Monday, May 20, 2013

Interview with Rachel Caine

Interview with Rachel Caine

Earlier this week I had the privilege of meeting the international bestselling author Rachel Caine at her book signing in Liverpool, England. I arrived for this event at 4pm however it did not start till 5pm and there was already a long line of highly enthusiastic fans of the Morganville book series in which , she was promoting her 14th installment. Eventually 5pm came and Rachel Caine began signing books for everyone and she was so gracious and sweet to everyone who came along , and some fans even brought all 14 of her books for her to sign and she signed every single one. When my time came to have my book signed I was with a group of sweet girls who were ecstatic as I was over the chance to meet Rachel Caine so much so that when Rachel Caine told one of the girls that she looked like one of the characters in the books, she cried with happiness, we were all given a glow in the dark "Morganville Resident" bracelet, a Morganville bag and a Morganville Resident ID which we were extremely happy about. We then waited until the last fan had their book signed to ask Rachel if I could possibly have an interview with her, and she said YES! she was so sweet answering all of the questions and didnt mind that we wanted to know about the books. It was such a great experience to meet such a down to earth and  successful author whose books so many people adore and love, and thankfully she didnt mind teenagers asking her questions about her books, so here is my interview with the author of the Morganville Series, Rachel Caine.

Q. Where did you get the inspiration for Morganville from ?
A. This is a funny story, so my publisher mentioned to me, I was writing the Weather Warden series at the time, which is an adult fantasy series, and they said "would you like to write a young adult series for us" and I thought "I don't really know how to do that" and my editor said "oh yes you do, just think of something" and I said " well what would you like to see" and she said "oh I don't know, something maybe supernatural/paranormal,I don't know, vampires or something" now this was right when Twilight  was just coming out , nobody was really aware of it yet, although I'm sure the editor was,but I said I used to write vampires, that would be fun ,and then I was driving home and I called a friend of mine and I said "I don't think I'm going to do this because I cant think of anything new to say about vampires,or new to do" and she said "I bet you can, tell me the first things that pops into your head"
So this whole series started on a bet?
Yes ,and it was dark and I said "the streetlights are really far apart" and she said "Why" and I said "because if vampires built a town streetlights would be really far apart so you would have further to run to safety" and she said "well that's interesting,I don't think I've ever seen anyone built a town around vampires before" so that's how it started.

Q.Did you base any of the characters of anyone you know?
A .I try not to base anyone exactly on a single person because it makes for very awkward Christmases ,you know there is always someone who will come up and say "I read that and I don't talk like that" or "my hair is better than that" or whatever, so I try not to do that but, what I do is take pieces of peoples characteristics  or their speech patterns or something that they've done and kind of blend it together, but I rarely lift somebody wholesale, now the historical characters I do kind of fit in and I disguise them just a little bit, just so people will have fun figuring out who's who ,like Ada for example, from the lab is Ada Lovelace , Lord Byron's daughter and one of the founders of computing and I honoured her by making her a vampire and sticking her brain in a jar. 

Q.Once you have finished this series do you think you will ever do a spin-off series?
A. You know, we've talked about it, I think I'm just going to let it alone for a little while I think, I have another book that's coming out after it that is unrelated called "Prince of Shadows"and then I'm going to be looking at what I'm going to do next , probably later in the year ,we'll see, if I do it'll be probably be some one-off books about adult characters I think.

Q.Which character of the series would you say you're most like ?
A. I'm probably most like Claire,only because when I was growing up I was an only child and I was very you know very sheltered and lived out in the middle on nowhere and I loved to read and I loved science and math although I didn't think I was very good at it, but I loved it and so had I applied myself to it I probably would have gone to school for physics and I did take a few physics classes in college.

Q. Have there been any plans for a film?
A. We've had it optioned several times by various producers and its always in conversation somewhere or other but the problem is that there are a lot of things right now that are similar too, like you get people saying "yeah but Vampire Diaries is still on TV and True Blood is still on TV and then Richelle Mead's Vampire Academy is coming out and Being Human" there's a whole range of things that it could be like so we will probably wait awhile.

Q. If it ever did get made into a film is there anyone you would want to cast, as we said Alex Pettyfer for Michael and David Tennant/ RDJ for Myrnin?
A. I dont think we can afford Robert Downey Jr.I really dont but I would be okay with David Tennant as Myrnin, he is my favourite Doctor Who. Okay true story the cover designer who designs these books she actually,we were walking around here neighborhood and she said "oh yes there's my apartment building, David Tennant lives there from time to time"

Q. Obviously because the series is long and amazing did you know from the beginning where it was going to go?
A. No, I knew were the first three books were going to go, and I had planned for six, I never in my life thought it would last past six, so I was writing book six and they came back and said "well we would really like you to do nine" and I said "well that's a problem because I have a plan for six, and it's like a big battle scene at the end" and they said "well you can do one-off books and do something different" and I said "okay I'll give it a try" so we did 7,8 and 9 and by the time I was on eight they said "lets go to twelve and then get it to fifteen"and we actually discussed going to eighteen and I said "I really don't think I can, you know let's take a breath", because I'm doing two a year, so in order for me to do anything else, I have to put it on hold so I can do something else, so that kind of why.

Q.How have you found the UK being on tour?
A. I love the UK, this is my fourth trip and I love it and I could live here ( you should) well my husband would be totally okay with that because he wants to live close to a pub and have a local, when we came last year, the rule was any signing I had he had to go to a pub before or after my signing.

Q. Have you got any tips for aspiring writers?
A. The most important thing that I can think of right off the bat is try to be patient because it is a business that happens slowly, I've been writing since I was 14 years old now Jennifer Lynn Barnes beat me by several years, she said she wrote her first novel at 6, she remembered what it was about, most first stories are always about animals for some reason. But also the other thing is to try a set a little bit of time everyday to write because if you just wait for something to strike you when you want to write it is very easy to get frustrated. If you space it out and have regular time, and you sit down and do it and what happens is ideas seem to come a lot easier because you sort of allow space for them. I know it sounds weird but it's true.

Q.Were there any hard parts to write in the series?
A.Yes it happens in every book,there is always somewhere around the middle of the book I just get this feeling that nothing is happening and I just don't know where I am going to go and I don't know how to get through it and I've become accustomed to that, and most writers feel that way at some point, it's just normal so once you know its normal  to feel that way it's much easier to work your way through it, you just say "I'm going to do five more pages today" and soon enough your in a part of the book which is easy to write.

Q.Are the people on the covers based on the characters?
A.Well on the UK covers, no I would say that they're not, I would say they are more representative of "Here's what Morganville looks like" There are some that look like the characters but on the US covers it's a little easier because they are very representational of the characters so I could tell you those, but the UK covers are more like beautiful art.

Q. Which was your favourite book to write?
A.Probably Last Breath because that one for whatever reason I just went through it in record time, it was just fast and I know every little thing that was going to happen and it all happened correctly and that never happens, so that's my favourite but probably Feast of Fools would be the other one.

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