Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Interview with Esther Friesner

So I got the awesome opportunity to have some of my burning questions answered by the very talented Esther Friesner. She is the author of Nobody's Princess and the soon-to-be-released Nobody's Prize, as well as many other novels. If you would like to see a review of Nobody's Princess click here. I was incredibly excited to do this interview and I was very intrigued by her answers.

So read on and enjoy!!

Where does your love of Greek Mythology come from? Have you always loved it?

I've always loved Greek mythology because I've always loved stories. My parents read to me a lot and in addition, my mom always told me stories. I don't remember if my first experience with Greek myth came from the stories I was told, the stories read to me, or the stories I read for myself as soon as I was able. I'm just glad of it.

Is Helen your favorite Greek mythology character?
I don't think I have a favorite Greek mythology character but I will say that I've been extremely fascinated by Helen lately. Besides NOBODY'S PRINCESS and NOBODY'S PRIZE I wrote a number of stories about her. One of these, in the Random House YA anthology YOUNG WARRIORS, is what got NOBODY'S PRINCESS/PRIZE published.

Who’s your favorite God/Goddess? Why?
My favorite Greek god/goddess has changed over the years. When I was very young, I really liked Aphrodite. When I had kids, I understood Demeter and her quest for her lost daughter Persephone much better and sympathized with her. Now I think more attention should be paid to the "neglected" deities like Hebe, cupbearer of the gods. It's fun imagining her story--getting to overhear all of the gossip on Olympus -and- married to Herakles

Will you continue Helen’s story until it reaches the same time period as the Iliad?
NOBODY'S PRINCESS and NOBODY'S PRIZE are YA books, so I will not be continuing Helen's story until the time of the events in the ILIAD since by then she would be too old to be a YA protagonist

What kind of research did you do for this book?

Most of my research for the Helen books was purely historical. I read many books on the Minoan-Mykenaean civilization. I was lucky enough to find a number of heavily illustrated booklets about contemporary costumes and weapons. I find it having well-illustrated research materials really helps me visualize the world my characters will inhabit. Since I happen to enjoy museums and ancient history even when I don't have a book to research, this was a great combination of business and pleasure.

What made you become an author? Have you always wanted to be one?

I always wanted to become an author because I always loved stories (See above, #1). I always wanted more. At first I thought the only way to get all the stories I could handle was to learn how to read. Then I realized that the REAL way to get all the stories I could ever want was to write some of them myself. I'm not the only person who discovered this. I once read a very good article with advice to aspiring writers that said if you can't enjoy reading a certain kind of book; you shouldn't try to write it.

What’s one of the hardest parts of being a writer?

One of the hardest parts of being a writer is waiting to hear about whether or not a book or story has been bought by a publisher. I deal with this by starting work on a new story or book as soon as possible.

What are you currently working on?
Right now I am working on a YA historical for Penguin called BURNING ROSES, about the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in New York City. I am also working on two more YA historical novels for Random House, in the spirit of NOBODY'S PRINCESS and NOBODY'S PRIZE. These will be about Nefertiti! I'm very excited to be writing about her.

What’s one crazy fact about yourself that you want to share?

I raise money for charity by telling fortunes with (toy) hamsters. It's called Cheeblemancy and I have a lot of fun doing it. This year I am raising money for the REVLON RUN/WALK FOR WOMEN (to fight women's cancers) and the AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION WALL STREET HEARTWALK (fighting heart disease and stroke). I think you can find some photos of the hamsters and me on my webpage.

Are there any questions you had wished I had asked?

I can't think of any questions I wish you'd asked, but I'm never very good at coming up with questions. I hope I've been all right coming up with answers, though.

Thanks again to Esther Friesner for agreeing to do this interview with me. I learned so much her and had such a great time coming up with questions to ask her. If you want to learn more about Mrs. Friesner click here to go to her website.


Anonymous said...

esther friesner says shes not going to continue the nobodys princess nobodys prize books but i dont understand i have read both and the second one seems unfinished I would really like there to be another book

Anonymous said...

I would also love a third book to nobodys princess. but i was wondering when do you think burning roses will be out, because i am really excited about it.

Anonymous said...

I really liked the two books that you did too but the secound seems unfinished I realy think you should do a third


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