What inspired your first novel, and what was your drive to finish it at such a young age?
“The first novel? I don’t know what caused me to want to write a novel but I’ve been writing as far back as I can remember. Like, in first grade I had these leather portfolios full of stories. It’s just always been something that I’ve done, so it just kind of felt natural. Like, ‘hey, I’ve written a lot, I should do a book now!”
You’ve since published four other novels – do you have any new projects coming up?
“I’ve been working on one since November of last year, and hopefully will be writing the rest of it November of this year. If all goes according to plan I’d like to release that in July of 2016.”
Can you give us a teaser? Is it different than your other work?
“It’s very, very different. It’s a different genre than I’m used to writing, that’s half the battle. I guess the best way to describe it is dystopian society.”
What was the easiest and most difficult part of writing this new novel?
“The most difficult part is the world building aspect, because I’ve never done anything than realistic fiction, which is set in this world and works the way that it does. But with this one I had to create an entirely new one, and you have to think about everything. All previous experiences help me. I know that I have the ability and the drive to sit down and write something of this length. I guess the easiest part was that I was so in love with the idea, I didn’t get as frustrated as I could.”
You’re not just a novelist. Recently you’ve started a new blog, will you tell me about that?
“It’s a blog where I teach people of the college and young adult age how to cook and go grocery shopping and make a budget for food and other skills involved in feeding oneself.”
What led you to create this blog?
“Since coming to college it has occurred to me that no everybody knows how to do so. A surprising amount of people are helpless in the kitchen! I think that it’s an important skill, but also that as young adults going through this transitional period in our lives that we doing be doing more to help each other, and more working together than working against one another.”
You’re also a musician – are you working on any musical projects right now?
“Yes, but I don’t know what! I guess I’m starting another band, but that hasn’t exactly met yet, so it’s still very much in the works.”