Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Interview with Carolyn MacCullough, author of Once A Witch

Interview with Carolyn MacCullough

I've been holding onto this interview for a good time post it and now seems like a perfect time with Ms. MacCullough's newest novel Always A Witch, coming out August 1, 2011. So here's an interview setting you up for this exciting sequel!

1) Once A Witch is filled with so many different elements-- witches, time travel and suspense to name a few. How did you come up with the concept?  

I love a  good witch story and I always wanted to tackle time travel, but it can get tricky.  I did make my own head spin a few times since the central idea of the book is whatever you change in the past can have huge consequences or echoes in the future.  I like the idea that time isn't linear, but more like overlapping circles and that all times exist side by side, but unseen.

2) I found it really interesting that we knew who the antagonist was pretty early on in the book. I liked that you worked with what he was doing and how it was going to all work out for suspense rather than the good old "who-dun-it". Was this always how you planned to write the novel or is it something that just sort of came about? 

I did always plan to have the bad guy known as the bad guy.  Even from the very first scene there are hints that he's not who he seems to be.  While I love a good "who-dun-it" this time I was more interested in writing about my main character, Tamsin's motivations for pretending to be someone else and then the consequences of that lie.

3) If you could go back and re-write your novel (for fun) in any other character's perspective, who would you choose and why?  

Oh, definitely Gabriel (Tamsin's best friend and love interest!)  I have such a crush on him! (me too!)

4) Did you cut anything out during the editing process that you were particularly fond of? Was there anything added during novel revisions that you loved?  

I was lucky enough to have such a great editor that when I did cut a scene that I loved (between Tamsin and her best friend Agatha) she protested so much that I put it back in (and am so glad that I did).  The ending changed quite a bit during revisions--originally, it ended on such a cliffhanger that I think readers would have thrown rotten fruit at me had I left it that way!

5) I really loved Tam and Gabriel as a pair. They matched each other very well and their banter was one of my favorite things about the novel. Was there any scene or line that you are particularly partial to?  

Yes!  I love the moment when he asks her out on a date (this is after they've returned from traveling back to 1899) and she says:

“I don’t know.  I mean, you just took me back, like, a hundred years.  Dinner would probably be so . . . anticlimactic now.”   There is a small silence and finally I dare to look up at him. 

One eyebrow jabs upward.  “If you and I went out on a date, the last thing it would be is anticlimactic.”

7) Have you read anything lately that you love?  

I just finished The Passage by Justin Cronin--government experiments on convicts gone awry that create a new super breed of vampire that causes the apocalypse--wow, it was so good.  I can't wait for the sequel!

8) Do you have a favorite place to write? Is there anything essential to your writing process that you can't live without?  

I like writing in cafes.  I just can't write at home.  I'll end up baking brownies, doing the laundry, dusting the ceilings, anything to procrastinate.

9) I know you are working on Always A Witch which is do out in August 11th. Can you tell us anything about what to expect?  

More time travel, spy work, the evil Knights rising.  Oh, and Tamsin makes Gabriel very, very annoyed with her so of course they have to make up!

10) Are you working on anything else new currently? 

 Mulling over a new idea--it would be a paranormal YA this time involving the ocean.

Thanks so much to the wonderful Carolyn MacCullough for agreeing to do this interview! Stay tuned to win a copy of Once A Witch later this week!


  1. Brilliant interview! I've been looking into reading this a lot lately, and it's great to see how the author thinks :)

  2. Fab interview! I can't wait to start reading both books! I think it's interesting a lot of writers write in cafes. I don't think I could do that. I usually like peace and quiet. Wow! I didn't know that's what The Passage was about. I'm totally reading that now :)

  3. Hi Carolyn :)
    I'm reading The Passage right now. It is a good read (thus far).
    All the best,

  4. Great interview. I'm also getting ready to read the Passage. It looks great!

  5. Great interview! When I first saw the beautiful cover and what the story was about I was really interested in it, and the interview is so great that I want the book now!

    Witches, time travel and suspense... it looks awesome!

  6. Okay, so witches, time travel and in the sequel - evil Knights? I SO need to start this series! So glad I read this interview because Once A Witch has definitely been bumped up on my wishlist.

    Great interview - loved the little teaser she posted from the book. And it's interesting that we know the bad guy from the start - can't wait to see how it all turns out!

  7. Ooh, this sounds awesome! Witches are SO underdone in YA these days. We liked Harry Potter for a reason, people!

    Plus, Carolyn seems so lovely. :) Consider it on my TBR pile!

  8. This sounds like a really great witch book! I'm also happy you liked Passage. I have yet to read it but want to really bad ;)

  9. This sounds like such a good read and It is good to know that writer can and often do fall for their characters! Great interview

  10. The quote from Tam was a good one. I think I would feel the same way if I had just gotten done time traveling.

  11. I always enjoy getting to know the author behind the books. I enjoy books about witches and time travel so Once A Witch sounds like a book I would really enjoy.

  12. Wow great interview! I love books about witches, so Once A Witch sounds really good!

  13. Great interview. The book sounds so great. I can't wait to get my hands on it!

  14. I haven't really heard of these books before now but I'm definitely going to check them out! Thank you for the interview. I especially liked that little clip, it's very cute!

  15. That scene alone makes me want to read the book already D:


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