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Monday, June 4, 2012

Author Interview: Diana Peterfreund (For darkness Shows the Stars)

Today on the blog I have a special treat, I'm sure a lot of you have heard about the novel For Darkness Shows the Stars (6/12/12), and the cover, indicated below, is just too stunning for words. I have, stationed below, just keep reading, is an interview with the awesome Diana Peterfreund! Get ready for an amazing Q & A!

Diana Peterfreund has been a costume designer, a cover model, and a food critic. Her travels have taken her from the cloud forests of Costa Rica to the underground caverns of New Zealand (and as far as she’s concerned, she’s just getting started). Diana graduated from Yale University in 2001 with dual degrees in Literature and Geology, which her family claimed would only come in handy if she wrote books about rocks. Now, this Florida girl lives with her husband and their puppy in Washington D.C., and writes books that rock.

1. In your upcoming novel, For Darkness Shows the Stars, what happened to be the greatest challenge while writing?

DP: Since the book is inspired by Persuasion, which is one of my favorite books, the biggest challenge was trying to figure out which of the beloved parts of Jane's book to axe because it didn't fit my story. The worst was losing Mary Musgrove and her delightful hypochondria.

2. When you saw the cover to the novel what was your reaction?

DP: How much I loved the font. I'd bucked the trend with YA novels and their one-word titles, so I'd asked my publisher to really play up the ornate title with a super fun and eye-catching font, and they did. Have you seen the spine? It's one of my favorite parts.

3. Are you big on music while writing? Is it helpful or a distraction?

DP: It really depends on the book. I have playlists for a lot of my books, but for For Darkness Shows the Stars, the only thing I listened to with any regularity (and it wasn't even that much) was Adele's "Rolling in the Deep" which had a bitterness theme with a recurring sea motif, so I thought it was fitting, and Sting's "Ghost Story" which was about winter and lost love.

4. Could you have one super power, what would it be and why?

DP: I usually go with flying, but I think I'm going to pick supernatural charisma, because in the end, it might get you farther. ;-)

5. When you're not writing, what are the things that you do on your downtime?

DP: These days, it's all about my daughter (codename: Q). She's a year and a half. I also garden, with sporadic results, and go hiking with my dog. I had a lot more hobbies before I had a kid!

6. Easiest snack you can make?

DP: No-knead bread. Recipe here. It's amazing and simple and I make it at least once a week. You can eat it with butter or oil or hummus or even plain, and it makes for AMAZING grilled cheese sandwiches. Sometimes I put fresh herbs in (rosemary is a particular favorite in my house).

7. What inspires you?

DP: It depends on the book. With Rampant and Ascendant, the more I researched the history of unicorns and all the legends that had sort of gotten lost in the onslaught of "pretty white fluffy magic rainbow sparkle" unicorns, the more I was inspired. With For Darkness Shows the Stars, I was inspired by the source material, and also by the idea of letters and the idea of generational shifts. With my newest manuscript, I'm very inspired by high fashion frocks.

8. Any advice you have for aspiring authors?

DP: I always give the same advice, but no one ever listens to me. :-) Do not be in a hurry to get published. It's far, far more important to have hte absolute best book before sending it out there. First impressions mean a lot.

9. Character from any book that you think portrays your personality very well?

DP: I've always felt that Anastasia Krupnik and I were pretty sympatico.

10. Biggest pet peeve in writing?

DP: A lot is two words. That is all.

11. Song that you could listen to over and over and not get bored of anytime soon?

DP: That's pretty much how I listen to music. I listen to one or two songs over and over until I do get bored of them, and then I move on. Right now, my go-to is anything by Florence + the Machine.

12. In your opinion, the most difficult part about writing? 

DP: At the risk of sounding like a broken record, it really depends on the book. With one book, it may be the voice, in another, it's making the romance believable, in a third, it might be getting the perfect beginning.

13. How do you feel when your story comes to a close?

DP: Usually relief that I've managed to pull it off again. There's a truism among writers that writing a book doesn't teach you how to write a book, it teaches you how to write THAT book. As soon as you think you know all the tricks, you're going to bat up against something that throws you for a loop and makes you feel like a novice all over again.

Great answers or what? I happened to enjoy the answer to the pet peeve, made me laugh! Leave a comment below telling me what you though and which answer did you like the most! :D Thanks again, Diana for the interview and can't wait for your book to hit shelves! 


Jessica S. said...

Agree with you on the pet peeve answer, it cracked me up. Thanks for sharing, I can't wait for this book! :D

Giselle said...

It's true eh the trend is YA with the one word titles and same-old cover. This one definitely catches your eye it's so sparkly and pretty! Great interview! Diana sounds awesome. I like it ALOT!! Baha *runs away*

Ashley @ Book Labyrinth said...

I loveeeee this cover, and I can't wait to read the book.

Also, I think that's FABULOUS advice about writing. I definitely think it's better to focus on the book itself rather than freaking out about publishing. You're never going to write the best book if you're worried about the end process rather than the story itself.

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