Today we have MarcyKate Connolly by the blog, a debut author whose first book comes out next year. And let me tell you, excited doesn’t even begin to describe how pumped I am for MarcyKate’s debut MONSTROUS.
About the Author: MarcyKate Connolly is an author and nonprofit administrator living in New England with her husband and pugs. She is also a coffee addict, voracious reader, and recurring commuter. She is represented by Suzie Townsend of New Leaf Literary. MONSTROUS is her first book.
Q. Could you give us the one sentence pitch of your book?
A. MONSTROUS is Frankenstein meets the Brothers Grimm in an original fairytale told from the viewpoint of the monster as a young girl.
Q. Why middle grade?
A. Well, that’s a funny story. When I first wrote MONSTROUS, I actually thought it was a young adult novel. I queried it as YA, signed with my agent with it as YA, and we even went out on submission as YA. So when my editor (who is obviously brilliant!) first offered to buy MONSTROUS as a middle grade novel, it came as a bit of a surprise. But after talking with her about her vision for the book, it was so clear that middle grade was, in fact, exactly what it was supposed to be all along. Needless to say, I’m very glad she understood that better than I did!
One of the things I love about middle grade is that characters at that age often still have this sense of wonder at the world, and getting to write about someone who’s discovering life for the first time makes you look at things you take for granted with new eyes. It’s a great feeling whether you’re reading or writing it.
Q. Generally speaking, which comes first: the world, the characters, or the plot?
A. Most of the time, the characters are the first thing that falls into my brain. (Once or twice it’s been plot/world first, but those novels never went very far, so…) I need to hear the main character loud and clear, and be desperate to tell his/her story. Usually, the voice and the opening line or two will be the first part of the book to come to me, and after that the plot and world fall into place. The hard part is always translating the vivid world in my brain to the page!
Q. They are always coming out with new editions of board games. If your book could be a special edition of any board game, which would you choose?
A. Definitely Clue. But it would be a special edition where up until the middle of it you’d be completely certain you’re just at a nice dinner party. Then things go horribly wrong. [insert evil author laughter here].
Q. What is your favorite middle grade read?
A. This is a tough one. There’s so much awesome middle grade that’s come out recently (Nightingale’s Nest by Nikki Loftin and A Snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd are particular faves). But for an all-time favorite I keep coming back to re-read, I’d have to say Susan Cooper’s The Dark Is Rising Sequence. I wore my copies of all 5 books thin when I was a kid, and I still go back and reread them as an adult.
Thank you so much for stopping by MarcyKate! I really enjoyed Nikki Loftin’s newest as well.
MONSTROUS doesn’t have a cover yet, but here is about about the book: Reminiscent of Frankenstein and tales by the Brothers Grimm, this debut novel stands out as a compelling, original story that has the feel of a classic.
Bryre suffers under the magic of an evil wizard. Because of his curse, girls sicken and disappear without a trace and all live in fear. No one is allowed outside after dark.
Night is when Kymera comes to the city, with a cloak disguising her wings, the bolts in her neck, and her spiky tail. Her mission is to rescue the girls of Bryre.
Despite Kym’s caution to go secretively, a boy named Ren sees and befriends her…but what he knows will change her world forever.