Hi Christy, I am thrilled that you decided to do a story based on Celtic history. I love anything Celtic. What drew you to this?
Eleven years ago my husband bought us tickets to see Riverdance for Valentine’s Day. I had never heard of Irish dancing, but after watching the dancers, I knew that I wanted to learn how. Once I began Irish dancing, I was drawn to the culture and mythology, the rhythm and the music.
How long have you been writing?
I always wanted to be an author, but when I grew older, I somehow got it in my head that it wasn’t a real job. So, I went on to other things. When I became pregnant with my youngest child, that same desire to write broke through the surface and I had a ferocious need to write. I began writing and attending conferences and workshops. That was about six years ago.
Who is your favorite character in your book? Who would you hang out with and why? Who would you avoid and why?
Ah, that is like asking me which of my children I love the most. I love Aunt Avril because she is so unpredictable and doesn’t care what others think of her. I would like to hang out with Zoey, McKayla’s little sister, because she is so full of energy and imagination. I would avoid the lizard. He’s kind of creepy.
Who does your book target?
AWAKENING is a young adult novel, but it targets a wide audience. Pre-teens will love McKayla’s little sister, Zoey, and teens will relate to McKayla’s struggles with balancing school, dance, and boys. I am also targeting the audience of adult women who love to read young adult books. Rourke and Leah’s story is for them.
What type of magic is in your book? If you were to have a magic power, what would you choose?
My magic system is based on movement, and the senses. There’s magic in dancing, singing, sign language, and even cooking. If I were to choose a magic power, it would be the ability to breath underwater (I’m deathly afraid of being underwater).
Describe your mindset while writing this book. What kept you going?
There’s something about expressing yourself in art. I wanted to share a piece of myself with others through the written word. I wanted to know that, even though I am, first, a mother, there are other things that I can accomplish, and I want to show others that they can reach for their dreams.
You have been amazing at getting the word out on your book. Is there any advice you’d like to give our readers on marketing?
Marketing is about being genuine, and building a network of friends that can help boost each other up. Also, keep your finger on the pulse of publishing, and what types of marketing is working for others that are successful. Always try new things, and keep records so that you can tell what works and what doesn’t.
What is your favorite writing tool?
I love to have music playing while I write. It centers me and tells my brain that it’s time to focus. Usually I will listen to John Schmidt, or Celtic Women, or the Disney’s Brave soundtrack.
Is there any writing advice you wish you knew before you started writing?
You don’t have to get it right the first time–in fact it is certain that you won’t. You can’t edit a blank page, but if you write down what you have in mind now, you will have something to work with.
Thank you, Christy, for answering my questions. I know I, for one, am excited to read your book!
. . . because some Celtic stories won’t be contained in myth.
A little magic has always run in sixteen-year-old McKayla McCleery’s family—at least that’s what she’s been told. McKayla’s eccentric Aunt Avril travels the world as a psychic for the FBI, and her mother can make amazing delicacies out of the most basic of ingredients. But McKayla doesn’t think for a second that the magic is real—it’s just good storytelling. Besides, McKayla doesn’t need magic. She recently moved to beautiful Star Valley, Wyoming, and already she has a best friend, a solo in her upcoming ballet recital—and the gorgeous guy in her physics class keeps looking her way.
When an unexpected fascination with Irish dance leads McKayla to seek instruction from the mute, crippled janitor at her high school, she learns that her family is not the only one with unexplained abilities.
After Aunt Avril comes to Star Valley in pursuit of a supernatural killer, people begin disappearing, and the lives of those McKayla holds most dear are threatened. When the janitor reveals that an ancient curse, known as a geis, has awakened deadly powers that defy explanation, McKayla is forced to come to terms with what is real and what is fantasy.
A thrilling debut novel based in Celtic mythology, Awakening is a gripping young adult fantasy rife with magic, romance, and mystery.
Christy Dorrity lives in the mountains with her husband, five children, and a cocker spaniel. She grew up on a trout ranch in Star Valley, Wyoming, and is the author of The Geis series for young adults, and The Book Blogger’s Cookbooks. Christy is a champion Irish dancer and when she’s not reading or writing, she’s probably trying out a new recipe in the kitchen.
Christy’s book is now available in stores: