Sticking with the MeeGenius new author theme, I've asked Jennifer Young to answer some questions about her adorable story, Poison Apple Pie. (Which is currently a MeeGenius bestseller. Congrats, Jennifer!) You may recognize Jennifer from my blog, as she's been a follower and a reliable commenter for awhile now. I really appreciate that she's taken the time to actively follow my blog so I'm more than happy for this opportunity to introduce you to her. (And she has a fun blog too.)So, here we go!
|Author Jennifer Young|
The Restless Writer (RW): Poison Apple Pie draws on popular fairy tale elements to create this new tale. What is your favorite fairy tale?
Jennifer Young (JY): Cinderella hands down. It has every element I love about classic fairy tales; magic, a moral, some justice, and a very happy ending. I had some funny memories as a kid with my sister. We would act out Cinderella at times. For some reason, I always played one of the ugly stepsisters. We had my little brother participate too, poor kid.
RW: Poison Apple Pie is a fantastic title. Did it come to you before or after you wrote the story?
JY: Thanks Sarah, I’m so glad you think so. I thought of the title during the writing process. I had it as my #2 pick. I almost went with Winka the Witch instead. I took my husband’s advice and changed it.
RW: How long have you been writing picture books?
JY: I started writing for children back in 2008. I had been a stay at home mother for a little more than a year. My five year old daughter was one at the time and I was very much inspired to try out this new writing adventure.
RW: What are some of your favorite picture books?
JY: When I was a kid I loved (and still do):MISS NELSON IS MISSING! By Allard, Harry and James Marshall (I loved the twist ending) Tikki Tikki Tembo by Arlene Mosel (Tikki Tikki Tembo’s name in itself is like a song) How the Grinch Stole Christmasby Dr. Seuss (Who doesn’t love this one, right?!)
As an adult I absolutely fell in love with: All the Mercer Mayer books, Click Clack Moo: Cows That Type by Cronin, Doreen (This is one funny book!) Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs by Judi Barrett (Love the storyline, and the silliness of pictures- this is probably is my #1) No, David! by David Shannon (His illustrations are outlandishly fantastic) The Polar Express byVan Allsburg, Chris (I can’t believe I didn’t find this one sooner. It captures the magic of Christmas)
RW: What excited you most about the whole MeeGenius contest process?
JY: The most exciting part was seeing my story illustrated by the very talented Lara Apponyi and getting an email from the MeeGenius Team notifying me that Poison Apple Pie made the finalist round. I opened the email at 9 o’clock at night when everyone was asleep and all I wanted to do was jump around and tell the world. Of course we couldn’t announce it on Facebook or Twitter for about a month. Also, a definite highlight during the process was having the continual support from my family, friends and the community.
RW: Are you currently working on any other writing projects or just enjoying the success of Poison Apple Pie for a bit?
JY: I have a few things going on. Since the beginning of 2012 I joined a fabulous writing challenge where I have to write one picture book draft a month for a year. The challenge is called 12 x 12 in 2012 and it’s hosted by Julie Hedlund on her blog Write Up My Life. I joined a poetry challenge for the entire month of April at Rena Traxel’s blog. I also have a couple of picture books going out next month to querying agents. Lastly, I’m waiting to hear back about future edits on a picture book that is currently under contract with Willow Moon Publishing.
RW: Fairy tales seem to be rising in popularity, at least as far as Hollywood is concerned. Are you planning to see Mirror Mirror?
JY: That one looks great! Julia Roberts is great in everything she's in. Although, I'll skip the theaters and see it when it comes out on tv. I do have a soft spot for fairy tale movies like Enchanted, Happily Ever After, and I’ve even enjoyed a few episodes of the tv series, Once Upon a Time.
RW: What is the best book you've read, so far, this year?
JY: Lately, I’ve been reading mostly kidlit books. I’ll have to go with My Monster Mama Loves Me So by Laura Leuck. I would LOVE to create a book just like this one day. As for adult lit I really enjoyed Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert.
RW: Was there something specific that inspired you to write this story or just one of those moments of pure inspiration?JY: The story started off as a different type of fractured fairy tale. At first, I created a story where the main character travels into different fairy tales and partakes in each story as a new character. It was kind of like the behind the scenes of a fairy tale. From there, I created the character Winka the witch and in some way it developed into Poison Apple Pie.
Thank you so much, Jennifer, and best of luck with your books!