If you'd like to read my review for Sea Change, click here. Otherwise, without further ado, here we go!
For as long as I can remember, writing was the thing I loved to do best. The drawers of my childhood bedroom were jam-packed with "novels" I had written in spiral-bound notebooks. So I always knew I wanted to be a fiction writer, but it wasn't until I was in my early twenties, and working as a children's book editor, that I realized I wanted to write YA fiction. I fell in love with YA, and there were so many exciting things happening in YA literature at the time. That was when I was given the opportunity to write SOUTH BEACH, my first novel--and I was off and running from there.
2. How did you come up with the idea for Sea Change?
One summer afternoon a few years ago, I was riding a ferry. I was standing by the railing, and looking down into the ocean spray, and I started thinking about all the rich sea life that exists beneath the waves, and then I remembered that my favorite fairy tale as a child was The Little Mermaid. I began to wonder: what if the gender roles were reversed? What if it was a girl who fell in love with a boy who came from the sea? My heart started pounding, and when I got off the ferry, I went home and wrote what would become the first chapter of SEA CHANGE.
3. The ocean is extremely prevalent in Sea Change (obviously), but it's almost a character in and of itself. Do you have an affinity with the water, yourself? (I ask this because I'm obsessed with oceans, of course.)
I have always been drawn to water, soothed by water, captivated by water. I suspect this may be in part because my astrological sign is Cancer the Crab! (and, like a crab, I'm often happiest under my umbrella on the beach, borrowing my toes into the sand). But the funny thing is, I never learned how to swim. I grew up in New York, a real city child, with not much access to pools. And I think in a way because I can't really swim, water is that much more mysterious and intriguing to me: the dark unknown. Though the main character in SEA CHANGE is a good swimmer, I still wanted the book to capture some of that feeling.
4. Are there specific authors that inspired you to become a writer?
Like most book lovers, other authors are often like celebrities to me. Growing up, I read constantly and followed certain writers religiously! Some of the authors that most inspired me when I was young were Ann M. Martin, Judy Blume, the Bronte sisters, Frances Hodgson Burnett, J.D. Salinger, Paula Danziger, Candice Randsom...the list goes on and on.
5. If you had to, would you be able to pick your favourite character from Sea Change? If so, who would you pick, and why?
I have a little bit of a crush on Leo, who is so mysterious and sensitive and soulful. And of course Miranda is very near and dear to my heart. But in some ways, my favorite character is CeeCee, because she was lots of fun to write, and she's not quite what you expect she will be.
6. Will there be a sequel to Sea Change?
At the moment, there is no sequel planned, but I will let you know if and when that changes!
7. I hear you're a fan of shoe-shopping, so answer me this - shoes or mermaid fins?
Ooh, that's a tough one! I guess I'd love the best of both worlds: mermaid fins in water, and fabulous shoes on the city streets.
8. Do you have any secrets to curing writer's block?
I wish! Writer's block can be so painful, so agonizing, but it is helpful to remind yourself that nearly every writer goes through it, and it's just part of the writing process. What also helps is stepping away from the book for a while. Sometimes just going for a long, cleansing walk, meeting a friend for dinner, seeing a movie, reading another book--some sort of outer distraction may be just what you need to get you re-energized and back on track.
9. Just because I'm mean, I'll ask you this - What is your favourite book of all time if you can only choose one?
That is mean! Of course this answer changes all the time, but if I have to choose right now, I'd say Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. Such an amazing character, and a rich, surprising story with flawless writing. It's a book I return to time and again.
Thank you so much for participating, Aimee! It was so great to hear your thoughts, and I'll keep my fingers crossed for that sequel!
If you all get a chance, please check out Aimee's site here. Thank you!