Writing, promotion, tips, and opinion. Pour a cuppa your favorite poison and join in.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Author Interview—Cortney Pearson

Young Adult author Cortney Pearson is with us today talking about her debut novel, Phobic. She also shared what grosses her out, so be sure to read the full interview! :)

Fifteen-year-old Piper Crenshaw knows her house is strange. It’s never needed repairs since it was built in the 1800s, and the lights flicker in response to things she says. As if those things aren’t creepy enough, it’s also the place where her mother committed murder.

To prove she’s not afraid of where she lives, Piper opens a forbidden door, which hides a staircase that leads to the ceiling. That’s when the flashbacks of the original residents from 1875 start, including a love affair between two young servants. Each vision pulls Piper deeper into not only their story, but also her house. Piper confides in her best friend, Todd, whom she's gradually falling for, but even he doesn't believe her. At least, not until her house gets axed during a prank, and the act injures Piper instead, cutting a gash the size of Texas into her stomach.

Piper realizes her house isn’t haunted—it’s alive. To sever her link to it, she must unravel the clues in the flashbacks and uncover the truth about her mother’s crime, before she becomes part of her house for good.


To buy the book:


Cortney Pearson is a book nerd who studied literature at BYU-Idaho, a music nerd who plays clarinet in her local community orchestra, and a writing nerd who creates books for young adults. She lives with her husband and three sons in a small Idaho farm town.
www.cortneypearson.com | twitter.com/cor2ney | FACEBOOK


You recently decided to self-­publish your YA horror novel, Phobic. What influenced that decision?
I had just finished a two­-year­-long bout of querying. I had TONS of interest and then rejections that for the most part weren’t based on anything actually wrong with the story, just that agents “couldn’t connect” or it wasn’t “the right fit.” It was really discouraging because I knew my story was just as good as what was being published!

I kept hearing about people having huge success self-­publishing. And then I met an author at LDS Storymakers who shared her story and she asked a question that rocked my world:

“What can traditional publishing do for you that you can’t do for yourself?”

I decided to find out. And there were so many factors! I wouldn’t have to wait on other people’s opinions—I could publish a story I loved and have it out for others to enjoy! I could design my own cover, have it listed for as long as I like, in short, I’d have control, which, after waiting on others for so long, was especially appealing.

*Way to take control, Cortney! That is a very appealing aspect of self-publishing. -K.S.

Tell us a little about the inspiration for Phobic.
My great-­aunt lived in this super old house built by her dad. Her basement was turbo creepy—I hated going down there! It wasn’t finished and it had this old iron stove and just an eerie feel, like stepping back through time and being watched while doing it. One night my mom, sister, and I were trying to get in Aunt Vay’s after driving all day. My mom couldn’t find her key and we tried the knob a few times...and then the door opened. All on its own. When we checked the knob, it was STILL LOCKED. Freaky. That inspired the opening scene in Phobic.

*Oooh, that is creepy!! -K.S.

Describe your writing process. Plotter or pantser?
Both! I pants for a bit until I figure out where the story is going. Then I have to plot, so I make sure I’m not just rambling. ;)

*Sounds familiar... :) -K.S.

What are you currently working on?
I’m getting ready to publish a YA sci fi/fantasy called SEALED WITH A KISS in December. It’s about a spy­-in­-training who kisses a guy to distract him from getting a weapon she has been sent after, not knowing the venom in his lips will make her literally addicted to him (to the point of death...dun dun dun). She has to figure out how to break his curse all while determining if what she feels for him is real or just a spell.

*LOVE that premise! Sounds like a great story! -K.S.

If you could be a character in any novel you’ve ever read, who would you be and why?
I know most people probably say this, but I’d love to be in a Harry Potter novel. I want a wand! To learn spells and apparate. I WANT TO GO TO HOGWARTS.

*That would be fun! -K.S.

If you could live anywhere on this planet, and take everything that you love with you, where would you choose to live?
My first thought was Paris, France (just because I’m dying to go there!), but I’d probably move back to the town where I grew up. There’s just something about that town that feels like home.

*Hometown girl. Love it! -K.S.

What specific thing have you done that impressed yourself?
I’ve been pretty impressed with my mad painting skills lately. Not like, artwork painting, but just painting our house, lol. I’ve also gotten pretty good with a caulking gun.

*Haha! I have some things at my house that need a good caulking... :) -K.S.

Name one thing that drives you crazy.
Eyes gross me out. I can’t even watch my husband put his contacts in because bleh. Gross. Guess it’s a good thing I don’t wear glasses. ;)

*LOL! You sound like my husband. He can't watch me do my contacts either. :) -K.S. 

A BIG thank you to Cortney for taking the time to answer my questions. I loved learning about her self-publishing journey! And best of luck to her and her debut novel, Phobic! It sounds amazing, right? I'm heading over to Amazon right now to buy it!


mshatch said...

"I pants for a bit until I figure out where the story is going. Then I have to plot, so I make sure I’m not just rambling."

Boy, that sounds familiar! And I was just watching one of the HP movies and said to my son, "Wouldn't it be cool if you could apparate?"

Great interview and great premise for a story. I'm interested :)

Cortney Pearson said...

This was so fun, thank you! :D

Liz A. said...

Funny. The eyes thing used to gross me out, too. It took me forever to learn to wear contacts (but it's worth it!).

Suzi said...

Sealed with a Kiss sounds good too. Can't wait to see that also!

Crystal Collier said...

Awesome. Way to be brave enough to strike out on your own, Cortney!