Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Guest Post: Seven Random Questions with Lissa Bryan

On this wonderful Wednesday, I am thrilled to hand the blogging reins to my dear friend and author Lissa Bryan, author of four books including the recently released Under These Restless Skies. As part of her blog tour for UTRS, she has graciously agreed to answer Seven Random Questions for me today, and I don't want to take up any more of her time or space.

Take it away, Lissa! 

1. What surprised you most as you worked on Under These Restless Skies?

Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII got married on January 25, 1533, right before dawn. When I was writing the scene, I went to NASA to find out the phase of the moon, so I could describe the night accurately. That night was a new moon. I immediately wondered if Henry and Anne had chosen that date because it would cover their movements in darkness as they slipped outside to the gatehouse of the palace where the wedding took place.

I started researching it and didn’t find anything else on the topic. I remember sitting there thinking, “I can’t have been the only one who ever noticed this.” It’s hard for me to believe a little fiction writer might have discovered a detail to add to Anne Boleyn’s story, but maybe I have. 

I was also surprised by how many people actually believe that Anne was guilty. A few reviewers have contacted me about my unusual portrayal of Anne as an ordinary person, not a spiteful woman driven by lust for power. I didn’t realize how many of the myths about her still prevail in popular memory.

2. If you could interrogate any historical character, who would it be and what would you ask? 

I would love to interrogate Henry VIII and find out if my theory that he was a sociopath is accurate. I got chided a bit when I said he was in a Readers Digest article because you can never accurately diagnose someone who’s been dead for five hundred years, but he seems to fit all of the diagnostic criteria.

3. Someone is making a movie of the past year of your life. What is it called? What is its genre? What is the main song on the soundtrack?

QWERTYGirl, or 24/7 with a Keyboard. Soundtrack: “Writer’s Block” by Just Jack

4. In your post-dystopian romance, The End of All Things, Carly and Justin raid empty homes and abandoned stores for supplies. If you were to raid any house or store, past or present, which one would it be and what would you grab?

Can I raid the Library of Alexandria? In that case, I’m taking everything.

If it has to be a store, Justin is in the back of my mind insisting it be a Walmart because one can get food, ammo, and clothing all in one fell swoop, but I’d prefer a Barnes & Noble.

5. Describe an ideal afternoon.

A quiet Sunday at my computer, my dog curled up at my feet, my True Love playing video games on the other side of the room, Moby in my earbuds, a large cup of tea at hand, and no deadline looming, so I can write whatever I feel like.

6. You and I met through a mutual love of Twilight and its fanfiction. Who is your favorite character and why?

Emmett, I think. His gentle good humor and love for his family was so enjoyable. I always thought he was a better match for Bella than Edward, honestly. But that’s the joy of fanfiction. We can explore all of these possibilities that didn’t exist in the original book.

7. In Ghostwriter, Sara and Seth defy the odds and find beauty in the impossible. Tell me something odd, something beautiful, or something impossible.

Something odd: I never tasted Kool-Aid until I was in my late twenties.

Something beautiful: All of my pets have been rescue animals.

Something impossible: I think of six impossible things before breakfast. It’s impossible that I feel so much affection for fictional characters, but I do. It’s impossible that I have an affectionate bond with people who died five hundred years ago, but I do. It’s impossible that I feel like I know them, but I do.

***You get the bonus question if you do all three!

BONUS QUESTION: If you could have one writing-related superpower, which would it be?

I want back the power to be able to write five thousand words a night. I used to be able to do it when I wrote fanfiction, but now that I’m writing books, my progress is so much slower. Back then, I could throw out words like confetti, because I didn’t think anyone was reading them, and it was just for me, so it didn’t “matter.” Now that I know people are reading them, I spend way too much time worrying over every single phrase.

Under These Restless Skies is available now!

Under These Restless Skies 
Lissa Bryan 

Available from AmazonKoboBarnes and Noble, and TWCS


Will Somers has always thought himself unlovable. When he encounters a creature of myth and magic, he seizes the chance to finally have a wife and family of his own. Emma is a selkie—one of the immortal fae-folk of the sea—bound to Will by the magic of her kind, and eager to learn about life on land. She has to learn to adapt quickly to human customs, because Will is headed for the court of Henry VIII, to serve as the king’s fool. It’s a glittering, dangerous world, where a careless word can lead to the scaffold and the smallest of gestures is loaded with political implications. Anne Boleyn is charmed by Emma’s naïveté and soothing selkie magic and wants Emma for her own fool. Can Will protect his newfound love from the dangers that lurk in every shadow? Circa regna tonat: around the throne, the thunder rolls.
Author Bio:

Lissa Bryan is an astronaut, renowned Kabuki actress, Olympic pole vault gold medallist, Iron Chef champion, and scientist, who recently discovered the cure for athlete’s foot . . . though only in her head. Real life isn’t so interesting, which is why she spends most of her time writing.

Connect with Lissa Bryan on: 
Other novels by Lissa Bryan

                                                  Ghostwriter                The End of all Things

Short stories by Lissa Bryan

                                             Tales From The End   The Golden Arrow and The Butterfly

 Coming soon The Land of the Shadow 

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