Please tell us your latest news!
In 2009, Universal acquired the film rights to the Wicked Lovely books. Vince Vaughn's Wild West Picture Show Productions will be producing, and Caroline Thompson (Nightmare Before Christmas, Secret Garden, City of Ember, Corpse Bride, and Edward Scissorhands) has done the screenplay--which I've read and love.
If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
I don't believe in regrets, so no. Could I write a better book if that was my NEXT book? Hopefully. I want each book to be better in some way than the last one, and if that stops happening, I want to notice it and switch careers. Life is about moving forward, growing, learning, evolving.
Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
Faulkner is my god. He did brilliant things with narrative structure and sensory detail; he was both a storyteller and a writer (which, I believe, are two different skill sets). In my very biased opinion, he is the best author born in our country, as well as being one of the best authors worldwide. No one tops him for me.
Do you see writing as a career?
It is the career I'm in right now, but that doesn't mean it's what I plan to do forever. I'm not quite 40 yet, so (barring catastrophe, disease, or apocalypse), i suspect I can try a few more careers if the path leads that way.
Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I grew up in a family of storytellers who indulged my love of reading (I read before I started school) and of hearing stories (folklore, fairy tales, and whatever else I could get them to tell me about). My mother took me to the library; my uncle sent my boxes of books; my grandmother opened her shelves to me; and one of the Sisters at my school told me in 6th grade that I'd better get cracking since she was sure I was a writer-in-process. I was 12 when I decided I wanted to be a writer, a teacher, and (most importantly) a mother.
Do you have any advice for other writers?
Believe in yourself. Remember there is NO right way to do this (the writing or the business). Get a good agent.
How does your family feel about having a writer in the family? Do they read your books?
My mother, spouse, and daughter (16 yr old) read all of my books. She was 12 when I wrote the first one, so she didn't read them then. Likewise, my son is 11 so he doesn't read them. My father isn't a book person, but like the rest of them, he's incredibly supportive,
What did you do before you became a writer? Do you write full time?
I taught (university). When I sold the first book, I needed to transition to doing this full time. A person can only hold so many jobs at once; my limit is two. Before, I was a teacher and a mother; now, I'm a writer and a mother; and eventually, the beasties will go off to college, and at that point I hope to teach and write.
What is your writing process? Do you outline, fly by the seat of your pants or a combination of both?
I find outlines truly perplexing. I have a story in my head, and as I write it becomes clearer. It's a pretty organic--albeit often chaotic--process.
Do you have a ritual when it comes to writing? Example..get coffee, blanket, paper, pen and a comfy place
No music=no words Beyond that, I can be flexi. If I write at my desk, I type. On the road, I write longhand. I typically write at night, but I have days where I wake and immediately write. I have either or tea (or both if the words are really flowing). I can adjust in many areas, but music is my big exception. Without sounds pouring out of my headphones, I can't write.
"Thanks for the interview invitation! M."