Monday, 29 February 2016

Getting to Know the Authors: Featuring Colleen Oakes!

   Colleen Oakes is the author of books for both teens and adults, including The Elly in Bloom Series, The Queen of Hearts Saga (Harper Collins 2016) and The Wendy Darling Saga. 
    She lives in North Denver with her husband and son and surrounds herself with the most lovely family and friends imaginable. When not writing or plotting new books, Colleen can be found swimming, traveling or totally immersing herself in nerdy pop culture. She currently at work on a standalone novel and another YA fairytale series.
    You can visit her webpage at:
     Find her on Facebook under Author Colleen Oakes or follow her on Twitter @ColleenBlooms.

What she has written:
Elly in Bloom (The Elly in Bloom #1), 
Queen of Hearts (Queen of Hearts, #1), 
Wendy Darling: Stars,
The Wonder (Queen of Hearts, #2), 
Elly In Love (The Elly in Bloom #2), 
and Wendy Darling: Volume 2: Seas.

Now on to the Interview!!!
1) How old were you when you started writing, in your opinion?
  I remember being interested in writing as early as fourth grade. I had a teacher, Miss Brown, who really encouraged me in that area. I earned my B.A in Creative Writing in college, but I didn't really take writing seriously until I was thirty years old, when I made a New Year's Resolution with a friend to write a book that year.

2) What do you want a reader to gain from reading your works?
 I would hope that readers would find themselves lost in a different world, inhabiting a character who somehow both a wild stranger and a good friend.

3) What are your three top suggestions on becoming an author, or being a pleasure writer?
   First, you need the right tools. Find yourself a laptop you love, earbuds and at least six or so hours to really get into your writing.  Two, research your genre before starting. Know your word count and what trends have already passed. If you have a great idea, chase it down like mad, because there is probably someone else with a similar idea out there.  Three, read. Read all the time.  If you aren't reading for pleasure, than you can't expect others to read your book for pleasure - why would they?

4) What is your favorite novel, why?
 My favorite classic novel is Jane Eyre. I love the current of Gothic horror that runs through this very buttoned-up, very religious story.  I reread it every year.

5) Who is your favorite author, why?
  I have a few, but the one that comes to mind today is Ann Patchett. State of Wonder was the best book I've read in a long time. That scene with the snake- I can shiver just thinking about it.  Patchett writes with such lyrical, bold strokes and yet her stories are so straight - like an arrow to the heart. She is one of a few writers that I aspire to. Also, if I met her in person I would probably go completely fangirl and make a total fool of myself.

6) What are your favorite past times besides writing?
  I love traveling, reading, spending time with my husband and son, swimming and keeping up with nerdy pop-culture.  Chocolate is also great.

7) Who in your life do you credit your imagination to the most? 
  My parents, who never gave an age limit on using my imagination.

8) What are the top five things on your bucket list?
 Traveling to the U.K and Italy, being able to spend summers in Kauai, to own a swimming pool, to pet a manatee, and to meet Christian Bale at some point, whether pre-meditated or accidentally.

9) What is your funniest childhood memory?
 Well, I did once tell my mother that my little sister was in the car when she actually wasn't, which caused my mother to leave her at school and drive all the way home before noticing.  They still talk about it. I'm a much better sister these days.

10) To the youth of today, if you could tell them one thing, what would it be? 
 That reading books is the best drug that will ever come their way. It's an escape, it's a release and that if they want to experience something exciting and independent, they need look no further than their bookcase.

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