The winners of The Duff ARCs are (actually I only had 2 books so Natalie email me offline and I'll find something great for you!):
1 Laura Pauling (signed)
2 Sharon Mayhew
3 Natalie Bahm (email me for your choice- sorry :(
Congrads and email me your addresses firstname.lastname@example.org!
Today, we have Kirsten Miller (also author of Kiki Strike novels) who dropped by to answer a few questions. You can also visit her blog.
Win a signed hardback of Eternal Ones. Just comment on the post and tell me: If past lives were real, what/who do you think you were? (only open to US residents)
Hi Kirsten, thanks for stopping by. Tell us about you as an author. Tell us about Eternal Ones (in 140 characters :)
Much like my books, I appear normal at first glance and get increasingly weirder the more you get to know me. (Or so I’ve been told.) I’ve always found myself drawn to odd facts and ideas that make the world seem more magical. Which is probably why all of my novels follow heroines who accidentally discover that beneath the ordinary often lies something quite extraordinary.
For instance . . .
The Eternal Ones is a twisted tale of past lives, passion, and sinister secret societies that asks the question: Does true love ever die?
(All that with three characters to spare!)
What inspired the idea for Kiki series? Eternal Ones?
Before I wrote the Kiki series, I used to daydream about a girl mastermind who secretly controlled New York City. Over time, the character started to become increasingly real to me. She was the sort of girl I always wanted to be—powerful, enigmatic, and good with a bazooka. I started writing Kiki Strike to entertain myself, and I never really expected anyone else would ever read it.
The Eternal Ones was the result of a life-long fascination with reincarnation. If it were real, reincarnation would explain so much—déjà vu, phobias, child prodigies, and (of course) love at first sight. I also wanted to write a book that was set in the two worlds I love best—the rural South (where I grew up) and New York (where I’ve lived since I was seventeen).
Every author has some kind of ritual when they write. What is your writing process like? What do you need in your creative writing process?
I write in mad spurts, and these days I would be unable to function without my drug of choice: Manhattan Special. What is it, you ask? Only the most delicious and potent espresso soda available over the counter. I don’t know if you can get it anywhere but Brooklyn. (It’s even hard to find here.) It’s been made and bottled by the same little family for over 100 years. I love it so much that I’m thinking of giving them a shout out in one of my books. Not for money (never for money!) but out of pure love and sincere appreciation.
Did you ever get rejections or feel like giving up? If so, how did you get through it?
I struggle with self-doubt every single day. I don’t need an actual rejection to question my worth as a writer. (Though I’ve experienced plenty to be sure.) Some days it’s almost impossible to soldier through, and I begin to fantasize about other careers. (I’d really like to be an auto mechanic.) But usually I’ll end up having an idea that amuses me so much that I can’t wait to get it on paper. And that will make writing fun again.
What is the most creative thing you have done to market your book?
When the second Kiki Strike book (The Empress’s Tomb) came out, I commissioned a street artist to draw an enormous rat-filled sinkhole on a sidewalk near the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Manhattan. I’m not sure if it sold any books, but I really enjoyed watching pedestrians stop, stare, and try to step around it.
We know you are really, really good at writing, but what is something that you are you really, really bad at?
Gee, thanks! I am really, really bad at lots of things, unfortunately. Singing, organic chemistry, dusting, dancing, spelling (boy am I a terrible speller), and cooking chicken to name just a few.
I’m particularly bad at keeping plants alive. I am responsible for the deaths of countless orchids, cacti, and ferns. I love them, and I try my best to save them. But the poor little things always shrivel up and die the moment I come near. I worry I may have to answer for these atrocities some day.
I am a terrible folder of laundry. I just fold them in way they come out. What is your biggest fear?
Excellent question. The older I get, the more I fear being eaten by something much larger than myself. (Armchair psychologists will have a field day with this one.) Sharks, bears, sumo wrestlers—I do my best to avoid them all.
I’m also terrified of spiders and millipedes. Especially millipedes. **Shudder** I hope none of my enemies are reading this.
You can read an excerpt of Eternal Ones