Thursday, April 12, 2012

Interview and Giveaway with Melissa Lemon, Author of Cinder and Ella

This week on the Writer's Block I have Melissa Lemon, author of Cinder and Ella, a retelling of Cinderella with a supernatural twist. She's hydrophobic, addicted to chocolate (me too!) and peanut butter and her craziest dream involved a group of nuns (hmm...I'm sensing the beginning of a great joke here).

Melissa Lemon and her cat Matilda (such a cute name!)

What was your favorite book as a kid? I remember liking The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary and The Education of Little Tree by Forrest Carter.

Tell us your favorite quote. “The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company... a church... a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past... we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it.” Charles R. Swindoll

What is your favorite genre to read and what makes it so awesome? Actually, I like a wide variety of books.  I almost never read the same genre twice in a row. 

Tell us your favorite author. Which book is your total fave from that author? My favorite authors are Jane Austen and Charles Dickens.  My favorite books of theirs are Pride and Prejudice and A Tale of Two Cities.

Any pet peeves you'd be willing to share? Of course!  I hate it when people leave fly swatters on surfaces that are used for preparing food or eating.  I have issues with things like bug guts and germs.

If the Earth suddenly became uninhabitable, would you rather live under the sea or in space?   Um, definitely space, because I’m hydrophobic as well.  I actually have panic attacks when I see large bodies of water.

What was your most favorite past time as a kid? Playing softball.  If there wasn’t anybody around to play with, I’d put on my mitt and throw a ball up against the foundation of the house so it came rolling back to me; or I’d throw the ball high up in the air so it was almost out of reach behind me and I’d have to jump backward to get it.  We didn’t live close to anybody else, so I had to keep myself entertained a lot. 

If you could live in any time period other than the present, which would you choose and why? I’d love to be on Prince Edward Island with Anne Shirley.  I love the idea of living in simpler times.

Take us through a typical writing day for you. Do you have anything quirky - like you have to have a certain pen to write with, or the desk laid out in a particular manner, does it need to be raining, do you require a certain food/drink/candy to work by? Will you have an absolute meltdown if the atmosphere isn't what you like? I’m pretty easy going with no set schedule.  I just have to be ALONE, and it has to be QUIET.

What do you do when you experience that lovely problem called writer's block? One of three things:  I write through it, work on something else for a while or take a break from writing completely even for a day or two.  All of these have worked for me at one time or another, but taking a break seems to ALWAYS work.  I think that’s why we get writer’s block sometimes, because our brains need a break.  When I come back to look at something after leaving it alone for a while, I am usually able to see the problem, fix it and move on.

What is the craziest dream you've ever had? You don’t want to know, but I’ll tell you that it involved nuns, water, and adobe houses.

If you could live anywhere in the world you'd like, where would that be and why? I’d love to live in several places in Europe, including the UK, Italy, and Germany.  There is just something hopelessly romantic about those places in my eyes.  I’ve always loved the German language and customs, so that would be my first pick.   

Do you have a secret obsession you'd be willing to share? <wink, wink> Chocolate, but it’s really not a secret, especially if you see my hips.

What food/drink would absolutely devastate you if they stopped production on? Peanut butter and chocolate.

If you could step into the shoes of any fictional character for one day, who would it be and why? Did I mention I really like Anne Shirley?  I think I’d rather be Marilla or Diana so I could spend time with Anne.

Which do you prefer: ebook, hardback or paperback? I think all three have their uses.  I love hardbacks for my favorite, favorite books.  I like to get paperbacks when I’m getting books from the library or purchasing a book that maybe isn’t as much of a favorite.  E-books are great for traveling.  I think they’ll all continue to have important places in the literary world.

This or That
Underworld or Twilight
Original or Remake: Depends
Sweet or Salty
Drama or Comedy: Both
Fantasy or Romance: Both
Spring or Autumn
Michael Jackson or Whitney Houston
Walter Mathau or Jack Lemmon: Hello, we're probably related
Dirty Dancing or Footloose
American Idol or X-Factor or The Voice
Movie Theatre or Loveseat: because I can’t seem to get over the fear of contracting lice.
Tea or Coffee: I'm a water girl. Boring, I know.
Rain or Sunshine
Skiing or Surfing
Treehouse or Man Cave

Choose a challenge...if you dare!
Write a sentence using all these words: joker, fireball, backpack, sticker, hula hoop: With the joker suffering from mild distraction thanks to a fireball that came out of nowhere, I yanked the hula hoop into place, resting it on my large hips while I strapped the activation sticker around it—the backpack still tight on my back—and WHOOSH, up I went, higher and higher above the sidewalk.   Hey! That's actually pretty darn good! :)

You can pick up Cinder and Ella lots of places but here's the Amazon and Barnes and Noble links. And if you'd like, check out my 5 STAR review too, which (*coughs*) happened to make the back of the cover!

And now for the giveaway! Melissa is graciously offering a hardback of Cinder and Ella for you guys! Just fill in the rafflecopter below.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway


Rob & Emily Willardson Family said...

Not only is Melissa extremely funny and creative! She is a terrific person and mom! I am glad I got to read a little more about her!

miki said...

thanks you for this post and thanks you Melissa for your generosity

all the best

Anonymous said...

Melissa seem's like she is a ball of fun!!! And sounds like an amazing mother!!
I love the cover of this book. Thank you so much for the chance to win!

Brenda Demko said...

Awesome post! Melissa is very entertaining. Thank you for the giveaway! :)

Unknown said...

Chocolate ROCKS!!!
I had to laugh about the fly swatter...I have the same issue! drives me FLIPPING NUTS, out comes the lysol wipes!
Loved the interview :0)

VanillaOrchids said...

Great interview!
I do so love the Anne of Green Gables books so for me, I would choose to be Anne so that I could spend time with Gilbert. :) I loved their love story. LOL

Thanks for the giveaway!


coley said...

I loved this book!!! Here's my challenge sentence!

The joker took off his backpack and took out his hula hoop, with the sticker on it, and started spinning it around which shot fireballs!


ArtemisG said...

Very beautiful interview! Chocolate is my secret obsession too but I agree with you that my hips can't keep it secret.
Thank you for the giveaway,

Bridget Howard said...

So I love the name of this book it totally made me want to read it before I even read the description!!!! I love retailing of fairy tales!!!!

passant said...

thanks for this awesome giveaway!!
i have wanted to read her books for awhile but didnt have a copy, i would surly enjoy a copy of her book :D

May said...

Sounds like a terrific book...