Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Interview with Megan Thomason, Author of daynight

Megan, welcome to Hardcover Feedback!
Thanks for hosting daynight!
Would you tell us a little about yourself?
I’m a happily married mother of five. Our family moved to San Diego from the Seattle area a few years back to escape the less desirable weather there :). I had a successful stint in the software industry, which I left after becoming pregnant with child #4. I thrive on hard work, drive too fast, eat too much sugar, and have a severe allergy to housework and paperwork (a non issue, due to my excellent prioritization skills that moves those things to the bottom of the list).
What is a typical day like for you?
Get my kids ready for and then take them to school (the state of California eliminated school buses from their bloated budget ages ago… so much better to have every parent driving their kids I guess?). Write, promote, or work on another project until it is time to pick them up. Occasionally, by necessity, I have appointments or errands to run. Take kids to and from activities (sports, theatre, etc.). Read on my phone while doing any sort of waiting. Hopefully, make a homemade meal and spend some time with husband and kids after, interspersed with more writing and/or reading.
When did you begin writing Daynight?  What inspired this book and how much research was involved in writing it?
I started in 2008 and drafts done in early 2009. The inspiration for the book came as I hiked the canyons of San Diego on a particularly hot day. I pondered what would happen if temperatures were so extreme that days and nights had to be switched. This became the impetus for Thera, the main setting for daynight. I researched the extreme temperatures would have on the environment and what a society would have to do to adapt to it. Even the lingo was affected… Monnight, Tuesnight, etc.; daygowns instead of nightgowns; daymares and more… I had a lot of fun with it. daynight's story is complex, so I plotted the whole thing out and then adjusted continually as I went along and had better ideas.
What or who made the biggest influence on you wanting to become a writer?
My husband, actually. I’ve always loved to write (even enjoyed writing essays in college), but it wasn’t until my husband decided to write a middle grade novel and I helped with plotting and editing that I got interesting in writing my own. 
What was the first book you ever wrote about and was it ever published?
I wrote my first book, a teen romantic comedy called the thin veil for my daughters and their friends. They loved the book, so upon their request I wrote two sequels, the thin line and thin skin. Immediately thereafter I came up with the much more ambitious project of daynight. Since being absorbed in the world of Thera and characters of daynight, I haven’t been able to switch gears to go back and get that original trilogy ready to publish. I love the characters and stories, but the writing isn’t up to my current standard.
Do you have any writing habits that people might find unusual?
I write everything on my 11” MacBook Air and will literally write anywhere. Son’s basketball game. In the car while in line to pick up my kids from school. Chiropractor office. Sometimes, I feel an intense need to chew while thinking and so I have a serious love/hate relationship with Hot Tamales. We will break up for up to two years at a time, but always find our way back to each other.
Do you have a favorite character or one that is especially close to your heart?
I like comedic, sarcastic characters, so I’m going to say Jax. He’s a minor character, but is charming, has a unique brand of double speak, is great eye candy, and much more important to the overall story of daynight than people may realize (though it shall become apparent in book 2, arbitrate ;)). I’m naturally sarcastic and had to really hold back on daynight’s main female character, Kira. If I’d made her like me The Second Chance Institute (totalitarian leader of Thera) would have killed her off within a day :).
Do you have a favorite quote? If so, what is it and why is it your favorite?
I’m not really a quote person (my mother’s continually recitation of Murphy’s Law ruined me). But I love this quote from Brave New World… "Actual happiness always looks pretty squalid in comparison with the overcompensations for misery. And, of course, stability isn't nearly so spectacular as instability. And being contented has none of the glamour of a good fight against misfortune, none of the picturesqueness of a struggle with temptation, or a fatal overthrow by passion or doubt. Happiness is never grand." —Aldous Huxley 
I can’t say I agree that happiness isn’t grand, but the alternative does make for compelling reading and writing!
What is the best gift you have ever received, do you still have it and who gave it to you?
My wedding ring… my husband. 
What is something that you have always wanted to do, but just haven't gotten around to it yet?
African safari. 
If you were stranded on a deserted island, other than basic necessities, what three items would you hope to find in your suitcase to help make your time there more bearable?
Solar powered generator to power my laptop and iPhone. If I’m stranded, I could get an awful lot of writing done. And I have thousands of books on my iPhone and could use it to keep in touch (I have to assume that one of the basic necessities is internet access ;)). 
What is your all-time favorite book?
I have read thousands of books, so very difficult to pick one (The Hobbit, From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, The Phantom Tollbooth, Pride and Prejudice, Hunger Games, Crime and Punishment, 1984 each were at various points in time). But, the book I’m probably re-read the most is my scriptures and I learn something new every time I read them so, I’ll go with that.  
Other than yourself, who is your favorite author?
Another tough one to narrow down. I’ll go with J.R.R. Tolkien for being able to come up with such a completely immersive world. 
If a TV show was based on your life, what type of TV show would it be (i.e., comedy, drama, suspense, etc.) who would you choose to play the leading character (you), and what would the theme song be? Why?
My life could be spun as a dark comedy, comedy, or drama. Elizabeth Banks or Tina Fey. Radioactive by Imagine Dragons. In our family there’s always drama (sometimes dark), but we spend a lot of time laughing about it. Our dinners in particular are right out of a comedy show.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
Besides writing… Spend time with my husband and kids. Date night with my husband (every week religiously). Read. Projects; always have one (from bizarre: world class weapons collection to useful: organize Gala fundraiser for daughters’ theatre group). Community service.
Are you an early bird or a night owl?
Night owl. 
What is your favorite TV show and/or movie?
TV: Vampire Diaries (though Revenge, Nashville & The Good Wife are right up there). I don’t have much time to watch… am way behind this season. Movie: Schindler’s List
If you could spend the day with anyone (living or dead, real or fictional - excluding Jesus, family, and friends), who would you choose and how would you spend the day?
I’m not a huge Harry Potter fanatic, but it would be cool to spend the day with Harry and Dumbledore touring Hogwarts and Diagon Alley, learning some magic, and seeing some magical creatures (it would be a packed day). 
If you had the opportunity to go anywhere you wanted, at anytime in history, where would you go and why?
Ancient Egypt. I was obsessed with the ancient Egyptian civilization when I was a kid. I’d love to see the pyramids and Luxor in their original splendor, as well as the Pharos, giant lighthouse and one of the original seven wonders of the world.
What are you currently working on?
I’m simultaneously promoting daynight and writing the sequel, arbitrate, targeted for a summer 2013 release. In addition, I’m writingB*Lies, the story of a girl who makes the decision to run from her abusive father. If I ever get any spare time I will do a re-write on my original trilogy, the thin veil, the thin line, and thin skin. 
Where can people connect with you online?
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6578897.Megan_Thomason
Twitter: https://twitter.com/megan_thomason
Facebook fan page: http://www.facebook.com/daynight.series 

Thank you so much Megan for being on Hardcover Feedback!
Thank you for having me!
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To find out more about Daynight and to enter a giveaway for a copy of it, Insurgent by Veronica Roth & a $50 Amazon gift card go HERE.

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