I read on your blog that your teenage daughter inspired Kristina, but who inspired some of the other characters, like Werrien and Hector? (Hopefully, no one real inspired Davina or Hester ;D)
Yes, Kristina, in the book was inspired by my daughter, and even though I named Kristina my character after my daughter, the two are different personalities. Werrien came from different personality traits of people I know. I have a teenage son, and I took some traits from him, as well as his friends and other teenagers I have encountered. Hector, I created from my imagination, at least I can't pinpoint where I got him from. Davina's and Hester's personalities came from kids I knew when I was in grade school—bully type peers. Even though they were annoying, hurtful and even scary when I was young, now that I'm an adult I find it quite fun to use their character traits in my writing.
This book has some beautiful illustrations. I know you teach art, so I was curious as to whether the cover or any of the images inside were your drawings?
Yes, I teach art and have been doing so for 11 years, but the illustration and cover were not done by me. I have a different style of drawing and painting than what is in my book. An artist by the name of Amanda Swanson did all the art work inside the book as well as the cover. She specializes in fantasy art and I am very happy with what she has created.
Bernovem seems to be such a beautiful place. Is there any place that you’ve been to or read about that inspired it?
I was inspired to create Bernovem from different places that I have been, like the Hoh Rain Forest in WA. I love hiking through its densely green, moss laden trails. There is definitely something magical about it. Hemlock Valley Mountain, in BC Canada, is a place I have been skiing at since I was a youth. It is a majestic yet peaceful place. I was in Tahiti and Hawaii some years back and enjoyed the beaches, aqua-blue waters, and tropical forests. I created Finimus Island from my experience at these two paradises. My mother and father are immigrants from Europe and throughout my lifetime I have had the opportunity to visit Austria, Germany and other places, like the beautiful city of Prague. These places have influenced me in creating the city Ezeree as well as Salas.
What inspired you to be a writer and to write the Magic Warble series?
I remember I was sitting in the movie theater watching the first Harry Potter movie when I envisioned my main character Kristina walking down a snowy sidewalk. At the time that was all of story, I had. I went home that night and wrote my first page not knowing where the story would go.
So the ending of The Black Shard left me in total, utter suspense - can you tell us when to expect the third installment of this amazing series?
I was hoping book 2 would leave readers wanting to read more and I'm so glad it did. I am in the process of writing the 3rd book and when it is finished (I don't have a set date yet) I will definitely let all my Magic Warble fans know.