Hosted by Raincoast Books out in British Columbia, fellow Canadian YA bloggers got the chance to have a live webinar chat with Marissa Meyer, author of Cinder! At 3:30 PST (6:30 EST), bloggers from all across Canada logged onto the webinar, and dialed into a 1-888 number to hear the live feed.
After a barrage of people dialing in and remembering to mute their phones, Crystal came on the screen and welcomed everyone – and introduced Marissa Meyer!
I didn’t manage to catch every single question that was discussed in the 68 minute call, but here is a synopsis on questions that were answered!
First off, I agree with Marissa when she talks about what amazing technology we have – to be able to have a country-wide chat online! Marissa envisioned the scene with Kai on a teleconference with the world leaders when this was proposed! Very apropos to have a webinar for such a futuristic book.
Inspiration for Cinder came 14 years ago when she was first introduced to Sailor Moon. Wrote fanfiction for fun and as part of a contest where she had to incorporate two components outlined by moderator. Contest only had 2 entries, and her’s didn’t win but it inspired her to write more sci-fi futuristic stories based from fairytales. Sci-fi aspect inspired by Star Wars and Firefly.
Marissa has outlined all 4 books in the series before writing Cinder. She knew where the series was going from the beginning, which was good for when she was seeking a publisher and agent.
At this point, Marissa reads an excerpt from the first chapter of Cinder before answering our questions.
- What actor does Prince Kai look like? Korean actor and Harry Shum Jr
- Book 2, Scarlet, splits to dual plot lines – 40% Cinder / 60% Little Red Riding Hood – Second book is Jan 2013. All books are spaced 1 year apart – her goal is to make each book worth the wait.
- Jen expressed disappointment with Kai at the end of Cinder. Will we see more of him? Yes, but won’t say in what capacity
- Kathy wants to know more about Snow White/Winter (Book 4). Marissa has written a first draft of Winter, but she focuses on the plot of the book and characters develop from that.
- My question: Significance of red shoe (instead of a glass slipper or something more mechanical): She was initially concerned since readers will see that there is no red shoe in the book. It was a publisher decision, convinced her it’s a marketing choice. Red shoe jumps out and is eye-catching. Theme of red might tie in through all 4 books. (Which is going to look amazing!)
- Evie asks what was the most difficult scene to write: Peony scene, without getting into spoilers
- Book 2 is almost done! First draft complete of book 3 & 4
- Read a lot of fairytale retellings not so much for research but more because she enjoys it. Loves retellings.
- We see the connection between Red Riding Hood/Scarlet, Snow White/Cinder – but how does Rapunzel/Cress fit in? Rapunzel is a kind of lettuce/cabbage, so connection with that and title “Cress” – watercress lettuce/lunar crescent
- Which of the characters in Cinder is most like Marissa? Within Cinder, Peony is most like Marissa. Peony is pretty much her at 14. In overall series, she is most like Rapunzel/Cress.
- Chose these particular 4 fairytale characters because those 4 kept coming up to the forefront of her mind
- Dropped a lot of hints in Cinder that tie into the future books. Queen Levana is main villain throughout. There will be a good chunk of Cinder throughout series as well.
- My question: Fave fairytale retellings: Ella Enchanted, Gregory Maguire books.. (Mirror Mirror, Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister) Sisters Red by Jackson Pearce, Shannon Hale
- Loving Canada.. hoping tour for Scarlet takes her to a broader Canada-wide tour. Everybody gets excited to push for a Toronto stop!
- Where do you usually write? Hard to focus at home at times, so often goes out to write. Not often hit with writer’s block. “Writer’s block” is just more getting caught up with distractions and saying it’s writer’s block. If she does come to a point that the words just won’t come out, it’ll probably be because she’s forcing the story to go in a way that it shouldn’t. So she’ll walk away, lie down on the living room floor and listen to her Cinder playlist to recapture inspiration
- Evie doesn’t care who’s cast in movie as long as it’s not KStew or RPattz. Marissa doesn’t mind RPattz, but definitely not KStew. (AGREED!!!!)
- Marissa will have Cinder playlist available on website when it’s done
- She thinks both printed books & ebooks both have a place in the world, depending on the mood or circumstance. (ie. travelling)
- Marissa hasn’t told anyone where the books are headed, not even her husband
- Asked if there were any love triangles in the series, Marissa says no. There might be a pair who aren’t romantically linked that will get shipped by fans but it’s not intentional on her part. (Yay no love triangles!)
Some more details on Scarlet: Based on Little Red Riding Hood. Lives on farm in Southern France w/grandmother. Grandma has mysteriously disappeared. Convinced something bad’s happened but nobody’s taking her seriously. Only person who offers to help her is a local streetfighter named Wolf. Accepts his help even tho she can’t tell if he’s on her side or not.
Cinder is the only main cyborg. Scarlet is a spaceship pilot. Cress is a cyber hacker.
After a bit more chatting and laughing, we all thank Raincoast Books for hosting, and Marissa for taking the time to chat with all of us!
ALSO, if you’re in BC tomorrow – Marissa will be at Chapters Metrotown (4700 Kingsway, Burnaby, BC) at 2pm for an appearance – so be sure to swing by!