Interview with the author Therese McClinton
Me: Thank you for giving us the honor to chat with you. May you please tell us something about yourself?
Theresa: Thank you for having me! Sure, I’d love to tell you something about myself. My favorite hobby is travel. If I could explore every nook and cranny of the world, that’s where I would spend my imaginary fortune. The deep sea is thefirst place I would explore. I’ve only ever been 40 feet under the surface, and we know less about it than we do space.
Me: What inspired you to write this book?
Theresa: I wanted to write about something unique, and I have always been intrigued about the Maya. So I couldn’t think of a better topic to write on than an ancient civilization in a contemporary setting. I didn’t have a dream or “ah-hah moment” that lead me to the plot. Just a deep interest and a love for writing.
Me: Is being a writer your dream profession?
Theresa: It hasn’t always been. Believe it or not, when I was young I hated to read. In middle school I swore there would never be a day I could read an entire book from cover to cover. It was probably due to my poor education as a kid. We hopped around from state to state, school to school, so I never had an organized, consistent education. But that all changed when I entered high school. It was the first time we settled down—for real this time—and I was able to stay in a school for longer than a year. My English teacher had us study some of the great classics like The Scarlet Letter and The Odyssey. That is when my passion for reading and writing was born.
Me: Tell us your most rewarding experience as a published writer.
Theresa: Meeting my new readers. To have people write and express how much they enjoyed The Stone Guardian is perhaps the most overwhelming feeling I’ve ever had—besides the day my kids were born. I’d be a bad mom if I didn’t say that. 😉 Also working with the amazing staff at Etopia Press. No, seriously. I feel incredibly lucky to have such a great editor and team working to make my book the best it can be.
Me: Tell us in few sentences why we must read your book.
Theresa: If you enjoy reading about myth and ledged, passion, betrayal, and the incredible strength of friendship, then you should read my book. My characters are my favorite part of being an author, and to me, they are real people. I know them as well as I know any of my friends, and they all have vivid personalities.
Me: What book did you wish you had written yourself?
Theresa: I’d have to say Horton Hears a Who. What? You weren’t expecting me to name a Dr. Seuss book? He was a literary genius! I can’t get enough of his books. In fact, I have a quote of his on my office wall. “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” It reminds me that I can do anything I put my mind to.
Me: If you could be a literary character who would you be and why?
Theresa: Since I’ve always secretly wanted to own a tiger, and you all know I love to travel, I’ll sayKelsey from the Tiger’s Curse series by Colleen Houck. I don’t think she understands the ridiculously lucky situation she’s found herself in. Two handsome princes who live part of their lives as tigers, and she gets to travel the world on Mr. Kadam’sdime? Need I say more?
Me: What are the books currently in your nightstand?
Theresa: Darker Still: A novel of Magic Most Foul by Leanna Renee Hieber.
Me: Any current/future projects?
Theresa: The Stone Guardian is the first of a series, so keep an eye out for the rest of the novels. I have one under review right now, but I won’t get into that too much since it’s sorta’ a surprise.
Me: What can you advice to those aspiring writers?
Theresa: Don’t ever give up. Write because you love it, and work really, really hard. With those combined you are sure to succeed.
Just for fun.
- What do you do on your free time? Travel and spend time with my awesome kids.
- If someone will write you a biography, what would be its title? “The life of a woman who seems a little crazy, but really is.”
- If you have won the lottery, what will be the first thing you will buy? I’d pay off my house. Then buy another one in Switzerland and learn how to ski!
- Where is your favorite place to travel? This is a tough one. Europe has my heart, but there are so many great countries in Europe, it’s almost impossible to choose. I’d say either Venice, Italy with its quant canals, or Germany with itstowering castles. Or maybe Amsterdam, with its cobblestone sidewalks and bridges that connect the city. I could go on and on!
- Any pet peeves?Who, me? No. I’m eternally patient…and always completely truthful. Ahem.
I’d like to start this review with the cover of the book. The art is okay though I personally do not like human faces in covers. However, the handsome face of the hero compensated for my early frustration, so I guess all is well.
While reading the first pages, I smiled. The theme can never be so timely. Basically, the story revolves around the Mayan race and its rich, but lost history. As I write this post, it is December 21, 2012 – the date predicted to be the end of the world as prophesied by an important phase in Mayan calendar. Now, isn’t that a coincidence?
If the world will end today, which I do not believe, then at least I have posted a blog entry today relating to the ancient race which started this all.
Now, the book and its story. It started with the beginning which may sound simple, but isn’t. Some authors tried to write it backwards or start with the climax. Those strategies are good, but I think it depends on the flow of the story. With The Stone Guardian starting from the beginning of the story, it made me comfortable. Sure, it did not bombard me with questions in my head because it started in the middle or the end, but like any other strategy, it made me continue reading. I think this is one essential element in writing. Some authors start with a bang, but after some point readers lost interest of the book as the story goes dull.
The story progressed slowly and made me impatient for a short time. However, I was rewarded with a sudden twist. I was like, “What the heck is that?” I was caught off guard. I thought the novel to be historical romance, not fantasy. I wasn’t prepared for the sudden onslaught of senses. In some points it made me more interested in continuing the book. From a normal story, it jumped to the world of fantasy which is neither laughable nor corny. It is somewhat believable, actually.
At this point, I would like to admit that I am not knowledgeable about the Mayan race. I am familiar a bit of its history, but I didn’t know about the stones, ancient powers, and gifted people. So imagine my surprise when I was introduced to those things. It wasn’t that bad, actually. In fact, I can say that I was fascinated with the story. As I said in a previous paragraph, a story about Mayans is a great factor for this novel.
The characters are believable, though I somehow see the heroine with a weak personality. She must be built with a sturdier personality, but since the story started with her being in a mental institution, I can understand. As for the hero, he was often described as someone well endowed. I can imagine him as the perfect personification of tall, dark, and handsome man. His personality was not that clearly described, but for some reason he suddenly fell in love with the heroine. And he’s loyal to a fault.
But like any other stories, there must be a conflict. In this novel, there are two. One is an outside force, a being much powerful than the race mentioned. Will he be responsible for the end of the world – December 21? The other conflict is an internal one – a struggle inside one of the character. Will that person be brave enough to continue loving even when darkness lurks just around the corner? Can they accept the truth?
The story ended and again I was caught off-guard. “What was that?” It is a cliffhanger. I wanted to tear the pages, but sadly I only have an e-copy, so I just stared at my reader. I want more! More, more! Now, if the author is reading my review, I am pleading: Hurry and finish writing the second installment!
Overall, I like the way the story was written. It is enough to catch the interest and convince a reader to continue reading. I was curious about the ancient race when I read the book that I made some searches about what were mentioned in the novel. However, I couldn’t find a reference. Either it was based from a fact which I haven’t dug up yet, or Theresa has this very creative mind to conjure such vivid picture where both mundane and magical worlds coincide. Whatever it is, I commend the author’s confidence in creating something new and unique in the world of publishing.
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