Monday, April 22, 2013

Author Post, Spotlight, and Giveaway: William Dickerson's "NO ALTERNATIVE" (Presented by The Finishing Fairies)

Please welcome William Dickerson, author of No Alternative, to Sapphyria's Book Reviews!!!!!

The High Wire Act of Being a Teenager

I was a teenager in the early 90’s, and to my surprise, teenagers still exist in one form or another today.  I’m told they’ve always existed, in fact.  While the boys and girls who inhabit the teenage existence come and go, the teenage state of mind remains rock solid in its institution. 

In “No Alternative,” the narration examines the dichotomy of being a teenager, in this instance, being the teenage girl that is Jackie O’Brien:

In high school, there’s a thin line between virgin and slut, and it’s a line every girl is forced to strut agonizingly across as though it’s a high wire act, with her reputation hanging perilously in the balance.  In high school, much like prison, your reputation means your life.  If you’ve had no experience, the smell of lameness will envelop you.

Rebellion, recklessness and disrespect are all essential ingredients to being a successful teenager – at least in the eyes of the teenagers themselves – and high school is the kingdom within which every girl and boy seeks to claim the throne.  It’s a time in your life when the labels other people give you actually become you.  This is not literally the case, of course, but our maturity levels at that age are at a level where such exterior perception commands our own perceptions.  Identity is something we grow into, often embracing a variety of identities – evidenced by changes in fashion styles, musical tastes and a revolving door of friendships – throughout our formative years.  Teenagers have always dealt with the same issues; however, things seem exacerbated these days.  We didn’t have the wonders of the Internet back when I was a teen, and most issues – being bullied, humiliated or intimidated – ended at 3:00pm when the bell rang and our parents picked us up.  Now, unfortunately, these issues continue throughout the day and into the evening.  High school doesn’t end at 3:00pm anymore, it continues on Facebook, on Twitter, on Instagram, and kids can’t escape it.  It follows them home, it permeates their private life, and it doesn’t let up. 

The high wire act I write about in my book—it is a constant for today’s teens.

I also write about suicide, an admittedly heavy theme for a book about teenagers, but it’s a serious issue amongst this age group.  It’s perhaps more serious and prevalent in this age group than any others.  It is precisely because teenagers often feel alienated, and different, and alone, that they are more impressionable than others when it comes to the appeal of hurting themselves.

Striving to be a “normal” teenager is a lot of work.  It’s a full time job, not to mention all the homework that needs to get done.  Who has the time for homework when you get home from school and continue to monitor your image on the web?  Teenagers these days need their own public relations campaigns to maintain their online brand.  These days, the Internet is as good as reality.  Unfortunately, suicide exists outside the realm of the computer, and it’s something that will not allow the rebooting and refreshing of a human being.  

Thank you so much for being here today William!!

NO ALTERNATIVE is a coming-of-age drama that drills a hole into the world of suburban American teenagers in the early 90's.

Thomas Harrison is determined to start his own alternative band, an obsession that blinds him to what's either the mental collapse, or the eruption of musical genius, of his little sister, Bridget. Bridget boldly rejects her brother's music, and the music of an entire generation of slackers, by taking on the persona of an X-rated gangsta' rapper named "Bri Da B."

NO ALTERNATIVE probes the lives of rebellious kids who transition into adulthood via the distortion pedals of their lives in an era when the "Sex, Drugs & Rock'n'Roll" ethos was amended to include "Suicide" in its phrase.

Purchase Links:


No Alternative


No Alternative


"A sympathetic coming-of-age story deeply embedded in '90s music. Reflective, unafraid of big-picture pronouncements--'nothing is more do-it-yourself than suicide.' The cool, casual tone results in knockout diagnoses of the '90s teenage condition: 'You feel older as a teenager than you will ever feel in your entire life.'" -Kirkus Reviews

"The novel--with its clear-eyed glimpse into the lives of a troubled family--satisfies." -Publishers Weekly

"Simultaneously brutal and funny, caustic and caring, 'No Alternative' is a sacrament to be shared by all the survivors who grew up at the tail end of the fragmenting century." -Jack O'Connell, author of "The Resurrectionist"

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William Dickerson graduated from The College of The Holy Cross with a degree in English and received his Masters of Fine Arts in Directing from The American Film Institute. He is an award-winning writer/director whose work has been recognized by film festivals across the country. He recently published his first novel, “No Alternative,” and completed his debut feature film, DETOUR, which hits Theaters and Video On Demand (VOD) this year. He is currently finishing up his second feature, THE MIRROR. 

He is hard at work on several new feature films and is writing another novel. In his spare time, he creates music for his band 9068dash39. 

He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Rachel, and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Duet. 



"Do You Remember The 90's?"


William Dickerson said...

Thanks for hosting me, Saph! It looks great!


Sapphyria said...

You're very welcome, and Thanks! :)

Kriss Morton said...

Spahhyria looks awesome!