Author Bio (via Website)
One of my first spoken words was “story” (right along with “bath” and “cookie”), my favorite toy as an infant was a soft, squishable book, and I’ve wanted to be a writer since I first realized such a job existed.
When I was fourteen my best friend introduced me to anime and fanfiction—over the years I would complete over forty Sailor Moon fanfics under the penname Alicia Blade. Those so inclined can still find my first stories at fanfiction.net. Writing fanfic turned out to be awesome fun and brought me in contact with an amazing group of fanfiction readers and writers. As Alicia Blade, I also had a novelette, “The Phantom of Linkshire Manor,” published in the gothic romance anthology Bound in Skin (CatsCurious Press, 2007).
When I was sixteen I worked at The Old Spaghetti Factory in Tacoma, Washington, affectionately termed “The Spag.” (Random factoid: This is also the restaurant where my parents met some 25 years before.) I attended Pacific Lutheran University where I sorted mail that came to the dorm, carted tables and chairs around campus, and took writing classes, eventually earning a Bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing and Children’s Literature. Knowing I wanted a career in books, I would also go on to receive a Master’s degree in Publishing from Pace University (which you can learn more about here). After graduation, I worked as an editor in Seattle for a while before becoming a freelance typesetter and proofreader.
Then, day of days, someone thought it would be a good idea to give me a book deal, so I became a full-time writer. CINDER is my first novel, though I have an adorable collection of unfinished ones lying around too.
I now live with my husband and our three cats (Calexandria Josephine, Stormus Enormous, and Blackland Rockwell III), who go in and out, in and out, about eight hundred times a day. My favorite non-bookish things include Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, re-watching episodes of Firefly, and playing all manners of dress-up.
Title: Cress (The Lunar Chronicles #3)
Author: Marissa Meyer
Publishing Date: February 4th 2014
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
In this third book in the Lunar Chronicles, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, now with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army.
Their best hope lies with Cress, a girl imprisoned on a satellite since childhood who's only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker. Unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.
When a daring rescue of Cress goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a high price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.
1. How did you get into writing?
I always knew that I wanted to be a writer, from the time that I realized it was a job that people actually got paid for. I was an avid book lover from the time that I was a kid, and the thought that I could use my active imagination to tell stories - not only that I would enjoy telling, but also that might have the same impact on readers as my favorite books had had on me - was enormous. I've been striving toward becoming a published writer ever since!
2. When starting a book how much of it comes straight from your imagination and how much is research?
I would say it starts with about 10% my imagination - where I'm building my concept for the plot and the world and beginning to get some vague ideas of the characters, followed by about 20% research, where what I learn and read might directly influence the world-building and expand on the plot I'd started with. From there, the remaining 70% is up to my imagination to fill in the holes and write the book, only stopping to research on a need-to-know basis.
3. Who is your favourite character you have written and why?
I have to say Iko, Cinder's android best friend. From the beginning she's been one of those characters who practically writes herself - and for being a robot, she also has as much or more personality than any of my human characters! She's a lot of fun, and always full of surprises, even for me.
4. Do you go into a book knowing how you want it to end?
Yes, I usually have a really good idea of where the book is heading and how the major plotlines will resolve themselves. I even knew the end of the series when I was first starting Cinder, generally speaking, at least. which isn't to say that those things are set in stone - things change all the time - but I typically have the basics of the finale worked out ahead of time.
5. What 5 books would you recommend for your readers?
Oh, I get to pick five! That's awesome. Let's see, for Lunar Chronicles readers specifically, I would suggest:
- Under the Never Sky, by Veronica Rossi (science-fiction with lots of fantastic characters and world development)
- The Book of Lost Things, by John Connolly (a dark and eerie fairy tale)
- The Raven Boys, by Maggie Stiefvater (a unique premise, complex story, and a large cast of characters you can't help but fall in love with)
- Shadow and Bone, by Leigh Bardugo (a sweeping fantasy world with plenty of romance and too-charming-for-their-own-
- Plus One, by Elizabeth Fama (intriguing politics and social prejudices, plenty of action, and a wonderful star-crossed love story)