NEW YORK – Hilary Duff may be a recently married young woman of 23, but when it comes to books she's not quite ready to grow up.
"I love reading young adult books even though I'm a little older than the set demographic for YA," she said Tuesday. "I love adventure. I relate to girl characters, love, finding yourself and breaking out of the mold that people put you in."
It makes sense then that the actress and singer would decide to write her first novel "Elixir" for the younger set.
Duff may have a feel for her reading audience, too, from knowing her viewing audience. Duff played Lizzie MacGuire for two seasons on the Disney Channel from 2001-2004. Fans who watched her on TV may also want to check out her book.
"Elixir" is about a young photojournalist named Clea Raymond whose photos have extra images in them that weren't there originally. Then her father disappears. Clea sets off to unravel the mystery of both.
"This idea just kept coming to me and building in my head. I thought 'What am I gonna do with this? Am I gonna write a script or pitch the idea? Have someone else write it?' And then I thought 'I'm open for a new challenge. I'm going to try to write a book.'"
Duff has had a busy year. Besides writing, she also wed pro hockey player Mike Comrie in August.
She says publishing deadlines can be more stressful than planning a wedding.
"It's very similar ... They (publishers at Simon & Schuster Children's) were very good to me during the writing process and very lenient with dates and stuff until the very end. Then it got hectic. I was planning the wedding, and there's deadlines with that, too, like getting the location and getting your dress at a certain time ... I tend to do everything at the last minute ... I couldn't even choose which one is harder. I guess I'd say the book."
Duff plans "Elixir" to be the first in a series of novels. She will begin its sequel in a few weeks.
"That's one thing I learned during the writing process. So much changes. You have an idea in your head and then more ideas come with that idea and then your premise can kind of change."