Tell us about your publishing journey…
I started writing books about a decade ago and was fortunate to have my first two middle grade novels, The Rock of Ivanore & The Last Enchanter, published by Tanglewood Press. But I found that I loved reading young adult novels, so I decided to give that a try. The result was, CONTACT, a sci-fi thriller about a girl who can upload people’s psyches with a single touch, an ability that drives her to attempted suicide. The book was originally published by Hallowed Ink Press, but HIP went out of business a year later. I am very lucky that Evernight Teen liked the book and re-published it. They even made it an Editor’s Pick.
What do you love about being an author?
I love the way characters seem to take on a life of their own. When I get about half way through a project, it begins to feel like the story exists outside of me and that I’m just the one writing it all down. It’s the moment when a story and the characters break free, become independent of the creator. It’s kind of magical.
If you could have dinner with any literary character, who would it be and what would you eat?
Jo March from Little Women. When I was a young girl, I wanted to be Jo March. Jo is strong-willed, feisty, and a writer. I’d love to pick her brain and just spend a little creative face-to-face time with her. I would probably want to introduce her to sushi, since I don’t think would have ever tried that in the 19th century.
If your book was to be made into a movie, who would you cast as the leads?
That’s tough. I’m a bit older than my readers, and many of the actors I love are closer to my age and would naturally be too old for CONTACT. But maybe Daisy Ridley (Star Wars) or Selena Gomez (don’t laugh!) could play Mira. For her love interest, David, Diego Boneta (Pretty Little Liars) has the right look.
Vampires – do you prefer them as sexy leads or blood hungry monsters?
I recently read Bram Stoker’s Dracula for the first time, and I was stunned how scary it was. I imagine it was terrifying back in 1897 when it was first published. The best vampires remain true to Stoker’s original vision–suave, sophisticated, but also cruel and violent. They are the epitome of irresistible evil.
If you had a time machine, which era would you go back to and why?
There isn’t a time in history I wouldn’t want to see. I’m kind of an ancient history buff. But I suppose if I chose one era, I’d love to travel back 2100 years to the time of Jesus Christ, see some of those miracles first hand. Then again, I’m not so sure I’d want to face the Romans or live in a time prior to ibuprophen or antibiotics.
What life advice do you wish you’d been given sooner?
To write books. To follow my dream. I wanted to become a novelist since I was a kid, but it took until I was forty-two before I actually did it. I wish I’d started pursuing my dream sooner.
If you were a supernatural creature, what would you be and why?
I’m really not into supernatural creatures. Ask me what super hero I’d want to be, and I’d say Kitty Pryde from the X-Men. I love how she can phase through walls. I’m a total Marvel Universe geek.
Where do you write best?
Anywhere where I am alone, which is no where. I have five children and a house full of people. So I quite literally never get any peace and quiet time, which makes it very difficult to write. I’ve tried going to the library, but you’d be surprised how noisy libraries can be. Normally, I write at my desk in my home office. At least I can close the door.
What was the last book you read, and what were your thoughts on it?
The Dogs by Allan Stratton. It’s a middle grade horror novel. It had just enough creep factor and mystery to give a kid chills. Perfect book for reluctant readers. I’m always on the look out for good horror novels for all ages. For adults, I recently read The Troop by Nick Cutter about these boy scouts on a island who get infected with genetically modified worms that make them really, really hungry. Some pretty disgusting things happen. Loved it.
If you didn’t write in your genre, which other would you prefer and why?
My secret dream is to be a horror novelist. CONTACT has some elements of horror, and I just finished writing a horror/sci-fi manuscript set on a distant planet with an invisible creature that rips the characters to shreds. Hoping to get that published in the near future.
Where can fans find you online?
The best way to keep up with me is via my e-newsletter. People can subscribe for free on my website:http://www.laurisawhitereyes.com/ or blog http://laurisareyes.blogspot.com./ I’m also on Facebook and Twitter.
Thanks for having me, Nicky!