Frequently Asked Questions: Twilight

Is there a sequel to Twilight?

Yes, there is a sequel! For more information on the sequel, click here.
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Are they going to make a Twilight movie?

Yes! Click here to read about the latest movie news.
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Can you get me an audition for a part in the movie?

Nope. If, for any reason, I do come into possession of knowledge concerning open auditions for any of the parts, I will post that information on the movie page.
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Did Edward bite Bella at the end of the book?

There seems to be a lot of confusion about the last line of Twilight. For that, I apologize. In my defense, I can only say that sometimes a writer loses a small battle here and there with her editor, and it wasn't entirely my idea to leave the ending so ambiguous. But let me assure you that it is only Edward's lips that are pressed into Bella's throat at that particular point in time. At the beginning of book two, Bella is still very human and Edward is still very stubbornly determined to keep her that way.
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Will Bella and Edward's story be a trilogy, or a longer series?

I have no intention of quitting at three. Firstly, Bella and Edward would never forgive me. Secondly, the next two books would have to be 1000+ pages apiece to get the story to any place that felt like a true resolution. Thirdly, there are other stories to tell here, and, though the narrator might change, the story will continue. I just have way too much fun living in Forks (in my head) to stop anytime soon.
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What's with the apple?

The apple on the cover of Twilight represents "forbidden fruit." I used the scripture from Genesis (located just after the table of contents) because I loved the phrase "the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil." Isn't this exactly what Bella ends up with? A working knowledge of what good is, and what evil is. The nice thing about the apple is it has so many symbolic roots. You've got the apple in Snow White, one bite and you're frozen forever in a state of not-quite-death... Then you have Paris and the golden apple in Greek mythology—look how much trouble that started. Apples are quite the versatile fruit. In the end, I love the beautiful simplicity of the picture. To me it says: choice.
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Why did you pick the title Twilight?

Twilight was not the easiest book to title. When I started sending out queries, I called it Forks for lack of a better idea. The first thing my agent advised me was that the title was going to have to change. We played around with a lot of different titles, and nothing seemed to convey the right feel. We brainstormed through emails for about a week. The word twilight was on a list of "words with atmosphere" that I sent her. Though these words were meant to be used in combination with something else, the word twilight stood out to both of us. We decided to try it out, and, after a little adjustment time, it started to work for both of us. It isn't absolutely perfect; to be honest, I don't think there is a perfect title for this book (or if there is, I've never heard it). When I look at the titles other countries have used (examples: Germany: Bis zum Morgengrauen which is "Until Dawn" or "Bite" if you add an "s" to make it "biss" (if you look at the German book cover on the Twilight International page); Finland: "Temptation;" France: "Fascination;" and Japan, which has split it into three separate books: "The Boy Whom I Love is a Vampire," "Blood Tastes Sadness," and "The Vampire Family in the Darkness."), it seems like I might be right about that. (Both New Moon and Eclipse were much easier to title, and the titles also fit better.)
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I'm confused by the preface; who is the Hunter?

(Warning: if you haven't read Twilight, this will spoil the ending! Stop now!)

Sometimes, things in the story are so clear to me that, when I write them, I don't flesh them out or explain them well enough. Usually the editor will catch these kinds of things. However, if it's just as clear to her, then confusion slips through. Some people get the preface, and some don't. So, to clear it all up: James is "the hunter." I think this term has caused some of the confusion, because later, he is a "tracker." But he is hunting Bella, so, in that moment, that is how she thinks of him. The moment occurs in the dance studio, near the end. The preface is one second of Bella's thoughts as James begins walking toward her from the back of the room. So here's the preface:


I'd never given much thought to dying—though I'd had reason enough in the last few months—but even if I had, I would not have imagined it like this.

I stared without breathing across the long room, into the dark eyes of the hunter, and he looked pleasantly back at me.

Surely it was a good way to die, in the place of someone else, someone I loved. Noble, even. That ought to count for something.

I knew that if I'd never gone to Forks, I wouldn't be facing death now. But, terrified as I was, I couldn't bring myself to regret the decision. When life offers you a dream so far beyond any of your expectations, it's not reasonable to grieve when it comes to an end.

The hunter smiled in a friendly way as he sauntered forward to kill me.


And here's the part where it fits in, on page 444 of the book:

I turned slowly. He was standing very still by the back exit, so still I hadn't noticed him at first. In his hand was a remote control. We stared at each other for a long moment, and then he smiled.

***INSERT PREFACE HERE***

He walked toward me, quite close, and then passed me to put the remote down next to the VCR. I turned carefully to watch him.


I could have flashed-back to the preface here, but, like I said, it was so clear to me that I didn't realize the need. My apologies to those who were confused!
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Why do all the guys at Forks High like Bella if she's supposed to be average-looking? Is she pretty or not?

Some parts of Bella's experiences are modeled after real life (my life, to be exact) in order to ground the fantasy aspects of the story in solid reality. Ironically, many of the details that are one hundred percent reality are the ones that are called into question the most (as illustrated by some of my angry Amazon reviews). In this particular case, I modeled Bella's move to Forks after my real life move from high school to college. (Personal story alert!) I mentioned in my bio that I went to a high school in Scottsdale, AZ, which is Arizona's version of Beverly Hills (picture the high school in the movie Clueless). In high school, I was a mousy, A-track wall-flower. I had a lot of incredible girlfriends, but I wasn't much sought after by the Y chromosomes, if you know what I mean. Then I went to college in Provo, Utah. Let me tell you, my stock went through the roof. See, beauty is a lot more subjective than you might think. In Scottsdale, surrounded by barbies, I was about a five. In Provo, surrounded by normal people, I was more like an eight. I had dates every weekend with lots of really pretty and intelligent boys (some of whose names end up in my books). It was quite confusing at first, because I knew there was nothing different about me. (Side note: don't ever let anyone tell you that high school is supposed to be fun. High school is to be endured. College is fun.)

Back to Bella. Here's a short excerpt from a character study I did recently (I wrote the first chapter of Twilight from Edward's point of view; it turned out really cool, and, eventually, Midnight Sun will be published so that everyone can read it.), which shows Bella's first day a school as seen by Edward's mind-reading perspective. It explains the excitement over her arrival:

Today, all thoughts were consumed with the trivial drama of a new addition to the small student body here. It took so little to work them all up. I'd seen the new face repeated in thought after thought from every angle. Just an ordinary human girl. The excitement over her arrival was tiresomely predictable—like flashing a shiny object at a child. Half the sheep-like males were already imagining themselves in love with her, just because she was something new to look at.
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Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?

Beware: I can only give writing tips for my style of writing, because I don't know how to do anything else!

My focus is the characters--that's the part of the story that is most important to me. I feel the best way to write believable characters is to really believe in them yourself. When you hear a song on the radio, you should know how your character feels about it--which songs your character would relate to, which songs she hates. Hear the conversations that your characters would have when they're not doing anything exciting; let them talk in your head, get to know them. Know their favorite colors and their opinions on current events, their birthdays and their flaws. None of this goes in the book, it's just to help you get a rounded feel to them.

I think outlining--in a very non-structured, free-flowing form--can really help. I didn't have to do that with Twilight, but it was very necessary for the other two books. I changed my outlines often as the writing led me in other directions--the outline is just a tool, not something mandatory that you have to follow.

Some of the best advice on writing I got from Janet Evanovich's website. She said if you want to be a writer as a profession, then treat it like a job. Put in the hours. Set aside time for writing, and then make yourself sit down and do it. Sometimes it's easy--the words flow and you can get a lot done. Other times it's hard, and you might only get one sentence done in an hour. But that's better than nothing.

Here's a tip that really helped me with book two and three: forget writing in order. With New Moon and Eclipse, I wrote out whichever scenes I was interested in, rather than starting at the beginning and working through to the end. I wrote most of the books in scenes, and then went back later and tied the scenes together. It cut out a lot of writer's block to write whatever part I was most interested in at the time. And it makes it easy to finish. By the time you get around to writing the less exciting transitions, expositions, and descriptions, you already have so much done! You can see a full novel coming together, and that's very motivating. (But you really need an outline to work that way--to keep from getting lost!)
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What advice would you give to someone who wants to be published?

Here are my recommendations on getting published: first, finish your book completely. And try not to focus on the publishing part while you write—tell yourself a story that you really love. After you're done, read through it several times and fix anything that doesn't feel right. Then, if you're brave, have someone you trust (who also has good taste in books) read through it and give you constructive criticism. After you've got the manuscript cleaned up, go to the library and check out a big book called "Writer's Market" (or you can get an on-line subscription for something like three bucks a month at WritersMarket.com, which is what I did). Search for agents who specifically represent the kind of literature you write--YA, children's, mystery, whatever. Research these agents as much as possible--find out if they just want a one page query, or a two page synopsis, or a whole chapter (there's lots of information about how to write a query on line--here's a good one: http://www.carolynjewel.com/craft/query.shtml.) You have a better chance of getting someone to look at your query if you give them exactly what they want. Be brave, even when you get rejections. All bestselling authors got rejections. All it takes is one person who wants to look at your manuscript.

Good luck with your writing ambitions! I wish I would have believed in myself and started writing sooner.
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Got any recommendations for books I can read while I'm waiting for the next book to come out?

Amazon has a list of all my favorite books here.
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What does Bella look like?

I left out a detailed description of Bella in the book so that the reader could more easily step into her shoes. However, so many people have asked this question, I have decided to tell you what she looks like to me. But I want to stress, Bella's looks are open to interpretation.

In my head, Bella is very fair-skinned, with long, straight, dark brown hair and chocolate brown eyes. Her face is heart-shaped—a wide forehead with a widow's peak, large, wide-spaced eyes, prominent cheekbones, and then a thin nose and a narrow jaw with a pointed chin. Her lips are a little out of proportion, a bit too full for her jaw line. Her eyebrows are darker than her hair and more straight than they are arched. She's five foot four inches tall, slender but not at all muscular, and weighs about 115 pounds. She has stubby fingernails because she has a nervous habit of biting them. And there's your very detailed description.
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What do you mean you're switching narrators? Are you crazy?

There seems to be some anxiety over my statement that, eventually, the story of Bella and the Cullens and all my other Fork friends might be narrated by someone besides Bella. Please, don't worry. I promise that Bella will get to tell her whole story. But when her story is more or less resolved, there are other stories left to tell. Bella and Edward will always have their roles. Don't fret—those two aren't going anywhere.
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In the outtakes, you described Bella's prom dress in so much detail. Do you have a picture of it?

I did! Unfortunately, it was lost in the Great Computer Crash of '04. I've searched through pages and pages of google images for Paris fashion week 2003, but I haven't been able to recover it. (I also used to have pictures of Alice's and Rosalie's, also from the runway). Sorry!

**update** A fan named Michelle—who also happens to be quite a sleuth—tracked down (using only my description in the outtakes and the clue that I found the pictures in 2003 Paris Fashion Week slides) the exact photographs that I used in creating my prom dresses for Bella and Alice. I am quite stunned that she was able to find Bella's dress, since I never mentioned that in the original photo the dress was light yellow rather than blue. Here they are:
Bella's Dress Alice's Dress
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Can you post Forever Dawn, or send me a copy, or give me a summary, or email me the outline...?

Ever since I put up my "craptastic covers" page and included the cover I made for Forever Dawn (the original sequel to Twilight), I've been getting different versions of this question. First of all, here's the reason why Forever Dawn will never be published: it doesn't fall into the young adult genre. I wasn't thinking about my audience yet when I was writing it, I was still just writing for my own amusement. When I knew that I was going to have to write another sequel, with a more YA focus, I went ahead and finished Forever Dawn so I could give it to my big sister for her birthday (how many of your sisters have ever written you a 600+ page book for your birthday?). Now, eventually, in the distant future, I will probably put up sections of Forever Dawn like I did with the Twilight outtakes. The reason I can't do this for a long time is because the plot line of Forever Dawn is still working as a loose skeletal outline for the rest of the series. In other words, it's chockfull of spoilers. So I won't be able to put any of it here on the site until I'm past that point in the story. After Eclipse is out and we get a little closer to the release of Breaking Dawn, I'll be able to reveal the first pieces of Forever Dawn.
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Can you come to my town on your next tour?

I actually have no control over my tour schedule. I just go where Little, Brown & Co. tells me to go. At this point in time, I have no idea where they'll be sending me next fall. As soon as I know about any events I'll be at, I will post them in the calendar section of this website.
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What CD is Bella listening to in Chapter Seven?

I took that information out because I wasn't sure how long it was going to take to get Twilight published. If it took ten years, would the band still be cool, or would it be embarrassing? Lucky for me, it didn't take that long, and the band is still quite cool (in my eyes, at least). Bella is listening to Linkin Park. As I am at this very moment.
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Is there anyway to hurry the release of the sequel?

Sadly, no. That's not in my hands. New Moon will come out in August of 2006, and Eclipse will come out on August 7, 2007. No matter how fast I work, that's how it will be—it's the publisher's decision to have the books come out one per year.
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And here's my favorite, though it's only been asked once:
Is Twilight autobiographical?

No. Twilight is a work of fiction.
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What if my question isn't answered here?

Try the Twilight Lexicon.
twilight lexicon


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