Sunday, July 31, 2011

Surfacing Briefly For Air...

Hello, bloggers! I do actually plan to get back to blogging sometime soon. It's just that the past two weeks have looked something like this...

Turns out that being overseas for the whole of the winter break did NOT help me prepare for lessons. Who would have thought?

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Gabrielle, The Authoress

As part of Gabrielle’s prize in the Power of Tension Blogfest, she won an interview on both my and Cally’s blogs (The Tension Blogfest? you ask. Wasn’t that, like, ages ago? Correct. But I’ve been out of the country recently, and before that... end-of-term-madness!).

So, let's get down to business!

I'd like to introduce to you all Julie Gabrielle Anne, all the way from Tennessee, USA (which is kind of far from South Africa...).

To set the scene, how long have you been writing and what type of stories do you write?

I’ve been writing since I was nine. I’d start a story, quickly get tired of it, and end up killing off the entire cast and tacking on “the end” just so I could say it was done. Not until I was fourteen did I start writing seriously. My favorite genres to write and read are humor, sci-fi, and action. Anything with big guns or big laughs :)

[At least you got to "the end". I only ever got a few chapters in and then got bored and moved on!]

Describe your favourite writing place.

My favorite place to write is at my desk. It’s older than me and came from my grandmother. I don’t like to sit at it, though. I have to sit on top of it, with my music going loud and my legs dangling off either side. It’s very comfy.

[Hmm, never tried sitting ON my desk...]

Are you a plotter or a pantzer?

I am both when I have to be, but I’m a pantzer by nature. It’s so much more fun to just dive in with no plan and start writing whatever crazy things come to mind. Sometimes, like with a prequel novel that I’m working on now, I have to plot because the novel covers twenty-five years, and I have to be careful not to mess up the timeline in the orginal novels.

[I'm with you on this. Pantzing comes more naturally to me too.]

Would you rather have a great plotline or fantastic technical writing? (No, you can’t choose both here!)

Definitely great plotline! You can always fix messy technical writing later, and it’s not as much of a headache as a disastrous plotline.


What's a completely random fact about you that most people don't know?

Hm. It drives me absolutely nuts when my younger siblings wrinkle the rug in my room. I can’t focus on anything else if the rug is crooked or has a lump in it.

[Haha, yup, that's pretty random!]

What was your favourite book as a child?

This one is an easy one. HOP ON POP by Dr. Seuss. It’s still one of my favorites. When I was learning to read, it was one of the few books I could read by myself and one of the first of Dr. Seuss’s genius books that I ever read.

[Ooh, I haven't read that one! Must go on the to-read-to-my-children-one-day list...]

If you were stuck in an elevator and had the choice of any writer, living or dead, to be stuck with, who would it be and why?

This is a tough one… Got it! Kate Brian. She’s the author who turned me onto romantic humor in YA, both reading and writing it. I think she’s a genius. In her Privilege series, the main character is a murderer and completely psychotic, but I still ended up rooting for her. What kind of crazy good writer can do that??

[Wow. I'll have to check out this Kate Brian.]

Out of all the characters you’ve ever created, tell us about the one you’d most like to meet in real life.

This is a close call between two characters from the same book, but I’d have to go with Darius Hanneman. He’s a cyborg turned con artist, teleporter, and fiercely loyal. He’s also a walking time bomb, almost always ends up getting somebody in trouble, and is never sorry. But on the rare occasion he can be sweet and sort of funny.

[Ok, I would be a little scared to meet this Darius dude!]

Have you ever based a character on a real person you know, and would you tell that person?

There is one character I based off a real person, but I never did and probably never will tell them. They’d be flattered to begin with, but when they found out who the character was… they’d be less pleased. Haha.

[Probably best to keep quiet then!]

Lastly (and most importantly): chocolate or ice cream?

*gasp* Is it even possible to survive with just one or the other? I love chocolate sooo much, but I’m ninety-nine percent certain I would expire without ice cream. Does chocolate ice cream count as chocolate?

[Hmm... Ok, you can have chocolate ice cream :-)]

~ ~ ~

Thank you, Gabrielle, and congratulations once again on an excellent entry in the Power of Tension Blogfest.

If you're interested in following Gabrielle's writing journey you can find her on her blog, The Authoress | Of A Writerly Sort.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Parcel in the Post: My Signed Copy of POSSESSION!

Several weeks back when Elana Johnson's POSSESSION was being released, Nichole Giles, Ali Cross and Windy Aphayrath hosted a blog hop where you could win a signed copy of POSSESSION just by writing about a time you broke the rules... My blog post, Good Girls Don't Skinny Dip, won me a copy! Yay!

I kept hoping it would arrive before I went overseas so that I could take it with me -- it certainly would have made the flight more entertaining! Instead it was something I got to look forward to on returning home (because -- I'll be honest -- having to stop holidaying and go back to work kind of sucks!)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Back from Holiday :-)

For those of you in the northern hemisphere your summer holiday is probably just beginning. I, however, returned to a wintry southern hemisphere last night and have to get back to school tomorrow :-(

For the last three weeks (yup, THREE WHOLE WEEKS for those of you who are scratching your heads and thinking, she was away? I didn't even miss her...) I was in the UK! Some of it was FANTASTIC and some of it was, um, not so fantastic... (like floating around Dubai airport in an exhausted, dizzy, only semi-conscious state for EIGHT hours waiting for my connecting flight...).

My sister and I spent a whirlwind four days in London, then some time taking care of grandparents in Hampshire, and then a few days living it up in what we affectionately called Chateau Haytor (aka my aunt's country house) in Devon.

Some of the things I loved:

The major landmarks of London.

The lovely old houses.

The gorgeous flowers blooming just about everywhere!
(That's me, top right, frolicking in the corn flowers ;-))

Hampton Court Palace
(I don't have a wide angle lens so I had to do the photo stitch thing,
hence the reason the palace looks slightly, uh, wonky!)

Widecombe-in-the-Moor, Devon
(click to enlarge)

Since I've been out of the blogosphere-loop for about a month now, please feel free to tell me what you've been up to recently!