Michelle Irwin stopped by today to chat about her new novel, Happily Evan After (out now) and talk us through what she’s reading, what her bookshelves look like and what her dream book would look like. Michelle will also be on the blog tomorrow as part of her blog tour for Happily Evan After where she will be talking about the impact books had on her, so make sure you check back tomorrow to find out a bit more about Michelle and her novels 🙂
What are you currently reading?
I’m currently between books. The next book on my to-read list is for a book club I’m part of and it’s called Sweet Mungo, but I don’t really know much outside of that.
What’s the last book you bought?
Wings of Vengeance by Aussie author Kylie Price.
Do you prefer to read books in print or electronically?
I have been doing most of my reading lately electronically, just because I always have my phone on me so if I have a few minutes downtime, I’d rather read a chapter than play a mobile game. There is something about the look and feel of a print book though.
If I was to walk into your house right now, what would your bookshelves look like? Do you have an organisation system (genre, colour, author…) or are you just happy to go with the flow?
The only system I have is that my own books are in a different section. Otherwise my bookshelves are a bit of a free-fall-all. In fact, there are stacks of books beside my bed almost constantly.
How often do you read?
It depends on what stage I am at with my writing. If I’m in the middle of a big inspiration rush, I might not read for a few days or weeks. If I’m in editing mode, I usually can’t enjoy reading. When I’m in a bit of a relaxation mode with my own words, I will read daily and for a few hours each day.
Describe what you would expect to find in your dream book?
Magic. Not literal magic as in Harry Potter, although I never mind that either, but the magic of being able to fall completely into a story and have it hold you captive until it’s finished.
How do you choose what to read next?
I don’t really have a method. Sometimes it’s an obligation thing, like a book club selection or something, other times it’s just a random scroll through my kindle app carousel to pick something.
So you’ve started a book and discover it’s not for you. Are you more likely to discard it or finish it?
Depends. If it’s something I’ve committed to reading, I’ll see it through to the bitter end. I used to do this for all books, but now if I’m reading purely for pleasure, I’ll put it down. There are so many great books out there, I don’t want to waste time on ones that just aren’t doing it for me.
If you could read any book again, for the first time, what book would you choose?
I would love to be able to read my book Through the Fire for the first time again. I’d love to know what it feels like to discover it as a reader.
What is about books that appeals to you so much? What is your favourite part about reading?
Being able to escape the humdrum of everyday life. I think that’s a big part of the reason why I like fantasy and paranormal so much. I don’t want to read about people trying to pay the mortgage and find their partner. I want to read about dragons and magic. Things that don’t exist but in the pages of a book feel like they almost could.
Was there any particular book that inspired you to start writing?
Yes and no. I’ve always been fascinated by English. It was my favourite subject at school and I was a straight-A student in it. I never really dreamed that being an author was within my reach though. I tried a few times to get a story out because it was something I felt I needed to but never really got very far. It wasn’t until I read the Twilight Saga and had a whole range of unanswered questions that started to inspire plot bunnies that I really started writing in earnest. Once I had though, it was impossible to stop and I soon left fanfiction stories of Edward and Bella behind to work on my own characters, but I took everything I learned during that time about plotting, pacing, and dialogue with me.
Do you have any advice to other writers out there?
Write. I know it’s the one thing everyone says, and that’s because it’s true. Learn your craft. Learn how to punctuate. Play with different voices and POVs. Don’t be afraid to try anything, but make sure you have a team of trustworthy people around you willing to give you constructive criticism, because even the best stories need that.
And lastly, what are you currently working on?
I am actively working on a few stories – All About Amity (working title) which is book two in the Fall for You series that follows on from the events in Happily Evan After. I have a steampunk idea that’s niggling at the back of my head. Another story tentatively titled Evergreen and one more, which I nabbed a beautiful pre-made cover for called tentatively titled Wild. I always have multiple projects on the go because it makes it easier to keep moving forward on something.
To learn more about Michelle, head on over to her:
Evan is a reluctant cupid.
Facing an unknown term of servitude to repay his debt to the world, it is his responsibility to guide couples together. Despite initial hesitancy, he has learned to handle every case with care and he now basks in the afterglow of new-found love and relishes in the energy it provides him. But his end goal is still the promise of paradise in return for his penance.
It’s all going according to plan until he receives an assignment that is inconceivable to him. He has to find a mate for Becca, within whom lives the reincarnated soul of his one true love. Bound by his duty to find her a match, he must resist her charm and suppress his own desires. It is his job and he cannot fail, even if his own paradise now seems lost.
For a cupid, falling in love is against the rules.
To grab yourself a copy of Happily Evan After head to the following retailers: