Author: Faith McKay
Series: (Lacuna Valley #1)
Genre: Young Adult
Published: November 2012
Ever since Samantha Winthrop's mother moved them to Lacuna Valley, supposedly in search of better weather, the list of strange questions she has no answers for has been growing out of control.
Does her little sister, Violet, have the ability to make things happen just by "praying" for them? Are Sam's dreams really predicting the future? Is she destined to marry the boy she just met, and what is the mysterious orb that he's guarding? Why does she get the impression that there are dangerous creatures watching from the woods?
While Sam should be focusing on answering those questions, there is one other that makes them seem almost irrelevant: Is her mother planning on killing her and Violet?
Q & A with Faith McKay
Q: When did you first know you wanted to write?
A: When I was three years old, maybe sooner. I didn't even know how to write letters, but I would scribble marks in lines on the page, bind them together, and hand them to people. I never really stopped doing this. Writing was always something I did.
Q: Tell us a little about your lead characters.
A: Samantha Winthrop is a sixteen year old girl with an abusive mother and an oddball little sister. She is just trying to survive until she turns eighteen years old. She loves music, antiques, and black t-shirts.
Her little sister, Violet, is nine years old. She has a pet named Penguin (it's a rat). She is adorkable and would very much like for you to play Littlest Pet Shop with her right now, please. She also happens to be able to make things happen, so you best play nice with her.
Nick is a guy with a lot on his shoulders. He also enjoys black t-shirts and music, and has a thing for sunglasses. He isn't very social, because his problems in life are a bit too heavy for other seventeen year old kids to relate to.
Q: How would you describe your writing style?
A: Honesty. I write young adult novels. I'm sure a lot of people take this to mean that I need to write simply and that I should censor myself more. From what I remember of being a teenager, and in my experiences talking with them now, they hate being talked down to and know when it's happening to them. I'm big on using content warnings on tough subjects so that everyone knows what they're reading and getting into, but I don't sugar coat anything. With teenagers in particular, honesty in writing is particularly important, I think. I rewrite scenes that don't feel honest until they ring true.
Q: Do your characters ever want to take over the story?
A: When I'm writing a first draft I let my characters do what they want. I can easily cut scenes and paste things together in revisions later on. I didn't even know who Nick was going to be when I started writing Prophecy Girl—he told me who he was as I got writing.
Q: What is your work schedule like when you're writing?
A: I write by hand most of the time. When I start the day off, I type up what I wrote the previous day. This helps me get back into the story and gets that part done. Then I usually lay down for ten minutes with my eyes closed, pull out some paper, put on my headphones, and get writing. From there, it's hard to say what will happen.
Q: What do you see as the influences on your writing?
A: My life. My feelings. The books I read, the television I watch, the music I listen to. Definitely the music I listen to. I think everything I do influences my writing, and I try to be careful about what I do with that in mind.
Q: What do you do to unwind and relax?
A: Umm, haha, people really do that? My mind seems to always be going a mile a minute. I suppose I read—though I don't know if it actually relaxes me. With a really good book, I tend to be found sitting up with one hand in my hair and actually gasping and tapping my husband on the shoulder to tell him what just happened. I get really into what I read.
Q: Do you have any hidden talents?
A: I can cook, without a recipe. I used to be really into quilling (with paper. It's a crafty thing). I think my real talent is patience. I can do a lot of things really well because I'm extremely patient. Quilling is a great example—I would take tiny strips of paper, wrap them into coils, bend them into shapes, and then put them together like puzzle pieces to create a design. I could spend ten to twenty hours on a project.
Q: What book are you reading now?
A: I'm finally reading Buffy Season 8! The graphic novels. I put it off for a long time because I wasn't sure my heart could take it :)
About the Author:
Faith McKay writes stories about characters with real world struggles in otherworldly settings. She is the author of PROPHECY GIRL, a story where characters struggle with the idea of having a destiny. In comparison, she feels really lucky that her destiny was to struggle with comma placement and be that awkward lady who points out puns at parties.
Other things to know about Faith… She wears two different colored shoes. She is a survivor of child abuse. She has lived with chronic illness for over a decade. A lot of people don't like her because she laughs too much. It's also the reason a lot of other people do like her, so go figure. She listens to more music than people are probably supposed to. She's a nomad. The word sounds really cool, so a lot of people say it, but she actually lives in an RV with her husband and their pet bunny rabbit, Dorian Gray.