new spin to planets and stars with her newest novel, Waste of Space. It’s a hilarious and all-too-real look at reality TV through the eyes of teens who happen to be starring on a reality show set in space… or so they think. You’ll giggle your way through the realization that nothing can stop drama — not even zero gravity. Today we’re catching up with Damico and chatting about her creative inspiration, lady heroes, and more. Scroll on to learn more about this brilliant writer!
Brit + Co: Describe your book in six words or less.
Gina Damico: Made of paper. Read, don’t eat.
B+C: Where/when do you do your best writing?
GM: I’d love to say that I do my best writing while snacking from a constantly replenished cheese plate and enveloped in a nest of specially trained cats who purr at just the right frequency for maximum workflow — but more often than not, I’m just splayed out inelegantly on my couch and in need of a shower. (Full disclosure: Sometimes there is a cat there. Always there is cheese.) As for when I write best, it’s any time I’m jacked up on too much coffee. I wish that this weren’t the case, but it seems that caffeine somehow opens up a Creativity Portal to Awesomeness, and who am I to argue with science?
B+C: What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever done in the name of book research?
GM: When I was writing Rogue, the third book in the Croak trilogy, I made one of the locations in the story the geographical center of the contiguous United States — a random spot among the cornfields in Lebanon, Kansas. I did as much internet research about it as I could from afar, but since I happened to be planning a road trip through the middle of the country anyway, I made it a point to swing by and get a more up-close-and-personal look. It was very cool! It had a plaque!
B+C: What’s your go-to cure for when you’re stuck in a creativity rut?
GM: If I’m actively working on something, I go for a walk. Something about forward momentum helps; it probably has to do with a metaphor. If I’m looking for ideas for a new project, I read National Geographic, because there is nothing crazier and more inspirational than the real world. The other day I read an article about a cave, which led to seeking out another article about a cave, and literally eight hours later, it had consumed my every waking thought. I am still thinking about it. ALL IS CAVE NOW.
B+C: What two lady heroes do you turn to for inspiration, and why?
GM: Too many on the list to count, but at the moment my favorites are: Dr. Mae Jemison, the first woman of color in space; and Julia Child, because aside from all her cooking talents, she was tall and awkward and made mistakes on camera and was a stone-cold weirdo — and she totally owned it. (Photo via Jemal Countess/Getty Images for National Geographic Channel)
View this post on Instagram
A post shared by stephen mcmennamy (@combophoto) on
B+C: What’s your latest Instagram obsession?
GM: I’m loving the art of Stephen McMennamy (@smcmennamy), who does these perfectly combined photos of two different things that fit together perfectly. Just go look at some, because I’m not doing them justice by describing. (What am I, a writer or something?) They’re just so surreal and unexpected, and spark the brain in ways you can’t anticipate.
B+C: Can you name a book that you think deserves a little more love + recognition?
GM: In the days after the election, I, like many others, was feeling very angry and distraught and overwhelmed by the world. Naturally, I turned to books for comfort — but none on my to-read shelf jumped out as what I needed right then and there. So I went to the library instead and pulled a book off the shelf that I hadn’t heard of: Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel, by Carl Safina. It’s a fantastic dive into the question of whether animals have emotions, specifically focusing on the astoundingly intricate social structures of elephants, wolves, and whales.
It was a joy to learn in depth about these animals, these whole worlds they inhabit that are outside of us, so alien to us, that have nothing to do with politics or personal human drama or vitriol on the internet. There’s a staggeringly infinite amount of amazing stuff in this world, and at that time, that book was a potent and much-needed reminder of that. By the time I got to the last page, I wanted to pack my bags and go study elephants for the rest of my life. I still haven’t ruled it out.
What’s next on your to-read pile?
GM: The Hate U Give, by Angie Thomas.
What advice do you have for aspiring creative ladies?
GM: Don’t wait for anyone to tell you you can do something. Make the awesome thing first, without listening to naysayers or your own self-doubt, and figure out all the boring details later. (Unless you’re trying to, like, build your own spaceship. You should probably do the math in advance with that one.)
Got an author you’d love to see interviewed? Tweet us @BritandCo and let us know!
Brit + Co may at times use affiliate links to promote products sold by others, but always offers genuine editorial recommendations.
(Featured photo via Gina Damico)
Pocket doors are so delightful in and of themselves. They appear when you need them, get tucked away when you don't, and make it easy to define rooms while keeping an open floor plan. Add to the pocket door a joyful patterned wallpaper surprise, and you will be sent right into fits of visual jubilation! Or something ;) Today we're sharing two simple and impactful pocket door makeovers that zhuzh up your space in a jiffy.
Anjelika Temple here, co-founder of Brit + Co and proud owner of several pocket doors! When I moved into my first real grown-up house a couple years ago, I knew I wanted to incorporate wallpaper so reached out to our friends at Chasing Paper to see how we might collaborate. It felt like a total lightbulb moment when I realized I could create a surprise pop of pattern on a couple sets of pocket doors.
Not only is it a whimsical way to bring color into a space, but the doors double as picture-perfect backdrops for all your SFH (selfies from home, obvs).
A few pro tips about install:
- Removable wallpaper is miraculously forgiving! You can take it on and off multiple times without it losing integrity (or mucking up your surface).
- I ordered this adhesive wallpaper installation kit with a squeegee and xacto knife and it worked super well. I also recommend a sharp pair of scissors for cutting longer lines.
- This is a two-person job! Get a friend, put on a playlist, and get ready to bond.
- Wild, organic patterns like Tally are great because it's challenging to spot any imperfections in pattern alignment; keep pattern choice in mind if you've got a lot of corners to match up. More geometric patterns and larger shapes leave less room for error (but are awesome in their own right!).
BATHROOM POCKET DOORS
In our primary bathroom, we chose the wallpaper pattern Tally, designed by Kelly Ventura, in White and Navy. In our space, the navy reads as a soft black, which is perfect for the space. It's easy to combine an ever-rotating collection of linens with the Tally pattern.
I love how the white trim becomes the perfect frame around this pocket door piece of art.
My favorite moment in this space is the fact that you actually get a third pop of pattern thanks to our serendipitously placed mirror!
And yes, this one works pretty darn well as a backdrop too ;)
LIVING ROOM DOUBLE DOORS
This set of doors is definitely a focal point of our home. It separates our living room from our primary bedroom which opens onto our backyard. The doors are pretty much always open, but when they're closed we wanted to evoke a fun, nature-inspired vibe. With that in mind, we selected the Lines and Moons pattern by Thimblepress in Green and Brown.
Earth mama vibes up in here! I love how the shapes and colors echo the ferns you see through the windows and the acorn wood details throughout the house.
Love this pattern moment, and xacto-ing out the door handle is def on the oddly satisfying DIY list.
For a pattern lover like me, I love that now I have this instant photo backdrop!
Thanks to Chasing Paper for providing these rolls of pure pattern amazingness. Head to chasingpaper.com to find our own favorites and start adding patterns to your home!
(Wallpaper wingwoman: Kayla Haykin; Photography: Kurt Andre)