Interview Author Maria V. Snyder + Giveaway

Filed in Giveaways , Interview , Maria V. Snyder Posted on August 30, 2010 @ 6:00 am 71 comments
We are very happy to have Author Maria V. Snyder here today. Her new book Spy Glass was released last week and she is here today to talk about a bit about herself and her books. Be sure to stay tuned for the wonderful prize Maria offers at the end of the post. Please give her a warm welcome.


BLI: Maria can you please tell us a bit about yourself?
Maria V. Snyder: I’m a full time writer and full time mom with two kids. Before I was a writer, I worked as an environmental meteorologist because I wasn’t very good at forecasting the weather. I’ve been writing for fifteen years and SPY GLASS is my seventh published novel. I enjoy playing volleyball and I dabble with photography.
BLI: How did you get into writing?
Maria V. Snyder: Boredom. My day job was either super busy or I had nothing to do. During the slow times, I started jotting ideas down. I started with writing short stories under the naΓ―ve impression that they were easier to write, but after many rejections, I decided to try writing a novel.
BLI: Describe a typical day of writing? Are you a planner or pantser?
Maria V. Snyder: I’m a pantser πŸ™‚ After checking email and playing around on various internet sites, I re-read what I had written the night before and do a few edits. Then I continued from where I had left off. I usually write for four or five hours then go to bed. I write at night from around 10 pm to 3 or 4 am. If the writing is going good, I’ll stay up until dawn then sleep till noon.
BLI: What do you think is the difference between a reader and a real Book Lover?
Maria V. Snyder: A reader enjoys reading and will have a book by his bed to read at night if he’s not too tired. The book is probably from the library and he’ll take a book on vacation or on the plane, but that’s about it. A book lover has a to-be-read pile of books he owns leaning dangerously on the night table. He’s on Goodreads.com everyday discussing books with his friends. He has a book with him no matter where he goes and has multiple books stashed around the house. He sneaks newly purchased books into the house so his significant other doesn’t yell at him for buying more books. He frequently stays up way past his bedtime in order to finish a book.
BLI: Where do you get your names from?
Maria V. Snyder: I have a couple baby books on my shelf. When I start a writing project, I search through the books and pick out names that have a special meaning. For example, when I started STORM GLASS – I wanted powerful names and also names that had weather references in them. Kade is from Kadar and is an Arabic name that means powerful. Devlen is Irish/Gaelic and means brave/fierce. Ulrick comes from Old German and means ruler of all or wolf ruler. Raiden is the Japanese thunder god. Aydan means little fire and I liked that name for my glassmaker.
I have a whole article about naming characters on my website if anyone is interested in reading more. The link is here.
BLI: How did it feel when Fire Study hit the New York times Bestseller list?
Maria V. Snyder: It was so exciting. My editor had emailed me the news and I jumped up from my desk yelling and my kids came running to find out what was wrong. Then we all danced around the house. They really didn’t know why that particular news made me so happy, but they enjoyed mom being silly for an afternoon πŸ™‚
BLI: How much of yourself is put into your characters?
Maria V. Snyder: I put some of me in all the characters. When I write about a certain character, it’s like acting. I try to get inside their heads and figure out why they are doing what they’re doing. So it’s me acting like someone else. Someone braver, smarter, reckless or nastier, but they are always filtered through me.
BLI: Opal Cowen is a glassmaker and live in a magical world. What can you tell us about her and her world?
Maria V. Snyder: Opal Cowan has a special ability to trap magic inside glass. In this world, magic covers the world like a blanket and magicians can tap into this power, by pulling down threads of magic. Opal traps these threads and her magic glass can be used by other magicians like a battery or even like a cell phone for the magicians who can communicate to each other telepathically. Now, instead of messages taking days to arrive, they can be sent almost instantly. This is an amazing development for a world without electricity, phones and cars. Whoever controls these glass messengers, controls the power in the world. So Opal is very popular and not in a good way.
BLI: What can we expect of Spy Glass?
Maria V. Snyder: SPY GLASS picks up a few months after SEA GLASS. Opal is home recovering from a struggle where she had to sacrifice everything in order to save another. Now without her special magic, she’s feeling lost and directionless until she discovers that there may be a way for her to become powerful again. Determined to reclaim her powers, Opal will do anything to get them back. Or so she believes.
BLI: Spy Glass is the final book of in the Glass trilogy and is about to be released soon. When we left Opal in the last book she went through major changes. What effect will these changes have on her in this final book?
Maria V. Snyder: Opal starts out adrift and unsure of her direction, but she soon has a mission to focus her energies on. She’s more confident and in order for her to complete her task, she needs to learn new skills that involve deception and undercover work. Even though uncomfortable with disguising herself and deceiving others, she feels this mission will be the deciding factor and will set the course for the rest of her life.
BLI: The Study and Glass books are set in a rich universe, do you plan to write more books and characters from this setting and will you write another book about Yelena and Valek? *Puppy dog eyes is hoping for a yes!*
Maria V. Snyder: There are characters from these books, that I would love to expand on and see what happens to them. I would also like to write another Yelena and Valek story – I am writing a short story about them for my free email newsletter subscribers right now. I’m also thinking about expanding that story and flashing back to Valek’s past when he meets the Commander and assassinates the King of Ixia. But for right now, I need a break and a new creative challenge to keep my writing fresh. I do intend to go back to Ixia and Sitia in the future.
BLI: In your Study Series Yelena is using a bow for fighting. This is so unique! How did you come up with idea? Did it take a lot of research to discover the techniques?
Maria V. Snyder: The bow or as it’s more popularly known as the β€œbo staff” is a martial arts weapon. I learned Issinryu Karate and had earned a brown belt (one before black) before I stopped to have children. In Issinryu, we learned how to use a bo staff and sais to defend ourselves. A bo staff is a good weapon for someone who is smaller than her opponent so it was a natural fit for Yelena. With her strong hands and arms, the sais worked well with Opal. For any future heroines, I’m going to need to go back to the dojo and get that black belt πŸ™‚
BLI: The Inside Out/Outside In books are a total departure to your more fantasy based books, do you plan to write more books with a science fiction based setting?
Maria V. Snyder: I would like to. It all depends on my editor and on sales of the Inside books. Unfortunately, Inside Out isn’t selling well and if Outside In doesn’t sell well either, my editor will be reluctant to publish anymore of my science fiction books. I do have a cool idea set in today’s world – something very different for me.
BLI: Did any of your characters give you trouble while writing them? Did they always fit perfectly into what you envisioned for them or did they sometimes do things that surprised even you?
Maria V. Snyder: My characters surprise me all the time and never fit or do what I envisioned for them. My super cool assassin, Valek turned into a pack rat who enjoyed carving. The Commander…well, you know about him. He completely shocked me. And Devlen did an about face on me and I wasn’t sure exactly what he was up to until I finished SPY GLASS. That’s the best part of being a pantser – being surprised πŸ™‚
BLI: What is next on your schedule? What should we keep our eyes open for?
Maria V. Snyder: OUTSIDE IN is coming out in March 2011, and I’m working on a new fantasy novel with a healer as the main character. In this world, a plague has decimated the population, leaving behind warring factions as the survivors scramble to put their society back together. The healers have been blamed for the plague, so she is on the run. This book is due to come out in January 2012.
BLI: Now a couple of β€˜mean’ questions *wink*:
Of course you can’t choose between your babies, but how do you see Yelena and Opal? Do you have a favorite?
Maria V. Snyder: I see Yelena as the more assertive one, the older sister of the two. While Opal is getting better, she still has her moments of doubt. Yelena worked her way into the limelight by her actions and deeds so she was more prepared for the attention, while Opal was thrust out into the limelight and had to deal with this sudden pressure. I wish I was more like Yelena when I was younger, but I feel I had more in common with Opal. As for my favorite…that would be Janco. I just love that guy πŸ™‚
BLI: Could you summarize your different series for us twitter style (140 characters tops)?
Maria V. Snyder: These are mean questions ;>
Study Series – Death row inmate gets offered food taster job – magic, murder and mayhem ensues.
Glass Series – Glass magician changes the world – power struggles, blood magic and deception ensues.
Inside Series – Insider searches for a legendary Gateway to Outside – death, defiance and danger ensues.
BLI: Can you tell us 3 reasons why people should read your books?
Maria V. Snyder: 
1 – Characters you care about.
2 – Page-turning action, adventure and a touch of romance.
2.5 – I have two kids to put through college ;>
3 – Entertaining and surprising.
BLI: Thanks so much for taking the time to answer our questions.
Maria V. Snyder: Thanks for inviting me here! If anyone is interested in reading the first chapter of all my books, you can go to my website and read them. Here’s a link.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

~*~*~Giveaway~*~*~

Thanks to Maria we have a copy of Spy Glass to give away.

All you have to do is ask Maria a question or just leave a meaningful comment about the interview.

Please leave us a way to contact you
(email in blogger profile or twitter name is okay).

This giveaway is International!

Giveaway ends on Saturday, September 11th and we will announce the winner on Sunday.

Good Luck everyone!

About Susi


Susi is a geeky vegetarian from Gemany. She just finished university and now works as a civil engineer in steel construction. Besides her reading addiction she also knits like a maniac while listening to audiobooks. Susi also blogs at the Secret HEA Society.

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71 Comments

Join the Discussion
  • Mysteriousrose August 30, 2010 at 6:15 am

    I like the way you pick out the names for your characters, I love when names mean something more so it's not just a name.
    I will go and read your article.
    Thank you for the chance to win your book I would love to read it.

    forceofstars(at)yahoo(dot)dk

  • sRy_ August 30, 2010 at 6:25 am

    I think to be writter gives you a life more complete and amusing, and also time for to be mom for your kids. I love it.

    I would love to read your book. Thank you for the chance πŸ™‚

    paraelisa21 (at) hotmail (dot) com

  • jen7waters August 30, 2010 at 6:37 am

    Oh my heart almost jumped out of my chest just now when I saw who was the guest author…I love your work Maria! I reckon it has mostly to do with this minor *cough* character of yours named Valek, but I do love everybody and everything else too πŸ˜€ It cracked me up to find out his name comes from Val Kilmer:)
    And please do write another story with him and Yelena whenever you can *joins BLI with the puppy dog eyes scheme* they are epic! πŸ˜€
    I have a question (a stupid one) is theobroma anything like chocolate? for some reason I always thought so!

    jen7waters(at)gmail(dot)com

  • Misha1989 August 30, 2010 at 8:16 am

    Hi Maria
    I want to ask which are your favorite books?
    Thank You
    Misha
    mishamary@gmail.com

  • Lu August 30, 2010 at 8:48 am

    Thanks so much for this wonderful Giveaway!! And fantastic interview πŸ˜€

    Thank you for the link to the first chapters of your books πŸ™‚

    And last but not least, thanks so much for making this international as well!!

    Question: Maria where is your favorite spot to read? And do you have a favorite Author?

    chidoryx AT hotmail DOT com
    http://lusbookblog.blogspot.com/

  • Lucy August 30, 2010 at 9:10 am

    Thanks so much for the giveaway!

    Where do you find your time to write, being a fulltime mom and writer?

    Kind regards,
    Lucy
    lucybeugelingramos(at)gmail(dot)com

  • Bethany C. August 30, 2010 at 9:14 am

    I LOVED the Study trilogy. I've been meaning to start the Glass for a while. Can't wait for the Yelena/Valek short!
    b(dot)cardone(at)hotmail

  • Kulsuma August 30, 2010 at 9:26 am

    Thanks for the wonderful giveaway!

    I would like to know where do you get all your ideas from and what advice would you give to others who want to write/get published as someone who has a lot of experience in the publishing world?

    k_anon[at]hotmail[dot]co[dot]uk

  • Maddie M. August 30, 2010 at 9:47 am

    I can't wait to read Outside In! Ir looks really good(:

    maddie.mmcphail@gmail.com

  • tetewa August 30, 2010 at 9:54 am

    I'm always looking for new series to read, sounds good! tWarner419@aol.com

  • Jessica August 30, 2010 at 10:17 am

    I love your books Maria! But of course you already know that!!! I am definitely a book lover too. No way am I a casual reader! Every bday or any other holiday I'm asked what I want, it's usually books! Or a gift certificate to the bookstore to keep my shelves full for the year!

    jessbess2505[at]yahoo[dot]com

  • elizabeth August 30, 2010 at 11:12 am

    Maria, your books are amazing! I loved Inside Out, so much. I cannot wait for Outside In.

    swordsforfighting at yahoo dot com

  • Linda Henderson August 30, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    I enjoyed your interview very much and I always like to get extra information on books and authors. I haven't read any of your books yet, but I'll definitely be looking for them.

    seriousreader at live dot com

  • draconismoi August 30, 2010 at 2:25 pm

    Hmmm….now I feel bad for wanting to shake Opal all the time. STOP WHINING! Yelena only whined when the situation called for it!

    I guess I didn't really consider the differences in their backgrounds…..

    cass at feministdracona dot net

  • The Itzel Library August 30, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    Wow! I've read some reviews of this novel and I find it very interesting, I can't wait for read this book. I've read a book of her before and I loved his style. Now I see that the names of the characters have special meaning, intrigue me more, because only read the name of character, and I can learn a little more about them… It's wonderful.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

    itzel_library@hotmail.com

    Take care,

    ~Yelania

  • Robin K August 30, 2010 at 5:37 pm

    I am so envious of your schedule. I wish I could sleep all day! How do you manage it with two kids!? LOL, I have two as well and a home business. Life is certainly busy.

    robin [at] intensewhisper [dot] com

  • Maria V. Snyder August 30, 2010 at 6:04 pm

    Hello! Thanks for all the great comments and questions. I'll try and answer them all πŸ™‚

    I have many favorite books and authors – but four books jump immediately to mind: Ender’s Game, by Orson Scott Card, The Gate to Women’s Country, by Sheri S. Tepper, The Lathe of Heaven by Ursula K. LeGuin, and Jaren, by Kate Elliott.

    Some of my favorite authors not listed above are: Rachel Caine, Harlan Coben, Melissa Marr, Naomi Novik, and Dick Francis.

    My favorite spot to read is on my cabin's balcony of a cruise ship – when not cruising, then on the beach!

    Writing is my full time job, so I find time just like most working parents. My kids are old enough to get to the school bus without my help and during the summer they sleep in as well πŸ™‚ I only sleep until noon, which gives me enough sleep.

    As for ideas – I wrote an article about how I get ideas and posted in on my website – here's a link if anyone would like to read it: http://www.mariavsnyder.com/advice/ideas.php

    The best advice to other writers that I can give other than what's on my site is persistence. Keep learning, keep writing, keep sending your stories out. Don't give up!

  • Barbara E. August 30, 2010 at 6:09 pm

    All of your books sound wonderful, but I'm especially fascinated with the Glass series. I love the idea of a glass maker that can trap magic in glass and other magicians can tap into the magic.
    You've convinced me to read your books with your 3.5 reasons, especially the one about putting your kids through college – I'm happy to help, LOL.

    Barbed1951(at)aol(dot)com

  • Kailia Sage August 30, 2010 at 6:21 pm

    Great interview! Maria, you're a great author and I LOVED your study books! They were so addicting! Your new books sounds really great and I can't wait to read them!

    twilightforever.edward at gmail dot com

  • Lindsay Letcher August 30, 2010 at 6:57 pm

    Great Interview. I absolutely love Maria's books and have been a fan since the first book came out in 2005. My roommate at the time bought it for me for Christmas because every time I went to Chapters I'd read a chapter. Now i'm an addict and have got 4 of my friend's addicted to the books!!!

    Lindsay (lindsay.letcher@uleth.ca)

  • Vicki August 30, 2010 at 7:20 pm

    I love the way your Write Maria. I have a question about Inside Out. I felt that the way things end with Cog was overly anti climatic. was this you purpose make it beautiful and forgettable at the same time to lessen the pain?

  • Anonymous August 30, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    You have really inspired me to read and write more. I have always loved to write but it is always so hard to pick the names of characters and get them just right. I think how you do it will really help we in the future.
    Thanks

    Grace (ghadlock15@gmail.com)

  • Amanda August 30, 2010 at 8:38 pm

    Excited for the chance to win a copy of Spy Glass! Thanks so much for spending the time to give this interview, Maria, and to Book Lovers, Inc for setting it up.

    What would you be doing if you weren't a writer?

  • Jessica August 30, 2010 at 8:41 pm

    Excellent interview. I love the tweet summaries of each series! Yelena is one of my favorite characters of all time.
    ireadtorelax@yahoo.com

  • Michelle August 30, 2010 at 8:45 pm

    I really enjoyed Outside In and I'm looking forward to getting the sequel from my library. I bought all of the books in the Study series, but I haven't bought any of your other books because I have a limited book budget! I hope your publishers continue to publish your sci fi books anyway!

    But I'd definitely buy another book with Valek in it – will you write more about HIM?!! πŸ˜‰

  • jenn August 30, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    I really love the Study and Glass series and am looking forward to starting Inside Out. I was wondering why you thought Inside Out isn't doing as well as your fantasy work?

    jennifer (dot) thorburn (at) gmail (dot) com

  • Rebecca August 30, 2010 at 11:27 pm

    I am very excited to read Spy Glass…I have told all my friends about both the Study and Glass series. I love them…and I have to agree with a previous commenter: Valek is a HUGE part of it!!
    I am definitely a book lover!!
    My question: I thought I saw on your blog that you mentioned writing the next chapter in "Ice Study"–I assumed that was the fourth book, but were you just referring to a short story??
    I will add my puppy dog eyes, pleading for another Yelena/Valek book!!! Pretty please!!

  • Rebecca August 30, 2010 at 11:28 pm

    oops…forgot my email…
    lonreb(at)excite(dot)com

  • Chris_and_Gina August 30, 2010 at 11:45 pm

    I was hooked after the first couple of chapters in poison study and couldn't wait to read the others. Then when you started a new series with a lot of the same charcters, but the main character was the focus on one from the previous series was very exciting, kind of a new twist in book series writing! I love how you have created your own fantasy world! It's like modern day with out all of it's conveniences, so fun! You are so welcoming and interactive with your readers, it really sets you apart from most. I cannot wait to read Spy Glass!! I would love to win a signed copy! It would also be very exciting to continue adventures in sitia and Ixia!! I also have your other books "Inside out" and "Outside In" marked to read. It's just so fun to read and have stayed up much too late wanting to go from one chapter to the next, it's hard to limit myself..but with a toddler and a brand new baby I have too, it definately give me something to look forward to.

    silversprings4(at)yahoo(dot)com

  • Jessica August 31, 2010 at 2:04 am

    Thanks for the great giveaway!

    Maria, I have some questions: when you were taking glass blowing classes for Glass series research, did you get to make anything fun? Did you attempt glass animals like Opal or just end up with some nice clumpy paperweights to commemorate the experience?

    I also just wanted to say that I love that you have all of your characters train for hours everyday and work so hard on their kick-ass fighting skills. It seems like in so many other books and movies the super ninja fighting skills come so easily to the characters so I thought it was cool that you made your characters work for it.

    Can't wait for Spy Glass!

    @jnaomicline on twitter

  • Joanne August 31, 2010 at 4:56 am

    Hiya Maria,
    I looove your books πŸ™‚
    just wondering how you go about developing characters to the depth that you have? is there alot of planning involved before each book, or do they develop through more natural ways?
    Cant wait to read Spy Glass, or the next installment of Ice Study πŸ˜€

    Blueweasles@hotmail.co.uk

  • host August 31, 2010 at 5:09 am

    I didn't know the meaning of Aydan name but know when I found out about it I think it suits him very well, actually I was delighted πŸ™‚
    The things I love about your books (besides great stories, of course) are those magnificent covers, they really make you buy a book instantly – I've seen and made many book covers but yours are amongst the best.

    I can't wait to read Spy Glass.

  • Sweet Awesomenessu August 31, 2010 at 5:49 am

    Oh, wow. What an insight.

    I absolutely love books and I absolutely love writing stories. I've been planning for six months now!
    I hope to be able to publish one in the future. πŸ™‚

    Maria, what would life be like for you if you couldn't write?

  • Sue S. August 31, 2010 at 7:13 am

    What do you enjoy most about writing Maria?

    sstewart2505[at]yahoo[dot]com

  • Kami August 31, 2010 at 10:07 am

    I LOVE that your character names have meaning. I think names should have meaning to the people who own them. I named my daughter Zoe because it means Life or God Given Life, and I really feel like that suits her, especially since she is our first child.

    What gave you the inspiration to create Ixia and Sitia and everything about them? Was it an epiphony one day, or was it a huge process after you came up with some characters and plot?

  • Julia August 31, 2010 at 10:11 am

    I can't wait to get my hands on Spy Glass (: ! Thankfully the european release is in just a few more weeks!

    My question stands: if you were magically offered the chance, would you visit the world you created for the study/glass series, and if so, which places there would you travel to?

    rainbowwi@hotmail.com

  • Holly August 31, 2010 at 10:11 am

    I love reading interviews with authors and finding out the behind the scenes info on books. I cannot wait to read Spy Glass, the thought of it has been taunting me for the last two weeks!

    Holly
    oceandreamerfla(at)aol(dot)com

  • Holly August 31, 2010 at 10:11 am

    I love reading interviews with authors and finding out the behind the scenes info on books. I cannot wait to read Spy Glass, the thought of it has been taunting me for the last two weeks!

    Holly
    oceandreamerfla(at)aol(dot)com

  • Carrie S. August 31, 2010 at 11:52 am

    Wow this book–along with all your others–sound amazing! I can't wait to read them! Count me in please!

    stewart.carrie94[at]yahoo[dot]com

  • Jenna Rysanek August 31, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE
    ALL OF YOUR BOOKS!! πŸ™‚

    I cannot wait for my book to get here from barnes and noble.com! yay!

    Sweetj826@aol.com

  • Christine August 31, 2010 at 2:16 pm

    Reason #4 why people should read her books… The premises are so unique! It astounds me how Maria comes up with such amazing stories that you won't find in any other books!

    fkt18(at)ca(dot)astound(dot)net

  • Jenny N. August 31, 2010 at 7:00 pm

    I really hope Maria can write another Yelena and Valek story, I just love the two of them so much. I haven't started the Glass series but I do have all the books except Spy Glass.

    jen4777[at]hotmail.com

  • happy always! August 31, 2010 at 9:15 pm

    LOL at reason number 2.5 why people should read the book! I don't understand why is Inside Out not selling well, it's a fascinating and great book! o.0 Issinryu sounds very interesting … After the talk about spy glass, i can't wait for it to arrive in my country! πŸ˜€

    I only have one question: why is writing short stories harder then writing a novel? :X

    beastman_93@hotmail.com

  • throuthehaze August 31, 2010 at 10:02 pm

    I like the description of a book lover. I definitely qualify…I stayed up until 5 am reading a book yesterday because I didn't want to put it down πŸ™‚
    throuthehaze at gmail dot com

  • Beverly August 31, 2010 at 11:36 pm

    Thanks for the interview – great info! Thanks for hosting. Please enter me. I am a follower.

    I enjoyed reading about how you pick out names – I especially like that you choose your names when you start your writing project. My favorite part about the name thing is that you choose specific names because you are looking for certain characteristics.

    bsharp88@gmail.com

  • Maria V. Snyder September 1, 2010 at 12:20 am

    What a fun group! Thanks for all the nice comments and questions πŸ™‚

    The end with Cogon did happen quick due to the nature of his…end (I don't want to give anything away) and then poor Trella had no time to react before Karla had her. You'll see more reaction in OUTSIDE IN.

    As for Valek – he does have a pretty big role in SPY GLASS. And I hope to write more about him and Yelena in the future. ICE STUDY is a short story that I'm sending out in small chapters to my newsletter subscribers. I might expand into a novel someday, but I'll end the short story for my readers or they'd have to wait a few years. If anyone would like to sign up for my free email newsletter, I have a form on my website on my News Page – you have to scroll all the way down to the bottom for the form (link: http://www.mariavsnyder.com/news.php) If you do sign up, email me and I'll send you a link to the six parts already written (email: maria@mariavsnyder.com)

    INSIDE OUT has gotten some great reviews etc… Unfortunately, the bottom line in this business is sales and INSIDE OUT is having a slow start. I hope it'll be like a snowball rolling downhill…

    I made a few lumpy paperweights in glass class ;> I also made some beads, two tumblers, and a couple x-mas balls (one looks like a tomato, which is okay – I like tomatos).

    My characters develop like my stories – as I write. I don't plan too much a head of time, I prefer they grow on the page.

    If I couldn't write, I'd be working in a bookstore or library!

    What I enjoy most about writing is communicating with my readers! I answer every email I get…eventually!

    Inspiration for the world of Ixia started when I sparked on the idea of making my main character a poison/food taster – after that it was like a forest fire – it spread rapidly and was hard to contain πŸ™‚

    If I could go to Ixia and Sitia, I would want to go to all the places mentioned in my books.

    Short stories are harder to write because you only have a few thousand words to tell a story – every short I wrote, my critique group told me the idea was too big and I should turn it into a novel. I'm finally catching on, but it's been a slow learning process.

    I think I answered everyone – if I missed one – sorry!

    And if anyone's still with me by now… for those interested in character names, I'm doing a whole guest blog on names over at Reading Rocks 4 me tomorrow (Wednesday Sept. 1st) here's the link: http://readingrocks4me.blogspot.com/

  • Sena September 1, 2010 at 3:24 am

    If someones has never read any of your books, which would you recommend them to read first and why? πŸ™‚
    Thanks!
    sena.sagani [at]gmail[dot]com

  • Giada M September 1, 2010 at 4:10 am

    Hi Maria! πŸ™‚
    Thank you for the interesting interview! I wanted to ask…do you think writers are born or made?
    Thank you for making the contest international! πŸ˜€

    Giada M.

    fabgiada (at) gmal (dot) com

  • Heather September 1, 2010 at 9:57 am

    Thank you for giving me a world to get truly excited about! I devour your books… people get neglected when I read them, lol!

    Heather

    littlebearries@yahoo.com

  • Anonymous September 1, 2010 at 11:54 am

    Dear Maria,

    Many thanks for the interview. I truly believe you are an inspiration to others both writers and readers. There is something almost magical about reading your books that just makes the creative juices start flowing, and I just have to write. In reading the Glass trilogy, I'm remembering and feeling much of the same fire I felt in the Study trilogy. I'd like to thank you for providing such a meaningful and fantastical world in Yelena and Opal's stories. Please keep at it, and I'll keep reading (and hopefully writing!). :>

    ~Amy

    museofscrolls@yahoo.com

  • Lisa R/alterlisa September 1, 2010 at 3:38 pm

    I love your answer to the book reader or lover question. I have extra books in every vehicle that I might possibly be in, just in case (and a lover knows what just in case is), books in my purse and at least one on my computer in case anything I'm pulling up or downloading takes two seconds to much. Heck, I'm as likely to read the back of the cereal box as not while sitting at the table. What about you, what type of books to you love to read?

  • Fi-chan (Bookish-Escape) September 1, 2010 at 10:08 pm

    environmental meteorologist wow.

    according to your definition of a reader and real book lover, I'm somewhere in between! πŸ˜€ I don't want to stay up wayy past my bedtime, bad for health and parents might even ground me from books -_-

    and wow at the character names! I like all those special names.

  • Pink Panther September 2, 2010 at 9:02 am

    Thanks for the fabulous interview, Maria! I love Fire Study and all the books in the series. The concept is refreshing and intriguing, pulling me in like a vortex. (in a good way. Of course.)

    I've read Inside Out and it is excellent! Although the story starts out quite slowly and I am quite confused at first by the Inside and all those units and divisions. But then, the story starts flowing along and I finally get what's going on. After that, I simply can't put the book down AT ALL! Seriously. Can't wait to get my hands on its sequel – Outside In.

    Thanks so much for making this fantastic giveaway international! πŸ™‚ You can reach me at luvpinkpanther@gmail.com

  • Anonymous September 2, 2010 at 8:32 pm

    I've enjoyed all of your books.

    Would you ever consider going back to being a meteorologist?

    Louis

  • EVA SB September 2, 2010 at 11:16 pm

    I think Maria had me in mind when she was describing a book lover!

  • Maria V. Snyder September 2, 2010 at 11:43 pm

    More great comments – thanks for the compliments!

    I would recommend you start with POISON STUDY – it's my first book that started the whole thing and if you're new to me, that's the one to read πŸ™‚

    I think writers are made. Most of us love to read and many of us are creative in other ways as well. I learned a ton about writing from reading a zillion books and from practice. Some writers have a more natural ability, but even they need to learn.

    I enjoying reading all different books – fantasy, YA, mystery, suspense, SF, and some horror. I also like non-fiction books if they're written in the form of a stoy – like the Perfect Storm πŸ™‚ If you want a more detailed list – I'm on Goodreads.com – it has my virtual bookshelf (well about 1/8th of my shelf), what I'm currently reading and my TBR shelf.

    I don't think I'd go back to being a meteorologist – if I need a new job, I'd work at a library or bookstore or I would teach.

    I hope everyone has a great weekend!

  • Jess Esplin September 4, 2010 at 12:34 am

    Your books are so well written, it almost doesn't matter what the plot consists of (though the plot is near perfect every time). What is the most important thing to you about writing (characters, plot, beginning, ending, middle, etc)? And how did you find your voice to come through in your writing?
    jess.esplin@gmail.com

  • mbreakfield September 5, 2010 at 8:26 pm

    If Spyglass was made into a movie, who would you pick to play the main characters?
    marlenebreakfield(at)yahoo(dot)com

  • ellen-cullen September 6, 2010 at 12:13 am

    Question for Maria: Who do you think you identify with, or see yourself in more, Yelena or Opal?
    Love your stories! xoxoxo

  • Jennifer K. September 6, 2010 at 3:41 am

    I like the idea that you put an essence of yourself in each of your characters. I'm still an amateur but it seems like I can relate to you a lot — writing is like a form of "acting" for me. I was never really comfortable with doing it physically myself; like drama in high school. But writing it down and getting into the characters through writing is so much easier, and I feel like I can express myself better too. Thanks for the great interview & advice that I'll definitely keep in mind.

    mashimaro_18@hotmail.com

  • Tynga September 8, 2010 at 8:57 pm

    I love Maria's description of a book lover! I most definitely fit the description, and since I order all my books online, I'm sad when I don't get packages hehe

    Thanks for the giveaway =)

  • Png September 9, 2010 at 12:48 am

    How do you choose the right book covers?
    this interview is short and nice. :DDD

    regards:
    maidenhealer@hotmail.com

  • jmspettoli September 9, 2010 at 2:51 am

    Thanks for the interview! Since most of your books take place in a fantasy setting, do you find difficult in creating these worlds?

    spettolij AT gmail DOT com

  • SandyG265 September 9, 2010 at 7:38 am

    Maria,

    Do you find it difficult to go back and forth between different series?

    sgiden at verizon.net

  • Lora1967 September 9, 2010 at 8:07 am

    Beautiful interview.
    I have not read any of your books. I would love to win it and read them. I then donate to Middletown public library. Our funds have been cut for new books.
    They are taking donations. Thanks for the chance to win
    chaarmedone1512@aol.com

  • Julie September 9, 2010 at 10:13 pm

    Your series sounds very interesting. I like the way you name your characters, so much more fun than the more commonly used names.

    juliecookies(at)gmail.com

  • Breanne September 10, 2010 at 10:36 pm

    haha I love reason 2.5 for reading your books. I soo want to read this so thanks for the giveaway!

    bmweida at yahoo dot com

  • Dana September 11, 2010 at 12:33 pm

    What inspires you to write?
    danasandstrom@sbcglobal.net

    Thanks for the great giveaway!

  • Meredith September 11, 2010 at 1:56 pm

    I love that you use a baby name book to name your characters! I guess they are kinda like your babies, right?

    meredithfl at gmail dot com

  • Spav September 11, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    I loved both the Study series and the Glass series and I can't wait to read the last boook, Spy Glass!

  • Dovile September 12, 2010 at 9:47 am

    I'd like to know if I can read Spy Glass as a stand alone novel, or do I need to read the first two first?

    Thanks!

    spamscape [at] gmail [dot] com

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