“For the first time in her life, Rain has a choice to make. The thirteen-year-old slave girl lives in the country of Yoan, where slaves aren't allowed proper names, let alone anything else. After being sold by a gambler and bought by a thief, she's freed by an eccentric young noble, about whom many rumors abound. Some say his manor is haunted, his horse can fly, and that he's actually a devil. Now that she's free, Rain must decide what she will do with that new freedom. Her choices will lead her to new friends and many adventures, none of which she could have possibly expected.
Fans of Harry Potter and Howl's MovingCastle will enjoy this magical tale about choices, consequences, and what it really means to be free.”
Let’s get down to business…
What started you writing and is it something you always wanted to do?
I've wanted to write a book since I was about 12 or 13 years old, when my English class read "The Outsiders" by S.E. Hinton. When I learned that she was only 16 when she published it, I figured I'd take a stab at writing. I'm 28 now, and Seranfyll is my first fiction work that I published. But I suppose it's better late than never!
Do you write full-time or do you have another career?
I do have a day job, so writing is part-time for me. I like what I do, though it does have its own set of challenges, and I'm thankful that I've been able to work and have a steady income through these hairy economic times we've been experiencing.
Describe your typical writing day.
I don't write everyday, but when I do, it's usually rather late. Sometimes I listen to music, sometimes I don't. I usually tune things out when I write, so I don't notice much around me. Except, say, when a fire alarm goes off. But I'd prefer to notice something like that.
What inspired you to start writing?
I didn't like reading much as a kid, but I enjoyed being read to. My mom used to read to me before bed every night, and I actually made my first book with some friends in our neighborhood when I was about four. We hadn't learned how to write letters or numbers yet, so we sort of squiggled something onto some dot matrix paper we took from my father's printer, drew some illustrations, cut up a cardboard box for the cover, and bound it with clear adhesive tape. It was quite fantastic, if I do say so myself.
What projects are you working on now?
I'm working on a sequel to Seranfyll. It takes place about two years after the last events of the first book. Rain, Domrey, and Coal are all back, along with some new and colorful characters, and they go on a pretty big adventure across the sea to a place popularly known as The Untamed Continent. Naturally, there's a lot that can go wrong in a place like that.
I was hoping to have it ready to launch in time for Christmas, but it looks like it'll be about Spring of next year when that will happen. That may also give me time to get another book ready, but we'll see.
How do you publicise your work?
Not very well, lol! Or I should say, not as much as I probably should. I gave away review copies of the ebook to book bloggers and reviewers, and then I did several giveaways when the paperbacks became available. I've hung out on Goodreads and Twitter a lot, but I've sort of slowed a bit on those since I'm trying to concentrate on writing the next book. And, of course, I do guest posts and interviews with lovely people like you!
Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
I'm still pretty new at this, so I'm not sure I have much to offer. But something that C.S. Lewis wrote once has stuck with me, and that's, "The proper rewards are not simply tacked on to the activity for which they are given, but are the activity itself in consummation.” I personally like to write because I like to tell stories. Sure, I'd like to be compensated for my efforts and I'd love to do this full-time, but that's not the primary reason I do this. If I personally don't feel rewarded in simply doing the craft, regardless if I'm being paid, then I would want to rethink my intentions and maybe find something else that does make me feel that way.
Other than your own, what’s your favourite work of fiction?
Oh, there are plenty of books that I prefer to read over my own (and I do like Seranfyll very much :]). Of them, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis is my favorite. It's such a charming story written simply by a brilliant man.
Which author had the greatest influence on you as a child?
I was really into the original Nancy Drew mysteries when I was younger. I know that Carolyn Keene wasn't a real person and that several ghostwriters wrote those books under that pen name. But those were the first books that I wanted to read on my own and that weren't for school. I also read a lot of comic strip compilation books, and my favorites were Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson and Garfield by Jim Davis.
Finally, and most importantly, you’ve lost your wallet, who do you enlist to help you find it, Poirot or Miss Marple?
Please don't flog me, but I have to admit that I've not read any of Agatha Christie's novels! I'm sure either of them would do the job perfectly, but Nancy Drew might do pretty well, too. Of course, I still wish she would get a boyfriend who had a better name. (Eternal apologies to anyone out there with the name Ned Nickerson. I truly am sorry for you on so many levels.)
Christina has a brilliant blog at: http://christinadaley.blogspot.com/ and can be found on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/#!/CDaleyAuthor
Seranfyll is available on Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/60160