1. Tell me about Carrier of the Mark. How did you come up with that story angle or idea?
Answer: Carrier of the Mark is a paranormal romance set in a small seaside town in the south of Ireland. Megan moves with her father from the US after he is mysteriously offered an amazing job. Megan is an easygoing girl, devoted to her lonely father, and adaptable as she's moved around most of her life. But this time it's different. Strange things start to happen, she meets the DeRises, Adam, Rían & Áine, and soon discovers there's much more to them than meets the eye. Megan’s life is about to change forever as she discovers that she is linked to the DeRises and destiny that is plotted out for them, a destiny full of magic, lore, and dangers.
The idea for the story was a culmination of years of reading Irish folklore, an overactive imagination, and school visits to various historical locations around Ireland.
2. How did you get interested in writing this particular genre (YA-lit)?
Answer: I always loved YA stuff whether it be TV or books, I devoured anything YA. When I started writing Carrier of the Mark it was a YA voice that popped into my head. I guess it was just meant to be.
3. What kind of research did you do for this series?
Answer: I looked into Celtic mythology and how it intertwined with certain landmarks in Ireland. I tried to weave my idea of the elements with stories that were already deep rooted in Ireland’s heritage. I also researched critical events that happened around the world and linked certain happenings from my story with actual historical events
4. What's a typical working day like for you? When and where do you write? Do you set a daily writing goal?
Answer: I don’t use writing goals; it’s just not how my brain works. I try to write most days while the kids are at school, but I never force myself to write, if I’m not feeling it I focus my efforts on other things. Like indulging in my guilty pleasure (see question on guilty pleasure).
5. What is the hardest/easiest part of writing for you?
Answer: The hardest thing is getting going and getting stuck into a new story. The easiest part is keeping going once you are immersed in a new idea, when that happens there aren’t enough hours in the day.
6. What’s the best thing about being an author?
Answer: Writing. Doing what I love and of course seeing my book on the store shelf. That is such an awesome feeling.
7. What are you working on now?
Answer: I’m working on edits for the second book in the Carrier Series, Shadow of the Mark. I’m also writing the first draft of the third book.
8. What advice would you give aspiring writers?
Answer: Read everything you can get your hands on. You can’t write unless your read…lots.
Don’t bend to market trends. Trends come and go, but good writing will always be in style.
Take it slowly. Enjoy the writing process. Write because you love it, not because you want to be published.
Hone your editing skills and find yourself good and trustworthy critique partners. They are worth their weight in gold.
9. Do you have any favorite authors or favorite books?
Answer: My favorite books and authors are an eclectic mix of what I grew up on. I loved the humor of Judy Blume in Blubber, Fudge, Super Fudge, and Are you there god it’s me Margaret. Then I adore the wicked scandalous humor of Jilly Cooper in Riders, Rivals, and Polo. I had a brief love affair with the dark gothic works of Virginia Andrews Flowers in the Attic, Petals on the Wind, and If there be thorns. I love Jane Austen. My favorites are Pride and Prejudice and Emma. And since I’ve discovered YA, I’ve loved anything by Lauren Oliver, Cassie Clare, Sophie Jordan, Stephanie Meyer, Jennifer L Armentrout, Rachelle Mead, Julie Kagawa, and… oh I could just go on and on. There’s so much to love.
10. What question have you always wanted to be asked in an interview? How would you answer that question?
Answer: Honestly, I think I’ve been asked pretty much everything that can be asked and some I wished I hadn’t been. LOL!
11. If you were writing a book about your life, what would the title be?
Answer: How to fail at feeling comfortable in you own skin.
12. Is Carrier of the Mark being made into a movie/television series? If you got the opportunity to cast the characters, whom would you choose and why?
Answer: There has been quite a bit of interest in Carrier from some production companies, but as yet there’s nothing definite. As for a dream cast, what do you think of these?
Áine – I’m thinking Elizabeth Gillies. She has a striking face, and such beautiful strong eyes. I think she’d make a great Áine.
Adam – How about Landon Liboiron? He is absolutely gorgeous, but there is a certain depth and soul to him. And I think he’d make a great a believable twin for Elizabeth Gillies.
Rían – I was looking for dark broodiness in an actor to take on Rían’s role, and I think Shiloh Fernandez has that whole broody bad boy vibe when he gazes into the camera. I think he could definitely pull of Rían.
Caitlin – Saoirse Ronan. She sprung to mind immediately. She’s naturally beautiful and oozes a genuine warmth and infectious friendliness, just like Caitlin in Carrier. And bonus, she’s Irish!
Killian – He’s all warm and fun loving, sort of puppy dog like. I think Jason Dolley would work fantastic in this role.
Darren – Mitchel Musso. He has that playful, boy next door thing going on. Good looking, but only young guys savvy, if you know what I mean. I think he’d be perfect.
Megan – I think of all of the roles to fill, hers might be the most difficult. I have this very clear image in my mind of who she should be, and I’ve been finding it difficult to see her in other actresses. I think Emma Roberts might come close, so if I had to pick someone now, I’d go for her.
1) If you could trade places with a person for a single day, who would it be and why?
Answer: Does it have to be a person? Can I pick my cat, curl up in a ball and sleep for the whole day, only taking breaks from sleeping to eat and get attention? Because that sounds kind of perfect right now.
2) What was the last movie you saw?
Answer: Mission Impossible Ghost Protocol.
3) What is your biggest TV addiction?
Answer: At the moment, Once Upon A Time.
4) Guilty pleasure?
Answer: Watching romcom’s in the afternoon when I should be working. LOL!
5) Fruits or veggies?
6) Favorite childhood toy?
Answer: My Fisher Price Little People tree house with working wind up elevator and pop up roof tree canopy. It was AWESOME.
7) What did you have for breakfast this morning?
Answer: Black coffee and toast with butter (Irish of course).