Saturday, January 21, 2012

Spirits of Glory by Emily Devenport - Interview | YA Fantasy

One morning the people of the North woke up and the people of the South were gone. That's the first thing every child learns on the colony world of Jigsaw. But for one girl, knowing about The Disappearance is not enough. Hawkeye wants to know why.

That's why she spent half her life researching The Disappearance. And that's also why eight Neighbors show up on her doorstep, demanding that she accompany them into the Forbidden Cities ruled by the Southern gods to speak with the Spirits of Glory. Everyone thinks Hawkeye is an expert on Neighbors, these almost-humans who move, talk, and think as if they were born inside one of the Time Fractures. But she can't imagine what they want to ask the ghosts of their ancestors, or why they need her to go along. The Southern gods caused every human inhabitant of the Southern cities to disappear overnight; what else might they do?

But the Northern gods say Hawkeye should go and her curiosity won't let her refuse, even though she's going into more danger than she can imagine. Pain and puzzlement wait along the broken interstate, along with scavengers who want to kill them all. Hawkeye's questions only generate more questions as they move farther and farther into the South, right into the heart of the Disappearance, until Hawkeye's questions have all been answered.

Even the ones she was afraid to ask.

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How did you start your writing career?

  I started writing short stories before I could write novels.  This is funny, because now I would have to re-learn the skill of writing in that shorter length.  About 3 years after I started writing in earnest, I sold my first stories to a magazine called ABORIGINAL SF.  I even earned a Boomerang Award from the readers for most poplar short story.  This was an actual boomerang (but no kangaroos were harmed during the presentation of this award). 

Tell us about a favorite character from a book.

  I love Bilbo from The Hobbit.  Now that I'm older, I can relate to his desire to attend to his affairs in his comfortable home, as well as his yearning to do exactly the opposite and venture over the mountains to see what's there.  He also felt compelled to write it all down, and I'm equally inclined to scribble. 

Where do you dream of traveling to and why?

  I'd love to see the volcanoes of Hawaii, because I'm a geology nut.  I'm probably one of the few people who would rather hike the volcanic fields in Hawaii than visit the beaches.  I'd like to go to Turkey, also because of the geology.  Cappadocia is an city carved out of volcanic tuff.  I'd like to see Machu Picchu, too.  But I'm also really happy traveling around the Southwest U.S.  The wide open spaces really soothe my soul. 

Tell us about your current release.

  In Spirits Of Glory, my characters have to travel down a shattered highway, into a place whose inhabitants have disappeared.  The mystery behind this Disappearance is the key to their survival – if only they can solve it in time. 

Tell us about your next release.

  I'll be releasing Belarus, one of my backlist titles, in ebook early next year.  And I'm hoping to have a new title out in ebook by March, a YA a co-wrote with my husband, Ernest Hogan: The Terrible Twleves. 

Who is your favorite author?

  I can't pick a favorite anything . . . 

What was your first sale as an author?

  A short story titled, “Shade and the Elephant Man,” sold to ABORIGINAL SF MAGAZINE. 

When in the day/night do you write? How long per day?

  I can write at any time.  I've gotten up to write in the middle of the night.  I think if I could be a lady of leisure, I would write from around noon to 5:00 p.m., just to be regular.  But when you're on a roll, you can really lose track of time.  Hours go by, and you don't know it.

  Since I'm not a lady of leisure, I have to write when I can.  I've written entire novels just by writing during my daily lunch break. 

What is the hardest part of writing your books?

  Finding the time to write.  I'm currently working 7 days a week, and I've gone back to college. 

What does your significant other and family think of your writing career?

  My husband is artist/writer Ernest Hogan.  We are very happy domestic partners.  We have also collaborated on a couple of books (forthcoming: The Terrible Twelves and One Particular Dream Spider).  We brainstorm together for ideas, and proof each other's work.

  My family is proud of me, if somewhat bemused by my choice of subject matter. 

Do you have critique partners or beta readers?

  I pay a professional editor to go over my manuscripts, once I've finished a coherent first draft.  Her name is Elinor Mavor, and she edited the magazine AMAZING STORIES in the early '80s.  Ellie is also an artist – she's the one who did the covers for Spirits Of Glory and The Night Shifters. 

Who are your books published with?

  NAL/Roc published my first 9 novels (under 3 pen names).  I was also published by THE WOMEN'S PRESS in the U.K., URANIA in Italy and OPUS in Israel. Now I publish ebooks with Smashwords, because they distribute to several other sites (Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Sony, etc.).  I also publish a Kindle version of my ebooks with Amazon.  I charge $.99 for my ebooks, because I think you shouldn't have to choose between buying books and paying your bills. 

What do you think makes a good story?

  I read somewhere that there's just one basic plot, out of which all other plots spring: Things are not what they seem. 

What book are you reading now?

  Unfortunately, my Chemistry 152 textbook.  My eyeballs are fried and my brain is turning to mush.  After final exams, I'm going to read Stephen King's new book, my special treat for getting through another semester. 

If you were to write a series of novels, what would it be about?

  My husband and I wrote a book titled The Terrible Twelves.  The heroine of that book, Bea Garcia, is 12 years old, so we'd like to write sequels until she's 18 or even 19. 

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

  A Mermaid, a ballerina, and/or a mom.  I didn't become any of those.    But I'm a happy camper. 

What are your favorite TV shows?

  Dexter and Nurse Jackie. 

What are the most important attributes for remaining sane as a writer?

  A sense of humor, the ability to learn from your mistakes, and inhuman perseverance. 

What one word best describes you?



I have written under three pen names: as Emily Devenport I wrote Shade, Larissa, Scorpianne, Eggheads, The Kronos Condition, and Godheads. As Maggy Thomas I wrote Broken Time, which was nominated for the Philip K. Dick award. As Lee Hogan I wrote Belarus and Enemies. My books have been published in the U.S., the U.K., Israel, and Italy. I just published two Emily Devenport e-books, The Night Shifters and Spirits Of Glory. They can be read on your kindle -- look for them on amazon! I'm always working on new books, usually two or three at once, so keep checking my page for updates. I live in Arizona, a wonderfully strange place where I enjoy hiking, gardening, rockhounding, and writing. I also review books on amazon as Emily Hogan. (No, I don't have Multiple Personality Disorder -- just Multiple Pen Name Disorder.)


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