Hi everyone! I have Samantha Shannon, New York Times bestselling author of The Bone Season, on the blog today! Get to know to know more about Samantha and her books in this exclusive interview!
1. When did you realize that you wanted to be a writer?
When I was about twelve or thirteen.
2. How did you come up with the idea for The Bone Season?
I was working in London in the district of Seven Dials in Covent Garden in 2011. There are a few stores in the area that sell crystal balls and tarot cards and offer psychic readings, and I came up with the idea of a society of clairvoyants living in London. Then I had an image of a girl having the same day at work that I was having, but she happened to be clairvoyant. I combined that with a previous idea I’d had about supernatural creatures controlling Oxford, and ‘The Bone Season’ was born.
3. What made you decide to write fantasy?
It provides the best opportunities for worldbuilding, which is the part of writing I most enjoy.
4. What were the challenges you encountered while writing the first book in the Bone Season series?
The biggest challenging was explaining the world to readers, and it did involve a fair bit of exposition in the end. I thought it was important for readers to get to grips with the rules quickly, even if there had to be a few pages of explanation before I jumped into the plot.
5. What is the best part in building the world of the Bone Season series?
Creating the alternate history and thinking about how the events of the past impact on Paige’s world. I love taking bits of the Victorian era and mixing them into the futuristic milieu of Scion London.
6. What song best describes the series?
‘Merchant Prince’ by Thomas Bergersen.
7. What makes a good storyteller?
Someone who can make you turn the page.
8. Would you consider writing a novel in a different genre? If so, what would it be and why?
Definitely. I don’t want to restrict myself to just one category. Generally speaking I’m quite anti-genre; I like to mix and match. I’d be particularly interested in veering towards sci-fi, high fantasy or steampunk.
9. The Mime Order is the second book in the Bone Season series coming out on October 21st 2014. What can readers look forward to it?
New characters, old characters, a deeper look at the world of Scion London and the clairvoyant underworld, and lots more.
10. What is your advice to young writers who aspire to be like you?
Write the story you want to write. Trust your own voice and your gut instinct first. Most importantly, don’t let anyone tell you that you’re writing is too experimental or unusual, or that your way of writing is “wrong”. There is no right or wrong way to build a world or write a story.
Samantha Shannon’s books:
It is the year 2059. Several major world cities are under the control of a security force called Scion. Paige Mahoney works in the criminal underworld of Scion London, part of a secret cell known as the Seven Seals. The work she does is unusual: scouting for information by breaking into others’ minds. Paige is a dreamwalker, a rare kind of clairvoyant, and in this world, the voyants commit treason simply by breathing.
But when Paige is captured and arrested, she encounters a power more sinister even than Scion. The voyant prison is a separate city—Oxford, erased from the map two centuries ago and now controlled by a powerful, otherworldly race. These creatures, the Rephaim, value the voyants highly—as soldiers in their army.
Paige is assigned to a Rephaite keeper, Warden, who will be in charge of her care and training. He is her master. Her natural enemy. But if she wants to regain her freedom, Paige will have to learn something of his mind and his own mysterious motives.
The Bone Season introduces a compelling heroine—a young woman learning to harness her powers in a world where everything has been taken from her. It also introduces an extraordinary young writer, with huge ambition and a teeming imagination. Samantha Shannon has created a bold new reality in this riveting debut.
*Photo and synopsis from Goodreads
Paige Mahoney has escaped the brutal penal colony of Sheol I, but her problems have only just begun: many of the fugitives are still missing and she is the most wanted person in London.
As Scion turns its all-seeing eye on Paige, the mime-lords and mime-queens of the city’s gangs are invited to a rare meeting of the Unnatural Assembly. Jaxon Hall and his Seven Seals prepare to take center stage, but there are bitter fault lines running through the clairvoyant community and dark secrets around every corner.
Then the Rephaim begin crawling out from the shadows. But where is Warden? Paige must keep moving, from Seven Dials to Grub Street to the secret catacombs of Camden, until the fate of the underworld can be decided. Will Paige know who to trust? The hunt for the dreamwalker is on.
*Photo and synopsis from Goodreads
Calling all Bone Season fans in NYC! Samantha Shannon is coming to your city!