What kind of stories do you write?
I write the most delightful kind of story there is: middle grade fantasy. Inventing worlds, creating whole new systems of magic, coming up with characters with whom I’m dying to spend months of my time . . . there’s nothing better in the world. Everywhere I go, I’m on the lookout for anything that’ll spark my next story idea.
What are some of your favorite books?
Oh, I could go on about my favorite books for hours. But I’ll try my best to be succinct.
- The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier
- Circus Mirandus by Cassie Beasley
- The Thing About Jellyfish by Ali Benjamin
- The Serpent’s Secret by Sayantani DasGupta
- A Face Like Glass by Frances Hardinge
- Midsummer’s Mayhem by Rajani LaRocca
- Love Sugar Magic: A Dash of Trouble by Anna Meriano
- Roll by Darcy Miller
- The Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan
- The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
- The Lockwood and Co. series by Jonathan Stroud
- Flights and Chimes and Mysterious Times by Emma Trevayne
- Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk
- Six of Crows by by Leigh Bardugo
- Fire by Kristin Cashore
- The Selection series by Kiera Cass
- The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
- Splintered by A.G. Howard
- The Summer Prince by Alaya Dawn Johnson
- The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee
- Never Never by Brianna R. Shrum
- The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
- The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
- Falling into Place by Amy Zhang
- The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
- Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen
- The Dresden Files series by Jim Butcher (Changes is my favorite)
- Firelight by Kristen Callihan
- Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
- A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
- The early Valdemar books by Mercedes Lackey
- Heart’s Blood by Juliet Marillier
- Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
- The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
- The Martian by Andy Weir
What mischief do you get up to when you’re not writing?
Well, I obviously read a lot. I usually have three or four books going at once, so I have something ready to pick up no matter what mood I’m in. Take a look at my list of favorite books above if you want to know what stories draw me in.
I also watch a lot of movies. Going to the theater is one of my greatest joys, and you’ll always find me there on opening weekend if a new Star Wars, Marvel, or Disney/Pixar movie comes out. I saw The Greatest Showman in theaters eight times—a personal record for me. There’s even a local theater that plays old movies on Thursdays, and it’s always amazing to see a classic I’ve loved all my life on the big screen.
Disney World is my favorite place I’ve ever been, and I have multiple Disney-themed tattoos (but way more Harry Potter tattoos). I sing my way through about half of my waking hours (this is only sort of an exaggeration), and am learning to play the guitar so I can accompany myself. I’ve kept the playbill from every Broadway show I’ve seen as an adult—a positively enormous collection. (It will surprise exactly zero people to learn that I also have two Broadway tattoos.)
I want to read your books! Where can I buy them?
Patience, young Padawan. I haven’t quite made it that far on my writing journey yet. But I can promise you that I won’t give up. When it comes to my writing, I tend to subscribe to the Yoda school of thought: Do or do not. There is no try.