Friday, December 13, 2013

Feature Friday: Jodi Meadows

Jodi Meadows lives and writes in the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia, with her husband, a Kippy*, and an alarming number of ferrets. She is a confessed book addict, and has wanted to be a writer ever since she decided against becoming an astronaut.

*A Kippy is a cat.

Interview:
A.L.:
What piece of advice would you give to a budding author?

Jodi:
Finish that first book. It doesn't have to be good. Just finish it. (Then revise it.)

A.L.:
What's your favorite book and why?

Jodi:
I don't have a favorite book -- singular. I have lots of favorite books, mostly in the YA fantasy and science fiction genre. Some of my recent favorites are STARGLASS by Phoebe North, DEFIANCE by C.J. Redwine, THE GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS by Rae Carson, and GRAVE MERCY by Robin LaFevers. (I'm stopping there, because if I tried to keep naming books, we'd be here all night.)

A.L.:
Where did you get the idea for the Newsoul series?

Jodi:
I shook up a bottle of soda and let it spray all over the kitchen floor. I read the story in the bubbles.

Just kidding. The getting of ideas is kind of a mysterious thing. Ideas just happen. You can practice by asking "what if?" a lot; many of my ideas begin that way, and grow as I roll them around in my thoughts and more ideas stick to them.

A.L.:
Did you hit any snags while writing the Newsoul series?  What were they and how did you fix them?

Jodi:
Nothing that seemed really insurmountable. INCARNATE was my seventeenth completed manuscript, so by that time, I sort of knew what I was doing, and that if I messed up something, I could always revise it into shape.

Though, while I don't think it was a mistake, exactly, I did write the second and third books before I finished editing the first, which meant by the time I was ready to edit book three, so many things had changed in the plot and worldbuilding that it was just easier to trash the entire first draft and start over.

A.L.:
Which one of the characters in the Newsoul series is your favorite and why?

Jodi:
Oh I don't have a favorite. It's like choosing favorite children or pets! But, of course, Ana and Sam have a special place in my heart, since they're the two main characters.

A.L.:
Can you tell us a little bit about your journey as an author?

Jodi:
As I mentioned above, I'd written sixteen manuscripts before I wrote INCARNATE, so as you can imagine, my journey to publication was, ah, long. Or it seemed very long. I started writing in 2003, got an agent in 2007, left that agent by the end of the year, and began searching for a new one. I wrote INCARNATE at the end of 2009 and got a new agent in the beginning of 2010, and sold INCARNATE that summer.

So all in all, it was really only a few years, but it it was my full-time job that didn't pay, and pretty difficult for me to get over all that rejection. (I have a pile of over 400 rejections.) But, I'm glad it happened. It gave me perspective and experience. I think I'm a better writer for the journey.

A.L.:
What are you working on now?  Sequel?  Something new?  Maybe some interesting tidbits about The Orphan Queen?

Jodi:
Right now, at this very moment when I'm answering these questions, I'm taking a short break while I wait for my edit letter on THE ORPHAN QUEEN. Before this, I was working on the first draft of its sequel. And any day now, I'm going to get my edit letter for OQ. So, to keep from having to trash the entire first draft of the second book (haha, remember when I did that with INFINITE? Yeah, good times), I'm taking a break, now that I know all the things I need to know to foreshadow properly in book 1.

Tidbits . . . The main character really likes office supplies. Specifically paper and dip pens and fancy inks.

A.L.:
You love to create yarnish things!  What's the most fantastic thing you've spun/knit/crocheted?

Jodi:
Oooh, I don't know. I really like the lacy shawl I'm working on, but I've been working on it for well over a year now -- and when I say working on, I mean I stopped working on it because it started demanding too much attention as it grew.

Um. I have some really pretty silk I spun. I like spinning silk.

A.L.:
I know it's super hard to choose just one of your ferret underlings, but if you had to feature just one of them today, who would it be and why?  What would this ferret say to the good readers?  (we like pictures)

Jodi:
Todd seems to be the most popular ferret, but Hiro has a pretty solid fan base. I don't think I could choose just one. In fact, I refuse! Here's a blurry picture of both of them together.

A.L.:
What are your feelings about the Newsoul series coming to an end?  Are you a little bittersweet or excited to move on to another chapter in your writing career?

Jodi:
Ahhh, both. I'm sad to leave Ana and Sam and the rest of the reincarnation gang, but their story is finished. I'm really, really excited to share THE ORPHAN QUEEN and all the fun people living in that story!

The Giveaway:
Jodi is offering a swag pack -- bookmark, stickers, signed bookplate -- internationally.

Infinite:  DESTRUCTION
The Year of Souls begins with an earthquake—an alarming rumble from deep within the earth—and it’s only the first of greater dangers to come. The Range caldera is preparing to erupt. Ana knows that as Soul Night approaches, everything near Heart will be at risk.

FLIGHT
Ana’s exile is frightening, but it may also be fortuitous, especially if she can convince her friends to flee Heart and Range with her. They’ll go north, seeking answers and allies to stop Janan’s ascension. And with any luck, the newsouls will be safe from harm’s reach.

CHOICE
The oldsouls might have forgotten the choice they made to give themselves limitless lifetimes, but Ana knows the true cost of reincarnation. What she doesn’t know is whether she’ll have the chance to finish this one sweet life with Sam, especially if she returns to Heart to stop Janan once and for all.

With gorgeous romance and thrilling action, the final book in the Incarnate trilogy offers a brilliant conclusion to the compelling questions of this fascinating world, where one new girl is the key to the lives of millions.


Read Goodreads reviews.
Buy on Amazon.
Buy on Barnes and Noble.

How to Enter:
Enter the giveaway using Rafflecopter. Hit the arrow buttons, follow the prompts, and hit the enter buttons when you're done. (You may have to log in using Facebook to do this). There will be one winner (selected by Rafflecopter). I will contact the winner via email.

a Rafflecopter giveaway