Interview with Micheline McAllister
June 19, 2010 by admin
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Q: What is it about writing that you love so much?
There are so many different things that I love about writing, but I guess if I had to narrow it down I would say, for me it is about telling a great story. As well, I really enjoy the process of getting to know my characters and seeing where they take me.
Q: Your first novel, Welcome to My Life, is about a personal assistant working in Hollywood and gives a behind the scenes look at the life of celebrities. Where does your insider knowledge stem from?
I have worked in the “industry” since I was young. I started as an actress, then moved to animation, and when animation crashed, I became a personal assistant between jobs. Of course the book is fictional, but is also pretty real at the same time. I always found myself in situations and thought about people in the real world followed by, “they have no idea.” I love the entertainment industry and can’t imagine my life any other way, but it is so much fun to make fun of at the same time.
Q: How were you able to break into the writing industry?
I just believed I could do it. I sat down, wrote and wrote and wrote and then submitted. I submitted to agents, contests, magazines, whatever I found. I never for one minute thought that I couldn’t do it. I also showed my work to everyone, because when I was a teenager I went to see Back to the Future and George McFly was telling Marty that he never let anyone read his work. At that point we already knew he wasn’t successful and he wasn’t a writer, so I remembered that and even when afraid, I always show my work to others.
Q: When you were growing up, what did you think would be your career?
A writer. I always loved telling stories, so I knew that someday I would write. I had planned on taking over the world of Hollywood as an actress, but honestly, I always wrote and knew that no matter where the acting career took me, writing would be a big part of my life.
Q: Who are some of your favorite authors?
I love so many different genres that this may not make any sense, so I will just start with the ones in the same genre as me: Marian Keyes, Sophie Kinsella, Jane Green, Jennifer Weiner and Cecelia Ahern. I also love Stephan King, Robert Ludlum and John Grisham. That said I am a huge fan of Russian, French and Irish literature. Crime & Punishment, Les Miserables & Dracula being three of my all time favorite books. Oh and Dickens, I love Dickens. As you can see, this list could go on forever.
Q: What would you say is the hardest part about writing a book, start to finish?
Just the time it takes to sit down and write. I am lucky in that I usually don’t get writer’s block, so once I decide on a story, I just write and it comes out. I also still work in animation, so there are times when I am working 7 days a week 14+ hours a day and then it is hard to get writing in, but I always try to do at least an hour a day.
Q: What are three items you can never leave the house without?
My MyTouch phone, a notepad and my Nook.
Q: Are you a fan of reality shows? If so, which one would you most likely be on?
I like the contest ones, but not the scripted fake ones. I would love to be on the Amazing Race!
Q: What is your best advice for aspiring writers?
My advice is if you want to write, then you have to write. I meet so many new people and they say they want to write, but never do. It is really the only way to be a writer. Also, it is very important to not take rejection personally; it is part of the business. In addition to rejection, you need to be able to take critiques and not be offended, but instead make the changes needed for a stronger story. My last piece of advice is to have fun. We are so lucky that we get to write so enjoy it.
Q: Where would be your dream vacation?
Paris. I would like to take one of those Paris Writer Retreats and just be inspired by the city writing by day, going out at night, and of course getting lots of shopping in.
Both my novels:
Welcome to My Life and Love You, Love Your Work, Let’s Do Lunch available online through Amazon, Barnes and Noble and other online booksellers!