Interview with Melinda Michaels
Tell us about the main characters in Golden. Who are Hanna and William?
Hanna and William are descendants of the people who inspired the first fairytales. Hanna is a direct descendent of Goldilocks and William, the Big Bad Wolf. In the Golden series, descendants tend to repeat the fairytale of their heritage every few generations, and while usually these descendants don’t cross paths with others from different stories, Hanna and William have been connected for almost ten years, though they have never met due to an event that took place prior to the book’s beginning.
You’re bio states this is book one in a series. How many books do you have planned for this series? When can we expect the next book?
There will be five all together, though they are a standalone series. The second book, Roses, follows a secondary character in Golden and each future main character will be introduced in the previous novel. Roses is already completed, so I’m currently working on the third, Glass.
What inspired this series?
I think it’s a safe assumption that most kids grew up watching Disney movies and I was no different. To find a prince charming is so deeply ingrained into our culture that I think it sometimes affecting our outlook of real relationships, which are always more complex than happily ever after. I wanted to write a version of the classic ‘Fairytale’ that was more realistic, that demonstrated real people with real insecurities and worries and sacrifices.
You list the genre as YA magical realism. This is a new genre to many of my readers. Can you explain a bit about it?
I guess I would compare it to a very light fantasy. In fantasy, supernatural elements are based on a set of rules that work outside of reality. In magical realism, the supernatural is accepted, hesitantly, in a rational world. I wrote Golden with the idea that magic did exist at one point in time and truthfully, when people believed in witches and fairies, they were real in a sense because they held a presence in people’s lives. In Golden, Hanna herself is a descendent of that magical world that once existed and is a ‘left over’ product of it.
What is your favorite fairy tale?
The Twelve Dancing Princesses. I think it’s because of the picture Arthur Rackham created. I love it.
Which fairy tales do you enjoy more—Disney or Brothers Grimm/Hans Christian Anderson versions?
I always found Hans Christian Anderson versions particularly moving for some reason. I’ve cried reading his stories.
If you could travel anywhere in the world, cost being no object, where would you go?
I’d like to go to the Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany. And Machu Pichu… And Stockholm… And Yellowstone National Park… And Manchester, U.K. I have a bit of a list.
If you could visit any fictional place, where would you go?
I would most like to visit the land of Faerie on the other side of the Wall in Stardust.
If you could have dinner with any fictional character, who would you entertain? What would you serve?
That’s a tough one. If I could only choose one though, it would have to be Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud from Ray Bradbury’s The Halloween Tree. I’d serve Pumpkin Pie and black tea to appease the kid in me, but I don’t think he’d find the humor in my choice of dish.
When did you begin writing?
I began writing when I was about fourteen years old as a means to cope with the difficulties of adolescence. It was a real confidence booster in a way and became a true love of mine.
Do you have any advice for new writers just entering these shark infested waters?
Writing is a job, like any other. If you have a passion for it, a real passion that survives all the times you give up, all the rejections and you still come back to it, you will succeed. But success is different to everyone just like there are different writers. If fame or fortune is your ultimate goal, good luck to you, but if it was that easy everyone would do it. Every writer hopes for those things, but it isn’t the reason they write. There’s only one right reason to write. Hone you skill, nurture your craft, be honest with yourself and persevere.
Then give up.
Then get back to work.
Is there anything else you’d like your readers to know about you or your novel?
I just hope they enjoy it!
Where can readers find you online?
YA Magical Realism
March 24, 2015
Amazon | Goodreads
High school senior Hanna Loch just suffered a blackout in front of her entire homeroom class. She hasn’t had one in over ten years, and she’s terrified—the last time she blacked out, she woke up with no memory of her life before. To make matters worse, no one can explain why it happens. For Hanna, bad things tend to come in threes.
And that doesn’t even begin to cover it . . .
When she learns she could be a descendant of someone who lived once upon a time, Hanna must put her trust in William Vann, a descendant of one of the most hated villains ever known. Their histories are intertwined in more ways than she expected, and he has answers about her past, answers even her family won’t share.
But is it safe to put her trust in someone who appears to be danger reincarnate, while trying to escape the darkness that tried to kill her ten years ago?
A loose fairytale retelling, GOLDEN is a story that’s just right, weaving together lost secrets, vengeful enemies, and what happens when fiction becomes reality.
About the Author
Melinda Michaels is the author of Golden and currently lives in Milford, Pennsylvania. A self-proclaimed historian with a rare sense of humor, Melinda finds an immense amount of joy in knowing useless facts, exploring historical places and drinking copious amounts of coffee. When she’s not writing she can be found researching obscured time periods for her own amusement or refurbishing old furniture.
Melinda loves Philadelphia and visits often to enjoy the city with her husband Andrew. Together they have three rambunctious pets. Archie the Beagle, Winston the Boston Terrier and Beatrice the cat.
Golden is the first in a Young Adult magic realism series.