Ask me questions!
Here you’ll find answers to questions people ask me and some I don’t get asked, but where I tell you what I would say if I did.
How did you get the idea for The Replacement?
This is a question I get a lot and sadly, I still don’t have a really good answer. I’d been thinking about writing a modern-day changeling story for literally years, and then one day, it just seemed like the perfect time to start writing it!
Is there a sequel to The Replacement?
I wrote The Replacement as a standalone story, which doesn’t mean that there will never be another book about Mackie and Tate and Roswell, but right now, I have a few other projects I’m really excited to work on first, and there aren’t any concrete plans for a sequel.
Did you have any say in the cover design for The Replacement?
I didn’t have a thing to do with it, and I couldn’t be happier! The photographer for the US cover is Jonathan Barkat and the designer is Natalie Sousa. As you can tell from looking at the finished product, they are both amazing.
How did you come up with the fictional town of Gentry? Is it based on a real town?
I wanted Gentry to be kind of a throwback to the little village in Shirley Jackson’s short story The Lottery. I wanted it to have that same really insidious kind of Creepy. While Gentry is definitely not based on a real town, it does have a lot in common geographically with some of the places I drove through when I visited my sister at school in Pennsylvania.
You talk a lot about making pie crust. Is your recipe a secret, or will you share it?
I am absolutely willing to share my recipe! It’s very simple—so non-bakers out there, don’t be intimidated. All you need is:
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup shortening
- 6 tablespoons cold water
Whisk the flour and salt together in a big bowl, then cut the shortening into the flour mixture using a pair of butter knives (you just drag them through the bowl in opposite directions, cutting the shortening into smaller and smaller pieces and letting it get caked with flour).
After the mixture starts to look like coarse crumbs with some pea-sized lumps in it, add the cold water and blend with a rubber spatula, making sure to scrape all the drier stuff off the sides of the bowl and into the mix. The secret is to have the water very cold and to cut the ingredients together using knives in place of a pastry-cutter or a fork. It takes a little longer, but the finished texture is super-flaky because the flour doesn’t get over-mixed.
After it’s blended, gather it into a big ball, wrap it in waxed paper and refrigerate for at least half an hour before rolling it out and making your favorite pie!
What is your favorite flavor?
Blue, because blue is delicious. All the best candies are blue—blue Pixy Stix, blue SweeTarts, blue cotton candy. Also, I like cinnamon. But not as much as blue.
Do you read manuscripts/query letters/works in progress? Will you read mine?
Unfortunately, I can’t read unpublished work due to a combination of liability issues and being very short on time. However, if you’re looking for a critique partner, the internet is populated with great sites where you can meet other writers.
When is your next book coming out and what is it about?
I’m currently working on another standalone—this time about demons, mortal peril, self-destruction, and falling in love. It’s called The Space Between and will be out from Razorbill this fall. I don’t have a cover yet, but I’ll be adding it to the site as soon as it’s available! In the meantime, my blog is definitely the best place to stay up to date—I tend to post all my latest news there first.
You’re one third of The Merry Sisters of Fate, where you and your critique partners take turns posting weekly short fiction. How did you meet the other two Merry Sisters, Tessa Gratton and Maggie Stiefvater?
A few years ago, Maggie was looking for critique partners. I’d been seeing her around the internet for awhile, so I knew she was really funny and I’d read a paragraph she’d shared of the book that would eventually become Shiver, and I wanted to read more. So I volunteered and we had a good time, and eventually, she introduced me to Tess. The group blog went up in May of 2008 and has been going strong ever since!
Merry Fates is great, because it’s kind of like practicing in public. It makes us work hard on a regular basis, but without the long-term commitment of a novel. We can be more experimental and take more risks, and if it doesn’t work out, there’s always next time.
Want to know something not in this list? Email me!