Thursday 11 October 2012


What is your name, where were you born and where do you live now?
 Sonia Pereira Murphy. I was born in Hartford, Connecticut and now live in Western Massachusetts. I've turned from a suburbanite to a more rural gal though  there are definitely times I wish I either lived by the ocean or in a glamorous city.

Did you always want to be a writer? If not what did you want to be? 
When I was really young I wanted to be a fashion designer. I still sew a bit and read too many fashion magazines for my own good (and I'm a Project Runway addict!). Then around my teenage years I decided to focus on poetry and fiction. I started primarily as a poet and began writing fiction in college. So it makes sense that my first book is written is prose poems.

What can we expect from you in the future?  ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
I started a sequel to "Snow Spell" and am almost done writing a middle-grade novel that's completely different from the kind of dark, romance of my first book. It's about a young girl's fascination with her new town's "bad seed" (an older girl in her class) and how she deals with the loss of her parents while figuring out what friendship actually means. Other than that, I also have an adult thriller/mystery on the back-burner. It's quite dark and creepy which is something I have great fun with. 

Do you gift books to readers to do reviews?
Yes, absolutely! If anyone wants to review "Snow Spell" feel free to contact me and I'll send over a copy asap!

How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?
Well, I knew I wanted to set "Snow Spell" in Paris since it's my favorite place in the world and writing about it was a way to revisit my trip without actually getting on a plane. I feel Paris lends the story an old gothic feel that I fell in love with and wanted as a backdrop to my story. Since "Snow Spell" is a retelling of Snow White it seemed fitting that to set it in such a fairy-tale-like city... spires, cobblestones, gargoyles, and all!
I chose the name Neve for my heroine since she's Portuguese and Neve means snow in Portuguese. And since she's my story's Snow White... it just made sense. Plus, I find it pretty (of course!).

Do you basic plot/plan for your book, before you actually begin writing it out? Or do you let the writing flow and see where it takes the story?
I devise a plot outline before I write. It's very specific, otherwise I would get caught up in the love of the language and forget where the story was going!

How do you market/promote your books? 
This has been a learning process for me since I am naturally a shy person and marketing sometimes seems like you're the kid in class, jumping around with your hand in the air, trying to get the teacher to notice. At this point I'm simply getting to know book bloggers and readers and reaching out without trying to seem too aggressive or obnoxious. I don't want to sound like a salesperson (that is SO not me!) and cross my fingers that my book sounds interesting enough for someone to give a chance.

What do you do to unwind and relax?Do you have a hobby?
I love to sew and knit, watch movies with my daughter, and read. I also love to bake and really love to eat though I'm not the best cook in the world (!). 

Have you ever based characters on people you know or based events on things that have happened to you?
I've based one of the main characters in the middle-grade book I'm working on now on someone I knew in elementary school and who sort of disappeared from my life. I also base some of the events in the book on my experiences in grade school. Reliving those experiences can be painful but fascinating at the same time. One gets to analyze how one reacted at such a young age... and maybe understand one's self a bit more as a result.

What are you currently reading? Are you enjoying it? What format is it?(ebook, hardback or paperback) 
Actually, I've been going through a lot of Louisa May Alcott's books recently. I just reread "Little Women" and "Little Men" on my Kindle which is great because they're free. Wahoo! While I continue to enjoy Alcott's work I also can't help rolling my eyes at a lot of the books' moralizing. She really liked to bonk you over the head with her sermonizing. Luckily, she makes up for it with Jo's spirit. (Though I still think Laurie and Jo should have gotten hitched!)

Is there a book you know you will never read? Or one you tried to read but just couldn't finish?
I will probably never read a book by Jackie Collins or Danielle Steele. It's not out of snobbery, I just can't get interested in them. I also will probably never read "Ulysses" since every time I try a get a major headache and have to have a lie-down.

What do you think about book trailers?
I love them! I'm a very visual person and tend to write my books with movie scenes in my head, like it's all unfolding cinematically. Trailers are wonderful for that sort of thing!

If you could invite three favourite writers to dinner, who would you invite and enjoy chatting with?
Charlotte Bronte (while I love "Wuthering Heights" I feel Emily would be too wild-spirited for me), Elizabeth Barrett Browning, and Agatha Christie.

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