Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Interview with Leah Cypess, author of Nightspell

Please welcome Leah Cypess to the blog today! I asked Leah if she would like to come answer some fun questions for us, and I am so happy she said yes :) I gave her a big set of questions and let her choose which ones to answer. Here's what she had to say:

Prologue: Intro

Tell us a little about yourself and the book(s) you've written...

I’m a 34-year-old mother and writer who has been trying to get published for the last 15 years… and now I have! I’ve written two young adult fantasy books, both published by HarperCollins/Greenwillow: MISTWOOD, the story of an ancient shapeshifter trapped in the form of a human girl, and NIGHTSPELL, the story of a warrior princess who rides into a macabre country to rescue her sister... only to discover that her sister doesn't want to be saved.

Part One: Your books and writing

Do you have a favourite line or two from one of your book(s)? What is it?

Oooh, fun question!  Here’s one from Nightspell: “`It’s a very useful thing, sometimes, to burn your bridges behind you. While they’re there, you know you can cross back over them... [but] once something is impossible, you don’t have to think about it anymore.’”

How do you choose the names for your characters?

Part of the fun of writing fantasy is that you get to just put a bunch of syllables together and find out if you like them. Sometimes the name for a characters come to me right away. Other times, I struggle to find a name. For some reason, I’m usually pretty sure which letter I want the name to start with, so I’ll fill a piece of paper with various endings for that letter until I hit upon one that sounds right to me.

How much control did you have have over the cover design of your book?
Do you like it? If you didn't design it yourself, how do you think it would have turned out if you did?

Zero, but I love it. If I had designed it myself, it would have turned out a lot worse! I remember thinking of various possible cover designs, and for some reason I was convinced that there should be horses on the cover. It's a good thing they didn't ask me.

Part Two: All about you

If you weren't writing what do you think you'd be doing?

I would probably be a lawyer, since that’s what I did for two years after graduating from law school. Part of the reason I quit was because it was so time-consuming I had no time to write. (I had no time for a social life, either, but somehow that didn’t bother me quite as much.)

What is your favourite tv show? Favourite movie?

As anyone who follows me on twitter knows, I am a huge fan of Gilmore Girls, mostly because of the constant funny one-liners. They’re not just snarky, they’re also smart and usually not at all mean-spirited. That’s a hard thing to pull off! My favorite movie is The Last Unicorn, which I watched for the first time when I was seven years old and never forgot. To me it epitomizes everything that is great about fantasy. (It’s based on a book, The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle, which is equally fantastic.)

What is the first line of the first book in your bookcase?

Which bookcase? And how do you define “first book”? But I couldn’t resist this question, so I walked over to the nearest bookcase, closed my eyes, and reached out at random. The book my hand fell on was The Demon’s Covenant by Sarah Rees Brennan, and the first line is:

“Any minute now,” Rachel said, “something terrible is going to happen to us.”

Epilogue: Outro

What advice would you give your teen readers about life?

That it gets a lot better, and the things everyone thinks are important now are going to be the subject of dinner party jokes in ten years. Try to get through your teen years without messing up the rest of your life, and it will be well worth it!

Summary for Nightspell by Leah Cypess:
When Darri rides into Ghostland, a country where the living walk with the dead, she has only one goal: to rescue her younger sister Callie, who was sent to Ghostland as a hostage four years ago. But Callie has changed in those four years, and now has secrets of her own.

In her quest to save her sister from herself, Darri will be forced to outmaneuver a handsome ghost prince, an ancient sorcerer, and a manipulative tribal warrior (who happens to be her brother). When Darri discovers the source of the spell that has kept the dead in Ghostland chained to this earth, she faces a decision that will force her to reexamine beliefs she has never before questioned – and lead her into the heart of a conspiracy that threatens the very balance of power between the living and the dead.

Find more from Leah Cypess at the following places:
Website: http://www.leahcypess.com/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Nightspell/128757930527688
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/LeahCypess

1 comment:

  1. Loved this interview. I will definitely check out Leah's books. :)