Blog Tour

Welcome to my blog!

I’m so glad you could join the Blog Tour. Please take a seat and make yourself comfortable. I do apologize for the smell. Some feral cats got into this blog last week and made a mess. Yes, yes, the cats are still here, but mostly beneath the floorboards now. If you hear disturbing scratching or shrieking sounds beneath you, it is probably just those cats. Probably.

I would offer you a drink, but this is a blog and so is made of electricities (I suppose; I am not a scientist) and liquids and electricities don’t mix. That said, I do have some interesting tidbits for you! You cannot eat them, these bits of tid. But you can enjoy them. So. Let’s enjoy! Blog Tour Away!

The Monster & Mab Ipswich, courtesy of Marcela Vargas
The Monster & Mab Ipswich, courtesy of Marcela Vargas

Who came before?

My friend and fellow writer Lara Ehrlich invited me on this Tour o’ Blogs. Lara’s writing is centered on “the liminal space between adolescence and adulthood, a space imbued with restlessness, anxiety, shame, and desire.” She explores this terrifying space in both fiction, like her razor-sharp sports satire THE HERO, and in non-fiction like her hilarious pieces for The Hairpin. She blogs at LaraEhrlichWrites.com.

What am I working on?

I recently completed the first draft of my middle-grade novel-in-stories MAB IPSWICH, OR THE WICKEDEST WITCH. It’s a series of interlocking stories about a wicked, chaos-causing 11-year old girl who is the only witch at her school. It’s currently with beta readers. A few of the Mab stories have been published in the children’s lit mag Underneath the Juniper TreeAnd one Mab story will soon be turned into an audio story on the YA scifi/fantasy podcast Cast of Wonders. You can find my published Mab stories here.

copyright 2011 Elizabeth Rose Stanton
Mab Ipswich, courtesy of Elizabeth Rose Stanton

How does my work differ from others in its genre?

The biggest difference is that my book is a novel-in-stories rather than a straight novel. And the stories in the book span different genres. Some are comedic, some are horror, some are fantasy adventure, one’s a locked room mystery, one’s crime fiction, etc. Mab’s role also changes story-to-story. In some she’s the hero, in others the villain; in some she’s the main character, in others she’s a background character who sets the action in motion. The goal is that by the end, through these different character POVs, genres, and stories, you get a full picture of Mab and what makes her wickedly tick.

Mab Ipswich and Mrs. Johnson, courtesy of Stacey Byer
Mab Ipswich & Mrs. Johnson, courtesy of Stacey Byer

Why do I write what I do?

I spent two years teaching English in junior highs and elementary schools on a remote Japanese island. I really enjoyed working with kids and seeing the world through their eyes. The middle-grade age range (8-12) is a really fascinating time, I think, because it’s when you really start to perceive the shape of the world and your place in it; when you really start to become you, before you get hit with the burdens of being a teenager or an adult. For me, I remember it being when I was at my most imaginative and adventurous, exploring the woods behind our house and imagining it filled with dinosaurs, black wolves, and buried treasure. So, I enjoy reading and writing stories that deal with that time of life, with a healthy dash of magic, monsters, and mischief thrown in for good measure.

Mab Ipswich & the Ghost of Grammy Goneril, courtesy of Ken Lamug
Mab Ipswich & the Ghost of Grammy Goneril, courtesy of Ken Lamug

How does your writing process work?

I write mostly at coffee shops (I need the hum of activity and the jolt of caffeine) once or twice a week after work or on the weekend, then do editing at home. I also have a writing circle that reads my pieces and offers critiques. They are invaluable and have made me a much better writer.

Who’s next? (on March 31)

Amanda Duncil is a freelance writer who pretends to live in perpetual summer by wearing flip-flops and shorts year-round. She maintains a healthy dose of whimsy in her life by watching cartoons and reading YA books. She writes for various online platforms and can often be found advocating for gender and LGBTQIA+ equality. You can chat with her on Twitter at @amandaduncil.

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