Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Interview with Bethany Wiggins!

Hey guys. It is time for another interview, and this time I got the chance to interview one of my favorite new authors, Bethany Wiggins! She wrote the AMAZING book, Shifting, which is in stores now. If you haven't read it yet, check it out!

Question: Shifting has a lot of Navajo mythology in the book… Did you research this, or is it something that you grew up with?
Answer: A little of both. I spent a year in New Mexico as a teen, which is where I first heard stories of Skinwalkers. But when I wrote SHIFTING I did a lot of research into the more religious aspects of the Navajo people.

Q: Where did the inspiration for Maggie Mae’s character come from?
A: Honestly, I was sick of female main characters in young adult novels who were weak, annoying pushovers that never stood up for themselves, or were always complaining. When I wrote Maggie Mae, I tried to make her as opposite of the typical young adult female main character as possible.

Q: Can you tell us if you’re planning a sequel to Shifting, or has Maggie Mae found her happily ever after?
A: That's a REALLY tough question. Believe it or not, I have already written a part two to SHIFTING. But after I wrote part two, I wrote STUNG--a completely different story that totally blew my agent away. So my agent gave STUNG to my publisher and it's the next thing coming out.

Q:  Maggie Mae works at the Navajo Mexican. Did the idea of mixing these two types of cuisine come from a restaurant that you’ve tried?
A: Ish. When I was a kid, my church had a Halloween party every year and they always served Navajo Tacos (a scone with taco toppings). I guess the idea grew from that. Plus I love Mexican food. Sadly, I have yet to discover a restaurant like the one in my book! 

Q: How long did it take you to write Shifting?
A: It took me about six weeks to get the story down on paper, and then eight more weeks to tweak/edit/enhance/rewrite the initial story. But I spent A LOT of time in front of the computer. I can't do that anymore because I have four small kids that take up all of my day. Now I only write at night, and typically an hour or two per sitting.

Q:  What other projects are you working on at the moment, and what do you have planned for the future?
A: I already mentioned STUNG, which comes out winter 2013 (yeah, that sounds really far away, I know!). I am currently working on a companion novel to STUNG.

Here is the blurb for STUNG:
When the government attempts to save endangered bees by genetic modification it causes their sting to induce deadly, flu-like symptoms in humans. A vaccine created in response changes children into ferocious, killer beasts. The uninfected have built a wall to keep the beasts out, and a girl has awakened on the wrong side.

Q:  Is Mrs. Carpenter patterned after someone you know or knew growing up?
A: She's a little bit of several people, with touches of my mother mixed in (like when Bridger is carrying her inside because she's been injured, and she says something like, "If I knew all it would take was a wolf bite to get a young man like you to carry me across the threshold, I'd have gotten bit years ago.") That is SO my mom.

Q:  Maggie Mae is a strong character, but she’s not abrasive. Was it hard to find the balance between strength and callousness?
A: Not at all. I based her strong side on a teenager I know, and then tempered it--I'm a really, really nice person (almost to the point of being a pushover) so it's actually hard for me to write an abrasive, sarcastic, snarky type of character.

Q: What song do you think describes Maggie Mae and Bridger’s relationship?
A: "Faraway" by Nickelback

Q: What were the easiest and hardest parts of writing Shifting?
A: The easiest part was getting that first draft down on paper. But it was so hard to write the sad parts! Like when Maggie gets bullied--I'd be sitting at my computer crying so hard I couldn't see the screen! And when she thinks Bridger has a girlfriend, I felt like I'd been dumped and was sad for days.

Thank you Bethany for taking the time to answer my questions! I am looking forward to Stung, and I will keep my fingers crossed that we have another Maggie Mae story!

Amazon.com: Print
Amazon.com: Kindle E-book

Barnes and Noble: Print
Barnes and Noble: Nook E-book


  1. Great interview! That's a really short time to get a novel done! I take forever!!! :) Can't wait to read Stung!

  2. Thanks! I take a long time to write too. I blame college, haha :)

  3. Thanks for taking the time to answer the questions, Bethany! :)


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