Answering your writing & blogging questions (Part 1)

Last week we said we’d answer all your writing, reading and blogging questions. There were quite a few so we’ve split them.
Part 2 will be tomorrow.

What book would you save from a burning building?
Question by Emma CarrollThe Snow Kitten by Nina Warner Hooke
DENISE: The book I’m currently working on. In other words, my computer!

LUNA: The Snow Kitten by Nina Warner Hooke. Despite all the special books I have (there are some personalised signed copies I would cry if I lost) this book is special for another reason. It’s a battered second-hand copy my mum bought and used to read to me. It’s one of the few things that made the journey to the UK after my parents died and that’s why it’s special.

Do you think authors should/shouldn’t read reviews? How about responding to them? (I’m assuming polite responses if any.)
Question by Alexia Casale
DENISE: It’s impossible not to. The only reply should be a thank you for good reviews – everyone is entitled to their opinion.

LUNA: I think it would be awfully hard for an author not to read reviews, especially with things like Twitter and Goodreads and as a book blogger I do really appreciate a “thank you” tweet. It’s the reactions to negative reviews that tend get out of hand. I appreciate that having something you’ve worked on (sometimes for years) criticised hurts but once it’s in the public domain it’s out of your control.

When you are starting a novel do you have a set routine for writing everyday?
Question by Linda Green
DENISE: In an ideal world, my routine would be stay in bed and write. Ah, to dream. My writing fits in around my life. I get most done when my kids are at school. But that’s OK. The best ideas often come when I’m doing something else e.g. driving, walking the dog, swimming, cooking.

I’m always so impressed by the number of books you read! Do you read faster than most people, and if so, do you think that’s a key skill for a book blogger?
Question by Yangsze Choo
LUNA: My reading speed increased when I began blogging but after this summer (I wasn’t very well) it’s gone down. Some books are easier to read quickly but I can get through a 300(ish) page book in an evening which is quite good. Reading quickly helps but I don’t think it’s a key skill.

Which character were you most like as a teen?
Question by Aoife Carton
DENISE: I’m going to choose a character from the Butterfly Novels because I know Alex, Rachel and Sarah better than any others. I was most like Rachel – who is very down to earth, a good friend but is never going to set the world on fire.

LUNA: Cherokee Brown (Finding Cherokee Brown by Siobhan Curham), before she has her transformation.

Which character would you most liked to have been like as a teen?
Question by Aoife Carton
DENISE: Alex – who says it as it is and doesn’t suffer fools lightly.

LUNA: Jeane Smith from Adorkable by Sarra Manning, I think she is amazing.

Do you ever see real people around now, that remind you of any of the characters (I do!!!!)
Question by Aoife Carton
DENISE: OK, so we need to talk! I’m trying to think. Alex, Sarah and Rachel are all so real to me, their own people. I’d hate to think there was someone out there exactly like any of them. I guess I see various traits in various people. And definitely, there are a lot more people like Alex around now than there were ‘back in the day.’ What I mean is that teenagers, certainly on the surface, have a lot more confidence and independence than I did. Of course, what we see of most people is on the surface. We don’t know them until we live in their shoes. That is why I chose to write the each book from the point of view of each one of the three friends.

LUNA: Hmm, not recently.

What is the most stressful thing about writing?
Question by ChrissiReads
DENISE: Hmm. It’s only happened once but: overshooting a deadline with no end in sight.

Do you read all of your reviews?
Question by ChrissiReads

I absolutely love to read, averaging out at about 4 books a week. I also love to write. Do you think that these two things are enough to be a successful reviewer?
Question by Linda Green
156500155770601873JXt237NYcLUNA: You sound well on the way, loving reading is a must. While I’m a readaholic I don’t think reading loads of a books is a requirement, the quality of reviews if more important in my opinion. One big thing is commitment. This is like a second full-time job, a lot of blogs get abandoned within the first 6 months.

Are your favourite books generally ones you really enjoy in an easy-happy sort of way or the ones that bother you for years afterwards?
Question by Alexia Casale
DENISE: Ones that make me think, ones that make me feel and ones where a character climbs into my heart, curls up and stays.

LUNA: The ones that bother me, I love “happy” reads but it’s the emotional ones that haunt me that I’ll be talking about for years, the bigger my connection to the characters the bigger the impact.

Do you feel pressure to keep your blog constant?
Question by ChrissiReads
LUNA: Yes, although I think I’m worrying a bit too much about it. When I was ill I didn’t really do anything for a week and nothing dramatic happened. At the moment I probably over-blog which 5-6 posts a week, come 2014 I plan to balance this a bit better so I have more time for other secret-epic-projects-of-awesome. 😉

Do you feel like you have to read ‘current’, ‘popular’ books in order to stay relevant?
Question by ChrissiReads
LUNA: Again yes, with review copies from publishers you do tend to end up with a reading order. Especially because I do try to keep in line with the release date but I’ve learned never to read books unless I’m in the right mood. Sometimes I think reviewing books after they’ve been out a while reminds people after the initial hype has died down.

What’s your favourite reading snack?
Question by Yangsze Choo
DENISE: Coffee and chocolate.

LUNA: Milka chocolate with a cup of tea. Although Denise has just introduced me to Jelly Tots and they are addictive.


Come back tomorrow for part 2  🙂

Denise Deegan & Luna’s Little Library

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