Joy Preble grew up in Chicago, though she moved to Texas and inexplicably began listening to country music, which she claims she didn't like until then. She has an English degree from Northwestern University, and she teaches high school English. Dreaming Anastasia is her first novel. She can be found online at www.joypreble.com
Do you use myspace, facebook, twitter, or other social networking sites? If so, how do we find you on those sites?
I'm Joy Preble on Facebook.
I'm @joypreble on Twitter
What books are you currently reading?
I'm reading so much right now that I can't list them all, but some that I've just finished and absolutely loved include Sarah Dessen's latest, Along for the Ride, Melissa Marr's newest,Fragile Eternity, and the definitely edgy Freaked, by Jen Dutton and Crash into Me by Albert Borris. They are all amazing. Also just finished the ARC of Maggie Stiefvater's Shiver. Wow! The Sam and Grace romance just grabbed me. If you are looking for a great werewolf story and fabulous, lyrical writing, pick this one up! Two other ARC's that I've read and that everyone should look forward to are Megan Crewe's paranormal Give Up the Ghost, and Lauren Strasnick's Nothing Like You, which made me cry more than once.
What are your favorite books?
Again, I've got too many to list, but F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby has to be at the top of the list.Fitzgerald absolutely nails the corruptive aspects of the American Dream. To me, it's a book that's always contemporary even though he wrote a very long time ago. Pretty much anything by Sarah Dessen and Anne Tyler will always draw me in. Older fantasty childhood favorites such as Madeline L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time and Edgar Eager's Half Magic gave me my love of the genre. Like a lot of people, I've read every Harry Potter and I think JK Rowling is an amazing genius. I've got so many others - from classics like Flaubert's Madame Bovary to Libba Bray's Great and Terrible Beauty trilogy and of course, anything by Holly Black. And Judy Blume's Forever! Loved that one, too.
What books would you recommend to your readers?
Well, I guess I'd want to know what they like to read, but of course I'd have to recommend all the books of my fellow debut authors, the Class of 2k9. You can find us on line at http://classof2k9.com. Stop by and check out what's debuting next! And pretty much anything attached to Cynthea Liu's Authors Now site - lots of great new titles there. Beyond that, since DREAMING ANASTASIA is a re-telling of the tragic story of a real girl - Anastasia Romanov, I'd say check out the biography Nicholas and Alexandra by Robert K. Massie and Anastasia, The Last Grand Duchess by Carolyn Meyer. They'll both give you the scoop on the real girl.
Any message to your readers?
I am so excited to share Anne, Ethan, and Anastasia's story with everyone! If you like a little romance and some alternate history with your paranormal stories, then DREAMING ANASTASIA is definitely for you. Drop by my website, www.joypreble.com and see what's going on. Comment on my blog at joysnovelidea.blogspot.com. Join the Dreaming Anastasia group on Facebook. And most of all,keep dreaming! Remember, you are never too young or too old to follow your dreams - even if sometimes they don't turn out exactly as you'd planned!
What is your book about? Please provide a description.
Sixteen year old Anne thinks her life is pretty ordinary - until she smacks into handsome, mysterious,and okay, annoying Ethan on he way to chemistry class. Now Anne has powers she doesn't understand, a history altering mission she may not want, and a growing attraction to this blue-eyed stranger. And Ethan -who at eighteen made some choices he's starting to regret - realizes that Anne is the girl for whom he's been searching - for a very, very long time. Stir in doomed Russian Grand Duchess Anastasia - who is definitely not quite as dead as the history books say - and Baba Yaga, the legendary witch from Russian folklore, and you've got DREAMING ANASTASIA, a contemporary YA fantasy that alternates between the voices of Anne, Ethan, and Anastasia as Anne and Ethan join forces to battle the bad guys and save Anastasia. Only problem is - no one's quite sure who's really bad and who's good. And everyone has some secrets.
How long have you been at work on this book?
Finished the novel in fall '05. Signed with ABLA agent in '06, sold to Lyron Bennett at Sourcebooks in August 07. Book set to launch on 9/1/09.
How did the idea originate?
I'd always love the story of the Romanovs, the tragedy of Anastasia. I was a fan of fantasy and fairy tales and folklore. I love strong, kick ass female characters. And then one day in the fall of '04, Anne's voice came to me. She was funny and snarky and a little angry and hungry form something more. And she wanted me to give her a story. Soon after, Ethan popped up, and everything sort of flowed from there. I had this very strong character and I wanted to see what would happen when I threw life-altering obstacles at her and gave her the opportunity to change history. Would she? Could she? Should she? And would she fall for the handsome, mysterious guy?
Did the book entail any unusual writing habits or places?
Although now my son is out of the house in his own apartment, I wrote Dreaming Anastasia as a working mom. That meant that I learned to write any time, anywhere. At home. During my conference period at school. Jotting down notes on the program at football games. Tucked in a corner at Starbucks. In the dentist's waiting room. And although I now have my own little office in our house, I still maintain the ability to write whenever I've got a spare minute or two.