KAREN MCQUESTION: ANNI FROM HELLO LOVE IS A REAL DOG
Posted by Ognian Georgiev
Karen McQuestion’s last novel Hello Love is one of the most successful books for 2014. The story for a cute dog, named Anni, was accepted very well by the readers. In our next interview the author of famous Edgewood series is discussing her future projects. Enjoy!
– Karen, Did you expect Hello Love to become such a big hit with almost 1400 Amazon reviews averaging 4.4 stars?
– I had hoped Hello Love would do well, but I never could have anticipated how people would take the story to heart. An adorable missing dog and two people looking for a second chance at love turned out to be a winning combination. And the cute cover helped big time. I’ve been thrilled with the reader response.
– How did you decide to write the story?
– I’d long thought it would be fun to write a novel from two alternating points of view, especially if the characters didn’t know each other, but kept crossing paths again and again. As a structural device, this would enable the reader to know more than the characters, which is always fun. As the story took shape in my head, I realized that a lost dog would play a role in the book, and the image of my niece’s dog, Anni, popped into my head. I asked my niece for permission to use her dog in my book, and she said yes. For inspiration, I tacked up photos of Anni next to my desk and the story went from there.
– Tell us something more about the creation of your main characters, Dan, Andrea and the dog Anni? Are they close to someone from your real life?
– There is a real Anni—she belongs to my niece, Michelle, and looks very much like the photo of the dog chosen by the cover designer. Dan and Andrea, however, are completely fictitious.
– Who are you?
– Honestly, I’m nobody. Just a woman who lives in a quiet town who loves to write. I’ve been a day dreamer my whole life and that’s been a problem for me at times, but as it turns out, day dreamers make the best writers.
– When we will see your next novel?
– My next book, From a Distant Star, comes out on May 19th of this year. It’s another tale of love lost and found, although this time the characters are younger and the storyline has paranormal elements.
– What is the news around book four of The Edgewood series? Would you share something around the plot?
– The Edgewood series has been a huge and happy surprise for me. I had no idea the extent to which readers become invested in a series, and I was shocked (and happy!) to get messages from readers who wanted more after the third book came out. One reviewer even said: “Edgewood was better than Divergent and The Hunger Games.” It doesn’t get any better than that.
Book four is in progress and I’m hoping to finish it before this summer. As for the plot, it’s still unfolding, so I’m not quite sure where it’s going just yet. I can say that I’m hoping to keep up the pace of the previous three books, along with the mix of intrigue, action, and romance.
– You are writing books for different ages. For who is tougher to write for – for kids, teens or adults?
– The writing of each book comes with its own set of challenges so I can’t really say one age group is tougher to write for than another. At this time, I find that writing young adult fiction allows me more freedom in both content and readership, because crossing genre lines is acceptable and many adult readers also read young adult fiction.
– How do you deal with writer’s block?
– I don’t generally get writer’s block, but when I do feel stuck midway through a story, I try to suss out the heart of the problem. Sometimes it’s that the story took a wrong turn or a character does something inconsistent with their personality. A day away from my writing usually allows my subconscious to work out what’s wrong. Once I figure it out, the words come more freely. At that point, I’ll make the appropriate changes and move forward in the novel.