Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!
One of the most memorable and very different novels I read in 2015 was ‘Shattered Blue’ by Lauren Bird Horowitz and I asked this delightful author if she would be willing to be my first interview for 2016 and she very kindly agreed! Here is that interview – then keep reading for information about ‘Shattered Blue’, including an amazing $400 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway!
Lauren Horowitz—or “Bird” as she is often known— is a screenwriter and novelist lucky enough to call both Los Angeles and Kauai home. Bird also counts herself lucky that writing exists as a profession—how else could she share the crazy, fantastic worlds in her head? Bird studied writing at Harvard University with novelist Jamaica Kincaid, where she won several prizes including the Edward Eager Memorial Prize for fiction. She’s a proud member of the Writers Guild of America.
Read on to hear Lauren’s responses to my interview questions!
Where did you get the inspiration for the series?
I like to say that Shattered Blue sort of burst out of me at a time I needed a little magic in my life. I was very stressed out over truly Becoming An Adult and among other things, purchasing my first ever home (complete with mortgage!), and I was writing a lot of poetry to cope with my anxiety. It made me think about how even as a teen, I used poetry to get through difficult times (some really difficult times!) and sort out my emotions. That’s when the idea of Noa came to me—a high school girl, not so different from the teenage me, who writes in secret as a way to survive and grow up. I wanted very much for her to discover the world as a place filled with as much magic and fantasy as she imagines in her poems, and so Aurora and my version of the Fae race was born!
What is your writing process?
I write Every. Single. Day. It is essential for me, because if I allow writing to become too rare or sacred, my inner perfectionist demon starts to judge every word as I write it and stops me from getting anything out! Writing has to be something totally ordinary and plentiful for me so that I can feel free to write without making it too ‘precious.’ If it’s just an ordinary thing, I can experiment and be creative and try things that may or may not work— without feeling like it’s my special writing time wasted!
I also really believe in learning how to write when you’re not actually writing. My writing is inspired mostly by things I experience in the world, not when I am sitting behind my computer screen in my cave. I like to bring a little recorder with me everywhere I go to record any wayward poems or thoughts while I am out and about. Then when I do get to the computer, I have a lot of ideas all ready to draw from! It is also EXTREMELY useful in plotting out complicated plot twists—a big staple of mine—before I actually start putting down words. And amazingly enough, I write many, many poems by voice because they just start whispering in my ear in the strangest places!
Do you write using pen and paper or on a computer?
In general I use the computer because of the ease of saving and editing, but I also use pads and paper if I am outside and don’t want to worry about glare and battery life. I am a big outside writer, and laptop batteries only last so long! My favorite place to write is right out in front of my Kauai home, my computer on a little tv table right in the sand, listening to the waves.
Who is your favourite character out of your stories and why?
Gotta be Sasha, that little monster. She is like my Id, my pure spirit and childhood soul. She loves fiercely and without limits; she rages purely and without regard; she feels everything fro her toes to the tips of her ringlets. She demands from the heart, sings her life every moment. We all have a Sasha inside of us, and we need to treasure and care for her even as we grow older and more guarded!
If you were a character in your story, which would you like to be?
I love this question. It’s so hard, but from Shattered Blue, I would pick one of the Fae because powers! I’m always torn though between Callum and Judah (so far anyway, though there are other choices I’d love to talk about once the next books in the series are released!). As people, both Callum and Judah both have flaws and struggles I completely identify with—Callum wants to do right so desperately he bends and loses himself; and Judah struggles to defy labels the world and he have come to believe— but really, it comes down to the gifts. I would LOVE to read minds like Judah and Red Fae (and plant thoughts too, though he isn’t the most skilled at that), but Blue Fae like Callum talk to atoms and can transfigure anything. If I were Callum, I could fly!!!
How and why did you choose the names for your main characters?
A central theme to Shattered Blue is the immense power of language and words—
and of words, names are the most potent of all. They shape us first, bequeathed to us by our parents like artists giving us our first form. Names can bless us with high goals and inspiring images, or shackle us with expectations, limits, and misunderstandings. Judah is the best example—can a boy named Judah, from Judas the betrayer, be anything but the villain? Who decides? Each of my character’s names has a story like that, tied intrinsically to his or her path and journey. Names, words, poems, writing—they are the most magical elements of all.
Thank you so much Elaine! I am so thrilled to have this opportunity to talk writing and Shattered Blue!
Fans of Cassandra Claire’s Mortal Instruments series and Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight saga will love this dystopian adventure!”
For Noa and Callum, being together is dangerous, even deadly. From the start, sixteen-year-old Noa senses that the mysterious transfer student to her Monterey boarding school is different. Callum unnerves and intrigues her, and even as
she struggles through family tragedy, she’s irresistibly drawn to him. Soon they are bound by his deepest secret: Callum is Fae, banished from another world after a loss hauntingly similar to her own.
But in Noa’s world, Callum needs a special human energy, Light, to survive; his body steals it through touch—or a kiss. And Callum’s not the only Fae on the hunt. When Callum is taken, Noa must decide: Will she sacrifice everything to save him? Even if it means learning their love may not be what she thought?
Links for Shattered Blue: