Yesterday, we talked about The Candidates and today we sit down and chat with the author!
What made you choose to write YA?
I was introduced to the genre when I heard a speech by Meg Cabot at a romance writer’s convention. I read the Princess Diaries and then the Mediator series and I was hooked! I was writing adult romance at the time, but found that I was really drawn to the openness of the young adult genre, where it seemed that anything and everything was possible.
Ironically - she's the reason I'm a YA librarian :)
Where do you write best?
It’s such a cliche, but I seem to write best in a coffee shop, especially when it’s early in the morning and quiet. If I’m writing something new, I need to get out of the house and have a chunk of time to get anything done. If I’m revising something I’ve already written, I can work just about anywhere.
How do you get your ideas? Do you use real events in your novels and if so, can you describe one?
Ideas come from everywhere -- it’s more difficult to whittle them down than it is to come up with them in the first place! I don’t explicitly use real life events in my novels, but real events definitely influenced me while I was writing Delcroix Academy: The Candidates. At the time, we were hearing a lot about the war with Iraq going wrong, increasing government surveillance, and preemptive action being taken against presumed terrorists. All of these things ended up affecting The Candidates, though to prevent spoilers, I won’t say exactly how!
Ah, I can see that now. That's VERY interesting!
How did you come up with your title?
I can’t say that I did. I’m HORRIBLE with titles. I had originally named the book Taking Sides, and at my agent’s suggestion, came up with lots and lots of other options when it came time to submit it to editors. None seemed to quite fit. My agent liked the idea of having something that would work for a series, and suggested Delcroix Academy: The Candidates.
Can you tell us a little bit about The Candidates?
I’d love to! Dancia Lewis is a girl with a dangerous paranormal gift -- she can make things happen just by imaging them. The problem is, when she uses her gift, people always end up getting hurt. Dancia tries to make herself invisible, hiding from the world in an effort to avoid using her powers, but when she's recruited to attend Delcroix Academy, an exclusive boarding school, all bets are off. Suddenly, she's got the hottest guy on campus and a dark, troublemaking best friend vying for her attention. But why has the most invisible girl in the ninth grade suddenly become so popular? What's really going on behind the gates of Delcroix Academy?
How many books will there be in the series?
Book Two, Delcroix Academy: The Watchers will be out in August 2011. After that, it’s anyone’s guess!
Oh, I LOVE the title!
If you had a “gift” what would you choose?
I’d love to breathe underwater. It’s a dream I’ve had since I was a kid. My name means mermaid, and I always thought perhaps if I tried hard enough, I could become one. :-)
What did you do on your release day?
I had a pedicure with my daughter, spent a lot of time emailing and hanging out on the internet, and then went out with friends to celebrate.
What was the last book you’ve read that you’ve been recommending to everyone? Flash Burnout by LK Madigan. I just loved this book and can’t recommend it enough.
I've heard GREAT things about this book. I must read it!
I Loved the idea for the love your library contest – which is finished, but amazingly awesome. What’s your favorite library story?
Thanks -- I wanted to make sure everyone knew I was thrilled for them to request my books at the library. I know books are expensive! Like the rest of you, I can’t get enough of new books and I definitely don’t buy them all. I am what I like to call a “power library user.” ;-) Meaning, I take my kids there a few times a week and we load up on the books. Multiple bags are involved. Picture books, chapter books, coffee table books, novels...it seems there’s always some new subject we’re learning about. I think my favorite day was when I found myself taking out books about Miami, gardening, flower arrangements, faeries, world religions, yoga, and jazz -- all at the same time. I figure the librarians must think I’m crazy!
I love the mix of books you grab!
Are there any authors you’d love to meet?
I’ve met her, but only briefly -- I’d love to have a drink and hang out a little with Meg Cabot.
Do you have a favorite literary quote?
It is wrong that I don’t? LOL. My favorite quote (not literary) is from Mahatma Gandhi: “Whenever you are confronted with an opponent, conquer him with love.” I find very little of value comes from hate.
Listing if your favorites:
Candy: Swedish Fish
Pizza topping: Fresh mozzarella (I can’t eat it otherwise!)
Genre of books: YA of course!!
Singer and/or Song: Jason Mraz, I’m Yours
TV show /Movie: Tough one! I love The Cutting Edge. Also, The Pirate Movie. They’re old. You’ve probably never heard of them. ;-)
Shoe: Black Dansko boots, ballet flats from Target
Video Game: Don’t really play ‘em. I’ve got enough trouble keeping up with my inbox without introducing video games into my life!
Anything I didn’t ask?
Do I like hearing from readers? YES! Please contact me via Facebook, Twitter (@inarascott) or gmail: inara dot scott at gmail dot com!