Interview with Shanti Hershenson, Author of Helipads in Heaven

18 Oct 2023

What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write Helipads in Heaven?

This book is heavily inspired by my own experiences growing up (minus the time travel, of course). I don’t remember exactly when I first came up with the idea for Helipads in Heaven, although the idea of incorporating time travel and childhood dreams was always a story that I found absolutely fascinating. And when I was a freshman in high school (I’m currently a sophomore), I wrote a 45-page screenplay for my creative writing class. That screenplay soon turned into Helipads in Heaven as I know it today.

If you had to pick theme songs for the main characters of Helipads in Heaven, what would they be?

An overall theme song for the book is Rocket Man by Elton John. In fact, it’s mentioned several times throughout the story. Other songs for the main characters could be The Archer by Taylor Swift, Chosen Last by Sara Kays, and last but not least, Genesis by Grimes.

What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?

I read all over the place, so I’d say that I don’t necessarily have a favorite genre to write. This is the same with my writing as well, considering I’m always looking to experiment with new genres and broaden my audiences.

What books are on your TBR pile right now?

I have probably a million books on my TBR pile right now. A few of them include Fourth Wing, Kingdom of the Wicked, and Girl in Pieces.

What scene in your book was your favorite to write?

There’s a particular scene later on in the book where the main character confronts a prominent and daunting figure of her past. When I was first writing the screenplay version of the book, this scene was one of the first ones I wrote. As much of this book is inspired by my own past experiences, I found it to be very emotional and almost therapeutic to write.

Do you have any quirky writing habits? (lucky mugs, cats on laps, etc.)

One habit of mine I’ve had since I began writing is always listening to the same song – Another Love by Tom Odell – in the first few minutes of my writing session. Considering many of my books are quite emotional, the song helps me get into the mood to write many of my most complicated scenes.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

I can’t think of anything specific!

If you could choose one thing for readers to remember after reading your book, what would it be?

Helipads in Heaven teaches readers to stay in touch with their roots and honor their childhood dreams – this is a message that I find especially important for my readers.


Shanti Hershenson is the author of the new book Helipads in Heaven

Connect with Shanti Hershenson

Author Site


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