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Author Interview: Marissa Meyer

Friday, February 3, 2012
Remember how I was talking about how Cinder is my favorite fairy-tale retelling? Today, I am super excited to be interviewing with the mind behind the story: Marissa Meyer!

Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth's fate hinges on one girl. . . .

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She's a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister's illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai's, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world's future.

Thanks for joining us at Imaginary Reads, Marissa! What was the first story you remember writing?
Thank you so much for having me! The first story I ever wrote was called “Rosie and the Rosebush.” It was about a little girl (Rosie) who one day fell into a magical rosebush and disappeared into this Narnia-esque world where she got to play with all the magical rose creatures. I was maybe four years old when I “wrote” it and I actually narrated the story to my mom, who typed it up and printed it out for me so I could illustrate the pages, but after awhile I got really sick of drawing roses so I think I gave up.

I'm glad that you stuck with writing because Cinder is an amazing read! Where do you find inspiration in your daily life?
I can find inspiration anywhere. Definitely music plays a big part in keeping my imagination well-fueled—great song lyrics or powerful chords can transport me to another place. The same with books and movies. But even the most mundane things can trigger something in my head— walking down a flight of stairs or doing dishes. You just never know when an idea is going to spring.

Music is one of my favorite places to go when I need inspiration to brighten my day. What do you enjoy most about retelling fairy tales?
I love that there is still so much room for interpretation and manipulation of these stories, even though they’ve been told and retold a gazillion times. Every author, artist, or director brings something new each time they take on one of these stories, and it’s our choice to change the characters, the settings, even the overall story structure if we so choose. For taking a pre-existing story that could be considered “limiting,” there’s really a lot of freedom involved.

You certainly proved it with Cinder. There are so many fresh details that, but for the Cinderella basis, it feels fresh and original. I love it and chances are high that I'll reread it one day. Which character did you have the most fun writing about?
Definitely Iko, Cinder’s android friend. I had no idea when I created her that she was going to be such a riot, with her spunky personality and crush on Prince Kai. I laughed out loud more than once in writing her dialogue.

I love Iko and am desperately hoping to see more of her in future books! What kind of dress would you be wearing at the ball that Cinder attended?
Something elegant and simple, perhaps a silk taffeta ball gown and a strand of pearls.

If you were to star in a fairy tale, which one would it be?
Maybe Snow White. Wicked queen aside, living in a quaint cottage in the forest sounds rather pleasant.

I would love to live in there too! Which Sailor Moon character would you like to be for a day?
Sailor Venus! Both a superhero and a superstar? That girl does it all.

Anything else you'd like to add?
Only thanks again for having me on your blog, and that Cinder is available now at a bookstore near you. I hope your readers will enjoy it!

I'm certain that they will if they haven't already read it, fell in love with it, and are dying to read book two, as I am!

Marissa's Website | Facebook | Twitter
Marissa Meyer lives in Tacoma, Washington, with her husband and three cats. She's a fan of most things geeky (Sailor Moon, Firefly, color-coordinating her bookshelf...) and will take any excuse to put on a costume. Cinder is her first novel.

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My Review of Cinder

3 comments on "Author Interview: Marissa Meyer"
  1. I can't wait to read Cinder! I've always loved retellings and dystopian fiction, so combining them together makes me so excited! I love how Marissa described her first story - it sounds so magical, and kind of like a fairy tale! Anyways, thanks for the interview - I'm so hyped now because of the mention of Iko and Sailor Venus.

  2. Great interview! I love how she wrote her first story when she was 4. I also like that she got tired of drawing rosebushes and stopped illustrating it, haha.


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