Wednesday, April 21, 2010

We've Got Georgia on Our Mind: Interview with Georgia McBride

This is how you may know Georgia McBride.

Hopefully after this interview, you'll see her a little differently!

You may know her awesome work bringing Young Adult writers, agents, and editors together with the weekly #YALitChat on Twitter. She also is the founder of the interactive YALitChat online community where authors, agents, and editors, and readers can come together to discuss the world of Young Adult literature. With Georgia at the helm, the YALitChat grew to 1000 members in three months. Amazing, right? But that's not all of her fabulousness. She is also the author of the pre-published YA Urban Fantasy series PRAEFATIO. Both St. Martin's Press and Sourcebooks Fire have asked her to help launch their debut lines. Her creative background also includes being a former artist manager and marketer in the music business as well as being a product marketing exectutive and web producer. Georgia also blogs with The YA-5 gals, Kelly Barnhill, Steph Bowe, KA Holt, Justina Ireland, Sarah McClung, Cristin Terrill

Here's a little Q and A with Georgia

(1). How important do you feel an online persona is to a writer?

An online presence is crucial in today’s market. As readers are increasingly online, writers must seek to reach them where they are.

(2). You consider yourself a marketing person. For people who perhaps do not have a background in marketing, what are the top three to five things you would suggest for the m to do to get noticed in the industry?

  1. Your work must stand out as unique, well-written and marketable

  2. You must be professional yet approachable

  3. Perpetuate a positive, can-do attitude

  4. Seek opportunities to participate within the writing community as a contributor

  5. Pay it forward.

(3). You have two small children. For our writers who pull double duty as mothers, what advice would you give them to help balance their writing time?

Writing can’t be a chore. It must be a passion in order to move you forward successfully. Because I’m so passionate about my work, I make time during naps, when the kids are asleep, etc. It’s become my “me” time.

(4). I notice that your PRAEFATIO series and other works deal with Heaven, Hell, Archangles, etc. Since I, myself, have an angel book going on sub in a little while, I’m curious to know what interests you about them?

Nothing in particular. My characters find me. They ask that I tell their story, whatever that may be. I have a reaper waiting his turn, two brothers--averagely human and a human girl who happens to have been cloned from an alien life-source. I didn’t choose to write about angels. It just happened to be Grace’s quandary.

(5). Music has played a great part in your past and present (you enjoy songwriting, managed Indie bands, etc), and I see where Praefatio has an rockstar for an LI. Is adding in that musical layer a conscious or subconscious thing. I, myself, seem to have a guitar player in every novel…I think I’m working at making it my signature thing!

Music seems to seep into everything I do. I’m not quite sure how Gavin Vault ended up as a rockstar though I’m certain there’s a perfectly good explanation in the book. I will say that I listened to music constantly when writing PRAEFATIO and the one song in particular that kept cropping up was Halo by Depeche Mode.
(6). Do you feel that YA needs more diversity? The changing of the cover of Liar comes to mind, and the fact that we need more stories about minorities.

There are YA books written by African Americans, Latinas, Asians and Caucasians and for whatever reason, they simply just don’t get the same attention in the market when the main character is not white. PRAEFATIO has a multi-ethnic cast of characters though the protagonist is white.

(7). I see where you offer to speak to middle and high school students. Do you feel authors should do this because it’s important not only for readership, but also to discuss the craft of writing with them?

I speak at grade schools through college levels and I mentor a college creative writing course! I absolutely believe that writers need to get out and talk to students about writing. They need to share what they’ve learned with kids and help grow the next generation! Of course, from a marketing perspective, its never too soon to think about potential readers for your book.

(8). Since you’re pretty much an International Woman of Mystery, what do you have up your sleeve next…world domination? J

Well… I’m working on the adaption of PRAEFATIO for the big screen! HUGE. Wish me luck!

Psst, Check out the Book Trailer for PRAEFATIO

*Wondering about YAChatlit? Georgia answers your questions*

What’s in it for me?

I get tons of editorial experience by working through submissions, queries, first pages, synopses, etc. In essence, I learn by doing and take that experience and apply it to my own work making it better in the process.
How do I have so much time to contribute?

I don’t. I make time. I also don’t do it alone. I have 2 interns and 10 awesome Group Coordinators in YALitChat that volunteer to manage groups within the community. And now, the weekly twitter chat has 4 awesome co-hosts!

Do I get preferential treatment from the agents/editors I work with?

Absolutely not! In fact, sometimes I think the opposite it true. I think the expectation may be even higher for me.

What makes ME so special that these agents/editors want to work with me?

Perhaps I have the biggest mouth?

Both myself, Krista, and the gals here at GotYA want to thank Georgia for taking the time to do an interview with us. She's truly awesome!!

We also want to give a special GotYA shoutout to our own Kathleen who signed with awesome agent Emmanuelle Alspaugh.

CONGRATS KATH!!!!!!!!!!!


Kathleen said...

I've been dying to read PRAEFATIO ever since seeing the amazing trailer for it. One of my favorite book trailers. Great interview!

(and thanks for the shout out)

TheGotYA said...

YAY Georgia! The YA community is SO appreciative of all the hard work you do on our behalf! Great interview, and love, love, love the book trailer!


(Debra, aka, houndrat)

TheGotYA said...

And, last but not least....SQUEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!! YAY YAY YAY Kathleen! I'm soooo happy for you and the awesome HEMLOCK!


(houndrat again, who is too lazy to sign out of TheGotYA master account)

Pam Harris said...

Wow, I knew Georgia was awesome, but I didn't know she had so many talents. Great interview. :)

Christina Lee said...

The biggest mouth--heh heh!

WAY to go, Georgia!!! Fantastic interview!

Annie McElfresh said...

Georgia is AWESOME!! She does so much for us YAwriters!! :D

Great interview!

Brian said...

Fantastic, looking forward to Praefatio on the big screen.

Jamie B said...

That book trailer is beautiful! I knew Georgia was pretty cool, but man...Professor McGonegal had to have given her Hermoine's time turner to have enough hours in the day for all she does! :)

Sheri Larsenッ said...

Wow! Busy woman and so helpful. Great interview, Georgia. Thanks for connecting with us even more! And thanks to Got YA for doing the interview!

Mundie Moms said...

Great interview! I am lucky to have Georgia as such a dear friend. She is an amazing women and has accomplished so much. She's a great example to the YAwriter world. I'm dying to read Praefatio and send Georgia all the best wishes for bring it to the big screen.