And so, here's Kathleen. :) (And yes, I promise that Kathleen wrote this. Go ask her if you don't believe me.)
I wish I could tell you that I’ve always wanted to write about werewolves. Or maybe about a crazy summer spent watching wolf packs in some deep, dark, nature preserve. But my earliest short stories were all vampires draped in velvet, and the closest I’ve come to seeing a real wolf is spotting the occasional coyote.
So why did I choose werewolves? It was entirely the fault of the characters. When I decided I wanted to try and write a book, I had two possible concepts—both based on a handful of characters and ideas that I’d had several years before. Of the two, I felt a stronger connection to the characters in what would end up becoming Hemlock.
I didn’t know anything about trends, and I was just starting to venture into reading YA. But people always tell you to write what you love, and I loved Mac, Jason, and Kyle.
I loved them enough to build a world around them, to go without sleep, and to use every ounce of my vacation time to write. Coworkers went to Mexico and Las Vegas; I went to Starbucks and boarded the imagination train. Friends would call, and I’d say things like, “Can’t go out. Mac’s stuck down a well and a werewolf has gone to fetch help.”
Even my family (who have had decades of my single-minded, obsessive ways) worried that I was spending a little too much time thinking about how science would try to rationalize the existence of werewolves and whether or not thirty days was a reasonable incubation period for a virus that left you howling at the moon.
But I told myself that every sleepless night and vacation spent hunched over my laptop would be worth it if I could just reach “THE END” and find someone who loved the characters as much as I did. Luckily, I found a few someones (including my agent, editor, and publisher *phew*).
I don’t feel like I consciously picked werewolves. I picked Mac, Jason, and Kyle. Getting to write bone-crunching transformation scenes and falling in love with reading and writing YA were awesome bonuses.
Kathleen spent most of her teen years writing short stories. She put her writing dreams on hold while attending college but rediscovered them when office life started leaving her with an allergy to cubicles.
Hemlock, her first novel, will be released on May 8th by Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollinsGoodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/