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May 25, 2022

Editorial: Thrill on the Alley

With distanced outdoor dining all the rage, there’s never been a better time to roll out Gilroy’s long marinating Gourmet Alley project. The branded corridor, which runs between Monterey and Eigleberry streets from 3rd to 7th, has had its cool-sounding name for at least...

Editorial: Small businesses should not be taken for granted

We thought we would’ve had more time to lace up the slippery shoes, choose the perfect-sized and weighted ball, and hit the lanes for a few final frames. But as the closure of Gilroy Bowl and Scotty’s Restaurant showed, time is elusive during life under...

South County Chrysler Jeep Dodge named “Large Business of the Year”

This year's Spice of Life award-winner for a large business has kept its motors running in Gilroy since 1981. South County Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram has donated to dozens of local charities over the years.

‘Flying Lady’ Jan Perlitch dies

Morgan Hill residents Jan and Irv Perlitch were purveyors of the

Letter: Pay tribute to Scotty’s

We are long-time customers of more than 20 years who loved Scotty’s Restaurant. We feel that there should be way more tribute to owner Gracie and her beloved husband who has passed. My husband and I are approaching our 60s now. Unfortunately, there are not...

Chicano community extends an inviting hand

By Cesar Gamboa Nestled in the southern Santa Clara Valley, at the crossroads of the Great Central Valley, Bay Area, “Silicon Valley,” the Monterey Peninsula, and Salinas Valley sits Gilroy. Gilroy serves as an ideal place for tourism, agriculture, high technology and healthy U.S. Patriotism.  When...

Editorial: Marie Blankley for mayor

Gilroy’s next mayor will face an unprecedented financial situation that is mired in uncertainty. The mayor alone won’t be able to solve this issue. But how effectively they lead the city council during the next four years will be critical to Gilroy’s long-term survival. There is...

UPDATED: Man found dead in west MH home

Wesley Painter, 29 of Gilroy, whose lifeless body was located in a west Morgan Hill home while police were investigating an unrelated incident, is not considered a victim of foul play, Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Sgt. Jose Cardoza said. 

They Look Identical; Write Differently

Writing a book is a major accomplishment. But if you are 23 years old, have an identical twin, have written the book together and have published your first in a series of young adult novels, that is astounding.Brittany and Nicole Pettibone spent their early years in Kansas, before moving to Morgan Hill over a decade ago. They are known in the literary world as T.S. Pettibone, a pen name created by using the first letters of their parents’ names, Theodore and Sabrina.The twins attended freshman year at Thomas More High School in San Jose. The following year Nicole traveled to New York, where she attended a boarding school, while Brittany remained at home.It was an experiment of sorts as the twins wanted to experience life apart.“We realized that we’re better together,” Brittany said.“We feel we complement each other, although we’re very different,” Nicole added.Three years ago the Pettibone family, with 10 kids, moved to Gilroy, and in January the twins completed their first book, Hatred Day, in the young adult (YA) fantasy/sci-fi genre.The Gilroy community can meet these local celebrities on Saturday, April 2 at 3 p.m., when the Pettibone twins appear at Gilroy Library to read from Hatred Day.The library visit is something the twins look forward to; they see it as an opportunity to meet avid readers of YA fiction.As it happens, Brittany and Nicole are not only identical twins; they are mirror image twins.Many of their physical traits are exact opposites of each other, such as Brittany being left-handed, and Nicole being right-handed. The same can be said for their personalities.“I was more outgoing when we were younger, and Nicole was more withdrawn—not really shy, just withdrawn—and her focus was on writing,” Brittany said.“For example in writing, [Nicole] has strengths where my weaknesses are, and my strengths are where her weaknesses are,” Brittany said, adding, “I can see things more broadly, like plotwise, and she’s better at the details and dialogue. It really works.”The girls don’t consider their relationship any different from other sibling relationships, although they’ve been told otherwise.“People have commented that they find us as unapproachable because we have that twin bond, and we’re always talking,” Nicole said.The twins admit they’ve had fun with the fact that they are identical. When they were in second grade, Brittany, the eldest by 15 minutes, proposed the idea of switching identities, they wanted to see if their teachers would notice.The ruse worked, and for three days the twins pulled it off.Throughout their grade school days Brittany spent most of her time with friends and playing sports, while Nicole created her own world through her art and her writing.“The things I imagined, or the things that moved me, I loved to be able to put into physical form,” Nicole said. “It’s sort of without leaving the house you’re exploring on your own. You’re building worlds, you’re learning and discovering new things.”It wasn’t until the 10th grade that Nicole decided to share her writing with her sister.“I was mesmerized by it. I loved it,” Brittany said.Inspired by Nicole’s work, Brittany tried her hand at writing and formulated the premise for their first book, a sci-fi/fantasy thriller set in 2052.“It was absolutely terrible back then,” said Brittany. “We were about 15 when we thought of the idea for the story, but Nicole actually wanted to write it with me because she saw some potential in it.“We didn’t have the theme, we didn’t have moral arguments, and all these kind of things way back then, and our characters were completely different too.”The twins explained that the idea of the main character, a teenaged girl, volunteering to be bait for a hunt, is the only aspect of the story that has stayed consistent.Many might be surprised to discover that writing together is something the twins really enjoy, and according to them, they rarely argue.“Normally, for the most part, we agree,” Brittany, said.They also agree on the genre of their writing, which is centered in the world of fantasy.“We’ve always loved the idea of no limitations. We loved the idea of being able to do what we want, to do really imaginative and crazy things in our book,” Nicole said.The twins love writing so much they admit that it has been a stumbling block for them.“Honestly we feel that we can always do better, we’re never satisfied,” Nicole said. “We just kind of have to cut the cord at some point and end it, because otherwise we’d probably write a million times, until we’re like old, and never get it out.”When it came to their writing process for the first book, the twins would brainstorm for hours; then each would write their own draft of the story. The process turned out to be very counterproductive, as they wound up with over 20 revisions. It wasn’t until they created an outline for the story, which provided structure to their writing, that it all came together.Hatred Day, released on Jan. 29, is the first installment of the authors’ planned seven-book series. They also aim to write two stand-alone books. The projected completion date for all nine books, according to the twins, is in five years, if not sooner.“Our long range goal is within three to five years to be able to fully support ourselves. That would be the ultimate thing for us, and it’s what we’ve been working towards for so long,” Brittany said.Even with numerous offers from publishers, after a great deal of deliberation the twins decided to go the route of self-publishing.“We like doing it on our own. We wanted to do everything ourselves,” Nicole said.“It is getting a lot more credibility, self-publishing, and it’s a lot easier to do than it was just a few years ago,” Brittany said. “Now a lot more people are open to it.”“I think that YA is mainly in that age [15-19], where you have a lot of firsts in life, you try a lot of new things,” Nicole said.“We don’t actually have that in our book,” she continued, “because they are in such a ruthless world, and they have to survive from a young age, and have to mature more quickly. So ours isn’t really coming of age, but there will be, throughout the series, there will be a lot of firsts, because it’s about growing up, first heartbreaks, and so on.”For more information about the Hatred Day series, visit the authors’ website at:http://tspettibone.com.    

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