Thanks so much to Aimée Cater, author of the soon to be released The Goddess Test, for joining us with an interview!
Make sure to check out Aimée's blog, goodreads page, and website before you go! You can also find her on facebook and twitter!
1) What inspired you to write a story about a girl going through the pain of losing her mother?
I wanted to write about a character who was on the brink of losing everything. I lost my mother when I was ten years old, and while my experience wasn't anything like Kate's, I know what that feels like. And more than anything I wanted Kate's fears and pain to be authentic.
2) What made you decide to write a story with the Greek Gods and Mythology?
It was never really a conscious choice. I grew up studying mythology, devouring everything even remotely related to Greek mythology. The idea was in the back of my mind for many, many years, and finally the key ingredient of Kate being willing to do anything to save her mother showed up, and the story blossomed. At first I thought it would be a retelling of the myth of Hades and Persephone, but in the end, it turned out to be much more interesting as a sort of modern-day sequel to that myth, which plays a large role in the story as something that happened thousands of years ago.
3) In the opening before the story you dedicate The Goddess Test to the memory of your mother. Was the close relationship between Kate and her Mother a reflection of you and mother?
I was ten when my mother died, and while we were close, we were never as close as Kate and her mother. Kate's mother is all she has in the world, and she's seen her through a devastating illness that was supposed to claim her years before. My mother died instantly and without warning, so there really aren't many parallels between my experience with my mother's death and Kate's, other than the emotional impact.
4) Did you run into any evil creative blocks with writing The Goddess Test? How did you work through them?
Coming up with a cohesive plot was difficult at first, and I must have rewritten the story a dozen times. Thankfully most of those were in outline form. The ending was a monster to figure out, and the prologue was added several drafts in as well, to highlight that part of the story. So many aspects of the plot changed, from Kate's mother's situation to several of the more spoilery plot points, but in the end I think - I hope - that it's the best book I could make it be. And that was what I was striving for all along.
5) What did you enjoy the most about writing The Goddess Test?
The characters, for sure. Writing Ava was a joy, and while Henry was a challenge, I loved exploring his history and seeing how it all unfolded. I also love editing, and watching the story go from mediocre to something I could be proud of was amazing.
6) Was Kate's personality based off of your own? What traits do you share with her?
Oh lord no, Kate is definitely not me! She's far more patient and a whole host of other things than I am. I tend to rely more on my mind, and Kate follows her heart. Though that love for her mother, that determination - that, I think, I share with her. Other than that, we're both brunette, so there's that. Though in my head, she looks nothing like me.
7) You explain at the end of The Goddess Test that a sequel is on the way. Is there anything you can divulge to us nosy fans?
Goddess Interrupted, the sequel to The Goddess Test, will be released in January 2012. And while I think my publisher would string me up by my toes if I gave anything important away, I will say that it involves a lot more mythology this time around. And as a result is a lot more action-packed. I'd love to reveal the plot, but unfortunately we'll all have to wait a bit longer!
8) I like how in your book there was no "love triangle," but I couldn't help but feel sad for James's character, not often, but still. Will he get a happy ending later on, or be doomed to be the odd man out?
Oh, I adore James! I think James has always been a bit of the odd man out, and whether that will change or not...well, I haven't written the third book yet. :) Really, whether or not he gets a happy ending would depend on your definition of that! Who would you like to see him paired with? Anyone in particular?
9) What books have influenced your writing and style for your first novel?
That's difficult to say. I think every book a writer reads influences them in one way or another. Mostly what I want to do with my writing is improve, and the books I love definitely make me strive to do better. I can't turn to any one writer in particular and copy them though. I have to be true to my own style and go from there.
10) The cover art for your novel is beautiful! Is this the finalized version before the debut release April 26th, 2011?
Thank you! The art department at Harlequin TEEN did an amazing job. As far as I know, it is the finalized version!
11) Is there anything that you would have done differently with your novel? Changed something, if only slightly, to the plot? or Characters?
In a year, five years, ten, I'm sure I'll be massively embarrassed about some glaring newbie mistake I made writing this book. But I've been so close to it for so long that right now, I'm content with it, and after nearly four years of working on it in some form or another, I'm just relieved it's finally about to be released.
Thanks so much for doing this Aimée!
Make sure you check out my review of The Goddess Test here.