You can find Cassandra at the following places:
Why she's here:
To start off, can you give us five fun facts about yourself?
1. I love to draw and paint.
2. I also love to cook. I actually taught myself to cook when I started high school. By the time I was a senior, I was cooking meals for my family every night.
3. I collect action figures. Mostly Star Trek ones, but sometimes I branch out.
4. I did a study abroad in Taiwan when I was in college. A big part of the program involved meeting several important Taiwan political figures, which was awesome.
5. I spent a year teaching high school English in a small central Texas football town. It was a lot like Friday Night Lights, actually.
That sounds amazing - to be so motivated to cook that you cook every night! I wish I did that more!
What are five books you think everyone should read?
1. One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez: This is one of my favorite books of all time. When I read it the first time (for a college class, of all things!) it was unlike anything I’d ever read before, and I fell in love with it immediately.
2. Howl’s Moving Castle, by Diana Wynne Jones: I’ve mentioned this before, but this book has one of the greatest falling-in-love narratives I’ve ever read. There’s a lot more to love about it than just that, of course, but the love story’s the reason why I think everyone should read it.
3. Harriet the Spy, by Louise Fitzgerald: Love this book! Harriet is an awesome character, plus the story’s ultimately a great, non-cliche exploration of the nature of friendship.
4. The Blind Assassin, by Margaret Atwood: This is hands-down my favorite Margaret Atwood book of all time. I love the complex structure (it makes use of nested stories, like the ones in 1001 Arabian Nights), the relationships between the characters, and the use of pulp science fiction novels.
5. How To Cook Everything, by Mark Bittman: Okay, you probably don’t want to read this cover to cover, but if you do want to learn how to cook, it’s definitely the most useful. It really does tell you how to cook everything.
Ohhh The Blind Assassin sounds amazing! (They all do!) I have yet to read Howl's Moving Castle (Super depressing, I know) but my sister's begging me to read it, so soon!
How has writing and being published affected your life?
Well, it’s made me a lot busier, for starters. I essentially have three jobs now — writing, teaching, and tutoring. I have to find ways to balance my work so that everything gets done and I don’t let something slip away. Of course, I’ve been making time for writing long before I got published, but pre-book deal I had a lot less pressure in terms of what I wrote and how fast I wrote it. One of my worst habits was taking breaks from projects, starting new ones, and just generally not finishing things. Now I have an obligation to finish stuff! This is a good thing, really.
One interesting side effect of being published is that being online starts to feel like work sometimes. Not because it’s unpleasant, but because posting to Twitter and Facebook and the like is actually part of my job now! And that’s taken a little getting used to.
Oh man, now I really need to get published - to think of all the stories I'd actually finish! Haha!
Who is your favorite character that you have created and why?
Out of everything I’ve written? Probably Cat, who is the main character of the adult book I have coming out next year, The Mad Scientist’s Daughter. She’s a pretty flawed person, which made her tricky to write — but it was such a deeply rewarding experience once I got her right. Second place goes to a character you’ll meet in The Pirate’s Wish, but I don’t want to say too much about her, since I don’t want to spoil the surprise.
Ohhh I can't wait to meet Cat and this unnamed character!!
What would YOU prefer to be: Ninja or Pirate? What would your name be?
I think I’d rather be a pirate. I love both traveling and the ocean, and as a pirate you get to do both. I imagine I could hold on to my real name. “The Dread Pirate Cassandra” has a nice ring to it.
You would be a pirate queen to be feared! ARGH! ;)
Which would you prefer to experience first hand: Riding on a camel over sand dunes, sailing the high seas with pirates, or disguising yourself in the marketplace?
My initial response was to sail the high seas with pirates, but when I thought about it a minute I realized I’d probably really prefer to disguise myself in the marketplace. Not so much because of the disguise, but because I’d love a chance to explore the markets in the story. Especially the night markets.
That sounds like so much fun! Those were some of my favorite chapters in The Assassin's Curse - the market place scenes!
If you were in Ananna's shoes, who would be your greatest threat: Leila, Naji's former lover, or Echo, the lady of the Mists?
Oh, definitely Echo. She could kill me! The worse Leila’s going to do is be mean.
Ahhh that makes perfect sense! The drama queen in me would have answered Leila (if I were you), but like I just said: Drama queen!! ;)
When the idea of The Assassin's Curse came to you, did it originally have a sequel attached to it or was it a standalone? How many books are planned for the series?
I originally wrote The Assassin’s Curse and The Pirate’s Wish as one long book. Too long, as it turned out, which is why we decided to split it in half. It helped that there was a natural split halfway through the story, too. I always intended that original super-long novel to be a stand-alone, and so for that reason the duology does wrap up Ananna and Naji’s story. However, I would love to write new stories set in the same world! Nothing’s planned yet, but that can always change in the future.
Oh my goodness I will totally read whatever you write about this fantastical world! :)
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
Thanks for having me on your blog, and I hope your readers enjoy The Assassin’s Curse!
Now how about it, guys?? Wanna read The Assassin's Curse? Well it's out, so you should all run to the
store immediately and BUY IT! :D Support this awesome lady and her awesome stories - you won't be sorry!
Come back for a review of The Assassin's Curse tomorrow!! FIVE STARS!! :D