There was a contest at the beginning of the month were you all were asked if you could ask Carolyn a question, what would it be? Well, I did it for a reason. Here is your interview of Carolyn! ;)
Dwayne: Justine seems like a very unique character. Who/what inspired this character?
Carolyn: As a reader, I’ve just always related more to underdogs and vulnerable characters, so I really wanted to create a heroine like that. You know how some scenes stay with you? I remember a scene in Die Hard where Bruce Willis was crying, because he was walking over shattered glass with bare feet, but he still had to be this hero. Moments like that in books and movies, where strength is mixed with vulnerability, inspired Justine.
Lillie (AliseOnLife): If I could, I'd actually like to ask Carolyn Crane how hard it is, during the writing process, to balance having a strong female character, with a woman vulnerable enough to turn to the male MC for help?
Carolyn: Ooh, what a great question! I don’t like any character who is an island and never needs anybody, whether male or female. I think it’s a point of strength to be confident enough to ask for help when you need it, so that’s something I try to keep in mind. I think as long as a character is pushing beyond her comfort zone, that is the most important kind of strength. My character is struggling to overcome her fear in these three books, and that’s the most critical struggle, and as long as she’s brave in other ways like that, I think it’s normal and even heroic to accept help.
Bethany C: I would ask the author if the model on the cover resembles how she pictured Justine in her mind?
Carolyn: Sort of! The Bantam art department asked me what Justine looked like, and I went on the internet and found photos of women who I thought resembled her. The gal on the cover is a bit more sexy than what I had in mind, but I’m good with that cover overall. (Though, when I was writing the book, I was hoping she could be wearing a bloody nurse’s dress on the cover. LOL. It’s probably good I didn’t get that wish.)
jellybelly82158: I would like to ask Carolyn if there will be more in the series.
Carolyn: Yes! This is a trilogy. Book #2 comes out in September, and #3, the grand finale, will hopefully hit in spring!
Katie A., EVA SB, JenM: I would ask Carolyn if she knew anyone afflicted with a disorder and if that was the inspiration for this book or if it came to her out of the blue and she had to do a lot of research.
Carolyn: Oh, yes. I have several acquaintances and family members who are different degrees of hypochondriac, and I went through a phase with it myself - not like Justine, but enough to get how it works, on a thought level. How a person can fool herself and scare herself.
Tore: What made her decide to write books?
Carolyn: A love of reading, combined with a penchant for daydreaming, I suppose, drew me to write. It just gives me so much pleasure to curl up with a good book. And I’ve always daydreamed scenarios and plots, so it was sort of natural to put pen to paper.
stacey: What gave you the idea mind disorders run in my family.do you know somebody that has one?
Carolyn: Well, many of my pals and family are various shades of neurotic.
Though, one thing - I used to have this friend who was slowly going insane—conspiracy theories, voices, the whole deal. It was really terrible, and sad. And whenever I’d hang out with him long enough, then afterwards, I’d feel a little crazy and wired, too, as if I’d soaked up his tormented energy.
So in a that sense, I think zinging already happens on a very minor scale. You hang out with somebody who’s intensely angry or depressed—or incredibly light and happy, and it greatly affects you. Could internal darkness be weaponized? Could a person deliberately attack another person in that way? Probably not, but that was a germ of the plot, too!
Vixen Pearl: If she could write Justine as a bad guy, what kind of harm could her beloved MC get into?
Carolyn: Ooh, I love when good characters turn bad. Justine is sort of devious when she wants to be, and if I wrote her as a bad guy, I think I might make her angry that she spent so much of her life feeling like an outcast. Maybe a world domination plot! She could hook up with the Silver Widow!
Robin K: What is BBA? I suppose I would ask besides BBA what other networking events is Carolyn part of?
Carolyn: Help! Social networking has taken over my life. Especially Twitter. Also Facebook, and BBA is a group on Goodreads, which I’m on, and I really enjoy. I love making new friends and seeing what people are up to, and what they’re reading.
Sandy!: I would ask her what she does for getting inspiration?
Carolyn: I daydream about characters. Sometimes I also like to go running, and listen to loud music and clear my head and ideas pop in.
Joan: My question, was there ever a time you just wanted to give up? If so, what made you continue writing this book?
Carolyn: Oh, yes, there have been many times. Sometimes it used to seem like everybody had a book deal a year after they start to get serious about writing. That's not my story. It seems like I've been writing fiction forever, and I wrote several unpublished novels, but my books never quite fit anywhere. Then, after YET another disheartening near miss, I sat down and said to myself, Well, what the heck, if I'm never going to sell anything, I should at least have fun. That's when I thought up this plot. And actually, I entertained myself greatly while writing it, but I also worked really hard.
What made me continue is that I believed I could do it. I think it’s key to believe in yourself, and look at your failures as the foundation on which success is built, rather than proof you’re no good. I’m happy for all my failed, rejected books. I think they made me a better writer.
“Lucy & Hikari”: I'd like to ask Carolyn what are some of her favourite songs?
Carolyn: I really like the music of Blur, Aimee Mann, Cat Power, and Alice in Chains.
davidpurse: I would ask her what inspired her to write?
Carolyn: Reading really inspired me. Don’t you just enjoy being in the world of a book? Writing, for me, is a way to be deeper into that. And a love of daydreaming up scenarios and interactions.
Midnyte Reader: I would like to know why Carolyn picked hypochondria as her heroine's flaw? Is it a statement on today's society when there is so much disease and illness?
Carolyn: That’s an interesting thought. I think, with the Internet and pharmaceutical ads, it is definitely easier to get obsessed with health and sickness. In a way, horrible diseases are like the ultimate monster in the closet!
heatwave16: Is Carolyn a hypochondriac or part hypochondriac??? I know my honey has it a bit, even though she won't admit it.
Carolyn: I definitely went through a phase of it! And I know quite a few people who are really serious hypochondriacs. Though, from reader responses, it seems like everybody has a tiny bit of it in them. Good luck to you and your honey!
Hey! Thanks for all these interesting questions! It has been so fun to have Mind Games in BBA! You guys rock!
I covered some questions in my interview with Carolyn HERE. I didn't want you to think yours were left out. They were just covered already. :) Kailia Sage, Meredith, Aik, Pamk
Now do you all want a chance to win Mind Games again? What about a pre-order of Double Cross? It’s your choice!
Leave a meaningful comment below w/ your email address. If you’re not comfortable leaving your email address, you can email it to me, but you must leave a comment! This is international as long as the Book Depository can ship to you! Contest will end August 6th, at 11:59 PM CST. You don’t have to be a follower, but I do appreciate it. :D