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Interview with Cassie Greutman

She is a small-town Ohio girl who has always loved stories in any form. You can usually find her typing away at her computer or playing out in the barn with her ponies.

Q.1 Tell us something about yourself not many people know?
That’s an interesting question! Hmmm… How about the fact that even as a grown adult, I’m still addicted to chocolate milk? It’s kind of sad really because just writing that makes me want to go and get a glass right now…

Q.2 Are we going to read more from you in the near future? Any new project you’re working on?
Right now I’m working on several projects! One is a short story in a mythological creature set, that will be out this summer. A short story in a dragon set, Dracos, which is coming out in May. The fourth book in my Penchant for Trouble series is about a fae girl in the human foster care system and a secret project that is under wraps for the moment!

Q.3 What inspired you to write The Arnath Chronicles?
I don’t think there are enough stories about true friendship out there, and I wanted to write something where two very different people have to learn to become friends. The story morphed from there.

Q.4 What is the most difficult thing about writing characters from the opposite sex?
It can be hard not to write the opposite sex in a stereotypical way. It helps that I have five brothers, so I’ve spent plenty of time around boys, and now men.

Q.5 How do you develop your plots and characters? Do you use any set formula?
I actually start at the end and then ask myself how my characters got into the situation they are in. If I know how things end, I can tie threads together that are hard to see unless you know where everything is headed.

Q.6 How many books have you written? Which one is your favorite?
That’s a tough question, I would honestly have to go back and count. Somewhere around ten? I have a lot of work I did before I decided to publish. I counted all those as learning experiences, but I may go back someday and see if the stories can be turned into something people would enjoy reading. 

My favorite is probably Regen. I love the relationship between the main character and her foster parents, Dan and Nina. Though an unpublished manuscript about a boy and his horse that’s been moved from laptop to laptop as I’ve gone through the years is probably a close second, as I’m as addicted to horses as I am to chocolate milk.

Q.7 What was the hardest part of writing this series?
Creating a whole new set of magic rules. I love the world of Arnath. I love our world. I love the world of Faerie from Penchant for Trouble. And they are all headed for one big collision.

Q.8 Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
I draw and play piano and violin, so I have other creative outlets, but I can’t imagine ever giving up storytelling. Maybe all of the work that comes with writing, but I’ll always be creating worlds for my imagination to live in.

Q.9 If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead role?
You like to ask tough questions, don’t you! I really like Luisa D'Oliveira. I think she’d make an excellent Sen.

Q.10 Is it vital to get exposure and target the right readers for your writing, tell us about your marketing campaign?
I’ve always been told it’s vital to target the correct readers but to be honest, knowing who those people are is hard! A lot of the emails and reviews I get are from people who I wouldn’t have expected to pick up the type of book I write, but here they are, loving the story. Or more specifically, the characters. 

If an author can get the characters right, I think you can draw in all types of readers. I honestly don’t do a lot of marketing because it’s so expensive and time-consuming. I figure there’s time for that later when I have more content. Though it would be nice to be able to make enough to quit one of my part-time jobs and have more time for writing!

Q.11 If you could be a member of any fantasy race, which would you choose and why?
An Elf. Not even picky about what kind, I just love nature. Living in a quiet forest somewhere sounds pretty spectacular to me.

Q.12 What is one stereotype about fantasy writers is absolutely wrong? What one stereotype is dead on?
That we’re all just weird and anti-social. But on the flip-side, most of us are a little different. You have to be to create a whole new world, I guess.

Q.13 If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
Just stick with it. You’ll find people who love your work, and it will make you keep on even when it’s early mornings and late nights, just to put a smile on someone’s face.

Q.14 Among all the supporting characters in your book, who is dear to you and why?
Honestly the villain in Orcus Fled is someone who I feel bad for. He grew up in a lot of competition with his own family and doesn’t know how to be a decent human. He thinks he’s doing the right thing, and to his people, he probably is.

Q.15 Who designed your book cover? How do you select him/her?
A. Angela Stevens
! We’ve been working together long enough that I don’t even remember how I found her at this point!

Q.16 How do you select the name of your characters?
For people from Earth, I look through a baby names book until something hits me. For people from other worlds, a lot of times I just throw in a place-holder name until their name just jumps out at me. It always happens eventually, even if it’s on the last round of edits.

Q.17 Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with good or bad ones?
I read every single one of them. Sure, an author isn’t really supposed to, because they can be really discouraging. I had someone go through and 1-star rate all of my one series for no reason. Either they continued reading books they knew they hated, or they didn’t read them. 

I don’t understand either way. But you do end up developing a thick skin, and realize that just because it’s something you love, it doesn’t mean everyone will, which applies to everything in life. I mean, there are even people out there who don’t like chocolate milk!

Q.18 Which famous person, living or dead would you like to meet and why?
They say never meet your heroes, but I’d love to have lunch with author Kristen Britain. Her Green Rider series is absolutely amazing.

Q.19 What is your favorite book from other authors and why?
Whoops, I kind of answered this on the last question. The Green Rider series has magic, dragons, and horses, what else could a girl ask for?

Q.20 Share the experience of your writing journey so far?
Honestly the first few years were very difficult. I have an extremely busy life, and I put a lot of pressure on myself to get books out, only making that worse. I’ve slowed down a little, which hurts my chances of ever being able to go full time, but I feel better about my future and not getting burnt out so easily or possibly permanently.

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