My Interview with Andrea Cremer!

October 15, 2010

 

Calla is a remarkable character. She’s strong, brave, beautiful—and flawed. (A difficult combination to achieve.)  And yet what do I love most about her? That hair! (I, too, have written a book with a white-haired heroine.) What do you suppose is so alluring about young women with white hair?

I’m entertained by this question because I had a strong resistance to writing a blonde heroine (with no good reason – my dad is blonde and I like him a lot!), but Calla was without a doubt platinum blonde with golden eyes. She looks like the flower that’s her namesake, elegant but strong. I also think that white blonde hair has a translucent quality that conveys mystery.

 

The love triangle in Nightshade is absolutely delicious. I finished the book months ago, and I’m STILL finding it hard to choose between Ren and Shay. I want them both! (Don’t tell my husband.) So here’s my two-part question. How do you manage to write such sexy, sexy scenes? And which guy would YOU choose?

Thank you!! I love writing the steamy scenes. I think it has to do with the fact that I was born a hopeless romantic and I adore being swept away by passion. One of my favorite responses to Nightshade is that so many people are torn between Ren and Shay. With regard to part two of your question – I’m afraid I have to give you the same answer I give everyone: I’m Team Calla because it’s her choice not mine.

 

Having spent some quality time with you in the recent past, I know you write very quickly. (And I’m incredibly jealous.) You say you almost go into a trance. Describe your work area, sartorial choices, and level of personal hygiene during these trances.

My work area is wherever I happen to be. I have a writing desk, but honestly it’s covered with books and notes and not actually somewhere I could get writing done. My most frequent writing spot is on my couch in the company of my pug and border collie, but I have been known to write on my deck, in coffee shops, in airports, and on planes. Sartorial: depends on if I’ve had to see people during the day. If yes, then I’m wearing normal clothes. If no, I’m probably in a t-shirt and yoga pants. Personal hygiene: same as above, except that when I’m really in a story I have problems remembering to do things, i.e. I’ll get in the shower and then just get back out without having washed my hair or anything.

 

Young adult literature is filled with some fabulous libraries. The one in Nightshade is particularly awesome. I must admit, I feel a little tingly whenever I set foot in an old library. These days, when almost every answer is just a Google search away, why are we still so drawn to these places from the past?

Since you’re speaking to a historian I feel like it’s in my blood. I’ve spent a lot of time in archives. I held one of John Winthrop’s bibles in my hand (for anyone who wants to know, John Winthrop was a governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony). Libraries are repositories for the human past in a way that is akin to archaeological evidence. Books, manuscripts, maps are all tangible. They have scent and texture. The internet is fantastic for its volume and speed, but it lacks the ability to ground you in the material past.

 

I know you grew up in a part of the country where wolves roam the woods. Have you ever come face-to-face with one? Would you like to?

Sadly, I have not, though my father has several times. And I’ve seen their tracks. When I was growing up the wolf packs were small as conservation and reintroduction programs were just getting off the ground. Now there are several wolf packs roaming the Chequamegon National Forest near my hometown. And yes, I do hope to encounter wolves in the wild someday.

 

The world you created for Nightshade is incredibly complex. How long have you “lived” in this world? How long do you intend to stay there? (In other words, how many books will be in the series?)

I stepped into Nightshade’s world in November of 2008 and I plan to stay there until 2012 for now (that’s four books, three in the trilogy plus a prequel). After that????

 

I don’t think it’s a secret that Nightshade ends in a cliffhanger. How could you do that to me!?!?! WHY, WHY, WHY?

I seem nice and cheerful, but in truth I am quite evil.

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