Today I have to good fortune to welcome Cindy Young-Turner to my blog! I had the opportunity to review her new book, Thief of Hope from Crescent Moon Press... so good!! I hope you have a chance to pick it up!
Why don't you start by telling my readers a little bit about yourself?
I’m a technical editor by day, fantasy writer by night. I’ve been an editor for a while now, but my favorite job was working as a VISTA volunteer at an adult literacy program in inner-city Baltimore. I really felt like I made a difference in people’s lives there.
I also love bagpipes (listening to them, not playing them).
What drew you to writing?
I’ve been writing forever. Sometime in elementary school I must have been given an assignment to write a story and that began my love of writing. I’ve always been a big reader, so the idea that I could create my own stories and characters was exciting. I used to carry around a notebook and pen and I’d write wherever and whenever I could. When I was about twelve I wrote my first novel, an epic SF novel that ripped off all my favorite movies. I still have it, carefully printed on notebook paper in a three-ring binder.
Do you write for the story burning to be told or do you write for a character that won't leave you alone?
Usually it’s a character that won’t leave me alone. Once I start paying attention, the story starts to unfold.
Are you a pantser or plotter?
Totally a pantser. I can’t outline to save my life, and I’ve tried. It would certainly make things easier sometimes. But for me part of the fun of writing is figuring out where the story is going. I honestly don’t know exactly what will happen until I write it because things often change or characters do things I don’t expect that might take the story in a different direction than I envisioned. I often know a few plot points along the way, but how I’m going to get there is never certain.
When do you like to write? Mornings, Afternoons, Middle of the Night, or somewhere in between (like when the kids sleep)?
With a nearly full-time job and a three-year-old daughter, my days are pretty full. I usually write at night, in the wee hours of the morning. Sleep, who needs sleep?
LOL.... I know what you mean.....
Do you have some favorite music that inspires your writing? A movie? What inspires you?
I like to listen to movie soundtracks. The Lord of the Rings movies, Braveheart, Last of the Mohicans, and original Star Wars trilogy are all favorites for when I write. I have really eclectic taste in music, so it also depends on the tone of the scene I’m working on. Sometimes I listen to harder music, like Metallica, Godsmack, or Cold, and sometimes it’s Irish music like the Chieftains.
I like The Killers, David Bowie, and The Beatles...
When you're not writing, do you have a favorite author or genre you enjoy?
I read all kinds of authors and genres. It’s hard to pick a favorite. I’m a big fan of Diana Gabaldon and love her Outlander series. I have a bunch of fantasy on my to be read list, like Game of Thrones and The Hunger Games. Sadly I don’t have as much time to read as I’d like, so I have to squeeze it in wherever I can.
What advice would you give to others in the journey to becoming published?
Just keep writing and don’t give up, because you will get rejected and feel discouraged. Join a critique group or find a good critique partner. I feel lucky enough to belong to two amazing critique groups (over ten years in each of them) and they have been invaluable in helping me with my writing. You really need to get honest feedback from other writers, plus have that support and encouragement.
Did you have a long line of submissions before you “got the call”?
Yup. I do have an agent and he’d been submitting my book for about two years before I received the offer from Crescent Moon Press.
Where can we find you and your books?
My website: http://www.cindyyoungturner.com
Crescent Moon Press: http://crescentmoonpress.com/books/ThiefOfHope.html
Share with us something about your current book.
Thief of Hope was recently named a EPIC ebook finalist in fantasy! I was so excited to get the message that I was a finalist. Winners will be announced in March 2012, so we’ll see what happens. Thief of Hope has an unusual heroine, Sydney, a pickpocket with authority issues who becomes involved in the fight to overthrow an oppressive regime, not to mention some dangerous magic. And there’s a bit of romance also.
What are your future plans for your series? Are you cooking up a new one?
I’m currently working on a sequel titled Thief of Destiny that continues the adventures of Sydney and Willem. The scope is much bigger in this book, and Sydney faces new challenges that make her question many of the things she believes. Fun new characters and old favorites. Plus there’s a lot more Willem in this one.
I, for one, would love more about Sydney (she's so sweet in her own way) and Willem (Willem is such a great character!)
Some fun stuff!
Coffee, Tea, or Something Harder?
All of the above! I’m a tea fanatic, though. I have drawers full of tea. Loose tea, tea bags, I love it all. I’m like a kid in a candy store when I find a tea shop, and there aren’t nearly enough of them around here.
If you were stranded on a desert island... would you hope that Johnny Depp, Hugh Jackman, or Gerard Butler was stranded with you (if hubby/boyfriend decided to stay home while you cruised, for me, not likely, lol, but I'd have a hard time choosing...)?
I think my husband would understand (right, hon?) that Johnny Depp would win, hands down. Plus if anyone could get us off a desert island it would be Captain Jack Sparrow. Riding on the back of a giant sea turtle? LOL Not that we’d want to leave…
Cake or Ice Cream (or both, what flavor)?
Chocolate peanut butter ice cream
Favorite all-time read? Movie? Favorite banned book?
There are too many to pick just one. A few on my “favorites” bookshelf are Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley, Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien, On the Road by Jack Kerouac, and a collection of stories by Edgar Allan Poe. Same with movies, but I love the original Star Wars trilogy and the Lord of the Rings trilogy. So many good banned books also. To Kill a Mockingbird is one of my all-time favorites.
To Kill a Mockingbird is one of my all time favorites as well... and Edgar Allan Poe!
Favorite paranormal creature?
I’ve always had a fondness for vampires, thanks to the vampire Lestat and The Lost Boys movie.
I LOVED Louie in Interview with a Vampire! The Lost Boys is a must watch, lol, every time it's on...
If you were going to pick a book/movie character to become...who would it be?
Eowyn from Lord of the Rings. I love a strong warrior woman.
To buy a VW van and drive cross country. I’m a hippie at heart.
Sounds like fun!
Thanks again for being here today Cindy! So much fun to learn more about the authors I love!!