inkpopper of the Week: Anatole
Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on July 26, 2010
“I’m currently sweet sixteen, a rising junior in high school in upstate New York. No siblings or pets, but I have a group of wonderful – if slightly (or totally) insane – friends who keep me going. My family is small – two parents, two grandmothers, and an aunt – so there’s not much to say there, other than the fact that they’re lovable . . . but drive me absolutely crazy. And vice versa.
“Hobbies include singing, dancing, playing the violin and piano (not like Jeffrey Siegel or Vanessa Mae or anything, but I get by) and, of course, writing. I also have a very deep obsession with all things The Phantom of the Opera and Love Never Dies. And don’t even get me started on how much the various media of Sailor Moon mean to me now. *cough* I mean as a child. *cough cough*”
While Elizabeth (aka Anatole) is a typical teenager; she is one with quite a bit on her plate. In addition to being a talented writer who was named Grand Prize Winner of inkpop’s 2010 Supernatural (Summer) Writing Contest, which snagged her the chance to fly to Chicago to meet with authors Kimberly Derting, Kelley Armstrong, Kim Harrison, and Ellen Schreiber during one of their stops on the Supernatural Summer Tour (which Elizabeth recapped for us right here on the inkpop blog); Elizabeth devotes her time to an abundance of creative activities – all of which hold a special place in her heart.
★ In your profile you state “I sing sing sing, dance, play violin, piano, and . . . write. of course.” Obviously, you are a part of many different creative outlets – which is your favorite one and why?
Anatole: Honestly, singing and writing are pretty much a tie, since I’m the best at them. I’m an all right dancer (tap is my forte), piano and violin player, but I wouldn’t win any awards. (Actually, I’ve won minor awards for my tap dancing, so maybe I should say that I wouldn’t make it very far in a formal competition.) Singing and writing both give me that special “high,” where you know you’re good – you could always do better, of course – and you’re confident, and you know for a fact that other people really enjoy what you put out there.
★ Currently you have two projects posted on inkpop – Eternal and Anticipation – both of which are short stories. Is this your favorite format to write in? Would you ever consider turning one of your short stories into a novel? Author Note: At the time of publication, Elizabeth had added two new projects to inkpop – the short story Loss and the book Black Tears.
Anatole: I like short stories because they’re short. They’re quick to read and are focused on one little storyline. They can quickly dip into things that books cannot, or have to expand upon to fill up pages. That being said, I really prefer writing novels, because you do get to expand, give more details, and really develop the characters and plot.
I probably wouldn’t turn one of my shorts into a novel, because there isn’t anything there to expand upon. My short stories are simple, and meant to leave the readers hanging.
★ You did extremely well in inkpop’s 2010 Supernatural (Summer) Writing Contest, being named the Grand Prize Winner with your short story Eternal and having a second short story – Black Tears – place in the Top 10. What is behind your success in this particular Contest?
Anatole: My success in the contest was all due to the wonderful readers and those who voted and critiqued the works. I enjoy writing realistic fiction with supernatural elements, which is an easy kind of genre-mix to find in any bookstore, but there’s almost never enough romance to keep me satisfied. I write what I want to read – supernatural (or not) stories with heaps of romance, witty banter, and cute guys. Thankfully, that’s what a lot of inkpop readers want to read, too.
★ As the Grand Prize Winner of the 2010 Supernatural (Summer) Writing Contest you had the chance to meet with authors Kimberly Derting, Kelley Armstrong, Kim Harrison, and Ellen Schreiber – even going to Coldstone for ice cream with all of them. What was this experience like? Out of the four authors, who did you relate to the most and why?
Anatole: Winning the Contest and getting to fly out to Chicagoland to see the four (amazing) authors was a surreal experience, and it still feels like a dream. They were all so sweet and nice; it’s hard to pick which one I related the most to. But, I guess if I had to pick just one, I’d say Kimberly Derting. She was the newest – the latest to debut – and was so happy and energetic about everything; it was infectious.
★ What do you think makes good writing?
Anatole: Grammar and a knowledge of whatever language you’re writing in that’s beyond basic makes good writing. What you put down on paper doesn’t have to be perfect, but make sure that other people besides yourself can read and understand it. Know capitalization, punctuation, and not to use text abbreviations and such, and if you have something in your head, explain it with great care to your audience. They can’t read your mind.
★ Who was your favorite childhood author and why?
Anatole: My favorite childhood author would have to be Phyllis Reynolds Naylor. I remember while my classmates were reading the Junie B. Jones and Magic Treehouse series, I’d be reading Naylor’s Witch and Alice series. I even read Shiloh, though it wasn’t my cup of tea. She’s written hundreds of books, too, which is definitely admirable.
Anatole: 1. Nine chapters of an AP U.S. History textbook (not of my own volition).
2. Cum Laude, by Cecily von Ziegesar
3. My Name is Memory, by Ann Brashares
4. Hush, Hush, by Becca Fitzpatrick
5. Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Carnival of Souls, by Nancy Holder (One of the many tie-ins to the series that you don’t see much anymore. I saw the book in Borders and had to have it, being a Buffy Freak.)
6. A House Afire, by Emma Kinna
★ How do you combat writer’s block? Do you have any tips for beating out writer’s block that you’d like to share with us?
Anatole: When I can’t think of what to write next, I either walk away to do something else, or look up people – actresses, models, etc. – that look like my characters. That usually inspires me and gives me someone tangible to base the character off of, even if their personalities are complete opposites. (Emmy Rossum is almost always incorporated somewhere in the mix.) While I take a break, I try to imagine what I really want to write about at that moment, and if it fits with the story, I put it in.
★ Anything else you’d like to add?
Anatole: If you’re interested in the Supernatural Summer Tour event that took place in Chicagoland (or in hearing me sing), visit my YouTube channel.
★ Hermione Granger or Bella Swan? 2005 – summer 2008? Bella. Now? Hermione. The movies ruined the Saga for me. Plus, Emma Watson rocks.
★ What’s on your iPod? Emmy Rossum, Vanessa Mae, Lady Gaga, Miley Cyrus’ newest album, plus a whole bunch of albums from the Sailor Moon musicals. I have strange tastes in music.
★ Lucky number? 44 and 27.
★ Food you could eat everyday? Rice Krispies Treats (I feel like such a kid!)
★ Best place to curl up with a good book? On the couch in my grandmother’s home in Long Island.
Over to you…who do you think should be the next inkpopper of the Week?
Erika (aka inkpoperika)