Monday 18 July 2011

Midnight Summer Festival (5) & Josephine Angelini Interview

Hosted by: Rabid Reads, Mission To Read & Deranged Book Lovers.

Midnight Summer Festival is a celebration of all books that cover Mythology, whether Greek, Norse, Egyptian, Roman or any of the many others. There will be 10 days of posts including Book recommendations, interviews and fun facts. 

Today I will be featuring 'Starcrossed' by Josephine Angelini

  • Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books 
  • Release Date: 3 Jun 2011
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330529730
When shy, awkward Helen Hamilton sees Lucas Delos for the first time she thinks two things: the first, that he is the most ridiculously beautiful boy she has seen in her life; the second, that she wants to kill him with her bare hands.
With an ancient curse making them loathe one another, Lucas and Helen have to keep their distance. But sometimes love is stronger than hate, and not even the gods themselves can prevent what will happen . . .

You can read my review of 'Starcrossed' here , a book that delves into the world of Mythology, magic, love, friendship, power and prophecy. It is incredible and I have to say, that ever since I finished reading Starcrossed, it has stuck in my brain. I keep thinking about it and getting pulled deeper into the world. I've found myself scouting reviews, reading blog posts, just looking for more!

Check out the authors website here it's great, has loads of updates and some wicked competitions. Josephine is really nice and replies to the comments and her posts are full of energy. 

To prove how great she is, I emailed her (on fairly short notice) asking if she would do an interview to go with todays post and she said yes!!! *Squeal* She was very friendly and encouraging. So without further ado, I give you Josephine Angelini:

1) When did you first start writing?
When I was ten years old my sister Mary Francis gave me something called “A Writer’s Journal” for my birthday.  She told me to write in it as often as I could, and I did.  It took me many years to gain enough confidence to think that I could write for a living, but I never stopped writing in my journal.  Thanks Mary Francis!

2) Where did the idea for 'Starcrossed' come from?
My bookshelf.  I saw a copy of the Iliad sitting next to a copy of Romeo and Juliet and I wondered why no one had ever tried to do a modern-day retelling of the Trojan War, but from the perspective of the two young lovers who started the dang thing.  It was a Eureka moment.  

3) Where do you do most of your writing?
I can write anywhere, although I prefer to work at the kitchen table.  I don’t really need anything except my computer, some coffee, and a cat to stare at when I’m searching for a word (purring relaxes me) but I do prefer to write in my own kitchen for some reason.  It’s probably because I’m half Italian.  We spend most of our lives in the kitchen.

4) Do you listen to music whilst you write? If so what is your favourite
song to write to?
I always have music on in the background when I write, but I only really listen when I’m either swept up in an action sequence or my husband is watching a UFC fight on TV and I need to block out the sound.  I pick different music for different scenes, of course.  The XX is really good to write love scenes too, for example, but Tool—not so much.    

5) How did you come up with the names for all your characters?
Most of them are from the Iliad.  The others I picked because they had a link to the House I put them in or because of a character trait that I wanted to emphasize.  And sometimes it was just about how the named sounded, like Claire.  It makes me think of a chocolate éclair every time I write it and that is just so delicious.   

6) Did you ever imagine your book would become so popular?
When I was writing it the only thing I was hoping to get out of it was an agent, and maybe in my wildest dreams I wished for it to get published.  What’s happened with my book is something that still blows me away.  I’m very blessed.

7) What's the best thing that has happened to you since Starcrossed hit the
Touring and going to book signing at stores is the best!  I absolutely love meeting fans, or potential fans, and talking about my story or even just talking about books in general.  It really is a blast to hang out in cool bookstores, sitting around jawing with intelligent people and call it “work”.  I have, hands down, the best job in the world.

8) How many books will there be in the series?
Three.  I have enough back story for a whole separate series of prequels, but this particular story is only three books.  

9) If you could go out to lunch with just one of your characters, who would
you pick?

Lucas, of course!  I’d try (and fail) to steal him away from Helen!  

10) Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?

Why, yes, I do!  The first thing that I want all aspiring writer to know is that although STARCROSSED was my first novel and it got published at light speed, it wasn’t the first thing I’d ever written.  I started off writing screenplays, none of which got bought.  I have 5 bad screenplays and one pretty good one gathering dust on a shelf somewhere, and most writers that I’ve met all have similar “manuscript graveyards” of all their failed attempts.  Becoming a writer takes time, perseverance, and a lot of falling down and getting back up so STICK WITH IT.  Everyone is a failure until they succeed, so don’t let a few set backs stop you if this is what you really want.  Keep going, and good luck.