by Jo Schneider
Series: Jagged Scars #1
Publication date: May 20th 2015
Genre: Post-apocalyptic, Science Fiction
Sixteen year old Wendy never knew the world before the Starvation. She’s learned to put her trust in her knives, and her confidence in her fighting ability. When the Skinnies attack her compound, she’s the lone survivor.
Injured and near death, Wendy is rescued and nursed back to health by mysterious strangers. Her saviors offer her a place among them, but trust has never been one of Wendy’s strengths, and suspicion soon leads to evidence that these people might be the group who killed her family.
The decision to get her revenge, and take the settlement down from the inside out is easy. Keeping her distance from those she must befriend in order to make it happen proves to be much more difficult.
What does your writing process look like?
Imagine a desk, and at one end is a neat, little pile of papers. Next to that is another pile, this one not quite so tidy. Maybe one paper is slipping off the stack, which leads the eye to an array of notes that may have been, at one time, in a pleasing fan shape, but now looks like someone gave it a noogie. This is usually where you will discover the discarded wrappers of whatever snacks I could find. A glass with the glazed on remains of a Diet Coke will be sitting on a Dr. Who coaster, and the little cup for pens will be empty, because the pens are now hiding under the papers. When your eyes reach the keyboard, you’ll see that everything has been pushed aside to make room for me playing of Facebook.
What book do you wish you could have written?
Ender’s Game. That book has captured so many people’s imaginations, I would love to have been the person to have written it. Plus, Ender’s Game sits somewhere in the middle of commercial fiction and literary fiction, a place I hope to venture someday.
How important are names in your books? Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds or the meaning? Do you have any other name choosing resources you recommend?
Names are very important, and I’m sometimes horrible at finding just the right one. Ages ago, I bought a baby name book–a book that my fiance packed up when we got married and moved in together and was a little concerned about–and I often use that to find names. Sometimes I look at meanings. Often I will end up with names that all sound the same (one syllable for instance) or all start with the same letter. When that starts to happen, I find a letter I haven’t used and I flip open the book. Sometimes I use the web too. Especially if I need, say, legitimate last name from Africa .
In my first novel, New Sight, I couldn’t think of a name for the bad guys, so I named them the New until I came up with something better. By the time I got finished writing the book, the New had stuck. It’s a dumb name, but now it’s theirs.
What do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment?
This one is easy, and maybe you’re expecting me to say “Finishing my first manuscript!”, but that’s not it at all. While writing isn’t easy, it’s something that I can do. What I struggled for six years to get is my black belt in Shaolin Kempo. I’m a round girl–always have been–and I had to put some seriously hard, physical effort into every single thing I did at the dojo. I can write all day, but ask me to do a push up, and I still inwardly roll my eyes and do them from my knees. So yeah, black belt. I’m pretty proud of that.
What is your biggest fear?
The dark. No, wolves. No, the lack of toilet paper in the apocalypse.
What super talents do you have?
I’m killer at writing dialogue.
I’m really good at making people feel stupid (the question didn’t say good super talents).
I’m good at diffusing tense situations. With either humor or logic.
Sometimes I think I’m around to look dumb, just so other people can feel good about themselves.
When you walk into a book store, where do you head first?
Fantasy and Sci-Fi. Either adult or YA. Whichever I find first. Although if there is a cafe, I might get a snack before I start. Looking at books is both exhilarating and exhausting.
Describe yourself in four words.
Evil and easily amused.
Top ten snacks while writing.
Soda Stream Cola on ice. I can’t get enough
Pretzel Thins, they go great with the cola
Those little Cadbury crack eggs
Rice Cakes-Carmel Corn is preferred
In-N-Out Burger or Pace’s Dairy Ann, whichever is closer
Any innocent chocolate that doesn’t get hidden
In reality, if there are snacks, I’m not writing, so usually I keep water or cola at my desk and that’s it. Mostly cold water.
~About the Author~
Author of Babes in Spyland, New Sight-YA fantasy out April 2014, wearer of a black belt in Kempo and always in search of the next cool place to visit!
Jo’s Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads
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