If you were stranded on a desert island what 3 things would you want with you?
- my Kindle
- a solar-powered charger for the Kindle
- a Victorinox Swiss Champ Swiss army knife
What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
chocolate with chocolate chips
Skittles or M&Ms?
M&Ms, of course. Skittles have no chocolate in them.
Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book.
Like Mayflies in a Stream is a short historical novel that lets you experience the sights, sounds, and smells of the world’s first city through the eyes of an ancient priestess.
Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects?
Current projects: In early fall 2012, I will self-publish an epic fantasy novel called Shrine of the Heavens
. In 2013, Hadley Rille Books will publish Ice Magic, Fire Magic
, afantasy novel with romantic elements. Meanwhile, I am revising a historical romance novella called Claimed by the Enemy
, I am starting another historical novel set in ancient Mesopotamia tentatively titled The Moon’s Wife
, and I am co-authoring an ancient foods cookbook for Hadley Rille Books.
Future projects: I have been worldbuilding for and plotting the first book of a possible YA fantasy series.
What was your favorite book when you were a child/teen?
Jane Eyre. It’s one of the very few books I’ve read more than once. I read it first as an odd, solitary child and found for the first time a heroine I could identify with. I read it next as a teenager and found it quite a different book. And when I read it as an adult, it was a different book yet, and at last I understood why Jane was attracted to Rochester.
What’s one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?
Study grammar and spelling so that you have the tools to get your story down on paper. You may have devised the greatest story ever in your head, but if you can’t get it down on paper in such a way that others can read it and see its genius, you’ve accomplished nothing.
If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
New Orleans. I lived there for 16 years. Of the many places in the United States I have lived, New Orleans is the only one where I felt I fit in and belonged.
What is your favorite Quote?
“Life is not a matter of holding good cards, but of playing a poor hand well.”
―Robert Louis Stevenson
When you were little, what did you want to be when you “grew up”?
a baseball player or a missionary (as I said earlier, I was an odd little girl)
If a movie was made about your life, who would you want to play the lead role and why?
I asked my husband, and he thought Keira Knightly should play me. We both have long brown hair and prominent cheekbones, and I had a similar figure when I was young.
Who are your favorite authors of all time?
Ursula Le Guin, Barbara Hambly, Guy Gavriel Kay, Brandon Sanderson, Ellen Kushner, N.K. Jemisin, Gene Wolfe, Saladin Ahmed, Madeleine E. Robins
I am probably the world’s expert on the Nicobar pigeon (Caloenas nicobarica). I play several musical instruments and have been bellydancing for four years.
Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Chips
How do you react to a bad review?
Since bad reviews often contain factual errors, my reaction is usually bemusement; I wonder whether the reviewer even bothered to read my story or book. If the review is factually accurate and well written, I study it for suggestions of ways I can improve my work in the future. If the review is silly or stupid, I laugh and then forget about it.
If you were a bird, which one would you be?
A hawk. They have few predators to worry about, they have excellent vision, and they spend most of their time soaring the skies.
You have won one million dollars what is the first thing that you would buy?
a luxurious vacation condo in or near the Garden District in New Orleans
Which authors have influence you most how?
Holly Black, Larissa Lai, Robert Crais, Kim Stanley Robinson, Paul Park, and Elizabeth Hand. They were my instructors when I attended the Clarion Workshop for Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Workshop in 2009.
What do you do in your free time?
Novelists have free time? That’s news to me.
When I can steal a little time from my writing, I like to read, work in my herb and vegetable gardens, and cook.
What’s your favorite season/weather?
Warm! I despise, despise, despise being cold.
Who or what inspired you to become an author?
Janet Louise Roberts. She was both a successful romance novelist and my aunt. Her financial success made my dream of one day making my living as a novelist seem realistic, and the fun she had researching and writing her books made being a novelist seem like a great career.
What is your guilty pleasure?
On the weekend, I try to take and hour or two off from writing and doing chores to sit in a quiet place and read.
Favorite places to travel?
New Orleans, Santa Fe, Istanbul, Washington, D.C.
Medieval music and Renaissance music are my top favorites. I also love to listen to Sephardic music; American and Africa blues; American folk music including Cajun, Zydeco, Appalachian, and bluegrass music; Celtic music; Turkish music; and Arabic folk music.