What was the first book you wrote? Published?
The first book I ever wrote (book, not short story) was basically a fanfiction (I didn’t realize this at the time) of things like the Wheel of Time and Sword of Truth series. There was every single high fantasy cliché you can imagine.
Which author do you most look up to?
I know saying JK Rowling is old hat, but I think I have to. She wove the most imaginative story, and captured an entire generation of readers. She basically unlocked the love of reading in many many young children, and I can’t imagine leaving a better legacy than that.
What is your ultimate goal as an author?
Basically what I’ve said above, starting a love of reading in people. And telling a killer story.
Which of your characters do you most connect with?
I connect to each one of my characters a little bit, you have to in order to write them. But I most identify with the ones who are unsure of their places in life, because that was me for so long.
What is your favorite genre to read? Why?
Fantasy, always fantasy. And for me it’s YA fantasy, because the genre is so revolutionary. It’s the kind of genre and category that makes me compelled to buy a book because the “hook” behind so many of the books is so intriguing. Plus there’s something about that teen narration that keeps me turning pages.
But yeah, it’s always going to be fantasy. There’s got to be something magical about it.
What is the most challenging part of your writing process?
Making myself sit down to do it when I know I’ve got about a dozen other things I should do.
Do you have any go to snacks while writing?
Mostly just tea. Lots and lots of tea.
What is your all-time favorite novel to read?
Anything by Neil Gaiman
What do you consider your greatest strength as an author?
No author wants to answer that, do they? It always sounds like bragging. But if I’ve got to say, I think probably voice (can I even say that, is that allowed?) It’s getting stronger with every new book, and as I find my space and narrative within each book.
What is the best writing advice you’ve ever received?
Don’t compare yourself to others. It really is the best advice, but I’ve yet to learn how to follow it completely.
If you could have a literary tea party with five of your favorite characters and five of your favorite authors, alive or dead, who would they be?
Characters: The Mad Hatter (because tea party, duh), Lord Henry Wotton from Dorian Gray and Magnus Bane from The Mortal Instruments (mostly because I think they’d have a verbal sparring match) Warren from Shatter Me, and Hermione from Harry Potter (I think she’d probably hex Warren, which would be delightful to watch).
Authors: Neil Gaiman, JK Rowling, Stephen King, Maggie Stiefvator and Maureen Johnson.
What’s the best thing about being a writer?
Getting to make up lies all day and being paid money for them.
If you couldn’t be an author, what would be your next choice for a dream job?
I don’t really have one aside from writer, but if I did, I expect it would be something else ridiculous, like mattress tester or chocolatier, or “pillow fight technician”. Okay, that last one I made up.
How long does it usually take you to write a book from plotting to publishing?
It varies wildly. But the Frost books are so dang long that the proper answer is “simply ages”.
What is your favorite place to write?
At home in my library without any noises or distractions.
Tell us something fun about yourself, completely unrelated to writing!
I hoop dance. Which is a bit like simple hula hooping, but with a lot more tossing and flailing and throwing things about.