Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Caragh O'Brien Author Interview + Giveaway

Caragh O'Brien Author Interview
Hey Booksnob followers, December's author in the spotlight is Caragh O'Brien and I am happy to feature an interview with her about her Young Adult Trilogy.  The first book is Birthmarked, the second is Prized and the third book Promised will be released in the fall of 2012.  If you are interested in reading a copy of Prized from this fabulous Minnesota author, read on.

1.      Tell us a little bit about yourself.
First, Laura, let me say how pleased I am to be invited by.  You’re so kind to feature my novels this month.
My life is simple.  I grew up in St. Paul back before the Mall of America, and spent summers with my family at our lake place up north.  After attending the Visitation and SPA/SS, I went east for college and graduate school.  My husband and I started a family, and we’ve lived in a small town in Connecticut for seventeen years now.  I recently resigned from teaching high school English to write full-time, so I spend most of my days on my couch, working.  I’m now in the last stages of revising the third book in the Birthmarked trilogy.

2.      What inspired you to write to a Young Adult trilogy?
My aim was to write the best story I could, and since Birthmarked was about a 16-year-old midwife, that put it squarely in the young adult category.  It has crossed over to adults since then, too.  I began to think of the story as a trilogy only after my publisher offered me a three-book contract.  That was a happy shock.

3.       Usually an author puts some of his own life experiences in the book.  Did you do that?  Do you have anything in common with your characters?
It’s rare for me to draw consciously and directly from my own experiences for my fiction, but my ideas must be based in me somehow.  I think we have many common, human emotions, so if for example my character is feeling impulsive or lonely, I draw from that inside myself.  Gaia from Birthmarked and Prized is much stronger and braver than I ever was, but I’m trying to be more like her.

4.      Can you tell us why or when you decided to become a writer? 
Writing has helped me think through ideas clearly since I was a seventh grader and began keeping a journal, so I’ve been writing most of my life.  I decided to write as my job last year when I realized I could no longer teach full-time and also meet my deadlines for the Birthmarked trilogy. 

5.      Do you like to read?  What authors or books influence you in the writing of the Birthmarked trilogy?
I enjoy reading, and lately I’m reading quite a few young adult dystopian novels, some by friends of mine, like Hall’s Away, DeStefano’s Wither, and Johnson’s Possession.  I’ve been influenced by Rand’s Anthem, Miller’s The Crucible, Meyer’s Twilight, and Collins’s The Trouble with Poetry.

6.      When is the third book in the series set to be released?  Can you give us a little hint or preview of what it is about?
The third novel, Promised, is due out in the fall of 2012. It’s hard to describe a book without spoilers, but I can say it’s clearly set up by events at the end of Prized, so it shouldn’t be a total surprise to readers.

7.      In one sentence tell readers why they should read the Birthmarked series.
If readers would like to try a fast-paced, twisted adventure story about a teen midwife who has to turn over a quota of babies each month to authorities inside the wall, they might like Birthmarked.
Thanks again, Laura, for having me by.  I hope you and your blog followers have a lovely time in the New Year.

If you are interested in winning a copy of Prized, enter by clicking the link:  Prized Contest

Thanks Caragh!