Tag Archives: Grier Cooper

Interview with WISH Cover Model: Colette

The cover reveal for WISH has prompted a lot of curiosity about the featured dancer. This comes as no surprise; Colette is a lovely and talented dancer. Read on to find out more about where she came from and where she’s headed.
ColetteHeadshot
Tell us about your ballet background.
I started ballet when I was 3 at a little studio in Fairfax called DT7. I danced with them for 7 years and eventually joined their pre-professional program. I then decided to audition for San Francisco Ballet School when I was 10 and was accepted to their year round program! I then went through levels 5-8 at San Francisco Ballet School for 7 years. When I graduated high school at the age of 17 I was accepted to Indiana University and now dance with the Jacobs School of Music majoring in Ballet.
What were your initial thoughts about modeling for the cover of WISH?
At first I wasn’t positive what kind of book WISH was going to be, but I didn’t hesitate when I was asked and felt honored to be on the cover of WISH.
What were your favorite parts about modeling? Biggest challenges?
My favorite part about modeling is getting positive feedback from photographers. When I know the photographer is getting what they need then it makes me feel excited to see the final product.The biggest challenge for me while modeling is being able to relax my face and body.
How do you feel after seeing the finished cover? How is it different from what you imagined it would look like?
I really love it, I think it looks really mystical, beautiful, and almost erie. It is a very intriguing image capturing the audiences’ attention. I really like the black and white effect. I thought it would be much more blurred out around the corners and thought I would be farther back on the cover, but I really like the final product.
What are your current projects? 
Currently I am a sophomore at Indiana University and getting a Bachelors of Science with an Outside Field. The bachelor of science part is a major in ballet while my outside field is environmental management. My freshmen year I performed La Bayadere and this year I have performed two pieces for the fall ballet, a classical Balanchine piece, Emeralds and a modern piece, Dark Elegies. We are now working on the Nutcracker, as Indiana starts to go into the low 30 degrees bringing in the holiday spirit, unlike California!
A few fun facts:
Favorite treat: Banana bread/ Oreos
Craziest thing you’ve ever done: going to a school 2,000 miles away from home.
3 things that make you happy: Indian food/ My parents/ Performing
Favorite past time: hanging with friends/ watching the TV show Scandal
Where do you see yourself in five years?
I see myself in a professional company either on the West or East coast in the corps de ballet.
Anything else to share?
Although ballet is a wonderful part of my life and I am so blessed to have the most supportive parents in the whole world, ballet can be extremely tough mentally and physically. I feel very lucky to be able to go to college and get my education. Although I am dancing around 7 hours everyday, I have many fun activities outside of the ballet program. I love my academics and I feel as though if I get injured or ballet doesn’t work out in the end, I will still have a degree from a great university! I believe doing something you love in life and pursuing it is very important but at the same time to be open to other possibilities, as well as living life to the fullest.

 

WISH: Cover Reveal

Wish - eBookCover

Title: WISH

Series: Indigo Dreams #1

Author: Grier Cooper

Release Date: December 2, 2014

About the cover: This cover is a culmination of a whole lot of work, a big dream, more work, and several talented people. I am thrilled with the results and hope you like it as much as I do.

I had an idea of the look and feel I was going for when I began. I knew I wanted a ballet dancer on the cover –not just any dancer – but a REAL dancer. A friend put in me in touch with Colette Kerny (the  cover model) and we shot the original photo in a dance studio this past summer. I passed this off to LJ Anderson of Mayhem Cover Creations and she worked her magic.

Nothing quite describes the feeling of seeing the cover of your book for the first time. It’s kind of like having an inner hoedown: swirling bits of relief, revelry, exhilaration, and jubilee. If I had any fireworks laying around I’d light ’em. For now you’ll just have to use your imagination.

Stay tuned for the story of my cover model. Colette Kerny, and other tidbits and yummy nibbles from WISH in the next few weeks leading up to the official release!

Synopsis: 

For Indigo Stevens, ballet classes at Miss Roberta’s ballet studio offer the stability and structure that are missing from her crazy home life. At almost 16, she hopes this is the year she will be accepted into the New York School of Ballet. First she must prove she’s ready, and that means ignoring Jesse Sanders – the cute boy with dimples who is definitely at the top of Miss Roberta’s List of Forbidden Things for Dancers.

But Jesse is the least of Indigo’s concerns. When she discovers her mom is an alcoholic, it simultaneously explains everything and heaps more worry on Indigo’s shoulders. As her mom’s behavior becomes increasingly erratic, Indigo fights to maintain balance, protect her younger brothers from abuse, and keep her mother from going over the edge. When the violence at home escalates, Indigo realizes she can no longer dance around the issue. At the risk of losing everything, she must take matters into her own hands before it’s too late.

WISH is available for pre-order…grab your copy now!

Amazon: http://ow.ly/D7yUN

Barnes and Noble: http://ow.ly/D7yx1

Smashwords: http://ow.ly/D7AIc

Google Books: http://ow.ly/D7zuh

Goodreads: http://ow.ly/D7Abn

Kobo: http://ow.ly/D7Ax9

 

 

Ballet Companies on Tour: Perks and Perils Part II

 

 

 

 

 

 

When you are touring with a ballet company there isn’t a lot of time to go exploring, so you learn to make every little bit count. Even a full performing schedule has a few openings to squeeze in a walk before or after breakfast or grab a snack or coffee in between shows or rehearsals. After all, if you’ve already flown halfway around the world (and hey, someone else even paid for it!) you owe it to yourself to go see something.

A group of us decided to use the time between breakfast and morning class to explore on foot. A few minutes into the walk we came across a farmers’ market. The sights and smells were so different from what we found at home: fried bread, twisted and dusted with powdered sugar, hunks of marbled halvah, a decadent treat made from sesame seeds that managed to be oily and flaky.

And oh, yes. Let’s not forget the uniformed men with guns.

Correction. Not just any guns. AK-47s. Not a sight I’d ever seen a farmers’ market before.

“Those men have guns,” said one of the girls. “Are we safe? Should we even be here?”

We all looked over nervously, assessing. The men were obviously military of some sort. They wore mirrored sunglasses so it was impossible to tell if they were watching us. They held their rifles stiffly, fingers resting on the triggers. There was nothing casual about their demeanor.

“We’ll be fine,” said our token male dancer. “They aren’t interested in us. They’re just standing guard.”

The other girls tittered nervously. “It creeps me out,” said one.

There was something unnerving about a bunch of guys with assault rifles standing within arms’ reach (sorry about the pun). We took it as our cue to exit stage left.

Walking back along cobblestone streets that were potentially thousands of years heightened the sober mood. Moments later we were walking along Via Dolorosa, The Way of Sorrows. Here we were, in Jerusalem, walking same path where Jesus had carried the cross. Our feet, retracing this ancient, Biblical event. Maybe occasionally breathing in a few stray atoms that were remnants from that time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For a moment I wondered if God might be watching.

Just then a flock of birds soared past, the fwap-fwapping of their wings dispelling the thought. I tracked their progress, watching the group of them wind around a tower nearby, spiraling up into the blue before breaking formation to come to rest on a distant rooftop.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We continued back to our hotel. I decided not to mention the dead cat staring mutely from a pile of garbage. Instead I wondered alone about how it ended up that way, which did nothing to ease my sense of security.

The Dome of the Rock came into view. It was a breathtaking sight, the colors and textures of azure blue and blazing gold so rich we ran the last bit of the way to it, laughing. Once there, we took photographs of one another, pretending we were shooting mock Gap ads.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And then we saw them. Although maybe they saw us first. A bunch of young soldiers in uniform, armed with rifles came running our way. They appeared to be our age or younger, many of them barely more than children. The sight of them with rifles was incongruous and made me feel queasy.

One of them was disarmingly handsome (sorry about the arms puns, my subconscious just keeps tossing them out, making me laugh as I type them). Truly, he was. He approached us, lowering his rifle as he introduced himself.

photo by Kevin Young

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We were speechless. The combination of that many guns and the hot guy was too much to handle at once. Plus we were terrified. Should we talk to them? Who knew what they would do, what they wanted. Yes, they were being friendly, but they had guns. We were a bunch of skinny dancers, hardly more than teens ourselves. This was not our country and there were no rules.

But moments later we were taking photos with them. The international language of chemistry traverses all borders. So, hell. Why not seize the moment and take a picture with the hot guy? You only live once.