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Thursday, January 28, 2016

COGLING Author Interview and Giveaway!

Today I have the pleasure of interviewing author Jordan Elizabeth about her latest YA release COGLING (love the cover!). Jordan emailed me years ago.  She enjoyed my books and she asked me for some writing advice. Over the years, she's been in touch with questions and updates about her writing.  She even invited me to be a guest speaker at her writing critique group in upstate New York!  Needless to say, I was thrilled when Jordan sold her stories and even more honored when she asked me to read COGLING for a cover blurb.  And this is what I said, "Hooked from the very first chapter, I loved this unique tale of adventure filled with engaging characters and non-stop action!"

Jordan is giving away one copy of COGLING.  It's open to ALL - see below for the Rafflecopter to enter the giveaway.

Here's the blurb: When fifteen-year-old Edna Mather tears an expensive and unfamiliar pocket watch off her little brother’s neck, he crumbles into a pile of cogs right before her eyes. Horrified, Edna flees for help, but encounters Ike, a thief who attempts to steal the watch before he realizes what it is: a device to power Coglings—clockwork changelings left in place of stolen children who have been forced to work in factories.

Desperate to rescue her brother, Edna sets off across the kingdom to the hags’ swamp, with Ike in tow. There, they learn Coglings are also replacing nobility so the hags can stage a rebellion and rule over humanity. Edna and Ike must stop the revolt, but the populace believes hags are helpful godmothers and healers. No one wants to believe a lowly servant and a thief, especially when Ike has secrets that label them both as traitors.

Together, Edna and Ike must make the kingdom trust them or stop the hags themselves, even if Ike is forced to embrace his dark heritage and Edna must surrender her family.

Take 10 with Jordan:

1.) COGLING puts a Steampunk twist on the legends of the fay stealing children and leaving changelings behind.  How did you spark on the idea for this?

A local illustrator, Aaron Siddall, and I sat down to plan out this book.  Many of the ideas came from our planning.  He drew the pictures and I wrote the words.  Unfortunately, it turned out that the book was published without his artwork.  [Too bad :(  However, Aaron said I could share a few pictures and here they are!]

Got Her by Aaron Siddall


Foxkin by Aaron Siddall
Aaron's Website

2.) The book has both Steampunk and magic.  Can you explain how you developed the idea to blend the two aspects?

I learned about steampunk while working at a Victorian Fair one summer.  It combined a lot of my favorite things – pocket watches, corsets, long skirts, and high-button boots.  I explored more of the genre and became even more excited.  I knew I wanted my characters to experience that world.

I have always loved magic since my grandmother read to me from a collection of fairy tales.  I have tried to write just fiction, but magic always slips in.  I have given in to my muse and when I brainstorm a novel, I always consider how a little bit of magic will fit in.

3.) What do you love about Edna and Ike?

I love their love.  I didn’t intend for them to form a relationship, but it started to develop during their first meeting.  Most of the scenes I wrote for them that involved tender moments had me smiling at the computer screen.  I also love how they are both strong individuals who will do anything for those who are important to them.

And what do they do that drive you crazy?

Whenever the moment didn’t fit for them to kiss.  Romance always makes me giddy.

4.) I really liked how you had hags and ogres as your antagonists.  How did you decide on their names and abilities?

I have much of that to thank Aaron Siddall for.  It was so much fun imagining what these ogres and hags would be like, and even though so many of them were evil, I wanted some to be good.

5.) Did you have to do any special research for this book?

I did quite a few searches on steampunk costumes.  The costumes are always so beautiful, and I really feel like the clothes make the genre.  I wanted the readers to be able to picture all of that.

6.) The Steampunk genre has created a sub-culture in not only books, but art and cosplay as well.  Do you participate in the Steampunk culture by attending conventions and wearing costumes?

I do wear the costumes, especially to my book signings.  I am a huge fan of costumes.  You should have seen what I wore throughout grade school!

So far I haven’t gotten to a convention, but I hope to make it to one in 2016.

7.) How did you become a writer? Is this what you saw yourself growing up to be? Or did it take you by surprise?

I wanted to be a writer ever since my mother read my first book to me.  My maternal grandmother would write down my made up stories for me from the time when I could first talk until I had my first computer.  I would record the stories into a tape recorder and she would keep playing it back to get it down right.  I had horrible handwriting and her writing was beautiful.  She also spoiled me with books.  Whenever we went to the bookstore, she would get me a stack.  My fondest memories are of curling up in the plush rocking chair in her living room with a book in my hand.  At night, she would read to me from collections of short stories.  She used to do different voices for the characters, and my mom does it too now.

I really wouldn’t be a writer today if it wasn’t for her.  She always believed in me.  She bought me my first computer just for my stories and all subsequent computers except for the one I have now.

I did always want to be a writer.  I also wanted to be a teacher.  I am a teacher now too.  

8.) Do you have a writing routine? Talk process for a moment, how do the words get on the page?

I aim for any free time I can find.  In the past, late morning has been my best time, but my day job gets in the way.  I usually don’t write until pretty late at night.  I try to write at least a chapter a night, depending on how much the day has drained me.

I am not a planning person.  I have a main idea and just go for it.  Sometimes the ending is something I never expected when I started Chapter One.

9.) Office? Closet? Corner of the living room? Do you have a set place to write?

I have to write in my bedroom on a desktop computer with the door shut.  I don’t usually listen to music.  I like it very, very quiet.  Okay, I’m very loud at typing, so it isn’t that quiet!  I have a laptop I take with me on vacation, but I’ve found that I can’t type on it.  The words just won’t flow.  Sometimes I lock the bedroom door to ensure I’m not disturbed.

10.) What are you writing now?  What’s coming out next?

My next book from Curiosity Quills Press is RUNNERS AND RIDERS, a companion to my Treasure Chronicles series.  I also have two young adult novels, GOAT CHILDREN and VICTORIAN, coming out from CHBB in 2016.  I based much of GOAT CHILDREN off my relationship with my grandmother.

Right now I am working on another fantasy-steampunk.  As of right now, it is untitled, but it is about magic in Alaska.  I am collaborating on it with illustrator Aaron Siddall.

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Links!
Website
Facebook
Goodreads
Amazon


13 comments:

  1. What an intriguing sounding book! It's definitely going onto my tbr list, but first I have to get to Night Study! ;)

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  2. Love the cover. Haven't read too many steam punk books

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  3. Beautiful cover! Can't wait to read this :D

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  4. I should read more Steampunk. I do enjoy it.

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  5. I've never actually read any Steampunk books but I hear that they are really good so I plan on reading them in the future. Also, the cover looks simply brilliant...and I love the title!!! : D

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  6. Great cover. Aaron Siddall is a wonderful artist.

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  7. I like the steampunk genre, it has some great costumes and the technology/steamounk is interesting. Sounds like a good read!
    Question for Jordan: Have you read The Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa?

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    1. I have read a few of the books. I need to grab copies of the others.

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  8. Very interesting combination, on my to read list now!

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  9. I love Jordan's books! Can't wait to read this one! Have you read Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff?

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    1. No - I haven't but I'll have to check it out! Thanks.

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  10. I love the cover! And it's too bad about the illustrations--they're fabulous too. This looks like a very cool and interesting twist on fairy tales. Congratulations!

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  11. haven't really read the genre

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