I get a lot of good thinking done when I’m driving and since I drive by a cemetery nearly every day, I often think about memories, regrets, life, and profound experiences. Having as many experiences as possible has always been a personal goal of mine - don’t even get me started on my mile-long bucket list. One day, my mind wandered to the idea of collecting the most cherished memories possible and that’s when I got the idea for a story about just that.
Strange Luck was a lot of fun to write because it allowed me the unique opportunity to explore how I feel about the mind, memories, and what it means to be a good human. Having discourse with my husband, who is a philosophy teacher, also helped me to think through a lot of these concepts. And, because I’m a huge fantasy fiction and magical realism fan, I decided to weave in lots of magical and supernatural elements, too.
Could you talk a bit about your publication process/experience?
It all started when I met a woman at the post office who had self-published her novel. She couldn’t say enough amazing things about the experience. She loved being in control of her vision and overseeing all aspects of her novel from start to finish. The idea certainly intrigued me, but I was afraid and didn’t know where to even start. I eventually tried the traditional route of querying agents, but grew tired of waiting and waiting. My fate was eventually decided over Chinese food with a friend. I joked, “Let the fortune cookie decide what I should do,” and as soon as I read ‘Trust Your Intuition,’ something clicked and I knew what I had to do. The experience has been wonderful, and challenging, but the most important outcome is that I can now share my story with the world, which is all I ever wanted to accomplish. You can read more about how I self-published Strange Luck in this recent blog post.
If you could jump into the world of your favorite book, who would you
be and what would you do?
be and what would you do?
That’s easy! I’d attend Hogwarts as Hermione Granger. First of all, I can’t think of anything cooler than living in a castle while learning about magic and spells. And, since Hermione is a curious, headstrong heroine, I would never be bored.
Are you currently working on any projects?
Yes, The Nightmare Birds. It picks up right where Strange Luck leaves off and follows Daisy Darling on her quest to authenticate a mysterious, evil book, but gets more than she bargained for. Keeping with an underlying philosophical theme, I implement one of my favorite topics—existentialism. There’s also lots of magic, myth, and supernatural elements. The Nightmare Birds is in the vein of The Neverending Story meets The Night Circus. Look for it in 2016.
What is something that surprises people about you?
That I’m a YA Fantasy author. I think people are surprised because it’s not every day you meet an author. I’ve probably only met a handful in my lifetime and only one who wrote fiction.
What section of a bookstore do you go to first?
Fantasy! It’s definitely my favorite genre, but I also think fantasy books have some of the best covers. They are so imaginative, strange, and dark. I could spend hours just admiring the artwork.
Who's your fictional crush?
I actually had to think about this question for a few days before coming up with Westley from The Princess Bride. I’m a sucker for old school fairy tale romances and this one definitely fits the bill—especially when you throw in a pirate costume and some swashbuckling.
If you could combine the storylines of two books, which ones would they be?
Through The Looking Glass meets The Neverending Story. These are two of my favorite stories and since they both deal with strange other worlds; it would be interesting to see how their worlds would collide or combine. I would also love to see a scenario where Alice wants to save Wonderland (like Bastain) instead of trying to escape from it.
About the Book:
Daisy Darling has never believed in the supernatural nor the spooky claims about the items sold in her family's antique shop. She's never sprouted wings, shaken hands with a time-traveling wizard, or even had a boyfriend. All she knows is a boring life taking care of her ailing father in her tiny mountain town.
That all changes when the seventeen-year-old opens a mysterious letter with a map to an incredible place far from her world. But Daisy finds out that the inhabitants of this world refer to themselves as prisoners, and her adventure quickly escalates into a dangerous journey where memories are stolen--the more cherished the memories, the higher the risk of losing them. Daisy possesses the unique ability to destroy the world and set its prisoners free, but first she must find the courage to battle the dark forces at play before her identity is erased and she's trapped forever.
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Disclosure: this post contains links to an affiliate program (Amazon), for which I receive a few cents if you make purchases.