It is not often that a would-be writer breaks through and becomes a National Book Award nominee. Even less likely is when a movie is made based that book.
However, that is the case with Rose State College humanities professor Tim Tharp. His 2008 young adult novel, “The Spectacular Now,” is being made into a movie of the same name, wrapping up production this summer in Georgia.
“I was able to see a couple of key scenes being filmed which made me feel that the movie was going to be very well-acted and that the tone will reflect my novel. So I think it will be a really good movie,” Tharp said.
What is next? What it has been for years for Professor Tharp—passing along what he knows to new and willing writers. Tharp was one of the faculty at Rose State College’s two-day writing Short Course, "The Writer in 2012: Navigating the Brave New World,” held September 15 – 16 at Rose State College campus in Midwest City, in the Professional Training Center.
Tharp taught what led him to “The Spectacular Now"young adult writing. Those who have a desire to write fiction for young adults learned the straight scoop first-hand from the author.
“My role as one of the speakers—since my last four novels have been young adult novels—was focusing on voice and style in the young adult novel,” Tharp said. “I think the young adult genre is so important because I never probably have been as influenced by books since I was a teenager or a young adult in my 20s. That is one of the reasons why I am interested in that genre, plus I’m around teenagers all day. I even teach a speech class where they get up and talk in front of me.”
In addition to “The Spectacular Now,” Tharp’s first novel, “Falling Dark (Milkweed Press), was awarded the Milkweed National Fiction Prize. “Knights of the Hill Country” (Knopf Books for Young Readers), his first novel for young adults, was on the American Library Association's Best Books of 2007 list. His most recent novel, “BADD” (Knopf, 2011), tells the story of how war affects the family of a returning soldier.
Tharp hopes that he will continue to connect with writers of young adult fiction.
“Different writers will have different niches,” Tharp said.
Wed, September 12, 2012
by Ben Fenwick