My guest today is a teen author (I'm so jealous!) called Madeline Carliglia, who has self-published her first novel called Thunderstruck. I'm really excited to share this interview with you, and I think we can all learn from her mature wisdom.
If you want to support Madeline, you can buy her book here:
And if you do buy one, make sure to leave her a review!
1. What is your book about?
My book, "Thunderstruck" follows Lacey, Fawn, and Garnet, three young girls faced with a nearly impossible task. While Lacey lives alone in a suburban community, she isn't truly alone- she is protected by fairies who she shares her home with. The fairies tell her a shocking revelation of the dark forces that are working against them and trying to destroy them by targeting thunderstorms at the fairies and the rest of the world. Lacey is sent on a quest by the fairies to stop the dark forces, and on her travels, she encounters Fawn and Garnet, who live in a society completely cut off and hidden from the rest of the world. They join her on her journey and help her to save what's most important to herself, all while learning about themselves and their own strengths.
2. How long did it take you to write?
I started "Thunderstruck" when I was 9 years old. I never imagined it to become what it is now, I purely wrote for fun. As I got older and finished the book, I learned more about publishing and it became my dream to share my stories with the world. In total, it took me five years to completely finish my book and get it published- I'm 15 now.
3. You're a teen author - was it hard to write your first book so young?
It wasn't hard for me to write because it came about so naturally. When I first started writing it, I had no idea what it would turn out to be, I just wrote whatever came to mind, even by the last of the first draft. Even when I had a plan for how it would end, it changed as it went. I reviewed and edited it numerous times afterwards too, and it changed then, too. The first draft is like a completely different story than the final!
4. Are people often shocked to find out you're an author? What do they say?
Yeah! Every person I know knows about it and has read it, or at least knows I love to write. It's been a long work in progress; when I first started writing it, even without knowing what it would become, I told people about it, just because I was excited and passionate about it. Almost everyone around me is passionate about it and for me as well, which is wonderful.
5. Have you ever doubted yourself/thought you were too young to write a novel?
Of course. I think every young person who wants to become anything has a ton of self-doubt in their mind. I believed that I had what it takes to be published and successful, not out of arrogance or greediness for attention, but because it was what fueled me. It was- and still is- my dream, and all I wanted to be. I'll admit- there were many days where I wanted to just give up and start something entirely new, if anything at all. I constantly questioned myself, but I had to believe I would get to where I wanted to be- published- because it was my passion. And eventually, I did make it! It's all about belief in yourself and your skill. If you don't believe in yourself, nobody else will! It's not easy but it's definitely worth it, and hey, you'll never know unless you try! And by the way, I'm not very well known yet, by any means, but it's all an upward climb and I'm just happy to be on the ride. :)
6. Is it independently published or from a publishing company?
Independently published, although it is printed through a company called Lulu. I received a grant from my 7th / 8th grade English teacher who thought that my story deserved to be published and that's what introduced me to the company.
7. Are you planning on writing any other books?
Yes- I would love to pursue a career in writing! Right now, I'm focusing on getting people interested in "Thunderstruck", though.
8. Do you hope to carry on being an author or will you get another job when you're older?
I hope to continue writing and sharing my work as long as I live! I can't imagine a world without literature, and I'm fascinated with creating my own. Being solely an author is a difficult job to live off of, though, and I do have other passions as well- I'd love to balance out being an author with something involved with animals, religion, counseling and maybe even music!
9. What are your other hobbies besides writing?
I love animals- I have three cats at home and I've had rabbits in the past; I also work at an alpaca farm! I dance (hip-hop, although I used to do tap, ballet, jazz, and modern when I was younger, as well as compete)and I love music! Oh, and reading. I'm constantly reading. ;)
10. What is one piece of advice you would give to other teens hoping to be authors?
For starters- it's not impossible! It's not. Start small and work your way to where you want to be. I always wanted to publish through a big publishing house, not independently, because I thought nobody would ever know me if I published independently. I was offered my grant, though, and I had to take it. So take risks! If you're given an opportunity, go for it. Don't give up, ever, no matter what, and don't let anybody tell you that you don't have what it takes to be whatever you want to be, author or not. And stay humble! Put your passion for your craft first and everything else will work out on its own.
Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions! If you want to get updates from Madeline, you can follow her on Twitter @TheMCariglia or on Instagram @madelinecariglia.
Hope you're having a nice day!