Welcome to The Tale of Mally Biddle Author M.L. LeGette! Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer some questions about your life and book!
Melissa LeGette lives in Georgia where she helps run a family farm, so her nails are a fright. The Tale of Mally Biddle is her second novel.
The Tale of Mally Biddle Interview with M.L. LeGette:
Do you bake? If so, box or from scratch?
I used to bake more often than I do know. After a few meltdowns in the kitchen the mixer and I took some well needed time apart. When I do bake I always do it from scratch. I’m not a box mix girl.
Do you have plans for a new book? Goals for future projects?
My upcoming novel is Quest for Milo. I’m really excited about it. It follows the adventure of two 12 year olds as they scurry around the countryside collecting ingredients to a rare potion. They’re oil and water and spend a lot of time learning to love each other. I’ve got my fingers crossed it will be published next year. I haven’t yet decided which project (I’ve got a lot of them) will be the next one I focus on, but right now I’m leaning toward one that’s set in a maze. I’ve pretty energized about it. It’s going to be … twisted.
Did you lose any characters along the way?
As in characters who died in the novel or characters who were scratched from the manuscript? There are characters who do die in the Tale of Mally Biddle. It actually opens with a lot of death. Three people die in the first chapter. But you know, I don’t think any character was removed before the final version. That’s new for me!
Which of your characters is most/least like you, and in what way(s)?
Of all the characters I think I’m most like Mally. Our temperaments are very similar. But this isn’t something that I do on purpose. I’ve never sat down and said, “Right. This character is going to be so-and-so who really annoys me.” But my own traits and the people close to me do tend to leak out into my writing. I’ll notice that a character will have the same nervous habit that I do or that a character’s hair is similar to someone I know. Small things like that.
At what point in your life did you decide you wanted to be a writer?
When I was 15/16. It was my mom, actually who suggested the profession. I was busily penning my first novel and telling her all about it when she asked, “Melissa what do you want to do when you grow up?” I said, “I don’t know.” (And I really didn’t.) She then said, “Why don’t you be a writer?” The question rather blew me away. It had never dawned on me that I could be a writer. But it was so obvious. I haven’t looked back since.
If you could get front row tickets to watch any performance live, who would you like to go see?
The Phantom of the Opera. That one never gets old.
Facebook or Twitter?
Facebook. I just can’t wrap my brain around Twitter.
What inspired you to write your first book?
I wasn’t doing much of anything. I was sitting outside in my backyard, thinking of nothing in particular, when I suddenly wanted to write a story. Simple as that. The main character of the novel popped into my head and it flowed from there. My first book in particular was heavily inspired by the movie adaptation of Peter S. Beagle’s The Last Unicorn. My early childhood WAS that movie.
Who designed the cover of your book?
Ileana Hunter did the artwork. The reference photo was done by Sergiu Cioban.
Have you ever suffered from writer’s block? If so, what did you do about it?
I think everyone faces the block. When I think of writer’s block, I think of lack of inspiration. When this happens, I generally take a break from the book and don’t spend any time thinking about it at all. This time away (the period varies) helps recharge my batteries and I always go back to it when I’m ready. I’ve also experimented with revising earlier chapters, hoping that inspiration will strike by rereading. This does help, but not all the time.
What is your favorite genre to read/write?
I love to write fantasy. It’s always been my comfort genre, even when I read. From the very beginning when I was exploring books, fantasy had a way of grabbing me that other genres just couldn’t do.
What book are you reading now?
The Flame in the Mist by Kit Grindstaff.
What’s the last truly great book you read?
Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke. That is really an impressive book.
How do you react to a bad review?
In the beginning, badly. It’s part of the job — you’re not going to please everybody — but negative reactions are still really hard to swallow. The good news is that I’ve gotten better at swallowing. If I’m really hurt or annoyed by a review I go on a truly spectacular tirade in the safety of my own home, surrounded by my family who happily cheer me on. This tends to help me deal with my pent up emotions and move on and no one (really) gets hurt.
What does your workspace look like?
I usually work at the dinning room table. I’ve tried to work in my bedroom, in squishy chairs, at desks, on the floor … but the kitchen table works best. I can prop my feet up in one of the chairs, have multiple glasses of tea (or hot cocoa), spread out any notes and not feel crowded.
Tell everyone where they can go to stay up to date on your latest news!
My blog: http://mllegette.com/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/M-L-LeGette/119655051430835 I’m on Twitter: https://twitter.com/MelissaLeGette And Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/melissalegette/
Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?
I’d like to say ‘thank you’ for being part of the tour and allowing me to answer your questions. People like you make spreading the word about my novels downright fun.
The Tale of Mally Biddle
When Mally Biddle agreed to spy upon the King of Lenzar and his overbearing knights she knew she was heading into danger. She didn’t know she’d find a family unlike any other.
Posing as a servant in Bosc Castle, Mally serves tea and tends fires for the most dangerous men in the kingdom. Her goal is to learn the truth of what happened sixteen years ago, when the infant princess met her death … a death that is surrounded by more questions than answers.
Along her search for the truth, Mally meets the energized Lita Stump, the strict and matriarchal Meriyal Boyd, and the opinionated Archibald Diggleby. Then of course there are the knights: Leon Gibbs who is slicker than a greased hog, Adrian Bayard, hot tempered and violent, and the worst of the lot: Sir Illius Molick, Captain of the Knights. And then there is Maud, a mysterious woman who just might know everything…
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