Today I have the great privilege to bring you an interview with debut author and friend, Kim Harrington. I first met Kim at a local book signing and our love of books, twitter and Chipolte quickly formed a bond. You know you are friends with someone when you do a silly dance in the outdoor eating area of a restaurant. I’m just glad that Kim’s phone is ancient and she couldn’t capture any of it on video….I’m not sure my dignity would survive the humiliation. But even though I am friends with Kim I say without bias that her book, Clarity (in stores 01 Mar 2011), is a fabulous reading. Its a great mystery filled with lots of snark, swoon worthy boys and a mystery that I didn’t figure out fully. (I still hate you for that Kim, I’m usually very good at that sort of thing.) Now enough rambling….on to the questions!
GFY: First off…tell us a little about you? (ie where are you from? when did you know you wanted to be a writer?)
KH: I’m from Massachusetts. I’ve always wanted to be a writer. The first works I remember writing as a little girl were a poem about my dog and a spooky story about a house that swallowed children. The main character in the story was named Shelly because I was looking around my room trying to think of a name and saw a seashell on my desk. It was far from genius. But I was seven, so there’s that.
GFY: I didn’t realize that your thing with spooky ghost stories went back so far. This explains a lot.
KH: Psychic chick solves murder.
KH: Either my husband or my friend Susan—depending on their schedule.
KH: The last, definitely. Both are so important, but I struggle with the last line the most for some reason.
GFY: When you write, which comes first title, plot or character(s)?
KH: It depends on the project. For the CLARITY books, the characters came first. For the standalone I’m working on, the plot came first.
KH: I had a lot of fun writing Chapter 3. I think I love it so much because Clare does something I’d never have the guts to do.
GFY: *runs of to look at Chapter 3 for a refresher* lol I like that scene too and I’m with you. I’d never be able to do it. Though I’d probably fantasize about it in my head.
KH: None of my characters are based on real people, but Clare and I both dabble in the art of sarcasm. Like Clare, I didn’t have many friends in high school. I wouldn’t say I was an outcast like her. More like invisible. But I understand her trust issues and where she’s coming from when she gets defensive. Most of my “words as weapons” was done silently, though. I never had the courage Clare has.
GFY: Dabble? Did you say you dabble in sarcasm? I’ve hung out with you…dabble is an understatement! lol Sometimes in high school I think I was a little too outspoken for my own good. Still am to some degree.
KH: The setting came to me very early on. I knew—because of the nature of their family business—that my characters lived in a tourist town. I picked Cape Cod mainly because I know it best.
KH: I would probably have the gift of perceiving danger before it comes because I’m a huge worrywart.
KH: I am pleading the fifth for spoilery reasons. 😉
GFY: You…are no fun!
In the book, Madam Maslov, who was a minor character quickly became one of my faves. What was your inspiration for her?
KH: My inspiration for her was those cheesy psychics you see on late night TV commercials. But, like all my characters, I wanted to build a little something extra in her. And I found it interesting to play with the idea of prejudice and dislike from outside AND inside the psychic community.
KH: Right now it’s ENDLESS SUMMER by Jennifer Echols. I haven’t started it yet, but I’ve very quickly become a Jennifer Echols fangirl after reading GOING TOO FAR and FORGET YOU.
GFY: What is the book that you most want to read again for the first time?
KH: Probably THE HUNGER GAMES. I think I will read it again sometime, but it will never be like the first time when you have no idea what’s going to happen.
KH: Again, it was THE HUNGER GAMES. Many friends and family members were basically forced to read it. But all thanked me after!
KH: Damn, now everyone’s going to know my dirty little secret! Yes, I’ve never read PRIDE & PREJUDICE. I watched it on TV, though! *ducks from flying tomatoes*
GFY: Don’t think I haven’t noticed that you didn’t answer the question!! Know that I will wear you down!
KH: It’s a tie between Peeta from THE HUNGER GAMES and Patrick Kenzie from Dennis Lehane’s series.
GFY; I’d go with Peeta, he knows how to cook and can probably also make fire. Although since I don’t know what Patrick Kenzie is like I am a bit biased in my choice.
KH: I would lose my first week. I’m the pickiest eater in the world, so I would probably starve to death within days. I am clumsy and uncoordinated so I’d be useless in the challenges. And I fail in nature. One bug bite and I’m gone. I actually can’t think of any competitor who would be worse than me.
KH: My zombie plan is to hide behind my husband (who has played so many zombie-themed Xbox games that he is, actually, over-prepared). Out of my characters, I would choose Starla Fern to be by my side. As a telepath, maybe she’d hear the “brainssss” thoughts coming and we’d always be one step ahead.
GFY: Can you share with us anything about your current project(s)?
KH: Up next is the sequel to CLARITY, coming in March 2012. After that, in Fall 2012, I have a standalone supernatural mystery—a ghost story. I’m super pumped for both of them!
GFY: I’m excited too! I really need to know what happens to Clare and company next! Any parting words?
KH: I just want to thank everyone for reading our foolishness! 🙂 You can find out more info about CLARITY (and watch the trailer) at my website: www.kimharringtonbooks.com.
Thanks Kim for taking time to answer these questions and I look forward to seeing Clarity out in the wild! Also be sure to come back later for a Clarity related contest.
Clarity will be released on 01 March 2011 by Scholastic/Point and can be pre-ordered now via Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Book Depository, IndieBound and Tatnuc (Local Indie Bookstore).