Author Interview: Melissa PearlPosted in author, Goodreads, guest, interview, promotion
About the Author:
Melissa Pearl was born in Auckland, New Zealand, but has spent much of her life aboard, living in countries such as Jordan, Cyprus, and Pakistan...not to mention a nine month road trip around North America with her husband. "Best. Year. Ever!!" She now lives in China with her husband and two sons. She is a trained elementary teacher, but writing is her passion. Since becoming a full time mother she has had the opportunity to pursue this dream and her debut novel hit the internet in November 2011. Since then, she has continued to produce a steady stream of books. Recently, she signed with Evatopia Press and her first Evatopia book came out in February 2014 - True Colors, The Masks Series #1. She is very excited to be trying out new things this year while continuing to publish under her own name as well. She has six books planned for 2014 and is excited about writing each and every one of them.
"I am passionate about writing. It stirs a fire in my soul that I never knew I had. I want to be the best writer I can possibly be and transport my readers into another world where they can laugh, cry, and fall in love."
What made you want to become a writer?
I’ve always been interested in writing, but never thought it was something that I could do for me. Becoming a published author just seemed too far-fetched :) But one day my friend and I were chatting about story ideas and she told me to write one for her so she could read it. I did…and I fell in love :)
Where do you get your inspirations from?
Everywhere - songs, movies, books, what-if questions, people watching. I just get ideas from all over the place. My stories usually start with one little scene in my head…a short scenario…and things grow from there.
Other than writing books, what else do you do in your free time?
Play with my kids - they’re really into 'pretend' games. I’ve been everything from a shop keeper to a customs officer at the airport :) I love watching movies with my hubby too or going out for dinner. When I’m on my own, I LOVE to sit at the piano to play and sing or just lie on my bed reading a book.
If you could work with another author, who would it be?
Wow - tough question, I have so many favorites!!! Probably someone like Anna Cruise or Simone Elkeles.
What are major themes of your work?
I like to write stories from the heart…so anything with a decent character journey suits me. I write in a variety of genres (suspense, contemporary, paranormal, fantasy), but there is always strong character growth in my stories. I like books that focus on things like redemption, forgiveness, overcoming self-doubts, following dreams, figuring out what you really want out of life, fighting for the things that are important.
What do you think people look for in a book?
I think everyone looks for something a little bit different. I personally look for romance, character growth and then I also love stories with a lot of tension or danger. Combine all those elements and I’m a very happy reader :D
Are there any recent works you admire?
SO many!! But if I have to choose, just off the top of my head… The Mark of the Lion Series by Francine Rivers would be right up there for me. I’ve read it so many times now. I also just finished Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Powell - wow that was one of the best examples of “show don’t tell” that I’ve ever read. I was very impressed. Also - The Help by Kathryn Stockett is a beautifully written and superbly powerful book.
Questions About the Book (I Know Lucy):
Which character in the book do you think you can relate to the most?
Hmmm - probably Zach actually. He’s a quiet, observant character. The amount of times at high school, I’d just sit back and watch the student body move around me. I often watch people and wonder what their stories are :) There’s always a backstory and I think knowing what people have gone through helps us to understand them better. Like Zach, I’m curious and like to figure out what makes people tick and explain why they act the way they do.
How did you come up with the character's names?
Hmmmm - Lucy was always a given for me, because the title of the book I Know Lucy came to me before I even started writing it. For Lucy’s various identities in the book, I chose names that could be unisex, because I felt like that is something she would do. Two of the characters - Elliot and Alex are named after my nephews :) Jaeda is a name I may have chosen if I’d ever had a girl, so it was fun to be able to use it in a series :) As for Zach, I don’t know where it came from, he was just always Zach :)
What gave you the inspiration to write this book?
The concept for this book first came to me when I was reading another book called Hunting Lila by Sarah Alderson. One of the characters in the book, the love interest, was such a cool guy. He was set on protecting the girl he cared for…protecting her from all the people chasing her. I liked the idea of a guy who would do that for a girl. I liked the idea of a girl on the run and meeting a guy she couldn’t run away from. The story grew from there and if I’m honest, I Know Lucy and Set Me Free are my two favorite books out of everything I’ve written so far. I love the characters and I adore the idea of love stopping us in our tracks and giving us the courage to stop running and fight back.
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