She's awesome! And I get to interview her today. Yeah, I know...I'm super lucky! But you get to read the interview so it's your lucky day too.
On Cortney's equally awesome blog, she says, "I squeeze out my stories in between chasing after two adorable boys, performing my favorite juggling act of being both mother and writer. I currently have an agent considering one of my novels. Join me on the road to publication!"
Mother and writer. Super cool. And so close to being agented! Which means, she knows her stuff. So let's get to the interview.
Cortney, how long have you been writing?
Since I can remember, actually. When I was little I would draw a picture, scribble underneath it and walk around telling my story to anyone who would listen. In grade school I wrote a picture book series called Why, Mr. Rabbit? about a rabbit with super powers. As I got older I would hide away in my mom's bedroom on our old-school computer and write stories about girls who were everything I wanted to be. Once, for Halloween, I put on a sweater vest, tucked a pencil behind my ear and counted it as my costume (since we all know writers wear sweater vests, right? lol). But I've been writing "seriously" for about four years now.
(I love the "old-school computer." We all know what you're talking about there. Well, most of us do :) I just gave away my only sweater vest. I guess I need to get another one!)
What made you want to write?
The big thing for me was Twilight. I know, I know--I got sucked in along with everyone else! But I found out Stephenie Meyer was LDS (Mormon) and it was encouraging because I am too, and I was like, if she can do it, so can I. And shortly after I started scribbling my first novel I heard that quote by Toni Morrison: "If there's a book you really want to read but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it." So I did. :D That book hasn't seen the light of day for about a year now, but it was essential in helping me figure out that there's more to writing than just...well, writing!
(Yay for the experimental first book. Everyone has one! And Twilight got me too. No shame! Everyone also needs a book to get them hooked.)
If you could meet any author, dead or alive, who would you choose?
My first thought was Charlotte Bronte because Jane Eyre is my favorite favorite favorite book. But then I changed my mind. I think I'd rather meet J.K. Rowling. What a mastermind. I'd want to know how (or if) she mapped everything out, how she kept track of details, where her ideas came from, etc. I'm sure it's all in an interview somewhere, but it would be way cooler to hear it in a conversation with her. That way I could ask whatever questions I wanted.
(And then I could have a conversation with you to find out the juicy details. She is a mastermind.)
Do you have any pet peeves while writing?
Not really. I know, lame-o answer. Interruptions are hard to take, I guess, just because I'm in the moment, caught in the details of my imaginary world. But it's so laughable, because with two small, beautiful boys, interruptions are inevitable! I usually write while the baby naps and make sure my four year old has things to stay occupied, but I always try to make sure he knows he's more important. I try to stop whenever he needs me (try being the operative word, ha ha j/k).
(I love the way you talk about your kids. Writing's awesome, but kids are priceless!)
If you could sit down and reread any book, which would it be?
Right now it would be Anna and the French Kiss. I loved it! And I checked it out from the library so I had to take it back, but it's definitely on my to-buy list. I heart Etienne!
Quick, you only have enough time to check a few writing blogs/websites. Which would you choose?
I'd check out my writer friend's blogs. They're definitely "in the know" and always have great posts.
Morgan's blog is fairly new, her writing is fantastic, and her posts are quirky and fun.
Right now Liz is having a spooktacular contest with agent Natalie Lakosil from Bradford Lit. You can submit a 500 word spooky story and if Natalie picks yours, you get a query critique and also critique of your first 10 pages! (I'm totally submitting, btw)
Also, I like bebopping over to Nathan Bransford's blog. He's a former agent and always has great insider advice.
(Thanks for the links! I'm excited to check them out.)
Do you prefer:
Angels or fairies? Angels all the way! Patch, if only you were real...
Vampires or Werewolves? Vamps, baby. Love em, even before Twilight came out. I'd actually written a vampire short story in high school that I always wanted to do something more with but never have.
Historical or Contemporary? This one is tough because I enjoy both. But probably contemporary, depending on the content, of course.
Series or Stand alone's? I love series as long as the story isn't dragged out just to make it into a series. If it can be told in one book, tell it in one book. And it's agony waiting for the next one to come out, especially if it's a story I'm into, but at the same time it's always nice to have more of the characters' lives that you've fallen in love with. Yay series!
And last, but not least, do you prefer fruity candy or chocolate?
Lol, I'm like those dogs on Up. I'll be talking and suddenly--chocolate! Okay, not quite that obsessed, but I love it. Hmm, time to go grab some.
Thanks so much for being on my blog today, Cortney. I had a blast learning more about you.
Be sure to stop by Cortney's blog, Cortney Pearson, for fun posts and a great writing friend!