*What were you like as a kid?
When I was really little, I was afraid of sand! That should tell you something. I loved animals just as much as I do now, and I also loved to play outside—tree climbing and night swimming were two of my favorite things!
As photo evidence shows, I was also a fairy princess.
*What was high school like for you?
In high school, I had a great, close-knit group of friends who still mostly keep in touch to this day; they helped make school fun. I also had a fantastic creative writing teacher who was the first person to inspire me to take my writing seriously! I was also busy with my horseback riding, dance, and guitar lessons, and admittedly read my fair share of awesome books under desks during classes.
*What are your favorite movies?
Beyond the obvious answers of Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, and the Harry Potter movies, I’ll keep this brief by listing two movies I recently enjoyed: The Jungle Book (the new version) and Captain America: Civil War (Team Cap all the way!).
*What are your favorite TV shows?
It would take way too long to list them all, but to name a few: Avatar: the Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra; Grimm; Castle; Firefly; Buffy; Angel; Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D; Vikings; Defiance; 12 Monkeys; Killjoys; Farscape; Stargate: Atlantis; True Blood; Supernatural …What can I say? I love sci-fi and monsters!
*What are your favorite books?
Oh boy. I have even more favorite books than TV shows! But a few of my favorite authors are: Garth Nix, Neil Gaiman, Tamora Pierce, Spencer Quinn, Libba Bray, Margaret Atwood, Madeleine L’Engel, Laini Taylor, Charles de Lint, Patricia McKillip, JK Rowling, Tolkien, Lloyd Alexander.
For more about my taste in books, you can check out my shelves on Goodreads.
*What are some random facts about you?
Well, I’m so glad you asked! For the curious, here are ten random facts about me:
*How did you come up with the idea for Fear the Drowning Deep?
I was inspired to write FEAR after seeing some fascinating, recently discovered sea creatures on the news—it made me realize how little we know about the vast world of the oceans.
For a longer explanation, see this post I did on my inspiration for FEAR.
*Where can I buy your book?
Thank you so much for your interest in my work! The best place to buy FEAR or any of my forthcoming works is from your local independent bookstore. However, my work will also be available through all major retailers such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, and more. Check out my “Books” page for more information and buy links!
*Also: This is just a friendly reminder that requesting books from your local library is a fantastic way to support an author (including me!).
*I’m a book blogger/reviewer interested in receiving a review copy of your book(s). Will you send me one?
Again, thank you for your interest! However, I’m sorry to say that review copies are out of my hands. Review copies are limited, and are distributed by my respective publishers, who have their own decision-making process when it comes to selecting people to receive review copies.
Reviewers interested in my books should direct all requests to the respective publisher (Sky Pony Press for Fear the Drowning Deep, Razorbill/Penguin for Reign of the Fallen, and so on).
*What music did you listen to while writing FEAR?
Great question! Here’s a sampling of music from the FEAR playlist:
Atlantis: Ellie Goulding
You Brought Me Up: Meav
Salt Skin: Ellie Goulding
Jealous of the Moon: Nickel Creek
Full Fathom Five: Meav
Newry Boat-song: Meav
*Is FEAR part of a series?
It is a standalone. I have an idea for a companion novel, but for now, there are many other stories fighting for my time that need writing! Maybe one day, though!
*What will your next book be about?
My next book (which can be found on my “Books” page) is called Reign of the Fallen and is the first in a duology. I can’t say too much about it yet, but it’s being published with Razorbill (Penguin) and includes some of my favorite things, like: necromancers, girls kissing boys, girls kissing girls, and a change-averse island nation ruled by a dead king for more than two hundred years.
*I want to be a writer, how do I get published?
While I do not give referrals to my agent or publishers, I can offer the following advice:
Once you’ve written a novel you love, edit that baby! Google will lead you to so many wonderful agent and author blogs that can give you in-depth advice on revising your manuscript. You’ll also want to get critique partners to help you edit once you’ve done the best you can on your own. CPs are a vital part of the writing process (I love mine!), and they can help you with everything from story feedback to writing and polishing the all-important query letter you’ll need for approaching agents.
Writing is tough. Querying is tough. The path to traditional publication is filled with so many unexpected twists and turns that you’ll need (IMO) two things to make it through: your critique partners to lean on during the tough times, and determination—because in some cases, it may take years to land an agent, and beyond that, it may take years for said agent to sell your work to the publishing house of your dreams.
Above all, I’d say don’t let the rejections bring you down—spoken by someone who’s been there. For more encouragement if you’re at the querying stage, check out this post I wrote about rejection in publishing and why they don’t always mean there’s anything wrong with your work.
You can also find some other ‘advice on writing’ posts on my now-defunct blog, which I’ve kept up as an archive of my early writing career.
*What are some of your favorite writing resources?
Here are some quick links to places I’ve found useful over the years:
*I’m working on a book. Will you read/critique my manuscript?
While I’m truly honored that you would ask, I’m afraid the answer is no. I’m sorry, but for legal reasons, as well as the existing demands on my time, I cannot read or review your work. Outside of my own work and family commitments, and feeding my ravenous pack of greyhounds, I only have time to read the works of my fully established critique partner circle.
If you’re looking for feedback however, I highly recommend finding critique partners of your own at the following places: Agent Query Connect, Absolute Write, CPseek.com, and by getting to know fellow authors in the terrific writing community on Twitter.