Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Interview with Megan Whitmer, author of BETWEEN, and Giveaway!


Hi, all! Today, we have an interview with Megan Whitmer, whose YA novel, BETWEEN, releases July 29th from Spencer Hill Press. Before we get into Megan’s answers, let’s have a look at BETWEEN!
And don't forget to sign up for the Rafflecopter before you go!



Isn't that cover absolutely gorgeous?

Here's a little about what's inside:

When a supernatural freak of nature forces her family to separate, seventeen-year-old Charlie Page must turn to her frustrating (yet gorgeous) neighbor, Seth, to help reunite them. Seth whisks Charlie to Ellauria—a magical world filled with the creatures of myths and legends—and tells her of the Fellowship, the group charged with protecting mystical beings from human discovery. (All except Bigfoot: that attention whore is a total lost cause.) But when Charlie learns that she's under the Fellowship's protection herself, well, "stressed" is an understatement.

Ellauria should be the safest place for Charlie while the Fellowship works to find her family, but things in the mystical realm aren’t what they seem.

Magic is failing, creatures are dying, and the Fellowship insists Charlie holds the key to saving everyone. With her family still missing and the danger in Ellauria growing, Charlie doesn't know who she can trust. She's dealing with a power she never asked for, falling for a guy she can't have, and being forced to choose between her destiny and her heart. And if she chooses wrong, she could destroy magic forever.

Charlie may be in over her head.

Okay! I asked Megan a few questions about the characters of BETWEEN and about her writing process, and here's what she had to say:

 What was your inspiration for Ellauria?

It’s funny. When I started writing Between, I had no idea what I was writing. I just knew that there was a group called the Fellowship that hid magical creatures from humans. I thought, at first, it was more of an urban fantasy. But as I got into it, that didn't make sense. There had to be a separate realm for all these creatures. (It is AMAZING how many mythical creatures there are. Every culture all over the world is filled with urban legends and stories that have been passed down for years and years. If all those creatures were running around the mortal realm, the Fellowship’s job would be impossible.) So I added the mystical realm, and then needed a capital city—Ellauria. In Between, the mystical realm was crafted by Mother Nature, so when I created Ellauria, wanted it to be filled with mix of nature's glory and magic—buildings made out of trees, blooms that serve as portals, that kind of thing. Also, it sparkles. I like sparkles.


Did you plot or write by the seat of your pants?

Before Spencer Hill Press bought my book, I was a total pantser. Whenever I’d attempted to plot out something ahead of time, it never really worked for me. After I got the book deal, the changes my editorial team and I came up with required more thought. I’ve become a bit of a mix—I plot out the main points (just three or four things) and then pants my way from one point to the next. It still gives me room for discovery, which I love, but it helps me know where I’m going.


What is your favorite part of the writing process?

I like the moment when characters take over and I sit back and watch. I know it sounds a little insane, but it’s the only way to describe it. There are several moments in Between that literally snuck up on me—I hadn’t planned on them, and without them, it would’ve been a completely different story.


Now that you’re getting closer to the release of BETWEEN, does it feel real? Surreal?

 It feels real. For the last year and half, I kept waiting for this huge moment where everything would suddenly click into place and become real, but that never happened. It’s been a very gradual shift from dream to reality. I still have my moments where I’m amazed that this book I wrote is going to be bought and read by people I don’t know, and I think I’ll always have those moments no matter how many books I write, but I think I’m getting better at taking ownership of this whole “I’m an author” thing.


What is your favorite mythical beast in BETWEEN?

 Oh my, this is such a hard question. I included lots of creatures in Between—some well-known, like pixies and unicorns, and some that aren’t as widely recognized, like the bogmen (boogeymen, based on the urban legend of The Slender Man). On top of that, there are creatures in the book that humans have never heard of at all because the Fellowship has done such thorough job of hiding them. Out of all of these….I think my favorite mythical beast is the dragon—both because the character who’s the dragon is one of my favorites, and because I love Between’s version of the dragon’s mythology.


What was your favorite part about writing Charlie? About Seth?

I love Charlie’s sense of humor, and Seth’s need to do the right thing. Both of them are extremely stubborn, and their interactions have been really fun to write.


How big an attention whore is Big Foot?

 Ugh, so big. She has t-shirts with her image on them, for Pete’s sake. She’s a nightmare for the Fellowship.


Do you have any words for querying writers?

Don’t give up. Nothing about this is easy. Once you get past querying, you’ll go on submission. Once you get past submission, you’ll be dealing with asking for blurbs or Kirkus reviews or Goodreads ratings. There’s no magical gateway to pass through where suddenly everyone loves everything you write. You know your book is good—you wouldn’t be querying it if you didn’t. Hold on to that. Even if this book doesn’t land an agent, it doesn’t mean you should give up. If you want this, keep going until it’s yours.

Thanks, Megan! Don't forget, you can check out BETWEEN for yourself on July 29th!

Learn more about Megan Whitmer and BETWEEN here!


About Megan:

Megan Whitmer loves all things Southern, and has a soft spot for football, kissing scenes, and things that sparkle. Aside from her personal blog and weekly vlog series, she's also a contributing blogger for YA Misfits and All The Write Notes

She lives in Kentucky with her family. Also, she writes books and talks a lot. You can learn more about her at www.meganwhitmerwrites.com.

Now, who wants a chance to win some awesome books and swag? Here's what you can win:
BETWEEN Prize Pack #1
BETWEEN by Megan Whitmer ARC (signed)
SING SWEET NIGHTINGALE by Erica Cameron (signed) 
EVER by Jessa Russo (signed)
RECLAIMED by Sarah Guillory (signed)
THE ART OF FALLING ebook by Jenny Kaczorowski
OF SCARS AND STARDUST postcard with download code for eARC by Andee Hannah

BETWEEN Prize Pack #2
BETWEEN by Megan Whitmer ARC (signed)
DOORWAYS TO EXTRA TIME by Erica Cameron (signed)
DIVIDE by Jessa Russo (signed)
RECLAIMED by Sarah Guillory (signed)
Preorder of BLACKFIN SKY by Kat Ellis

BOTH prize packs will also include various swag from authors: Jessa Russo, Dahlia Adler, Tonya Kuper, Lynne Matson, and Kat Ellis



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