This weeks YA Feature author is Katilin Bevis author of Persephone. Enjoy the interview and leave a nice comment for the author!
Can you tell us a little about yourself and how you got into writing?
I've always loved writing. When I was younger I would rewrite the ending of books and shows that didn't agree with me. As I got older I found creative writing classes, and eventually majored in creative writing in college. It's not something I remember waking up one morning and deciding. I've always been a writer.
Other than writing, I'm a graduate student at UGA, happily married, and have a very cute toddler. I run a local mom's group and a writer's group, and keep myself insanely busy.
Can you tell us a little about your book Persephone?
Persephone is a modern day retelling of the Greek myth with a twist. It's a coming of age story with a big splash of supernatural thrown in. In my version Persephone didn't know she was a goddess until Boreas comes after her, and Hades rescues her. She's stuck in the Underworld all winter, and has to come to terms with her divinity and growing feelings for Hades. There's more going on in the Underworld than it seems, and some big stuff is revealed at the end. The sequel, Daughter of the Earth and Sky, is coming out in January.
Where did you get the idea for Persephone?
From the trailer of Clash of the Titans. Something about all the music, and yelling, and the whole "damn the gods" quote got me thinking. If any god was damned, it would be Persephone. In the classic version of the myth she's betrayed by Gaia (she allows Hades to open the earth), abducted by Hades, raped, held captive in the Underworld, and tricked into eating the food there. Her father witnesses the whole thing and looks the other way, only relenting to Demeter's demands she be rescued AFTER Demeter starves half the planet. And even then, she has to return every six months. It would be terrifying, sitting on the surface, knowing that you have to go back to the man that did that to you. I'd be counting down the days in dread.
That was a pretty depressing line of thought, so I started thinking of other ways it could have gone. What if we missed a bit of the myth. What if Hades hadn't taken her to be a jerk, maybe he was helping. From there all the pieces fell into place and suddenly I had an outline.
In Persephone some characters are from mythology like Hades for example. Do you like reading books involoving mythology?
All of the characters, except for the random girls at school, are from mythology. Even Persephone's best friend Melissa (Melissa was a title for Priestesses of Demeter). Pirithous, Boreas, Persephone, Demeter and every resident of the Underworld (except I think for Gloria) made an appearance at one time or another in ancient myths. Tons of research went into this book, which is exactly why I love reading books about mythology. It's very interesting to see the way a different creative mind interpreted the same facts and twisted them to suit their plot line. It's fun seeing mythical figures pop up in literature. It's seeing an old friend in an unexpected place.
Why should we read your book in one sentence?
Don't you want to know what really happened?
Some Bookie Questions:
Fave book as a child and why?
Ella Enchanted. It was a fantastic book. Best version of Cinderella ever.
Fave 2012 read and why?
Thirteen by Kelley Armstrong. It was the end of an amazing series. I love the Women of the Otherworld.
An author you would reccommend to my readers?
Scott Westerfeld. If you haven't read Uglies, download it now. He balances an amazing premise with tons of action and very solid characters.
I'm torn between dystopian future and urban fantasy. I love reading the way different authors imagine future possibilities. It's interesting to explore the potential consequences to our actions generations down the road. But on the other hand, magic and supernatural stuff is tons of fun. I read both genres to an excess.
Complete this sentence
My perfect summer day would be sitting beside the sea drinking soda, eating pizza and reading a new book
I drink way too much soda, probably eat too much pizza too, but they are delicious. It doesn't matter what I'm reading. I love the thrill of reading through a new book.
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