Today I'm so excited to bring to you an interview with author Mindy McGinnis! She's got a fabulous story in the new Spring Fevers anthology, put together by a great group of writers at Agent Query Connect. Mindy also has an upcoming YA dystopian novel due out in fall 2013, NOT A DROP TO DRINK, and you can find out all the details at her blog: Writer, Writer, Pants on Fire.
Without further ado, here's the interview!
1. Your short story, "First Kiss," in the new Spring Fevers anthology
is amazing! What inspired this story?
Great question. I live in a sprawling old farmhouse situated on five acres. I found no less than four uncovered wells when I first moved in. I was just a kid when the famous Baby Jessica incident happened, but it made a lasting impression. A mix of that, and a random idea I had floating around my head about someone who had a Poison Ivy (Batman character) type ability coalesced into this weirdness.
2. What are some of the challenges of writing short stories vs. novels?
Less space, less time. You've really got to punch your reader in the face in a nice way that they'll love you for. They know there are other stories behind yours that might appeal to them more, and flicking a couple pages to move away from your story is a lot easier than putting down a whole book and going to pick your next one.
3. How do you approach writing a short story vs. a novel?
Impact is of utmost importance, always. I think with a book you need to focus on getting that impact into the first page, or paragraph. In a short story, you've gotta get them with the first line.
4. Is there anything else you wanted to cover on the topic of short
stories vs. novels?
I love writing shorts. I think they're a wonderful outlet for those stories inside of me that don't have enough meat to them to justify a novel. There are plenty of characters in my head who have *something* to say, just not necessarily a lot. I also think shorts are an important way for a writer to pull readers to them as an author, and sell themselves as a writer as opposed to selling their book, if that makes sense. If I can make you like me, and my style, in a few pages, that's great. A short that draws a reader in to my voice will (hopefully) make them look to see if I have a book. As a reader of short stories myself, I can honestly say I do that all the time, and it's the best avenue I've found to discovering new voices.
Thanks so much for the interview, Mindy! It's great to have you on the blog today. Readers can discover some fantastic new voices in The Spring Fevers anthology, an anthology of short stories with the theme of relationships, available for free at Smashwords. Be sure to check back here soon for an interview with Matt Sinclair, one of the co-creators of SPRING FEVERS.