When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?
I’ve known that I wanted to write since I took journalism in the 7th grade. I figured out pretty quickly that I didn’t want to be a journalist, though, since they have to cover big events like wars and droughts and epidemics. I’m more of a stay-in-my-clean-safe-house-and-make-stuff-up kind of gal. Thankfully, that worked out for me!
Who would win in a fight: a vampire, a werewolf, or a zombie?
After reading Carrie Ryan’s The Forest of Hands and Teeth, I’m kind of on Team Zombie right now. They’re slow (although not all of them!) but relentless, and have the bite of a pit bull.
Are you a fan of Twilight?
I am! I think it’s become popular to bash this series because it’s such a phenom, but here’s the thing: I’d spent my daughter’s entire childhood trying to turn her into a reader. I bought every kind of book I could think of trying to find something she loved. It wasn’t until I handed her Twilight that something finally clicked for her. Now, she’s an avid reader and for her last birthday she asked for B&N gift cards because she can no longer afford her reading habit! That’s huge!!! Twilight made reading cool again…gotta love that!
What are your five favorite books?
I’m warning you, I have eclectic reading taste, but here goes:
To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee (Best. Book. Ever!)
The Shining, by Stephen King (this book made me realize I wanted to write all-things-dark-and-creepy)
Night, by Elie Wiesel (Haunting!)
Wicked Lovely, by Melissa Marr (or pretty much anything by Melissa Marr)
City of Bones, by Cassandra Clare (I just discovered this series and I can’t get enough!)
And just for the record, I could so easily add at least 10 more to my Top 5 list!
What are your five favorite scary movies?
The Shining…of course!
The Sixth Sense
A Nightmare on Elm Street (the original), which may not be as scary now as it was 25 years ago ;)
Paranormal Activity. I don’t consider many movies “too scary," but this is an exception. I had to cover my eyes during the previews for the sequel.
The Ring. Loved it!
Where do you write?
I used to be able to write in the kitchen with all the chaos of the kids running around, but now I have a nice, private office. With a door and a lock.
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Keep trying. Don’t give up on your first, or fifth, or even 50th rejection. Read every book you can get your hands on, work on your craft, and learn to revise (even when it makes you uncomfortable). And keep submitting.
Do you think writing can be taught?
I do. I believe that some people are born with a gift to create stories but that can only take you so far. I also believe that writers should constantly be striving to be better and to learn from others. If you live life right, you never stop learning.
(That sounded like some sort of Public Service Announcement!)
What is your new novel about?
Desires of the Dead is the sequel to my debut novel, The Body Finder, about 16-year-old Violet, who can sense the echoes of those who've been murdered—and the matching imprint that clings to their killers.
Sounds scary, right??
Related post: An Interview With Writer Courtney Moulton