Sadly, this is the last installment of Charlotte’s interview. If you’ve enjoyed reading what she has to say, why not pop over to her website to check out what she’s up to, before she gets too popular to answer your questions or hear about how much you’re enjoying her novels. If you have a niece (or nephew), daughter, sister, roommate who is craving something now that Twilight is done, I highly recommend Miss McConaghy’s writing. It might just fill the hole left by Edward and Bella. I know it’s a big hole to fill, but still…
Miss McConaghy, do you find that your young age is an advantage or a disadvantage to your ‘author’ status?
I think the thing about writing for a particular audience is… to not write for a particular audience. I don’t set out to write for teens – I just write what I love, and hope that there are people who enjoy it – of course because I’m so young my books naturally fall into the category of young adult readers. I think that a lot of literature for kids really underestimates its target audience because everyone’s so focused on writing for teens, instead of just writing an awesome story for whoever likes it. And yes, I definitely have trouble getting taken seriously in the writing world because I’m almost a teenager myself, but I don’t really mind so much. ‘Status’ isn’t something you can really hope for anyway if your passion is for writing – it’s kind of a hermit’s job – unless you’re JK of course.
Who knows what the future holds! Any authors or books in particular that influenced your writing?
I really love Isobelle Carmody, Melina Marchetta, Guy Gavriel Kay, and have recently just fallen in love with Maggie Stiefvater because of her book Shiver.
What’s the absolute best thing about being published yourself?
Seeing my books in the bookshop, or hearing from people who’ve read either of them and really enjoyed them. That just makes my day.
Best advice for budding writers?
I know its super cliched but don’t ever give up! Finish something! Even if you get to the end and don’t like it, its a really good exercise in discipline to actually finish something you’ve started. Once you’ve got a draft done, make sure its as good as it can be, and then start sending it out. Rejections are an inevitability, but you also never know who might read your stuff and love it. Don’t get disheartened. And the big rule: don’t write something just because it happens to be popular at the time. Write about what you love, and what you’re passionate about. If you stick to that rule, its the most rewarding job in the world. I plan to be doing it for the rest of my life.
So since you’re sticking with writing – what’s in the works for you in the near future?
At the moment I’m working on finishing Book 3, then I’ll get straight into Book 4. Beyond that I’ve also got a few other stand-alone novels which I’d like to publish and release – the more the better! I love working on several things at once so I can jump between them depending on my mood. And of course, the more books I release, the closer I’ll come to being able to live off them. I’m sick of my clothes shop job!
And finally, if you had wings for a day, what would you do with them?
I’d use them to seduce a really cute boy. Wings are irresistible. 😉
Haha, good to know there’s still a bit of the everyday teen in the famous author. Thanks to Charlotte – ’twas a pleasure, and a special thanks to Black Dog Books as well.