Leah Clifford, author of A Touch Mortal, was recently awesome enough to grant some wishes on Twitter. Happening to be online while she was doing this, I got in with a cheeky interview request which she granted me - I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did!
When you close your eyes and imagine your readers, what do you see?
I see an awesome coffee shop, full of all of us just hanging out and talking books. To me that's the best thing in the world.
In a contest on your website last month you gave away a huge amount of stuff ranging from signed books to jewelery. Then you granted wishes on Twitter (including mine to get this interview - thanks!) You're also currently running an 'Assortment of Awesome' competition which has staggeringly good prizes. Are you the most generous person EVER, or does it just seem that way?
The giveaways and wish granting is just my way of giving back. The support I've been shown even before the book came out has been immeasurable. I've been cheered on, lifted up when I had down moments, given smiles and random tweets and facebook messages when I needed them most. I don't forget that. I try to match you guys awesome for awesome! :)
Speaking of those wishes, what was your favourite wish to grant?
Someone asked for a stuffed snake with quotes from A Touch Mortal on it. It was just so out there random and fun, and the snake in the garden of Eden feel to it had me laughing with Eden being my main character's name. HAD to grant it. Still trying to find a stuffed snake...
And, on the same theme, if you could have one wish granted by any author, what would it be?
This one stumped me. I've been staring at it and thinking for about an hour. I think if I could have one wish granted by an author it'd be to have lunch with Libba Bray. I've seen her in vlogs and interviews and she's just hysterical and I think we'd have fun!
How long did it take you to get A Touch of Mortal published? Did you ever feel it wouldn't happen?
To write the book and get an agent took me almost exactly a year. All told from touching fingers to keys to hitting shelves it was almost exactly three years. There were times I didn't even know if I'd finish the BOOK, let alone get it published. Once again, it goes back to supportive friends and people urging me on. I couldn't have done it without them!
Which other current authors do you enjoy reading?
Well, I just finished The Dark and Hollow Places by Carrie Ryan, which I've been dying for! I'm eagerly awaiting Forever by Maggie Stiefvater. There's also Invincible Summer by Hannah Moskowitz that I'm super excited to read which comes out at the end of April! Another book I read lately and loved was Slice of Cherry by Dia Reeves. I'm reading Bleeding Violet by her next.
If you could be a character in any book ever, who would you be and why?
Aw man. See, characters have stories written about them because they have issues. Major problems. And the books *I* like are the ones that are epically freaking tragic and terrible. I guess if I had to answer, I'd say Nobody Owens from Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book because it'd be nice to know the secrets of the dead while I was still alive.
You're a member of the YA Rebels. For those readers who don't know about the group, can you fill them in on the authors involved and what the group does?
The Rebels are a group of seven YA Writers--Gretchen McNeil (POSSESS 8/23/11), Hannah Moskowitz (INVINCIBLE SUMMER 4/19/11), Victoria Schwab (THE NEAR WITCH 8/2/11), Me (A TOUCH MORTAL 2/22/11), Jen Hayley (Repped by Alyssa Henkin), Scott Tracey (WITCH EYES 9/8/11) and Karsten Knight (WILDEFIRE 7/26/11) who are all at different stages in the publishing process and give a glimpse behind the curtain. We vlog every other week on everything from the writing process to taboo topics in YA (sex, drugs, language). We're also hugely open to suggestions on vlog topics, so if you have a question you want answered or a topic you want to know more about, leave us a comment on our channel!
If you can tell us without giving too much away, who's your favourite character in A Touch Mortal?
Kristen's such a scene stealer, so she always amuses me, but I think my favorite might be Jarrod. Sometimes he comes across as a jerk, but he's doing his best to hold the group together. He's got walls, but he's honest and loyal. He's complicated under the surface. There are sides of him I'm really looking forward to delving into as the trilogy moves forward.
What's next for Leah Clifford?
Right now I'm working on edits for the second book in the trilogy. (The title and cover are still under wraps!) It's a more psychological book than the first and definitely sexier. I can't wait to get it out to you guys and see what you think!
Many thanks for such a fantastic interview, Leah! All the best for the future.