Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Talking with Jade M. Phillips about MER

Jade M. Phillips is here today to talk about her new young adult fantasy/science fiction novel, MER, published by Kith Books.

About the book:
In a land where the sea grows restless, the summer breeze turns to ice and sleet, and Mother Nature has plans of another sort, dark and supernatural forces begin to unfold, fighting to unite the broken prophecy. In the midst of a tangled web lie the Castlecrays, a family with deep tragedy and mysterious secrets, who are torn apart and forced on a treacherous journey. Coming from a time when kings rule the realm, knights fight for honor, and eminence is power, the children of Castlecray are thrown into an unknown magical ambiance where nothing is as it seems, and bedtime stories come alive right before their eyes. Sweeping from a land of severe and savage seas to the sparkling underwater spires of a magical unknown world, this is a tale of lords and ladies, knights and nobility, traitors and trolls, who are all intertwined in a weaving maze of conspiracy and deception. Amidst gallantry and guilt, love and loss, the Castlecrays find their fate to be in the hands of their enemies, of each other, and of their new mysterious  allies, the Wavekeepers—all vying to keep the balance between good and evil, land and sea, in a fight for the ultimate desire; the power of MER.

Jade, how long have you been writing, and how did you start?

I’ve been writing short stories, poetry, and music since I was in grade school, for almost twenty years now, but this is my first published novel. I started writing because of my best friend. She was really into poetry and that sparked an interest in me that never went away.

How did you come up with the title of your book?

This book has a secret. And I am going to give you some VIP information by telling you this...but if you couldn’t already tell by the title, its secret is Merpeople. The idea came from a couple different sources. First of all, my five year old daughter is obsessed with mermaids, so I guess there is always a mermaid floating around in the back of my brain. LOL!

Second, my husband and I were up late one night discussing the current trends in young adult fantasy books (my fave of course). We were talking about vampires and werewolves, zombies, and faeries, when I was like, “Wait! What about mermaids?” And thus: MER was born!

How would you describe your book in a tweet? (140 characters or less.)
MER, the new young adult fantasy series, is dark and magically gripping, sure to have you hooked!

Great! That's not easy to do. Do you outline, write by the seat of your pants, or let your characters tell you what to write?

A little bit of everything! I start with an outline, but as I go on the story and the characters take on a mind of their own. I am sometimes surprised on where the book leads me!

What is your favorite quote?

“Happiness can be found in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” –Albus Dumbledore

That Albus was a wise man. How do you get to know your characters?

My characters are started with a vague idea, a thought in the back of my mind, a general age, sex, and a name. They then begin to develop personalities and traits on their own as the story progresses. I love how they sometimes say things that shock me! Haha!

Do you have a favorite of your characters?

That’s difficult because I love (or love to hate) all of my characters. But yes, I have a favorite. I’d have to say Quin. She’s a feisty, tomboyish ten-year-old girl who isn’t afraid to speak her mind; quite the contrary to the lady of nobility that she is expected to be. She cracks me up by always getting into trouble!

She sounds like my kind of girl. Which author would you most like to invite to dinner, and what would you fix him or her?

I would love to invite George R.R. Martin to dinner. Not only is he a fantastic writer, he is a great historian and fabulous person (from what I’ve seen of interviews). I would make chicken parmigiana, and hopefully not burn it.

What book are you currently reading and in what format (e-book/paperback/hardcover)?

I am currently absorbed in Laini Taylor’s Days of Blood and Starlight, the sequel to Daughter of Smoke and Bone, in e-book format. I would HIGHLY recommend these books, they are phenomenal!

Do you have a routine for writing? Do you work better at night, in the afternoon, or in the morning?

I am a lover of routines, but since I am a mother of two little ones who aren’t in school yet, I write whenever I can! That usually means at night after the kids are asleep, or on my husband’s days off I hand them over and bolt out the door to Starbucks, as quick as lightning, to get my write-on!

Where do you prefer to do your writing?

Starbucks is okay when necessary, but I really enjoy writing on my back porch, where I can hear the birds and see the trees. We have these comfy sofa-like chairs out there and I just grab my lap-top and a cup of hot tea and click away on the keyboard!

Do you ever get writer’s block? What do you do when it happens?

I throw things and curse a lot...*crickets*.
Haha! No, I’m kidding. I take breaks. A good walk helps me to clear my mind of all the stumbling blocks and refresh with new ideas.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

Read. I LOVE to read. I love to play video games and have dance parties with my kids.

What are you working on now?

I am working on MER (volume 2) the second book in the MER series. It is going to be fantastic! I get goose bumps just thinking about it!

Good luck with it, Jade, and come back and tell us about it when it's out.

                                                                MER book trailer

About the author:

Jade M. Phillips, aside from being an author, can play guitar, do a frighteningly accurate portrayal of a spider monkey, and has the unique and magical ability to vanquish entire armies of snarling trolls with a flick of her pen.
When she is not writing about mystical creatures and lovable characters, she’s having nightly dance parties with her kids, blogging about whatever tickles her fancy at the moment, and testing new recipes on the stove (which coincidentally, usually ends up testing her smoke detectors as well).

Jade M. Phillips resides in Arizona with her husband, two children, and her crazy cat, William Wallace Braveheart Fuzzy McFarland the Third.

Connect with Jade:

Facebook page
Goodreads author page