Character Interview: Melly from Drum Roll, Please

Hello, dear readers. Today, I’m here to introduce you to Melly, who stars in Drum Roll, Please, a delightful middle grade story by Lisa Jenn Bigelow that features a f/f crush at camp.

Find the confidence to rock out to your own beat.

Drum Roll Please CoverMelly only joined the school band because her best friend, Olivia, begged her to. But to her surprise, quiet Melly loves playing the drums. It’s the only time she doesn’t feel like a mouse.

Now, she and Olivia are about to spend the next two weeks at Camp Rockaway, jamming under the stars in the Michigan woods.

But this summer brings big changes for Melly: her parents split up, her best friend ditches her, and Melly finds herself falling for a girl at camp named Adeline. To top it off, Melly’s not sure she has what it takes to be a real rock ‘n’ roll drummer. Will she be able to make music from all the noise in her heart?




If Drum Roll, Please sounds up your alley, I highly recommend it! You can pick up a copy on Amazon or Indiebound!


Hello, Melly! Thank you for taking the time to talk to me, smack in the middle of camp! What is your favorite part about Camp Rockaway?

I should say the music, right? That’s what my parents are paying for. But canoeing is way up on the list, too. Adeline—she’s in my band—taught me how. It’s so peaceful, and I don’t have to worry about anyone else judging me. Even if I tipped us over, I bet Adeline would laugh it off. Nothing seems to bother her.


What is your favorite song?

This is not remotely rock star-ish, but it’s “You Are My Sunshine.” My parents sang it to me when I was little, as a lullaby. They’re horrible singers, but when they sang to me, I felt all warm and glowy like the sun. Also, Sunshine is way better than my other nickname, Mouse.


Who is your celebrity crush?

Do cartoon characters count? Because my first crush was Thomas O’Malley in The Aristocats, and I still sort of love him! He’s this big orange alley cat, all carefree and confident, and he can sing and . . . okay, maybe I wish I were him. What can I say? I’m a scaredy-cat.


What is your favorite emoji?

I’ll tell you what my least favorite emoji is: the flush-face! Freaked-out eyes, bright pink cheeks. It’s basically like looking in the mirror.


What are you most afraid of?

I’m scared of a million things, but most of all letting people down. My parents, my friends, my teachers—I feel sick imagining it. Now I’ve got a whole band to worry about. I’ll probably drop my sticks in the middle of our show, or trip over a cable and knock out the entire sound system.


What’s the most important trait to you in a friend or romantic partner?

I’ve never had a romantic partner, and I doubt I will until I’m like 50 . . . but mostly I think I’d want someone kind. They’d also need to be braver than I am because I could never work up the nerve to ask somebody out. And I’d like someone who can make me smile.

I’m basically describing my best friend Olivia, actually, but there’s no way Olivia and I would ever date. First, Camp Rockaway has turned her totally boy-crazy. Second, it would be just plain weird. But I guess that answers the question of what I admire in a friend.


What is your favorite food, and why?

Camp food or real-life food? Because now that Dad’s moving out and taking his waffle iron with him, I’d almost rather eat camp food for the rest of my life. Cooking is not Mom’s strong suit.

So far, the best meal at camp has been biscuits and gravy. The gravy looked like . . . well, I won’t say what it looked like, because that would be rude. But it tasted amazing! The best part was, a lot of kids refused to touch it, so I got thirds.


If you had a free day with nothing to do, what would you do?

This might sound weird, but I’d like more time alone. I’m used to a lot of me-time at home. At camp, I can barely get a minute to myself. I’d like to play drums—whatever I want, not just my band’s music. And I’d like to explore the woods. Maybe I could catch a glimpse of the sheep on the farm next door!

But eventually I’d want to hang out with my friends. I love the beach, and canoeing with Adeline, and sing-alongs at fire bowl. And even though our director, Damon, is kind of dorky, his percussion workshops are very informative.


If you could spend a day with someone you admire (alive, dead or fictional) who would it be?

I would have to say Sheila E., who’s maybe the most famous female drummer in American history. She’s played jazz, pop, rock, Latin, country . . . you name it, she’s played it. But the truth is I’d probably get totally tongue-tied. Maybe I could sit at the side of the stage while she plays, to see what her hands and feet are doing. And afterward she could autograph my copy of her memoir, The Beat of My Own Drum.



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