Taylor Guzman is Fresh Fiction’s newest YA columnist and reviewer. She is a
precocious 9-year old and avid reader! She sat down with best-selling YA author
duo P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast during a
spring 2009 book tour stop in Dallas,
Taylor Guzman (TG): When did you decide to write a book together?
P.C. Cast (PCC): Usually after you’ve published for a while you don't
have to write a whole book to sell it to an editor, but I'd never written young
adult before so my agent [had me write] a proposal and three chapters. I was
in the very beginning of writing chapter 1, before Kristin had gone to live at
college for her first semester, and I kept calling down the hall to ask her for
word choices. After about three or four times I just thought this would be so
much easier if I could just write it and have Kristin go back through it.
[Eventually] I thought why don't we just write them together?
(TG): How do you work through the process of writing the books?
(PCC): We talk about it and I write the whole first draft and leave
questions for her in the text. After that I send it to her and she answers the
questions and goes back and fixes things and she sends it back to me and I
(TG): What's your favorite book from the House Of Night series?
Kristin Cast (KC): Chosen.
(TG): Why do you like those books?
(KC): I like Chosen because I like what
Zoey goes through and she
develops through the character and it's just my favorite because of that.
(PCC): Well...I scared myself writing it because if something is really
in it it's usually something that frightens me and I enjoyed that. I really
enjoyed bringing them (people who read the House Of Night Series) myths of the
(TG): Do you think the House Of Night series will become a TV show?
(PCC): Well, it has been optioned by Empire Studios and Michael Birenbaum
Tucker Must Die) is the producer. He came to us three years ago when
Marked was first out.
We first saw it as a TV series but now he's also
considering feature films so we don't know. He's got it out there, we really
don't have anything else to do with it.
(KC): I think it would be cooler as a movie.
(TG): If it does become a movie do you have any actors or actresses in mind
to play the different characters?
(PCC): It’s hard for me [to cast the characters] because Kristin to me is
Zoey. I based Zoey on Kristin when she was 16 and she's 22 now so she's
entirely too old to play Zoey (laughs).
(KC): I think that Vanessa Hudgens would make a good Zoey.
(TG): What inspired you to write this series?
(PCC): Our agent! Several years ago, out of Romance Writers of America
National convention, she came to me and said that she had an idea for a series
she wanted me to write. And then she said three words that would change both of
our lives forever – Vampire Finishing School. I immediately thought Young
Adult, but our agent was like “no!” She had never represented any YA authors,
[but I insisted]: “No, I want to take it to the Young Adult direction.” And
that's how the whole thing was born!
(TG): Do you use your OWN experiences [when writing your stories]?
(PCC): I’ve used things I've seen happen to my students.
(TGG): Do you see yourself in any of the characters?
(PCC): Yes! I always identify with Aphrodite very closely. (laughs)
(PCC): Zoey was based on her [Kristin]
(KC): I was forced into that position.
(TG): Who's your favorite character?
(PCC): Well, I love Zoey, of course, but the most fun character[s] to
write [are] Aphrodite and Kalona.
(KC): I don't have a favorite character well…
(PCC): Well, you like Heath a lot.
(KCC): Yeah, but not enough to be my favorite.
(PCC): Well that's true…
(TG): What were some difficulties you ran into while writing these books?
(PCC): Well, I had never written any young adult before, even though I've
written about 20 adult novels .
(KC): She tends to be really wordy.
(PCC): I like to build worlds and I like to give lots of description when
I build worlds , and that works really well in fantasy. My fantasy novels are
about twice as big as the House Of Night novels but teenagers don't [always]
like [longer novels], so I had to learn to be shorter with my words.
(TG): Are you satisfied with how this series turned out?
(TG): Who is your favorite author?
(PCC): I couldn't possibly choose one author.
(KC): I have two, Richard Preston and Tom Pickerland, since she won't
answer the question!
(PCC): Well she can! (laughs) I read everything.
(TG): Who or what inspired you [to become a writer]?
(PCC): I don't ever remember not writing. I wrote my first book in 1st
grade Blubby the Blue Whale. It hasn’t been published--yet!
(KC): I just did it to be famous in the beginning. I mean that has
changed now, but I still started off just to be famous!
(TG): What helps you relax?
(PCC): A massage! I get one once a week, and really good red wine.
photos from the HUNTED signing
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