Thursday, March 24, 2011

Chatting with Anne Osterlund

Welcome Anne! Thanks for chatting with us. I've adored all three of your novels and can't wait to devour more of your writing!

What made you choose to write YA?
I love to read YA: Tamora Pierce, S.E. Hinton, Ann Rinaldi, Louisa May Alcott, L.M. Montgomery, John Marsden, Suzanne Collins, and on and on and on.

I also love YA because the characters, like most teenagers, have minds of their own. They make their own decisions and their own mistakes. They don’t have to be happy.Or funny. They’re free to express an entire range of emotions.They get in trouble and change their minds and have the ability to grow.They don’t know everything. And they don’t know they don’t know everything. There is always hope.

I LOVE that answer!

Where do you write best?
On the back of a half-wild stallion sprinting across the Tyralian frontier. Or in an interplanetary plane flipped upside down and scaling the side of a frozen waterfall. No, honestly I write on a couch, surrounded by papers, pencils, a thesaurus, and a dictionary. It doesn’t matter where you are when you write. It’s about where your imagination is.

How do you get your ideas?
My characters introduce themselves. I first met Aurelia (the heroine in Aurelia and Exile), on a yellow notepad, when she was complaining about being stuck at a party with an itching ankle. Aerin (the main character in Academy 7) was gazing in a mirror, removing her headband, and contemplating the vast question of whether she could scrub away the person she had been in order to become someone different.

All my characters have their own voices. My job is to listen.

How do you come up with your titles?
The titles come very naturally. Generally I don’t think a lot about them when I first write them down, but somehow they come to represent the largest, most unifying concept within the book. The center of the story.

Can you tell us a little bit about Exile?
Exile is the sequel to Aurelia. It’s the second book in a series about a princess who should not be a princess.

Here’s my personal pitch: Exiled. From the weight of others’ expectations, the responsibilities of being crown princess, and the pressure to marry, AURELIA is finally free to travel the kingdom and meet the people of Tyralt. If only ROBERT, her expedition guide, would stop pestering her about her safety and just kiss her. But then their journey erupts in a fiery conflagration, and with both of their lives and the fate of the kingdom at stake, she and Robert must determine whether they have the strength, and the will, to complete their mission. And face the darker side of exile.

Robert, Aurelia, and I hope you will all join us on their expedition which begins in stores April 28

I LOVED Exile! If you missed yesterday's post, read my review here.

What was the last book you’ve read that you’ve been recommending to everyone?
The Hunger Games. I read it last summer, and I’ve literally recommended it to everyone I talk books with: family members, librarians, brand new acquaintances, my best friend, perfect strangers at the park. LOL. Really just amazing storytelling. I’m reading The Iron King now, and it will probably be my next Goodreads recommendation.

Anne also has a page of recommended reads on her website

Do you have a favorite library experience?
One of my favorite books is Witch of the Glens by Sally Watson. I found it in a local library when I was in grade school, and I have read it over a dozen times. I always wanted to buy it, but the book was out of print and cost between $400 and $800. Then just a few years ago, it came back into print, and I received one for Christmas. I was SO excited! I reviewed it online last summer, and the author e-mailed me directly. She even read and reviewed my second book, Academy 7, for me. How amazing is that!

Great story - I love it!

Are there any authors you’d love to meet?
I met my favorite author, Tamora Pierce, at the Sirens: Women in Fantasy Literature conference in Vail, CO two years ago. She has cats!

Of course, I’d love to meet other authors: Ann Rinaldi, S.E. Hinton, and Sally Watson, to name a few. Which is not to say that I would be brave enough to talk to any of them if we did meet.

Do you have a favorite literary quote?
“Second to the right. And straight on till morning.” That, Peter had told Wendy, was the way to Neverland;but even birds, carrying maps and consulting them at windy corners, could not have sighted it with these instructions. Peter, you see, just said anything that came into his head.

Listing of Favorites:
: Butterfinger, Junior Mints, and Baby Ruth

Pizza topping
: Pepperoni, sausage & olives
Genre of books: Fantasy
Singer: Sugarland
Restaurant: Italian and Mexican
TV show: All time favorite: Little House on the Prairie.
More recent favorites
: Jericho, Smallville, Prison Break, The Mentalist
Movie: All time favorites: Mary Poppins, The Sound of Music
More recent favorites
: Penelope, Elizabeth Gaskell’s North and South, Pride and Prejudice with Keira Knightly
Color: Red & blue
Shoe: comfortable
Video Game: Nope. Don’t have one. They make my brain spin the way your mind does after spending all day in the waves of the ocean


Jessica said...

Great interview! I can't wait to read Exile. I really loved Aurelia. :)

Courtney said...

Awesome interview!! I absolutely loved Aurelia and can't wait to read Exile! Anne is an amazing author!