~ Q & A ~1. The Trolls in your story are very different from how we normally see them in popular culture. What inspired the changes you made to them and were you concerned with trying to make sense of their usual mythology in the world of your book?
If you actually look at Scandinavian and Norse mythology, there are quite a large number of variations on the myth of the troll. While they are sometimes represented as massive and stupid, that is not always the case. They are often human-sized with a human appearance. What they are very nearly always represented as possessing is a nefarious purpose, which is one of the reasons why I ended up using them as my monsters under the mountain.
I wasn’t too concerned about forcing my trolls to fit certain expectations, because I wanted them to be unique.
(Charlene: I definitely need to read more Scandinavian and Norse mythology!)
2. I am a *tiny* bit obsessed with the wonderful romance in Stolen Songbird, and I was wondering if there were any specific inspirations for how Cecile and Tristan's relationship develops? Who are your favorite romantic couples?
They were a little bit inspired by Will and Tessa in The Infernal Devices, but as you know, Stolen Songbird doesn’t have a love triangle, so there is no Jem ready to leap out in the sequel.
I really like Cole and Isabel, and I’m looking forward to reading Sinner when it comes out.
(Charlene: Oh yes, I keep forgetting that I need to check out The Infernal Devices - I've heard so many glowing comments on the romance!)
3. Cecile is a promising opera singer. Are you a fan of opera or musicals? Do you sing?
I adore the opera, and I also enjoy musicals. I have a terrible singing voice. Terrible.
4. If you could trade places with any character in your story who would it be and why?
That’s a tough question given that no one in Trollus has it easy. I’d probably choose Anaïs, because she’s powerful, smart, badass, and has excellent taste in dresses.
5. I adore the book cover, and I was curious how much input you had on the design and if you had any ideas for the cover that did not make it to the final design?
My editor ran the idea they had for the cover by me, which was basically Cecile in a green dress holding the rose Tristan gives her. I was supportive of going that direction, so they put together a written description with inspiration images for the artist, and I was asked to approve it before they sent it off. Steve Stone then worked his magic and produced eight variations of the cover (all quite similar), and they asked me which one I liked best. I asked for a few small changes, and they were more than willing to make them. I got a lot more input than most authors do, which was awesome. I love my cover. I can’t wait to see what they come up with for the sequel.
6. I really love the secondary characters in Stolen Songbird! I'm sure you can't reveal too much, but can we expect some great new supporting characters in the sequel?
There are a few characters who only got a bit of stage time in Stolen Songbird who have much more important roles in the sequel. There are a few new characters. And of course, there are the characters everyone already knows and loves (or hates!).
7. Do you have a ritual before you start writing to get you into the right mindset?
I circle the Internet a few times. Check all my social media. Procrastinate a bit. Then I start writing.
8. Last question - which Hogwarts house do you belong to?
(Charlene: Me too!! :D)
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