1. What is your name/pen name?
2. What do you write? Genre?
Young Adult fantasy/science-fiction.
3. Tell us about yourself?
I'm a Seattle-raised, online-school educated, and eight-time NaNoWriMo winning author who finally got a book deal! I've been writing all my life and trying to experience as much as possible, if only to add color to my writing. I hop around the west coast a lot, but am usually in Seattle or San Jose these days, and have many hobbies from hosting murder mystery parties to fire-eating to playing piano that I am far less dedicated to than my writing. I never wanted to grow up, and I guess being an artist is the closest I can come to being a kid forever.
4. What prompted you to pitch your book in #Pit2Pub?
I'd heard Rusty Shelton (author of The Twitter Playbook) speak at the San Francisco Writer's Conference earlier that year, and took his advice about the importance of Twitter and the opportunities that arise on it.
5. Tell about your #Pit2Pub experience.
I woke up one morning and saw the hashtag trending without knowing what it was. I did some fast research and came up with a tweet: “When her little sister is kidnapped by Peter Pan, Gwen makes an awkward, teenage trek to Neverland to bring her home #Pit2Pub #YA” I stayed glued to my computer, reposting every hour, and got three or four different publishers to request a partial or full manuscript. I had agents considering partial manuscripts at the time, but the small publishers moved faster. When I got the response, I was in Los Angeles with my boyfriend to see our friend Kyle perform at the Magic Castle in Hollywood. We slept in his basement that night and I woke up the following morning and saw a response from Clean Teen. I prodded the boyfriend and asked him, “hey, you want see what a rejection letter looks like?” as I opened it up. We both stared at it for a moment before he told me, “Audrey, this doesn't look like a rejection letter.”
6. Which publisher did you sign with?
Clean Teen Publishing
7. Tell us about your upcoming book.
The Neverland Wars is a modern day continuation of the Peter Pan story, in which a little girl runs away to Neverland, and her big sister, Gwen, chases after to bring her home safe, only to end up a teenager stranded in Neverland. Once there, Gwen discovers that all his treks between Neverland and reality have Peter slowly aged into adolescence as well. Furthermore, a war is brewing between Neverland and the adults who know about it's magical resources and would use them for practical, grownup things. Like solving the budget crisis. Amid this chaos, Gwen will have to pick a side in a war and world she didn't even know existed.
8. When is your book scheduled to be released?
I'm happy to say it was released on May 9th and is available at Amazon and in Barnes and Noble stores across the country!
9. What is at the top of your bucket list?
Buying a hammock. As soon as I get the first royalty check, I'm going to get one and set it up in the backyard so I have a good outdoors place to write!
10. Parting words for other authors?
When you get your manuscript finalized and start seeking publication, start a new project. You'll have to deal with a lot of waiting and rejection. Don't just sit on your hands. I wrote The Neverland Wars while querying agents for another novel. My first book didn't (and shouldn't) get published, but drafting The Neverland Wars kept my mind off that necessary failure. If you love writing, don't stop doing it just because you have a finished project!