Glitter girls, you have pressing questions for your favorite authors and we have their answers. Welcome to our weekly segment, Author Crush Fridays.
We love asking questions and we love the answers from some of our favorite authors. Today we’re talking to Kendare Blake, the NY Times Bestselling author of the YA fantasy, Three Dark Crowns (September 20, 2016; HarperTeen). We can’t wait for the second installment, One Dark Throne, which releases on September 19, 2017. Thank you for talking to us today, Kendare! We’re honored!
GLITTER: How much of Three Dark Crowns based on any fairy-tale or folklore? Where did the idea of Three Dark Crowns come from?
KENDARE: The island itself is partially inspired by the mythical island of Avalon, hidden in the mists, a haven for Goddess-worship. But I didn’t work off of any fairy-tale about murderous triplets. That part actually came from a swarm of bees. I was at a book event and there was a bee ball in a tree near the hot-dog truck (literally a ball made out of hundreds and hundreds of bees). We were afraid we’d be stung, but a beekeeper who magically happened to be at the event that day said they were just swarming around their queen, who was in the middle of the ball. Naturally, I was fascinated, and learned that before a queen bee leaves her hive she will lay four or five queen eggs, and these new queen daughters will hatch out, murder each other, and the one who lives gets to take over the old hive. How harsh is that? So I had to do it to people.
GLITTER: Describe Three Dark Crowns in 160 characters or less.
KENDARE: I read a review today that said it was like “the Hunger Games but at a family reunion.” Ha!
GLITTER: Tell us 5 random facts about yourself.
– I just started drinking coffee last year. I’m still not that into it.
– I have a tendency to walk through (or fall through) goose poop. I’m like a goose poop dowsing rod. Once I even rolled through it on an obstacle course.
– I have a horse named Lassie who is super old. She is basically my daughter as I’ve had her since she was born, and she looks like me.
– Frequently my dreams feature random celebrity cameos. And by random I mean celebs I’m not even really a fan of. Last night I dreamed I had to flee the advances of Aaron Eckhart, only to later have to flee the much more disturbing advances of Nicolas Cage.
-Sometimes I worry that food is too much of a factor in my life. That I plan vacations around what good stuff there is to eat. But then I realize that’s awesome, and go back to googling “Best buffets in Seattle”.
GLITTER: Tell us about your journey to becoming a writer.
KENDARE: My journey to writing feels pretty typical. I’ve always loved to read, and eventually that turned into a desire to write. I wrote for years, novels, short stories, just experimenting and improving bit by bit. I moved to London to study it for a year (but mostly to live in London, hell yeah). And then when I got back, I wrote more novels, and started contacting agents with the serious hope of being published, and then I got lucky, and luckier, and here I am.
GLITTER: In the Three Dark Crowns, what was your favorite chapter/scene to write and why?
KENDARE: I love to write about food. And in Three Dark Crowns, there is a faction of magical people called the poisoners, who love to eat nearly as much as I do, exceept they only like to eat poisoned food. Delicious, gourmet food, but tainted with poison. Cheese souffle prepared with wild, poison mushrooms. Roasted hens stuffed with hemlock and glazed with belladonna berries. That sort of thing. So writing their poison feasts was a lot of fun.
GLITTER: Which of your books would you love to see on the big screen and why?
KENDARE: Well, my horror novel, Anna Dressed in Blood, is in development with Stephenie Meyer’s production company. Cameron Monaghan and Maddie Hasson have been cast in the leads, and I would love to see that happen. The script is scary, and funny, and Cameron and Maddie have wonderful chemistry. But hey, I’m not picky. To see anything I wrote on the big or small screen would be fantastic. To think that something I wrote inspired other people so much that they wanted to turn it into something else, in another medium? What’s better than that?
GLITTER: Do you have any crazy writing rituals?
KENDARE: Nothing crazy. But I do often wind up writing rather uncomfortably, with a cat or two on my lap and two dogs under my desk and chair.
GLITTER: What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author? What has been the best compliment?
KENDARE: All criticism has about the same bite, so I can’t identify the toughest. I listen, I explode internally, and then I get over it. A big part of writing is learning which criticism to take and which to leave. You’ll never please everyone.
As for the best compliment, I guess…I love seeing fan art. Or cosplay. Once I showed up to an event and a librarian was dressed as Anna Korlov from Anna Dressed in Blood, and that was wonderful. When readers love the world so much, when they love the characters THAT much…that’s the best compliment.
GLITTER: What are you working on now?
KENDARE: Right now I’m finishing up Three Dark Crowns 2, aka, One Dark Throne, which should be out in September 2017!
Kendare Blake is the New York Times bestselling author of Three Dark Crowns. She is also the author of several novels and short stories, including Anna Dressed in Blood (NPR Top 5, Kirkus Top 10), the Goddess War series and more. She currently lives in Washington with her husband and their many pets. Her next novel, One Dark Throne, hits shelves this fall.
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