Forfatter-interview #102 Jennifer Donnelly

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Photo: D. Dundas

Læs anmeldelsen af Det blå dyb (Vandflammens saga #1)

Mention three fun facts that your fans maybe don’t know about you
I wish I had a whole herd of kangaroos.
I eat my weight in popcorn every day.
I’m addicted to Riverdale.

When did you know that you wanted to become an author?
I knew I wanted to be a writer when I was a child. My best friend and I made books with prizes in them and mailed them to each other. (I know, total nerdvana!)

How long have you been writing? And what started it?
Ever since I was a little kid. My mom, who’s a great storyteller, is completely to blame.

Who discovered you? (Did you contact publishing houses? How was the process?)
I pitched my story to a literary agency, Writers House, and they called me and asked to see more of my work and took me on. For which I am eternally grateful. It’s been a long and wonderful partnership. Selling my first novel was very tough, though. It took a great deal of rewriting to make my first draft good enough to submit to publishing houses. And even then, there were plenty of rejections. The whole long hard process taught me something: No one can ever guarantee that you’ll get published, but one person can guarantee you won’t — you, if you quit. So never, ever give up on yourself.

How many books have you published (so far)? And which genre?
Eleven novels, one collaborative novel, and one picture book. Some are historical fiction, some fantasy. Some are written for middle-graders, others for teens or adults.

Why this story? What made you choose this specific theme?
A dress started the Waterfire Saga, believe it or not. Actually, a few dresses! Designed by Alexander McQueen. For the whole story behind the story, go to:

How do you identify with the character(s) in your book?
I’m really interested in how strong female characters get strong. Most of us aren’t born strong, we have to build strength the hard way — by making mistakes. Lots of them. My characters certainly do. They screw up a lot. They make bad decisions. Trust the wrong people. They can be hot-headed. Stubborn. Short-sighted. It’s how they change and grow as a result of the mistakes they make that inspires me, and hopefully my readers. We all fall, but it’s the ability to get up again that shows true courage and strength.

What are you currently reading?
Just finished The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert. Such gorgeous writing and funny characters! And can’t wait to start Tomi Adeyemi’s Children of Blood and Bone.

When is your next book going to be published?
My latest book just came out! It’s called FATAL THRONE, and it’s a collaborative retelling of the stories of the six wives of England’s Henry VIII. I wrote Anna of Cleves, the so-called ugly one. I loved getting to know her and listening as she told me her story. She was smart and shrewd and she managed to keep her head — no easy feat in Henry’s court!

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