Check out her website here and her amazing blog here. And to get your hands her fantastic debut, THE EMERALD TABLET, click here.
1. THE EMERALD TABLET is the first of a three book series - THE FORGOTTEN WORLD. How did you come up with amazing creative setting - a world hidden underneath the Pacific Ocean? Also, can you tell us about the series?
I've always had that love of the unknown. Anything that can't be explained fascinated me. It was like there was a mystery and nobody had uncovered it yet. So I always loved Atlantis and I knew it would factor in my story. And while googling Atlantis, I found the sister continent of Lemuria deep under the Pacific Ocean. And I knew immediately this is where my story would take place! The Forgotten World Books, starting with THE EMERALD TABLET, tell the story of five kids who learn not only are they from this hidden continent under the Pacific Ocean, but they aren't even human - they're a species called telegens, and they have special powers like telekinesis and telepathy. So they're all set to spend their summer playing around playing tricks with their awesome power when they actually find out they need to save the world. And summer was supposed to be all fun and games.
2. Did you always want to be a writer? Or did the writing bug bite you later in life? Did you know immediately you wanted to write Science Fiction?
I never wanted to be a writer! I wanted to be an engineer. Which I was (for about fifteen years). And probably still will be no matter what. After all, a key part of engineering is trying to fix every little thing that breaks around the house. Once you're an engineer, you're always an engineer. :)
But while deeply entrenched in the engineering world, I had two kids and started wondering what else there was to life. Thankfully (very thankfully) my second (a daughter) slept through the night way early on, so in the evenings after the kids were in bed, I started writing. And if there's one thing I am it's consistent. I write every single night, and when I have to miss, there better be a pretty darn good reason why!
As for genre, there was never any question in my mind I wanted to write science-fiction or fantasy. It's all I read since I first learned to make the distinction, and it's what draws my interest above all else.
3. Are any of THE EMERALD TABLET characters like you? If not, what is your favorite character.
THE EMERALD TABLET has five main characters, and they all have a part of me. that said I'm mostly like a blend of Heidi and Gary. Heidi is fin, spunky, and doesn't mind breaking the rules. Gary is a nerd, plays chess, and never breaks the rules. Which kind of explains the battles which go on inside my head from time to time.
4. Do you revise as you write? Or do you write the first draft, then go back and revise?
I never revise as I write. I don't even go back and change a character's name if they've changed or remove characters I decide I don't want. I put a note on the side margin and push on through the first draft. Because finishing the first draft is a great feeling!
5. What has been the best fan reaction to your book so far?
I love getting the reactions from kids! Kids are perfect and precious and so sincere. I had the son of someone I know call me on the phone and tell me THE EMERALD TABLET was the best book he'd ever read. I also got chosen over Katherine Paterson's BRIDGE TO TERABITHIA for a classroom read-aloud. Knowing a kid likes my book is the best gift in the world.
Thanks bunches, PJ! :)