When I signed up for the Book Blogger Love-A-Thon hosted by Alexa Loves Books and Tales of Books and Bands I was anxious to say the least since I had only started blogging for real with the start of the New Year, so naturally I was terrified of being partnered with someone who was going to think I was a poor excuse for a blogger because I hadn’t been around for a whole lot of time. Which was completely unjustified because I’d only had great experiences with other bloggers so far, but yeah, I felt inadequate. I still wanted to do this so badly though because I loved the entire concept so much.
And then I got the lovely Danielle E. Shipley for an interview partner, and I was so, so relieved, because she wasn’t just super easy to talk to and a genuine partner-in-crime, but her blog kept me up two nights in a row just creeping, creeping, creeping, as you do.
Enough with my little introduction though, here is part 2 to our little interaction, which could’ve easily gone on and on if you’d asked me. It got a little out of hand with the word count, but I’m just so happy to have “met” Danielle. Couldn’t have asked for anyone better, really. Enough with the cheesefactor, check out her blog (for part 1 of the interview and more awesomesauce) by clicking below and be sure to take a look at her pretty wicked books on Goodreads by clicking here! Hope you enjoy the second part of our chat! 🙂
And now on with the shenanigans!
BOOK MARAUDER: NANO, whoop-whoop! We can be each other’s cheerleaders, come November!
I haven’t yet listened to the “X-Men: First Class” music apart from the movie, but even while I’m busy staring at James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender being awesome (and never mind staring at Jennifer Lawrence, can’t we just hang out and be friends already?), the quality of the music is apparent. Magneto’s theme, man! It excites me every time!
I forgive your delay in answering. I knew it was an unfair question when I asked it, so I fully accept the consequences. Nobody throw anything at me, but I haven’t read “The Catcher in the Rye”; it didn’t make it onto my school reading list. (And before anyone goes, “Oh, boo, the homeschooler got away with no required reading!” bear in mind that I still had to put up with “Great Expectations” and “The House of the Seven Gables”, so hush.) But Gandalf and Gansey I have met, and I approve. (My copy of “Dream Thieves” should be arriving in the mail any day now, squee! Jolly good thing, since it’ll be almost a year before the next “Hobbit” movie hits theaters. *sobs*)
EVER ON WORD: Where do I even start to answer this? (And where do I go from there? And where do I finish?) Probably the hardest part is figuring out who they are. I’ll usually start out having an idea of what I want them to do for the story, but until I know them — know their reasons behind the choices that keep the story moving — they won’t feel real to me. So I have to spend my pre-writing time (and maybe the first few chapters, though gosh knows there’s no end to when they can still surprise me) figuring out what makes these people tick. What gets a reaction out of them, and what that reaction is. Why they’ll put up with this or won’t put up with that. Where their breaking point lies. (*cough* When do I get to make them cry? *cough*) If I can get a preliminary handle on that, then the rest is just letting them go about their business in the plot I build around them.
(Pretty sure books don’t attack. The characters therein, on the other hand… Well, some of them can get nasty. You might wanna sleep with a baseball bat tonight. Just to play it safe.)
Okay. We’re gonna get radical and actually talk about blogging for a sec, here. (Cuh-RAZY.) To date, what stands out to you as your favorite blogging moment?
BOOK MARAUDER: I love that you said “letting them go about their business in the plot I build around them” because that’s really spot on what makes me truly love a character. If s/he is a trope or just a plot agent, I just can’t connect with them and get super irritated with them. I know there have to be that kind of characters, but they ultimately never affect me like the three dimensional, real ones.
(High Five for getting through The House of Seven Gables unscathed, my friend! I’ve been reading that one for 3 years… :D)
OKAY I’M DOWN WITH RADICAL (I also need to stop using caps lock so much!)
I think my favorite was posting that first book review, because it started it. I haven’t been blogging for long, but I’ve been secretly hiding in the community for a couple of years and yeah, I have to admit I was super scared to get going because it appears quite daunting at first. It’s so big and everyone’s got their friends already. I’ve met and got to know so many amazing people in a short span of time and it’s just nice to contribute and not be “silent”, I guess. It’s so easy with people that share the same passions, and I love to be a part of it. It’s nice to get “home” to at the end of the day, just firing up that laptop and actually talking to the people that run my favorite blogs as opposed to just skulking (I am not a creeper tho hehe).
Now that we’re talking about blogging, what’s your favorite part about it? You’ve been blogging for a lot longer, have you noticed aspects that you don’t enjoy as much as others?
EVER ON WORD: Yeah, I’ve found the same thing re: flat/real characters. Sometimes you can tell that the author’s strength doesn’t lie with the care and keeping of characters; maybe they’re clever at plot-creation or have a stylish way with words — two by no means unimportant skills to have — but if the characters don’t grab, the rest of the book probably won’t, so that’s long been my focus in writing.
(I don’t know if the fact that I had to listen to “House of the Seven Gables” on audiobook made the experience better or worse. I still had to pay attention during car rides to various extracurricular lessons, but at least it didn’t give me the opportunity to slack off and drag things out.)
Internet friends are AWESOME! (Caps lock solidarity, yo.) I’m not big into this whole “leaving the house” thing that a lot of people like to do, so it’s easier for me to stay in touch with people if we’re all hanging around the same sites. …even if I am frequently a creeper. My confidence to just jump into other peoples’ conversations goes in waves. Sometimes I’m just like, “Somebody mention this thing?! THIS THING, love/hate that!” Other times I start to type like three different comments, delete them all, and slink away, like, “Nobody’s interested in hearing that. Leave them to their fun.” Social anxiety; whee, yay. 😛
My favorite part of blogging: That moment of anticipation when I’ve just finished putting together a post that really tickles me for whatever reason (I’ve gotten good at amusing myself) and I can’t wait to share it with everybody! My least favorite part: When the post doesn’t seem to get much of a reaction. : ( I expect I’ve got lurkers off being entertained in a private corner somewhere, but if I can’t see the reaction, the sensitive artist in me assumes that nobody cares about me and kind of wants to go sit in a graveyard until death takes me. Yes, Sensitive Artist Me is that dramatic.
But lest this interview take too much of a downward turn, let me ask you this: Would you rather be an expert swordsman or archer? (Or do you think another weapon altogether wins in the category of utter coolness?)
BOOK MARAUDER: (I am so relieved I’m not the only lurker, because I totally do the exact same things ahahaha) I always get so excited when I write a review and think it’s a good one and then I have to schedule it instead of posting it right away, it drives me crazy not to share it immediately. (Let me give your sensitive self some chocolate, I feel you.)
Okay, I’d totally go for being an expert swordsman because I am so bad under pressure, and having to shoot things from a distance ahead of everyone else would WRECK me. (I feel very, very weird right now because I immediately pictured myself in that warg-battle in The Two Towers as Legolas and saw myself fail epically) So yeah, swordswoman would be pretty badass. And I would name it Meryl, because it would be the best sword ever.
I like this turn of events, so who’s your favorite literary heroine? Why? Can you picture yourself in her shoes?
EVER ON WORD: (Hee-hee-hee, let’s be total creepers at stare at people together…while wearing trenchcoats and fedoras! Even if nobody notices us, it will be completely hilarious.)
Swooords! Yeah, there was really no wrong answer, there; I love swords and bows both. Would die if I tried to fight with either of ’em, but that’s all on me. (Your Legolas and my Aragon could doublehandedly doom the free people’s of Middle Earth. -_- ) Ooh, and you’re right, one’s trusty sword must be named. I’ve gotten so bad about naming things, lately. I used to do it for everything, first thing, but then I got old and nitpicky and perfect names can be so hard to find.
Now, then. My favorite literary heroine. This could take a sec; I’m usually too busy crushing on the dudes to notice… If we’re talking fave heroines who fall into the “hysterically funny yet reeeally bad role model” category, that would be Georgia from Louise Rennison’s “Confessions of Georgia Nicholson” series (aka YA British comedy at its finest). She’s utterly self-absorbed and entirely over-dramatic, which makes for the kind of diary entries I wish I could think to write. (Would anyone find my journal that funny, I wonder? Doubtful. I don’t tend to get my best rants on paper.) I think one of my many “sides of self” is a daft British teenager, so I can identify with her all too well. Now that I think of it, that may be kind of a pattern with me and the girl characters who stick out to me: I see a lot of myself in them, and that’s not necessarily a good thing, but it is what it is, and it can be darn entertaining.
Oh, wow, would you look at the word-count! Paragraphs fly when you’re having fun, which I certainly have been. Thanks for dialoguing with me, Mara; I’ve enjoyed getting to know you!
BOOK MARAUDER: We can totally be British teenagers together, I loved Georgia when I was sixteen. I read the books when I was doing work placement in London and damn, I really enjoyed her. I also love heroines that are more like me, no surprises here. Because with all the Katnisses of the world, I’m like “ahahaha I would’ve died in four seconds” and probably would’ve died from anxiety attacks before anything had happened. Which isn’t all that funny, but oh well. Let’s be daft British teenagers together, please. I will be your wing woman! (Who doesn’t obsess over the guys more though? I wonder how it is with male readers, if they like the heroines better or pay more attention to them in general. Hmmm. I love books that make me fall in love with the girls. Sigh. They are really rare. It always makes me do a happy dance chanting “yes, I found a gem!”)
I must say the pleasure has been all mine (this sounds naughty, am I the only one?) It’s always pretty amazing to see how easy it is to talk to fellow book lovers/writers/bloggers. I was really scared to sign up but honestly, I wish there would’ve been more time (the word count is nuts already BUT I JUST DON’T CARE). Thanks so much! I had such a great time getting to know you! (Now let me go finish The Swan Prince – I am such a creeper, yikes :D)
EVER ON WORD: Aye, books with fall-in-loveable girl are a gem. Much like finding a friend in a randomly-paired interview. ;-D This isn’t the last you’ll hear of me, gal! (And I look forward to hearing your thoughts on my “Swan Prince”! – squee!)
BOOK MARAUDER: Haha you’re going to wish you would’ve seen the last of me because your Twitter will never be safe again! Just letting you know!