-- Q&A --
1. As a fangirl, I really appreciated your positive and accurate portrayal of an ardent fan in Jessica. What inspired your exploration of fan adoration and how did you come to understand it so well?
Thank you for that! I think the story came first and from there I had to develop Jessica into a fully-fleshed out character with a back story that was going to drive the narrative forward in the direction that I wanted it to go. Somewhere along the line I must have managed to get right inside her head!
2. Marina seems like the typical popular, lush musical productions of recent times. Was there a particular musical that inspired your approach to the style or story of Marina? Are you a fan of musicals? If so, which are your favorites?
No particular musical but, as you suggest, resonant of popular shows of recent times. I like musicals in moderation, preferably with a great storyline....Les Miserables, West Side Story, Evita...[and I'm a huge Gene Kelly fan!]....but otherwise, opera.
3. In a similar vein, was there a real life actor you thought of as you wrote the character of Kennedy Orr?
No; Kennedy Orr is not based on a real person. However the idea of the boy who comes from the boondocks and makes it overnight as a musical star, via the public voting for him in a TV talent competition, is inspired by real life---this is the way Andrew Lloyd-Webber has been discovering "unknowns" for his musical productions in recent years, here in England. That the fictitious Kennedy might then have difficulties dealing with reality seemed entirely plausible and helped give the story its narrative drive.
4. The idea of fantasy role-playing plays a major part in this novel as reflected in Jessica and Kennedy's relationship and in Mike's obsession with the game Runequest. Do you feel there is merit in fantasy role-playing for adults?
That's a huge question! All one can say is that, in one form or another, it seems to be here to stay and as a theme to explore for this particular novel, at this particular time, it appealed to me a lot.
Many thanks to Alan and his marvelous editor at Straw Hat, Patricia, for their time and willingness to share this wonderful book with my blog! I hope everyone will check out this story and love it as much as I did. The book is available on Amazon.
Lastly, I just wanted to share one of my favorite moments from this book - where Jessica and Kennedy are out walking on the day they first met, and Jessica is so in awe of what is happening to her that she just can't believe she is really with the Kennedy Orr and maybe he is some crazy imposter. And Kennedy can read this distrust in her face and while sitting in a tree (as you will) he starts to sing to her. Sighhh! How about that for a fangirl dream come true! :)