Saturday 31 May 2014


Do you have a "lucky charm" or "lucky routine" you follow when waiting for your book to be accepted by a publisher?
I work on another book, which preempts fears of rejection. I mean, they could reject the manuscript but I can always then mentally rebound with a thought like, "Yes, but if they only knew what I was working on now!" 

How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?
Sometimes it can take as short a time as a year and a half or so and with The Pure Trilogy -- the second and third novels -- I was on a yearly deadline so there was no dawdling. The novel I have coming out next year, Harriet Wolf's Seventh Book of Wonders, took about 17 years, and is now in edits on year 18. 

Which of your books were easier/harder to write than the others?
I whistle into each one like I'm skipping into a meadow and then each one turns on me in different ways -- bears, wolves, professional wrestlers... 

What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
I'll keep writing across genres. Cross-training eases my restlessness.

How do you come up with the Title and Cover Designs for your book/books?Who designed the Cover of your books?
Titles are either very quick and clear or they take forever. Sometimes a title shows up years before the book. There's always an art department and usually a number of covers get looked at before one is settled on. 

Do you choose a title first, or write the book then choose the title?
Both have happened. 

How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?
For The Pure Trilogy, I'd heard that names often emerge following the sounds of other popular name -- Addison followed Madison, etc... So as I was writing into the future, I was thinking sometimes toward names that might arrive at some point and nicknames. I love nicknames because they each hold a back-story. 

Are character names and place names decided after there creation? or do you pick a character/place name and then invent them?
Sometimes I have to change a name for some reason -- too close to another character's name or something... And it's very hard because the name was chosen so specifically for them -- it can feel like a character edit. 

Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?
My characters, on the best days, do their own changing. 

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 do map the books, but I'm always wrong. The characters take on their own lives and make more interesting decisions than I could ever invent for them; this is when the book most comes to life. 

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