Q: You're a mom of two. How do you manage to get any writing done?
A: I'm going to assume you ask the exact same question of dads and go ahead and answer. 1) I have an incredibly supportive spouse. 2) Therefore, I carve out dedicated time every week. This is important--I do not "find" time, I claim time. In addition, 3) I have very little social life. All of this is not enough to complete novels, so I also rely on 4) Naptime. 5) Bedtime. 6) Netflix.
Q: What's your best piece of writing advice?
A: I am definitely no expert. But. Just about any advice that works for one person, or even a lot of people, won't work for everyone, so my best piece of advice is be leery of advice.
That said, my favorite piece that was imparted to me and that I like to pass along is "Don't be high maintenance." That is--there are a lot of things you might find Nice while writing, like your favorite kind of tea in your favorite mug with your preferred music playing, but if you're going to write For Serious with an eye toward publication, it pays to be flexible, write whenever you have an opportunity, and consider these Nice but not Necessary.
Q: Which came first, Sophie Biscuit your cat or Sophie the protagonist of the Unraveled Kingdom trilogy?
A: This is where I confess that I'm really just that uncreative, and accidentally named my main character and my cat the same thing, completely unintentionally. But technically, Sophie Biscuit came first by several years.
Q: Where did you get the idea for TORN?
A: Buckle up for the nerd alert! I am a historical costumer and living history nerd, and was researching late eighteenth century jackets called “caraco.” It’s a really interesting time, sartorially speaking, and we have many fashion plates and extant garments that survive to study and learn from. As I was digging into a set of fashion plates, I realized that they were produced in the years leading up to and during the French Revolution—and found myself wondering, if a seamstress could influence the outcome of major world events, how would she? Anyway, things devolved from there. And no, I usually don't have quite so clear a "where did you get the idea" answer!
Q: Can you do this school event/do an interview/be at this con?
A: Please feel free to get in touch! Look, straight talk, travel is expensive and I have two little kids right now, so I'm doing my best to prioritize getting to more cons and events, but I'm not going to be at a whole ton of events. Writers typically pay their own way to cons and even library and school events, which can get tough, financially speaking. BUT! I am always happy to arrange for local-to-me stuff (Chicago, Indianapolis, Louisville areas, plus southwest Michigan) and to do Skype or emailed interviews if travel isn't possible. You never know what we might hash out, so please reach out!