Today we have author T.J. Wooldrige. T.J. Wooldrige releases her debut novel, The Kelpie at the end of the year though the awesome Spencer Hill Press. We also have the awesome cover for The Kelpie that has just been released! Enjoy the interview and please leave a comment below for the author on her book and the awesome cover!
The Author: T.J. Wooldridge
T. J. Wooldridge is but one of Trisha J. Wooldridge's several names and hats. Besides being a writer and editor, I'm also the president of Broad Universe (www.broaduniverse.org ), an educational feminist organization dedicated to celebrating, honoring, and promoting women writers of science fiction, fantasy, horror--and everything in between.
When not writing or being a professional geek (I work a lot of SF/F conventions), my other passion is animals. I have been known to infuriate my beloved - and otherwise made-of-awesome - husband by taking in rescues, and for over a decade, I've been a regular volunteer for the Bay State Equine Rescue (www.baystaterescue.org ), to whom I'm donating 10% of my royalties from every sale of The Kelpie. I am currently the proud mother of Nylis the Cat, Calico Silver--ex-victim of pharmaceutical equine testing, and two baby bunnies: Cameron and Vash. With Calico, I've also taken up horse geekery - showing, trail riding, and gushing like a perpetual twelve year old girl about ponies.
Outside of all that - or, often overlapping - I teach, tutor, read Tarot, hike, and play table top games with other geeks. And research myth, fairy tales, and folklore for fun.
I've just always written. I've loved writing since I could run home with vocabulary sentences in grammar school, so I've worked wordsmithing into every part of her life since -even in jobs like working a Wal-Mart register (where I scribbled short stories, poems, and bits on spare register tape) and customer service for an investment company (where I hand wrote this 800 page epic fantasy that may likely never see the light of day). Fortunately, now all of my paid work is in words: I write for a local paper, actually get invited to short story anthologies, and professionally edit.
The Book- The Kelpie
Not to jump on the "came from fan-fiction" bandwagon… but Heather, the protagonist of The Kelpie was born from a romance in my head that may, slightly, have some roots in a certain, geek-popular British television series. (Close readers will pick up on my nod to that.) Only Heather had a way more fun and containable story than her parents.
As for the kelpie, himself, Heather's antagonist, he was birthed from my love of Celtic faery tales… and equines.
Having worked with abused horses with severe mental trauma, I've had some truly frightening moments with being reared at, kicked, and run over. Add in that the kelpie is carnivorous and eats children? Now, that is a nightmare for me. The opening sequence with the horse fight has a lot of "actually happened to me!" moments, and my kelpie totally looks just like this gorgeous - yet terrifying - horse named Dancer whose mom shared her stable with me when I adopted Calico Silver.
Dancer looks like one of horses the Nazgul rode in the Lord of The Rings movies… and she ran me over, cracking my ribs and bruising my ankle bones.
(Yet, I still dragged two people I love from Spencer Hill Press for a photo shoot of her for cover planning.)
I can't honestly say I was joking when I suggested to my best friend, Joe – Prince Joseph, eldest son of England's Crown Prince – that we could probably find something the police had missed in regards to the missing children.After all, eleven and twelve year olds like us did that all the time on the telly and in the books we read…
When Heather and Joe decide to be Sleuthy MacSleuths on the property abutting the castle Heather's family lives in, neither expected to discover the real reason children were going missing:
A Kelpie.A child-eating faerie horse had moved into the loch "next door."
The two barely escape with their lives, but they aren't safe. Caught in a storm of faerie power, Heather, Joe, and Heather's whole family are pulled into a maze of talking cats, ghostly secrets, and powerful magick.
How does it feel to be releasing your debut novel in 2013?
If we were in person, you'd see this ridiculously goofy grin and glassy, teary eyes, hear this hardly-surpressed "eeeeee" noise…and possibly wonder how my feet weren't touching the ground… or how a human might bounce so much.
Can you describe your protangnist Heather in less than 140 Characters?
"Everyone I love has their own problems. I must protect them and any other kid from this monster I made angry, but am I turning into a monster if I do what must be done?"
Why should we pick up Kelpie when it releases in December?
Do it for the children! The ones who hopefully won't get drowned and mauled and eaten by an evil faery horse... if Heather can help it.
Some bookie Questions:
Favourite YA book and why?
A Swiftly Tilting Planet by Madeleine L'Engle. It has a unicorn. Well, that is why I picked it up. It had a kid riding a flying unicorn on the cover! And I was horse crazy… well, I have been for quite some time.
After picking it up with the cover, I was thrilled to discover a book set in modern times with a rather peculiar, yet realistic, family with kids who had issues, and it was the first book that showed me that faith, magic, and science could all live in harmony. Add to that time travel and a wicked awesome poem with a power that I can still feeldeep within me whenever I read it.
Favourite YA author and why?
Madeleine L'Engle. For all the reasons I mentioned loving A Swiftly Tilting Planet. I started picking up all of her books and found real people living in a real world - where magic, faith, and science all worked together.
Debut author/ upcoming author we should check out?
That's HARD! I edited several different debut authors from Spencer Hill Press who I loved so much I demanded we take them on and then read each book multiple times over - never waning in my love for them!!
Can I just cop out say check out the Spencer Hill Press (And Spence City, our urban fantasy imprint) line-up so I don't accidentally end up looking like I have "favorites"?? Seriously - I'm excited about so many books!
Favourite 2012 read and why?
That's another hard one that I'm specifically leaving my authors out of the running for, because, really, some of them really are my favorites - more than some published reading.
I finally read TheHunger Games and really enjoyed it. I'm waiting on the other books until after the movies because, usually, I enjoy books more so reading after the movie means I'm less likely to suffer disappointment over something. Though, I have to say I'm just as happy with the movie as the book in Hunger Gamescase.
I really enjoyed Kristi Petersen Schoonover's Bad Apple, which is not remotely YA… but wonderfully dark and twisted. Also, Phoebe Wray's J2, which isn't marketed at YA, but could pass.. it's the sequel to her debut science fiction dystopia JEMMA7729, which I also re-read this year.
I also read and re-read (and re-read and re-read thanks to having many nieces and nephews of the "read it to me again!" age) two children's books I simply adore. Emilie P. Bush's Her Majesty's Explorer: A Steampunk Bedtime Story and Steamduck Learns to Fly.
Sorry… I suck at "pick your favorite" questions…:(
A Book series you love and why?
Madeleine L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time series. I know it has another, more official name, but it's the one with A Wrinkle in Time, A Wind in the Door, A Swiftly Tilting Planet, and Many Waters. It's my "comfort" series that I've read more times than I can count - and that I can come away with something new every time.
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