Monday, August 13, 2012

Interview: Kathleen S. Allen

Hey everyone! We have Kathleen S. Allen, author of Lore of Fei, here with us today to answer a few questions! Please welcome, Kathleen. 


1) Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Sure. I am a YA author but I also write in other genres. I have been writing since I was eight years old but it might’ve been younger. I started writing poetry, then short stories, then novels.

2) What was the inspiration behind Lore of Fei for you?
I wanted to write about faeries.

3) Do you have a character from Lore of Fei that you enjoyed creating the most?
I enjoyed writing both Ariela and Rion. I found it interesting to write from a male POV, even if that male is a faerie. I also tried to make the human characters different from the faeries.

4) Ariela is such a strong character in your book, even though she is faced with some pretty impossible odds. Did you find writing her character to be difficult at all, or did that particular character just develop naturally as you were writing the book?
No, she developed on her own. I began to write the story and the characters developed from there. I usually write as I go, more of a “pantser”---writing by the seat of my pants---than a plotter but for this book I plotted it out first with a timeline and did a chapter by chapter synopsis. I didn’t write dialogue just a general sense of what I wanted to happen. For example, in chapter one I wrote: Ariela is mistaken for a human child and is kidnapped by the human warriors. How did I want the kidnapping to take place? What happens when Ariela is no longer in her homeland of Fei? This is what the rest of the chapter is about. How would she feel being out of her own land? She has never been in the company of humans, what does she think of them? And so on.

5) Is there something specific about faeries that makes you enjoy writing about them?
Their magos or magic fascinate me. I took a class at Eastern Michigan University when I was working on a Master’s in Children’s Literature called Legends, Ballads and Myths, taught by Dr. G.B. Cross (Professor Emeritus) and I learned about different types of faeires and I wanted to write about them.

6) Your website says that you write in several different genres, but that the young adult genre is your favorite. Why is that?
Well, I took a fun test called find your mental age and mine was 23 even though I am clearly not 23. LOL.

7) In your book, Lore of Fei, you use several different words that are clearly your own creations. How did you manage to come up with them?
Ah, I perused medieval dictionaries, etymology dictionaries (meanings of words), the OED (Oxford English Dictionary) and foreign languages to find similar or odd words I could use. I had fun finding the words to use. Some, of course, I made up! I put a glossary at the end of the book in order to help readers figure out what the words mean.

8) Was there anything in particular that served as your inspiration when creating the world of Fei in your book?
I wrote it two years ago during my first NaNoWriMo competition. That’s the competition where national and international writers attempt to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days during the month of November. It was my first time doing NaNo and I wrote LORE OF FEI over the course of the month. I ended the month with just over 50,000 words and the final novel is 86,000 words after editing several times. I edited over the course of several months before I submitted it to the publisher and then went through five edits with the editor. This past NaNo I wrote WAR OF FEI, the second Lore of Fei book coming out in Feb. 2013 and this coming November I plan on writing VEIL OF FEI, the third and final book in the series.

9) Speaking of other worlds, Hege, the human world in Lore of Fei, is very different from the world we live in today. It’s almost as if it was set in a different time period. Was there anything that served as a strong influence for you when creating Hege?
I had just finished writing a space opera with a planet similar to earth and I wanted Hege to be more medieval rather than more modern. I based it on medieval villages during the time when countries had small fiefdoms with warlords running their kingdoms. So, not exactly medieval but not present day either.

10) Are you working on anything new right now?
I am always working on something new! I have a YA zombie book I am querying to agents, I have a YA contemporary out to publishers, I have another YA book I have a premise for but haven’t started writing yet. I have the space opera out to possible publishers/agents. I have a murder mystery (not YA) that just got accepted to the publisher who did the first one (IF IT’S MONDAY, IT MUST BE MURDER). The new one is called IF IT’S TUESDAY, IT MUST BE TROUBLE. It’s the story of female cop turned P.I. after being shot. It’s the Mel Thompson, P.I. series.

Thank you so much for joining us today, Kathleen. Be sure to check out her book, Lore of Fei

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