Friday, November 09, 2007

WBBT Interview: SHANNON HALE!!!!!

Shannon Hale has been my hero for two years now I think - ever since I first came across Squeetus and Goose Girl. I will never forget the day she won the Newbery honor! I squealed when I read the post. After that I literally watched her become famous overnight. She has been one of the biggest influences and inspirations to me as an aspiring writer.

I recently reread Goose Girl and completely fell in love with it. Previously, my favorite of the author's novels was Princess Academy and then Book of a Thousand Days, but I'm going to have to say Goose Girl now takes top honors (although Book of a Thousand Days was simply wonderful, my review). I didn't want Goose Girl to end, even though I have Enna Burning and River Secrets that I can reread, too. Every time I picked it up I lost myself in it completely.

Shannon Hale makes such fabulously real heroines - not wimpy ones, but not ones that are unrealistic superheroes, either. I love Ani and Enna and Miri and Dashti SO MUCH. Her lyrical, poetic form of storytelling has such a classic, timeless feel to it.

It is with great excitement and much fangirliness that I hereby present to you my interview with Shannon Hale!

Which of your heroines were you most like as a teen? And which can you relate to the most now?

I think Miri was most consciously like myself. And she was the hardest to write. Go figure. And now…I don’t know…I don’t really think of my characters in terms of myself. I’d say at heart, I’m most like Selia. (kidding, kidding!)

What is your favorite fairytale that you haven't retold, and why?

Hm…maybe the Twelve Dancing Princesses. Or Snow White Rose Red. I like them both, but they’re not frustrating enough for me to retell, I guess. There will be others, I’m sure.

Has your acting background affected your writing at all? Is acting something you want to get back into someday?

No, I’ve lost my nerve! Unless my kids want to do shows, then I’d do it with them. Theater and writing are very compatible. Acting is all about character creation. I think it was wonderful preparation. But it takes so much time and energy, auditions are nightmares, and I just don’t have a lifestyle compatible to theater hours anymore.

How did you get your writing grant for Enna Burning?

It was through my state’s art council. Most/all states have them. Look them up online, it’s easy to enter. It paid the mortgage for one month when my husband and I were both out of work, so, very timely. That was a rough era. Sheesh.

Can you give us any hints about your next Bayern novel, Forest Born?

No! Never! Absolutely not! Except that it’s really, really bad right now. So, business as usual for a first draft. Oh, and I guess I can say that Isi, Enna, and Dasha are all significant characters.

What's your favorite thing about being a writer?

Those perfect moments when you find just the right sentence.

Shannon, thank you so much for answering my questions! Oh--and for being so amazing. :)

(She dresses up as her characters for her book release parties. How cool is that?! Answer: WAY cool.) --->

The rest of today's Winter Blog Blast Tour interviews:

Loree Griffin Burns at Chasing Ray
Lily Archer at The Ya Ya Yas
Rick Riordan at Jen Robinson's Book Page
Gabrielle Zevin at Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast
Dia Calhoun at lectitans
Jane Yolen & Adam Stemple at Shaken & Stirred
Alan Gratz at Interactive Reader
Lisa Yee at Hip Writer Mama

The WBBT ends tomorrow with:

Blake Nelson at The Ya Ya Yas


TadMack said...

Could she LOOK any more cute in that outfit?

I really admire Shannon Hale as a writer, and I have to squee a little that there will be more Bayern novels. It's amazing how they are a world that is so fun to just immerse into -- even for *ahem* nonYA readers. (Can you imagine doing a book trailer for a Hale book? Hmm...!) Great interview!

Anidori-Isilee said...

*sigh* Shannon's way too awesome.

Awesome interview, Erin. And can I repeat for the thousandth time how jealous I am? ;)

hwalk said...

Nice interview! And I love Shannon Hale--she can keep talking for ages and I would always listen.

Sherry said...


Sookie said...

GREAT interview! I can't wait for Forest Born!

Traci said...

I'm so happy for you Erin!! You got to interview YOUR HERO!!

Erin said...

tadmack - I have an outline for a B1000 trailer. I'm going back and forth on whether I'll make it...

everyone else - thank you!!

HipWriterMama said...

"Those perfect moments when you find just the right sentence."

So true...

How wonderful you had a chance to interview Shannon Hale! Congrats!

kelly lam said...

I love how she looks in her oufif shes so pretty i admire her so much in fact i wanna become a writer to my favorite subject was always writing (for real I ain't kidding u can ask my teacher)I love her books and it would be a dream come true to meet her and gues what i'm only 10 years old!!!One day i really want to meet her,but i don't supose soon because i live in new york city and i never go on vacation but some day i'll meet ust wait and see shannon!!!!

Merry said...

You're right. Shannon Hale does influence me as a writer and person both. You can tell that she obviously puts a lot of work into her novels. Whenever I get stuck in writing, I instantly refer to her writing mincemeat (at her website). My favorite book of hers in Enna Burning, followed by Princess Academy. *sighs* She is just AMAZING!

Eric and Debora said...

Shannon Hale's books are amazing. I can't get enough of them.