Adi Alsaid was born and raised in Mexico City, then studied at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. While in class, he mostly read fiction and continuously failed to fill out crossword puzzles, so it’s no surprise that after graduating, he did not go into business world but rather packed up his apartment into his car and escaped to the California coastline to become a writer. He’s now back in his hometown, where he writes, coaches high school and elementary basketball, and has perfected the art of making every dish he eats or cooks as spicy as possible. In addition to Mexico, he’s lived in Tel Aviv, Las Vegas, and Monterey, California. A tingly feeling in his feet tells him more places will eventually be added to the list. Let’s Get Lost is his YA debut.
The Poetics Project: Describe your novel in ten words or less.
Adi Alsaid: Leila, mysterious girl, crashes into four teens’ lives.
TPP: What inspired you to write Let’s Get Lost?
AA: It was partially inspired by my own travels and road tripping. It aims to be more than just a road trip novel, told through the points of view of different characters along the way, so it’s about more than just traveling. Each character’s section is imbued with its own inspirations, large or small, mostly stemming from my interest in the idea of a story about how we affect the strangers around us, my almost life-long interest in what’s going on in other people’s thoughts.
TPP: What was the most difficult aspect of writing your novel?
AA: Probably in finding the right balance of internal moments and external action. I wanted the book to be both emotional and yet fun, and so it took a few drafts (and my editors’ smarts/talents/etc) to strike the right balance.
TPP: What do you want readers to take away from your novel?
AA: I can’t pretend to teach any lesson to anyone reading, since I can’t pretend to understand their lives. Every reader will have a different experience when reading Let’s Get Lost, and though I hope that every reader finds something in my story that speaks to them, I know that might not always be the case. I do hope that they’re left with some sort of appreciation for life, and the possibility of opening themselves up to strangers. I will be more than happy if the only takeaway for most readers is the experience of a good read.
TPP: What advice can you give aspiring authors? What advice do you wish you would have been given?
AA: I hate to use a corporate slogan as advice, but Nike pretty much nailed it. Just do it. Yes, publishing takes a lot of patience and improving on your craft and a hell of a lot of luck. But no one ever got published without writing (save for maybe famous people with ghostwriters). Take time to write. The universe may help take care of the rest. But only if you’ve written.
TPP: Name 2-3 songs that would be on a soundtrack to your novel?
- Oh Comely- Neutral Milk Hotel
- Really in Love- Royal Headache
- The Trapeze Swinger- Iron and Wine
To learn more about Adi Alsaid, visit his website!