Tuesday, August 21, 2012
Interview: Corrine Jackson
Please help me welcome Class of 2k12's Corrine Jackson. Corrine not only has one but two novels coming out in 2012! I of course tried to find out which was her favorite and how she does it.
Corrine what is it like having two books come out in just months apart?
Insane. Completely, mind-bendingly insane. What’s more difficult is working on book two of the TOUCHED trilogy at the same time that I’ve been editing IF I LIE. I’m learning a lot about switching gears. Ultimately, though, it’s all very exciting!
How did you get the news that not one but two of your books were being published a few months apart?
I was on submission with both books simultaneously to different imprints/publishers. In February we received more than one offer on IF I LIE. I had a crazy week where my agent Laura kept the good news coming. In the end, Annette Pollert at Simon Pulse made an offer I knew we couldn’t pass it up. Her vision for the book sounded challenging and scary, and that usually means I’m about to grow and get pushed out of my comfort zone. I believe that’s an exciting place to be as a writer. So we accepted that offer, and I concentrated on starting a new WIP. The story should end there, but a month to the day after we got the first offer on If I Lie, my super-agent called with news that we’d received an offer for a three-book deal for Touched, my other book on submission. I remember sitting on the floor of my office in total shock. I tried not to mumble incoherently on the phone as Laura told me the details. Afterwards, I ran in to my pet-friendly office and shrieked so loudly it set off a chorus of barking dogs. That month will forever be one of the best of my life.
If I Lie and Touched seem so different from one and other. What can you tell us about each book?
At the core, they do have a similarity. In each a girl is struggling with a question that doesn’t have an easy answer. In TOUCHED, Remy can heal people, but she takes on whatever injury she heals. She heals your broken ribs, and her ribs snap. She has to balance tough decisions about who she heals and how far she’ll go because her life is at risk. In IF I LIE, Quinn is keeping a secret, and the consequences of that devastate her world. She loses everything – her friends, the respect of her family and her self-respect. She balances on the edge of loyalty to a friend and loyalty to herself. How do you decide in a situation like hers? I love to ask those questions and see what happens to my characters.
How do you switch from contemporary fiction to paranormal?
They have a different tone. My paranormal has a lot more action. My contemporary has more moments of quiet reflection. They’re both fun to write. I’m not sure there’s really a switch to flip. I guess I just plotted more fight sequences into my paranormal.
What advice do you have for aspiring writers and those that like you want to cover more than one thing?
I recommend treating your writing with respect and not like a hobby. Set aside time to write and keep to it. Work on your craft consistently so that you keep getting better. Sharpen yourself against other writers. And read a lot. As for covering more than one thing, I didn’t start out with a plan for that. I just wrote the stories that came to me. However, if you have an agent, discuss your goals with them. My agent has been really key to helping me develop a strategy for the order in which I work on the ideas I have.
How was the research part for each book?
For IF I LIE, I had to do a lot of military research. I interviewed some Marines, read a lot, and did a ton of online research. I also watched a lot of YouTube videos, documentaries, and spent time on the Library of Congress’ Veterans History Project site. I wanted the battalion my character was in to be a real battalion and the place he was fighting in to be a real place. I hope I did it justice because our soldiers deserve so much respect.
For TOUCHED, Remy has the ability to heal injuries and illnesses. She pictures the injuries as she heals them, and I had to research the types of injuries she’s healing to understand what she would see and how she would be affected, since she takes on whatever she heals. I also did a lot of location research back when my story was set in Port Townsend. The setting has changed to a fictional Maine town, but some of the settings remain the same with new names. Location research is my favorite.
All authors say you can’t have a favorite so tell us which is special to you and for what reason?
Hm. That’s like picking between your children. I’m not going anywhere near that one. :)
Aside from two books coming out can you tell us what’s next?
I’m working on the sequels to TOUCHED and I have another contemporary in the works. Never a dull moment around here. Or a moment to rest.
I want to thank Corrine for taking time to do this interview and to learn more about her visit her online at http://corrinejackson.com.