Hello and welcome to my stop on the Oxford Whispers tour. I have Marion Croslydon here in an interview. I hope you enjoy!
Hi Marion, and welcome to Storm Goddess Book Reviews & More! Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions.
Tell me about yourself, and your writing.
I’ve been living in London for almost 12 years. Before that I travelled a lot. I was born in West Africa, then moved to France. I studied in some amazing cities: Paris, Vienna, Berlin, Cape Town… and Oxford, where Oxford Whispers, my debut novel, is taking place.
My husband is a wonderful British gentleman. We have one daughter.
How long have you been writing? How many published books do you have, and what genres?
Oxford Whispers is my debut novel. I’m finishing Oxford Shadows, the second book in the Oxford trilogy. It will be out in May 2013, with the last installment scheduled for October 2013.
I write in the New Adult genre, also named Upper-YA, or Mature YA… or “college-lit”.
Do you write in multiple genres or just one? If just one, do you ever consider straying outside your genre?
I’m very happy writing in that genre. I have a contemporary romance scheduled to be released next July. But again, it’s New Adult, i.e. with characters in their early twenties.
Are you a plotter or do you write from the seat of your pants?
I’m a plotter. I have an outline, which I follow almost religiously. It’s nice to depart from it sometimes, but having it is a huge gain of time when the revisions start.
What is a typical writing day like for you?
I sit down and do all my admin stuff, then my social media: blogging, facebook, twitter (I love twitter). Then I write for 3 or 4 hours, and finally I edit.
I try and work on three projects at the same time: one book in writing, another in editing, and another one in promotion.
That’s the plan, at least ;-)
Who do you love to read? Favorite authors, favorite books?
Margaret Mitchell, Harper Lee, Shakespeare…
In the New Adult genre, I’m a massive fan of Tammara Webber, Abbi Glines, SC Stephens, KA Linde and Colleen Hoover.
What is something you'd like to accomplish in your writing career next year?
Keep my head above the water!
I have three books scheduled for 2013… so I’m going to be a busy lady!
If you could have one paranormal ability, what would it be?
Read people’s minds.
If you could keep a mythical/ paranormal creature as a pet, what would you have?
Edward Cullen in Twilight… Well, he’s a paranormal creature, technically….
Tell us a little about your latest release.
Oxford Whispers is the story of Madison LeBon, an American student at Oxford University, with psychic powers she prefers to ignore. But when the tragic lovers in a painting begin to haunt her, she must learn to accept her gift. Otherwise, life will imitate art and Madison's own first love will be doomed.
I’ve drawn inspiration from my own time at Oxford and my passion as a teenager for a Pre-Raphaelite painting by William Shakespeare Burton, The Wounded Cavalier. It is set during the English Civil War.
Also, there’s a strong Voodoo component through Madison—who is kind of an “Ivy-League Sookie Stackhouse”—because I was born in West Africa where Voodoo originates, and spent a lot of time in New Orleans and Louisiana.
What is something that you absolutely can't live without? (Other than family members)
Before I had a daughter and discovered what “sleep-deprived” REALLY meant, I was a tea-person (well I live in England after all)… but now, I can’t live without two pints of coffee a day.
Could you ever co-author a book with someone? If so, who would you choose, and what would you write?
I’d love that. Well, it would be with one of my favorite authors in my genre (the ones I mentioned above)… or Samantha Young. I just finished her book, On Dublin Street. I really liked it, and she’s Scottish!
If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them?
JFK! I’d ask him to make love to me… just to check what the fuss was all about ;-)
What are some of your other hobbies outside of writing?
I READ a lot. I know it sounds a bit nerdy that my life revolves around books, but it’s true. I love watching TRUE BLOOD with a very nice glass of wine… and my husband by my side.
Or late summer dinners, with some very good food, some very good wine (again), with close friends and family.
If you were on the staff to have a book adapted to movie, what would you pick?
Rrrr… I’d like to work on the adaptation of 50 Shades, or Beautiful Disaster (by Jamie McGuire, another New Adult author).
What is a talent you wish you had, but don't?
I’d love to be able to draw.
RED… It’s the latino blood in me.
Weather: Hot or cold?
HOT!!! Mucky, humid, steamy…
Favorite place to read?
Under my duvet…
Anything on a BBQ!
Favorite non-alcoholic drink.
Coke… because it’s the best thing after too many alcoholic drinks.
If you could travel anywhere and do anything, no limits or money holding you back, where would you go?
I’d leave in one of the beautiful places I visited in Louisiana.
Two star-crossed lovers in the English Civil War
A painting with haunting powers
A murderous ghost back for revenge
Madison LeBon is dead set against the dead. She has vowed to ignore her Voodoo-stamped heritage and the psychic gift passed down through her Louisiana family. The world of the living is where she wants to belong.
But her resolution shatters when the ill-fated lovers in a painting—the subject of her first history class at Oxford—begin to haunt her. The lovers warn her against their own nemesis, a Puritan from the English Civil War.
In misty present-day Oxford, Madison embarks on a quest to unravel the secrets of the past and understand her personal bond with the painting. To protect herself, she must learn to accept her gift before life imitates art, in all its tragedy.
College becomes more complicated when she falls hard for Rupert Vance, a troubled aristocrat and descendant of one of the characters in the painting.
With the spirit of a murderer in hot pursuit, Madison comes to realize that her own first love may be doomed…
Based on a real Pre-Raphaelite painting, Oxford Whispers is full of romance, drama and suspense.
Fall in love for the first time… Again
I am a true citizen of the world. I was born in West Africa, grew up in the South of France, and studied in Vienna, Paris, Berlin, Cape Town, and Oxford before finally settling down in London. This wide variety of cities has provided lots of inspiration for my writing. Talk about culture exposure!
In addition to being an author, I work as an entrepreneur, wife and mother-of-one but spend a good deal of time with books, DVDs and listening to my mp3 player; all for the sake of inspiration, of course. My debut series, The Oxford Trilogy, has been a blast to write because I can indulge in my favorite types of music: Country and English rock.
My main goal as a writer is to make readers dream bigger and cause their hearts to beat a little faster. Since my writing is all about sharing dreams and stories, I love connecting with fellow readers and authors.