Interview: Megan Paasch

For the final interview in my ‘I’m not Blogging This Week’ series, I give you Megan Paasch, who has some stuff coming out shortly, so keep your eyes out:

Who the heck are you, anyway?

Seriously, crows are awesome

Me? I’m just me. Okay, let’s see… I’m Megan Paasch, a writer of modern fantasy, working on my first and second novels. I’m also a mom to two rowdy little boys, wife to a network engineer, and a huge geek. I have a B.A. in history from the University of Washington, with a focus on the Medieval and Elizabethan periods. I have a fascination for Celtic knots, abandoned buildings (though I’m too chicken to go into any), the wilderness (except bugs. I really don’t like bugs), and crows. If you don’t know how amazing crows are, I suggest you go look them up. I also draw, and knit, and sew, and stuff. And play the ukulele. And sing, but rarely in front of anyone. That probably sums me up pretty well.

You’re taking a break from writing over the summer, but when you are writing, what are you working on?

I’m not really taking a full-on break. I’m still writing occasionally when I have the opportunity. But I’m being more casual about it for the next couple of months and not stressing about trying to squeeze it in every day. At the moment, I’m revising/redrafting my first novel, “Charlotte Elemental.” It’s the first of a modern fantasy series dealing with Celtic mythology, elemental spirits, possession, and climate change. Whew, that’s a mouthful! The other book, currently sitting in its pre-revision chill-out period, is “Midas Touched,” an urban fantasy action thriller that puts a new twist on several Greek legends including, obviously, that of King Midas, as well as The Muse, and Gordian’s Knot. I pull it out now and then and add things to it when I get an idea, but it’s mostly on hold until I finish “Charlotte Elemental.”

Where can we read stuff from you right this very instant?

I don’t have much available right now, unfortunately. I have an excerpt from “Midas Touched,” that I adapted for a flash fiction submission over here (http://elisevalente.blogspot.com/2013/02/excerpt-from-midas-touched-by-megan.html) at the lovely Elise Valente’s blog. Of course, that excerpt may change a bit by the time I finish the book, but probably not too much. It’s one of my favorite scenes. Not sure what that says about me. Hmm.

I also have my very first short story about to go up on Carey Torgesen’s blog (http://seattletfiles.blogspot.com/) as a part of “The Memory Project.” It’s called “The Lake Monster,” and it will be available to read sometime towards the end of this month. I realize that doesn’t count as “right this very instant,” but it’s the closest I could get. Sorry! The short story project has already begun though, so you should go take a look.

Moreover, you can check out my own blog, “Rhymes With Smash,” over at http://meganpaasch.wordpress.com. I also randomly contribute to “Samurai Scribes:” http://samuraiscribes.wordpress.com.

What are your three favorite books?

“The Count of Monte Cristo,” by Alexandre Dumas (Bantam translation), “Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell,” by Susannah Clarke, and…this is hard. I can only pick one more? Hmm, I pick…“The Caves of Steel,” by Isaac Asimov.

Who are your three favorite authors?

Again, it’s difficult to pick just three! I think I’ll go with Alexandre Dumas, Jasper Fforde, and Terry Pratchett for the overall volume of books from them that I’ve enjoyed, but there are many more authors jostling for position as my top three – too many to list.

They really need to stop writing books about ______

I can’t answer this. I honestly don’t have anything that I’m sick of reading about yet. I hope it never happens.

Someone really needs to write a book about ______

Oh goodness, I can’t answer this either. That would be giving away all of my ideas!

What’s your drink of choice while writing?

Coffeecoffeecoffeecoffeeeeeee! (That’s wired talk for “coffee.”)

You get featured on a new show where you have an unlimited budget to design your ultimate writing space. Describe it here.

It would have to be a tree house in the middle of the forest. There would be lots of windows letting in all of the green, and lots of wood. One wall would be a huge chalkboard where I can manic-scribble plot ideas and rearrange scenes. There probably ought to be a desk, but I wouldn’t ever use it except to stack things on, preferring the overstuffed chair and footstool. Obviously there would also be a snack pantry and a coffee pot. And wifi. And books piled everywhere. Actually, forget writing space. Could that be my living space too?

What was the best piece of writing advice you ever received?

Allow your first draft to be crappy. Just get the words down and fix them later. I’d quote a source, but I think everyone says this. They say it because it’s true.

If you could go back in time and give your younger self one piece of advice, what would it be?

Don’t wait for the time to be right to do what you want to do. It will never be exactly right. Just find a way to do it.

Write about anything at all for two minutes:

Write something for two minutes, huh? Okay, but keep in mind I’m doing this on three hours of sleep because my brain and my children are co-conspiring to kill me. How about I write about sleep? I love it, but only in the morning when it’s time to get up. At night when I should be going to bed, my brain decides that it would be fun to come up with all kinds of new ideas. It wants to read everything, write everything, draw everything, watch everything…so I stay up too late. Then when morning comes – far too early because I have a toddler – my brain chides me for giving in and listening to it the night before. There goes my two minute alarm. The end.

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