Author Interview

Author Interview: Meg Cabot

Meg Cabot


Meg has written a lot of books…. I’m not going to list them all here, because it would take up my entire post!

But this interview is to celebrate the upcoming release of the newest book in the Em Watts series:


Runway by Meg Cabot

Where can you hide

When everyone knows your name?

Em Watts is a prisoner: Brandon Stark, heir to the Stark corporation family fortune, is holding her captive.

Em Watts is a liar: She’s told all her friends she loves Brandon, and that everything is fine.

Em Watts is scared to death: She really doesn’t know how she’s going to get out of this one.

She’s still in shock over the fact that the girl whose life she was forced to take over when her brain was transplanted into her body is alive—alive and furious with her for stealing what she claims was rightfully hers…

…including Brandon Stark, who’s intent on finding out what that girl’s secret was, and using it to get revenge on his father.

But that’s not all Brandon wants…he wants Em. And not just to use her to trick Nikki into revealing that secret, and helping him secure his place as head of Stark Enterprises once and for all.

But Brandon’s not the only one who wants something from Em. Christopher wants to use her to hurt Brandon…for taking her away from him, and to destroy Stark Enterprises.

Em Watts is tired: She’s tired of being used. Tired of being lied to. Tired of being told who she can and cannot love. Tired of the lies she’s being forced to live.

With everyone she loves furious with her for things she can’t explain, Em’s reached the end of her rope…what’s the point of even going on?

But when she discovers the truth about Nikki’s secret, she knows there’s only one person she can turn to.

Will Christopher be able to put aside his personal feelings and help her expose her employer to the world? Is it even fair to get Christopher involved — since if he agrees, there’s every chance that Stark Enterprises will try to have them both killed—this time, permanently?

Maybe it would be better for Em to just keep on running…

I’m really excited to kick of the RUNAWAY Blog Tour! Here’s my interview with Meg:

You write books for kids, you write books for teens, you write books for adults.. (is there anything you don’t do!) Who is your favorite audience to write for?

Actually, I can’t seem to pass the Florida state written driver’s license exam or flat-iron my own hair. So there’s a lot I can’t do!

But even though I know all writers say this, I really do write only for myself, not with a specific audience in mind. So I honestly don’t picture any particular “reading audience” when I’m writing. I will say however that the Mediator fans write the longest (easily five or six pages, single spaced), most impassioned fan letters, which I’ve always found interesting.

As a multi-published author what is the hardest aspect of writing? The easiest?

The easiest part is definitely the first draft. Not that it’s easy to write—it’s super hard!

But in retrospect it always seems easiest, because I’m always so excited about it.

But then comes the part I hate the most: When my editor sends that beautiful, perfect first draft back, all marked up, along with a four (or eight) page, single-space editorial letter, telling me everything I need to rethink or change.

Of course she’s usually right . . . after revisions, the book is always much stronger.

But revising is SO HARD! I really, really hate revising. So, that’s the hardest part for me.

What is the most interesting comment you’ve received about your books?

“Most interesting” vs. “meant the most to me”:

“Meant the most to me”: The ones where readers have written to say how much my books have helped them get through a difficult time in their lives, such as going through chemo, or coping with the death of a parent.

Because that’s exactly why I write the kind of books I do, to help people through dark times like those. I’ve had rough patches like those myself, and other people’s books are what helped get me through them.

“Most interesting”: When a prison minister wrote to thank me for writing The Princess Diaries because it had “such positive moral values” and said he liked to show the movie to incoming prisoners, because it was so inspirational.

I still haven’t gotten over that. Somewhere out there is a prison where they show The Princess Diaries movie to incoming prisoners! All these guys in orange jumpsuits are sitting there watching Anne Hathaway and Matarazzo in schoolgirl uniforms as part of their prison indoctrination!

Describe your writing style in three words.

“Just shoot me.”

Wait did you say writing style or what I’m thinking while I write?

Your author Blog was one of the first of its kind. Do you think it’s important for authors to have an online presence?

I think it’s important for an author to have a website with a bio and a Coming Soon page (so readers can see what she has coming out next).

But I completely understand (and respect) why an author wouldn’t want to Twitter or have a blog or Facebook page. Those are total time suckers (although for some of us, the distraction can sometimes be welcome)!

What is a day in the life of Meg Cabot like?

Oh, you don’t even want to know. It’s chaos, because we’ve been remodeling a house that was built in the 1850s, and every day, it seems, we find some new thing that’s wrong with it. I’m lucky to get a few hours of writing in. That’s not even mentioning all the industry related emails and phone calls from people with urgent business that must be taken care of immediately!

Fortunately I’ve trained myself to be able to write with headphones on, blaring rock music (currently alternating between the new Vampire Weekend and Lady Gaga albums), to drown out the sound of the bandsaws, ringing phones, and email pings.

If you could travel back in time for one year, where would you go, and what three things would you take with you?

You mean like if we found a Hot Tub Time Machine? I wouldn’t need a year, a day would be enough to correct the horrible Strategic Boy error Past Me made on July 13,1985, summer of Live Aid. That’s what I would set my Hot Tub Time Machine dial to.

I’d take:

–Cash (obviously only pre-1985 bills so Past Me would not be incarcerated for passing forged bills)
–A certain phone number and address Past Me didn’t have and was unable to find (no Internet back then)
–And a copy of one of my own books from the Future, so Past Me would believe me when I told her she was making a huge mistake staying with That Boy

Although I’m a bit worried about the Butterfly Effect (Ray Bradbury’s theory which shows that anyone who messes with the past, even a little bit and with good intentions, inevitably causes havoc in our present).

Probably messing with my own past will ruin my Present and Future. So most likely given the opportunity, I would avoid the Hot Tub Time Machine.

Aren’t you more interested in the future, anyway? The possibilities seem endless! I’d way rather take a trip to the future in the Hot Tub Time Machine. Maybe I’ll finally learn to drive and flat-iron my own hair.

If you want more Meg (I know I do!) you can check out her guest blog tomorrow at My Friend Amy on her best and worst travel experiences!

You can also see the complete tour details at Meg’s Website! I’ll be checking out the twitter party!


Author Interview

Author Interview: Maria V. Snyder & Giveaway

Maria V. Snyder


  • Poison Study
  • Magic Study
  • Fire Study
  • Strom Glass
  • Sea Glass
  • Inside Out


Inside Out by Maria V. Snyder

Keep Your Head Down.

Don’t Get Noticed.

Or Else.

I’m Trella. I’m a scrub. A nobody. One of thousands who work the lower levels, keeping Inside clean for the Uppers. I’ve got one friend, do my job and try to avoid the Pop Cops. So what if I occasionally use the pipes to sneak around the Upper levels? The only neck at risk is my own…until I accidentally start a rebellion and become the go-to girl to lead a revolution.

How was writing Inside Out different from writing The Study Series? How was it similar?

With Inside Out, I had to keep close track of the setting details. Since the world is completely contained, I had to know where everything was and stay consistent throughout the story. I drew up maps and diagrams in the early stages of writing. With the Study books, my map developed along with my story. I knew Ixia was broken into eight Military Districts, but the locations and details weren’t decided until they had to be for the story. That’s why the map of Ixia and Sitia wasn’t put in the Study books, but it’s in the Glass books and the YA editions of Poison Study and Magic Study. The maps of Inside weren’t included with the book, but all the maps for both series are posted on my website at: http://www.mariavsnyder.com/maps.php

As for the similarities, I wrote the books in first person point of view and I kept my style–action packed, complex plot, cliff-hanging chapter ends, some twists, and a little romance :) I didn’t try and change my word choice because this was a young adult book and I didn’t simplify the plot either. Young adults are savvy readers and have been enthusiastic about my books before they were given new covers and put in the YA section of the bookstore.

Have you noticed your writers’ voice change from your first novels?

I haven’t noticed a change in my voice, but I do think the quality of my writing has improved. The old cliché about practice makes perfect is true. After writing 7 novels, I have a better sense of what’s needed as far as setting details and background information.

Now my readers may disagree with the change in voice, and I do get emails from them telling me one book is better than another or how I have improved (or haven’t) with each one.

Describe your writing in three words.

Character-driven, Fast-paced, Entertaining. (Are the hyphens cheating? Well, what do you expect? I’m a writer – three words is hard! :)

What’s the most interesting comment you’ve received about your books?

I have so many that I just love, but this one has to be my favorite. A little background. Brain’s girlfriend had been pestering him to read my first book, Poison Study for two years and he finally read the book in self-defense. This is what he emailed me: “I never thought that a book with a chick main character could interest me, but man was I wrong! This book was bad ass and I can’t believe that I didn’t even mind the romance!

And I can’t resist adding another. I was at the World Fantasy Convention in Madison, Wisconsin. These cons have dealer’s rooms where sellers set up tables. One seller, Larry Smith sells new books and he’s rather famous among the convention goers. I’ve heard through the grape-vine that Larry had been recommending my book to his customers, so I took a big bag of chocolate over to him to thank him. He’s a nice guy, but can be a little gruff at times and if you don’t know him. When he found out who I was he said, “I didn’t want to read your book. I didn’t want to like your book. But when I reached page 175, I just had to finish your book.

If you could travel back in time for one year, when and where would you go… and what three things would you take with you?

I’m not a big history buff. The thought of living back in a time where women didn’t have any rights or power, is unappealing to me. I’d rather go forward if possible :) But if I was forced…I’d go to Italy during the Renaissance. I’d take antibiotics, ibuprofen, and shampoo.

What are you working on now, can you tell us anything about it?

I’m working on Outside In, the next book in the Inside series. It starts about nine weeks after the end of Inside Out. I really can’t tell you too much or else it will spoil the plot of Inside Out. I’ll just say, Trella finds herself in more trouble.

Thanks so much for inviting me back to your blog! If your readers would like any more info or would like to read the first chapter of all my books, they’re welcome to go to my website at: http://www.MariaVSnyder.com I also have free short stories on my site. Two of them feature characters from my Study books (Valek in one and Ari and Janco in the other).

Check out the book trailer for Inside Out:

Check out the Official Inside Out Website! Where you can:

  • read the first three chapters of Inside Out
  • take the Inside Out personality quiz
  • plus other fun activities

I also have a signed finish copy of Inside Out for one lucky winner!

Official information:

  • to enter, please fill out the form below
  • entrants must be 13 years of age or older
  • contest deadline is April 13, 2010
  • contest open to everyone!
  • check out my Contest Policy/Privacy Policy


Book Review

Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake by Sarah MacLean

Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake by Sarah MacLean

Release Date: March 30, 2010
Publisher: HarperCollins/Avon
Age Group: Adult
Pages: 432
Source: Publisher
Interest: Author
Challenge: None

A lady does not smoke cheroot.

She does not ride astride.

She does not fence or attend duels.

She does not fire a pistol, and she never gambles at a gentlemen’s club.

Lady Calpurnia Hartwell has always followed the rules, rules that have left her unmarried—and more than a little unsatisfied. And so she’s vowed to break the rules and live the life of pleasure she’s been missing. But to dance every dance, to steal a midnight kiss—to do those things, Callie will need a willing partner. Someone who knows everything about rule-breaking. Someone like Gabriel St. John, the Marquess of Ralston—charming and devastatingly handsome, his wicked reputation matched only by his sinful smile.

If she’s not careful, she’ll break the most important rule of all—the one that says that pleasure-seekers should never fall hopelessly, desperately in love . . .

You wouldn’t know it from my blog, but I am a HUGE romance fan. I love historical and paranormal romance. If you look at my Goodreads shelves you’ll find romance novels scattered among all the ya titles.

My mom and I were going to do a mom and daughter review for this, because she reads more romance novels then anyone I know and I let her read my copy of Nine Rules and she devoured it, and then of course I took it back…. but anyway like I said we were going to do a mother/daughter review, but it didn’t quite work out…. so you just get a regular old review with me. Maybe I can talk my mom into doing one later. Anyhow… my thoughts on the book:

I was first introduced to Sarah and her writing with her young adult novel The Season, which also takes place in Regency England. I knew when I heard she has a historical romance novel coming out, that I just had to get my hands on it. And I wasn’t disappointed.

There aren’t many times in a romance novel that I actually laugh out load, but I did, multiple times when reading this novel. The whole idea of Callie making this list of the most sordid acts to preform was absolutely hilarious! And it often lead to the most interesting encounters with the leading man, Ralston.

Callie’s character was endearing and I recognized so much of myself in her. And of course Ralston was as delicious as a leading man should be, but I enjoyed all the characters in the novel. I especially loved Ralston’s younger sister Juliana! I am so hoping that Sarah tells her story!

The story was fantastic, the writing was outstanding, and the romance was HOT! I mean, somebody just lit my fire hot…! Sarah just reaffirmed my love for the romance genre. I can’t wait to read more about these characters! I love romance because they are the ultimate love stories and there is always a happy ending. What is not to love?



Custom Canvas Winner!

Thanks UPrinting.com for providing the giveaway opportunity!

The lucky winner of their own custom 16×20 canvas print is:

Cassidy F.

Congrats Cassidy! You will be receiving an email from UPrinting.com with instructions on how to redeem your prize!

Thanks to everyone who stopped by and entered the contest! There were 115 entrants!



The Cinderella Society Giveaway

Guess what!! I’ve got an awesome contest for you lovely readers! Woohoo!

I have the honor of giving away an advance readers copy of:

The Cinderella Society by Kay Cassidy
(did I mentioned it is signed!)
a beautiful glass slipper bookmark
(oh pretty!)

The Cinderella Society

When the Prom Queen becomes your fairy godmother…

Sixteen year old outsider, Jess Parker, gets the chance of a lifetime: an invitation to join a secret society of popular girls dedicated to defeating the mean girls of the world. The Cinderella Society guides all new recruits through its top secret ultimate life makeover. It’s all part of preparing them to face down the Wickeds and win. Determined not to let the Cindys down, Jess dives in with a passion. Finally, a chance to belong and show the world what she’s made of.

… be careful what you wish for.

Jess’s transformation wins her the heart of her dream crush and a shot at uber-popularity. Until the Wickeds–led by Jess’s arch enemy–begin targeting innocent girls in their war against the Cindys, and Jess discovers the real force behind her exclusive society. It’s a high stakes battle of good vs. evil, and the Cindys in power need Jess on special assignment. When the mission threatens to destroy her dream life come true, Jess is forced to choose between living a fairy tale and honoring the Sisterhood… and herself.

What’s a girl to do when the glass slipper fits, but she doesn’t want to wear it anymore?

Official info:

  • please fill out the form below
  • entrants must be 13 years of age or older
  • contest deadline is April 11, 2010
  • open to residents of the US only
  • Check out Contest Policy/Privacy Policy

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