Today I’m featuring Katie O’Sullivan’s recent release, Son of a Mermaid, as part of her Splash into Summer blog tour! Before we get to some fun author interview questions, let’s find out more about her book.
Published May 2013 by Crescent Moon Press
YA fantasy romance
Shea MacNamara’s life just got complicated.
After a freak tornado devastates his Oklahoma farm, the fifteen-year-old orphan moves to Cape Cod to live with a grandmother he’s never met. Struggling to make sense of his new surroundings, he meets a girl along the shore who changes his life forever.
Kae belongs to an undersea world hidden from drylanders. The daughter of royal servants, she knows the planned marriage of her Princess to the foreign King should put an end to the war between the clans. Two things stand in the way of lasting peace: an ambitious Regent and rumors of a half-human child who will save the oceans.
Sparks fly when she meets Shea, but could the cute drylander really be the Son of a Mermaid?
Get your copy from Amazon today!
About the Author:
Katie O’Sullivan lives with her family and big dogs next to the ocean on Cape Cod, drinking way too much coffee and inventing new excuses not to dust. She writes YA and romantic suspense novels, and works as an editor making other people’s words sparkle. For the last four years, she’s been the Editor of CapeWomenOnline.com magazine and writes a column entitled “The Write Way.”
She hopes her debut YA novel, SON OF A MERMAID, will make a big splash this summer, engaging young readers with a Cape Cod tale of a boy who discovers both his roots and his destiny far below the waters of Nantucket Sound.
Find Katie online:
Follow her Blog: http://katieosullivan.blogspot.com
Like her on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AuthorKatieOSullivan
Find her on Twitter: https://twitter.com/OkatieO
Check out her website: http://www.katie-osullivan.com
Add Son of a Mermaid on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17184560-son-of-a-mermaid
Q: Where were you born? Are you the kind of person who likes to move around a lot, or do you prefer to live in one place?
A: I prefer to live in one place, but looking back on my life it doesn’t seem that way!
I was actually born in Fort Knox, Kentucky, while my father was stationed there, but we soon moved back to my parents’ home state of New Jersey. I grew up in a town not far from where they grew up, close to both sets of grandparents, and actually had a lot of the same high school teachers that my parents had (it was a regional school system for several very small towns!)
When I turned 18 my family moved to Vermont and bought an Inn, which was a great summer job all through college. After graduation I moved to the Boston area, met my husband, and started our family. We bought a house on Cape Cod in 2000, and moved here full time a few years after that.
Q: What sparked your interest in writing? How long have you been writing?
A: I was an early reader, and liked to write stories from a young age as well. Unfortunately all of my earliest writings are illegible as our elementary school was part of some progressive educational movement that taught us to write with the phonetic alphabet!
It really took until my daughter was in full day kindergarten for me to sit down and try to finish a book-length manuscript. And then I kept writing.
Q: What provided the inspiration for your newly released novel, Son of a Mermaid?
A: We walk the dogs along our beach almost every day. I love to watch the waves rolling and crashing. It’s easy to imagine that there must be stuff going on beneath those waves and spin stories about the merfolk that live in Nantucket Sound.
Q: I confess that most of what I know about mermaids comes from Disney. Ariel is a favorite in our house. I’m assuming your mermaids don’t swim around performing undersea concerts. What about mermaids appeals to you?
A: For as long as I can remember, I’ve been fascinated by mermaids. When I came up with the idea for these characters and these stories, I thought it would be a great opportunity for publication, since there aren’t many contemporary YA stories out there with, you know, mermaids. Sadly, most of the agents I queried weren’t on the same page. Luckily, Crescent Moon Press took a chance with me and my story. *Yea*
Q: How long did it take you to finish it? How many drafts did you write before you were satisfied?
A: LOL. This book went through many revisions. I started writing it as a side project when I was busy with edits on my first romantic suspense novel that got picked up for publication. So, I guess I started writing the first draft in 2009?
As Son of a Mermaid is my first foray into YA, I wasn’t confident at first that I understood the market and took all the advice I got in rejection letters to heart. I mean, one agent told me that there was too much violence and no one would stomach the death of a young child. That was before The Hunger Games hit it big, obviously.
In the end, I amped up my own reading of current YA and realized it’s a really wide market and the most important thing was for me to be happy with the characters and their arcs. And then find a publisher who was on the same page as me. Luckily, I found Crescent Moon Press!
Q: How would you describe your path toward publication?
A: Long, lol. When I started out I thought it would be much easier. Finishing a manuscript is a long haul, but that’s only the beginning of the work when you’re looking to be published.
Q: Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
A: Write. Just write. And find a support network outside of your spouse and immediate family. And find good hiding places for your chocolate stash, or the kids will steal it and you’ll be left in the middle of the night scouring the cabinets for stray chocolate chips…
Q: Name a few authors who have inspired you and describe why.
A: As an English major in college, I’ve felt inspired by many, many authors over the years. I’m also an insatiable reader with eclectic tastes so again, many, many inspirations out there.
Some recent books that inspired me to tackle the current YA market? Bear in mind that these books have nothing to do with mermaids, but made me realize YA could be anything I wanted it to be… Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instrument series, Scott Westerfeld’s Uglies series (and Peeps, for being an anti-Twilight view of vampires), Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight series (I know everyone knocks her books, but they are compelling and make great beach books – and I loved Host too, for the record.)
I was also reading Carl Hiasson’s YA books when I was working on Son of a Mermaid, and loved the idea of sliding some environmental messaging into a book aimed at younger readers. His HOOT, FLUSH, and SCAT books have lots of action and adventure, but also point out serious problems with how some people treat Mother Nature.
Q: What are you currently writing?
A: I just signed a contract recently for a second book about Shea MacNamara, which starts up a few weeks after book one ends. The editing process hasn’t started yet, but when that’s done I may think about a third book…
Q: Coffee, tea, or hard liquor? (or all three?)
A: All three, lol, and each has a time and place. Although, I only drink tea in the morning if I’m sick or if I’m dead out of coffee beans. Otherwise I’m a coffee-first-thing-all-morning-long type of person. Always.
Q: What books are you currently reading or on your to-be-read list?
A: just finished The Grave Winner, by Lindsey Loucks, another Crescent Moon Press author. Next on my list is The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green… but I may have to take a break from that to read the last Sookie Stackhouse book coming out. (Talk about guilty pleasures! I loved the first half of this series sooo much, but the last two haven’t been as satisfying. I’m hoping Charlaine Harris gets back on track and wraps the series up with a bang in lucky number thirteen!)
Q: And now for the bonus fluff question: If you could be a character in your one of your favorite novels, which character would you be and why?
A: Hmmm. This is an interesting question! I always wanted to be Nancy Drew when I was growing up – I even named my sailboat Sleuth, like Nancy’s boat – but looking back she was always too concerned with what Ned Nickerson wanted and needed him to rescue her. I’d rather be able to do my own rescuing sometimes, like Clary from the Mortal Instruments… although I don’t think I’d want to necessarily trade places with her, either. There’s too many secrets in her life!
Thanks so much for stopping by! And be sure to check out Katie’s book!