Today I’m bringing you an interview with Ingrid Jonach as part of her Around the World in 80 Days Blog Tour. I’ll be posting my review for the book
tomorrow later this week, as I’m sick and can’t focus on writing it, but spoiler: it really is very, very good. And at the end of the interview you’ll find a very exciting giveaway that Ingrid is doing and which you can enter right from the blog. But enough preambling, let’s get to the interview!
Let’s start with the basics. Who is Ingrid Jonach? And forgive the curiosity, but is Jonach part of the reason for the double nationality? I am a writer living in Australia, who has been fortunate enough to have a few books published, including my upcoming young adult novel When the World was Flat (and we were in love). I live in the national capital of Canberra, with my husband and my very spoilt pug dog (who we accidentally named after a rude-word in German, much to the amusement of my Austrian relatives!). My mother is Australian and my father is Austrian (and there-in lies my dual nationality with Austria!), but he lives in the United States. I also have a younger half sister in the US and two older brothers here in Australia. What started you on the path of writing? I credit my love of reading to my grandpa, who read me fairytales until I could recite them word for word (particularly The Three Little Pigs). I soon became one of those kids who would walk along the street with my nose in a book, running into telegraph poles and stepping into oncoming traffic. I remember fighting with a friend once because I wanted to keep reading my book when she came to visit. My love of reading turned into a love of writing and I used to carry around an exercise book filled with stories, poetry and illustrations. The first story I remember writing in the exercise book was about a teddy bear’s picnic. Like many kids, I was convinced my toys were really alive and I would try to catch them moving whenever I went into my bedroom. Before When the World Was Flat (and we were in love) you’ve published several children’s books. Why the switch to YA? I love children’s books and I really enjoyed writing them (I still do!), but I really wanted to write a romance novel. I decided to write for young adults because it seemed like the next logical step (and I am not sure I am enough of an adult to write an adult novel). When the World Was Flat is an SF love story. What inspired you to write it? When the World was Flat (and we were in love) actually started out as a romance novel, with no science fiction at all. It was heavily inspired by Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. Tom was the rich and unattainable Mr. Darcy and Lillie was the somewhat eccentric Elizabeth Bennet. I decided to add the science fiction after the first draft, because I had been intrigued by some of the theories I ended up including (no spoilers!) for years. Do you have a favourite anecdote about the writing process? Any funny research questions you need to solve, characters that took the story into their own hands and ran off with you? I set the story in the United States, even though I live in Australia, because I wanted it to be accessible globally. It was originally set in a small country town in Australia, which meant it was full of slang like ‘knock your block off’ and ‘bloody hell’. I knew this would limit its audience, unfortunately. I wanted the book to be set in ‘anywhere town’, which is the reason I took it to the US. I have a lot of exposure to the US, given I have family there and we grow up on a diet of US television and novels here in Australia, but you will see in my acknowledgements that I have called my sister my American Translator. I would send her a long list of words that I thought were too Australian and she would send me back the alternatives, e.g. bomb cars became crappy cars; mollycoddled became babied; bush became forest, etc. We had a lot of fun working together on it! What has been the most exciting or unexpected experience about being published? I would have to say the reviews. I am really enjoying seeing what others thought of my story. I have lived with this story for almost five years now and it is refreshing (and terrifying) to send it out in the world. It is amazing to see how many different ways it is being interpreted and I love that there are reviewers who love it as much as I do. I really see those who love my book as kindred spirits, as writing is so subjective. What’s next for you? Do you have any appearances scheduled? Are you hard at work on your next novel? I am currently on an epic (virtual) around the world blog tour, which is why I am here today. It is called the Around the World in 80 Days Blog Tour and the details are here. I am spatially-challenged living in Australia, as the book is largely on the shelves in the UK, US and Canada. I am hoping to get up to the US for another visit next year to see my family and to do a few book-related events, as well as some research for future novels. In the meantime, I am finalising another book, which is a stand-alone, but is loosely connected to When the World was Flat (and we were in love). Is there something else you’re obsessed with other than writing? I have an obsessive personality and I tend to pick up a new interest every couple of weeks. I think the main things that I get obsessive over though are TV shows (my top three are The Walking Dead, Supernatural and Buffy); online shopping (I can spend HOURS looking through the beautiful things on Etsy); and property. When I was younger I used to design my dream house and every now and then I still draw plans of where I would have my library, formal living room and formal dining room, not to mention my writing studio. I really should have been an interior designer. I also collect images of beautiful homes on my computer. Finally, I have to stay true to my roots and ask a librarian question to finish off with: Do you shelve your books alphabetically, by genre or do you have an ingenious system? I shelve them by:
- Fiction or Non-Fiction
- Children’s, Young Adults or Adults
- Approximate Pub Date (e.g. all of the classics end up together).
Thank you for a great interview, Ingrid!
Bio: Ingrid Jonach writes books for children and young adults, including the chapter books The Frank Frankie and Frankie goes to France published by Pan Macmillan, and When the World was Flat (and we were in love) published by Strange Chemistry.
Since graduating from university with a Bachelor of Arts in Professional Writing (Hons) in 2005, Ingrid has worked as a journalist and in public relations, as well as for the Australian Government. Ingrid loves to promote reading and writing, and has been a guest speaker at a number of schools and literary festivals across Australia, where she lives with her husband Craig and their pug dog Mooshi. Despite her best efforts, neither Craig nor Mooshi read fiction. Find out more at www.ingridjonach.com
Enter below for your chance to win one of two awesome prize packages as part of the Around the World in 80 Days Blog Tour for When the World was Flat (and we were in love) by Ingrid Jonach. There will be two winners worldwide. Each prize package includes:
- a signed copy of When the World was Flat (and we were in love)
- a pair of silver plated key-shaped earrings in a When the World was Flat (and we were in love) gift box
- a When the World was Flat (and we were in love) bookmark.
The competition will run until 21 October 2013 and the winners will be announced on www.ingridjonach.com
[edited to take out the rafflecopter window on 25-11-2013]