inkpopper of the Week: Leigh Fallon
Posted by cat eyes & skinny jeans on November 29, 2010
“School? Me? That’s all a little bit in the past for me unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you’re looking at it). I’m all grown up now…well sort of, I’m sure there’s a little wiggle room for maturity growth. LOL. I’m living between counties at the moment, but I spend the majority of my time in the US in a small town outside of Boston, MA. In terms of hobbies, I love horse riding and ice-skating. I’m also a mom of four crazy kids, including identical twins so with them and my obsessive writing tendencies, time for hobbies is scarce.”
Though she may not have time for hobbies, Leigh Fallon has certainly made an effort to feed her “obsessive writing tendencies” – and the obsessive reading tendencies of her fans here on inkpop – via her projects – specifically her books The Carrier of the Mark (which received a Gold Star here on inkpop), and Haunting Jenny (which is currently ranked at # 94). Writing, however, isn’t the only passion in Leigh’s life – traveling is also an important aspect of who she is.
★ You grew up in Dublin, Ireland; lived in West Cork, Ireland; and recently moved to the U.S.? Do you feel that these experiences have influenced your writing in any way? If so, how and why?
Leigh: Travel is the ultimate way to experience life, and I’ve travelled a lot. Not just Ireland and the US, I’ve worked all over Europe. I’ve met amazing people and sampled so many different cultures. Every country is different, every person unique. Getting a taste of such diversity has really added depth of understand of people which I think has helped my character development. In writing it’s the subtle differences that can turn a person from just a flat character to a real person that jumps off the page and has a life of their own.
Leigh: The Carrier of the Mark, Dawn of the Knights and Haunting Jenny were all written while I lived in Ireland. With my move to the US my writing time has been squished into practically nothing. I’ve been working on edits of Carrier and I’m about to embark on a re-write of Dawn of the Knights. I guess, if my writing has changed I’m about to find out all about it!
★ You run your own blog – Leigh Fallon. In your opinion, how does blogging differ from writing books/short stories/poems – the things you are known for on inkpop? Do you prefer one over the other? Why or why not?
Leigh: Blogging is fun. It’s another outlet. I’ve mentioned before, I’m short on time these days, so it’s a great way to express myself without committing to a lengthy process. It’s like an instant gratification thing. But blogging can be tough. When you’re writing a novel and you’re having an off day, you simply walk away from it and come back to it when you’re feeling inspired, but with a blog, people expect you to post, and if you let them down, they’ll go elsewhere. If you want to stay in the game, you have to post regularly and be witty and inspiring and sometimes that’s just not possible. Bloggers are a tough crowd to please, but do it right and they’re the best audience in the world.
★ Your project The Carrier of the Mark was named a Top Pick, and received a glowing review from the HC Editor’s; you are now working on a new book – Haunting Jenny – which recently broke the Top 100. What goals do you have for Haunting Jenny? How do these two projects differ from one another?
Leigh: Yeah, Carrier got an amazing review; I was walking on air for quite some time after that. I’m still working on the edits suggested by the HC reviewer. I started writing Haunting Jenny while I was waiting for Carrier’s review. I wanted to do something a little different. It’s in the third person, which is a first for me. Haunting Jenny is a little different as it tells the story from two perspectives. Jenny’s soul which is trapped in a spirit realm reliving the past until she can unravel its secrets, while Jenny’s body, occupied by a ghost walks about hell bent on revenge.
★ What makes your writing unique? What sets it apart from other inkpop projects and books that have already been published?
Leigh: Ooo, that’s a toughie! I’d like to think my writing is fresh and light. I try not to get too bogged down in heavy description and narrative. I like my dialogue to tell the story in a natural and easy flowing way. Fingers crossed I’ve achieved that.
Leigh: Nice question! Do you know what? I’ve always had a soft spot of Mariah Lucas in Pride and Prejudice. Now, there’s a story that holds potential. She was such an overlooked character, and even left out of the Hollywood remake! If Jane Austen was still around Mariah would make a fantastic spin off. Charlotte, was really holding Mariah back, once Charlotte had been married off it would have opened the door for some good old fashioned bodice bursting passion for Mariah. Oh yes, I could play Mariah!
★ If you had to create a soundtrack for either The Carrier of the Mark or Haunting Jenny, which songs would you include and why?
Leigh: I have one! Music inspires me more than anything. I wrote Carrier listening to Radiohead, Moby and Elbow. All of their music is so amazing. As I’m listening, the scene just pops into my head. My playlist for Carrier is on my website. Go have a listen, and be prepared to be inspired.
★ Who is your favorite character(s) in any of your work and why?
Leigh: Again, a toughie! I have so many. If I had to single one out right now, I’d be leaning towards Áine DeRís in Carrier. She’s so spunky and funny. She’s had a sad life and has a very daunting future. She’s restricted in everything she does and has a betrothed waiting for her when she’s old enough, and hasn’t even had a boyfriend yet! But despite all this, she is full of hope and fun and she has the best one liners and sarcastic sense of humor.
Leigh: My major writing quirk would be handwriting! Yes, I’ve written all my books in longhand. I scrawl them out in notebooks in horribly undecipherable handwriting and then when they’re finished they get transferred to my computer. Though, that’s changing. I’m finding myself leaning towards the computer more and more. I think it’s a confidence thing. Before, I used to think there was magic in the pens. Like magic ink! I know…crazy. When I’d see the ink running out on the pen I was writing with, I’d begin to panic and have to scouring the shops looking for the same type of pen in order to continue. My other writing requirement is black coffee on tap. If they administered it intravenously, I’d be first in line.
★ If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing?
Leigh: Ummm, I’d be going insane! Yip, I’d be rocking back and forth in a white padded cell mumbling incoherently and shrieking ‘the bells’ intermittently. I started writing to create another reality for myself, a reality that I could escape too when I needed too. Escapism is a way of life for a mom of 4, trust me.
★ Anything else you’d like to add?
Leigh: I want to say a big thank you to all my buddies on inkpop. You guys have been amazing. There are too many to mention, but I want to put a big shout out for Morgan Shamy AKA MIC, author of Shadow Watchers. She is the most awesome online friend anyone could hope for and a super talented author to boot.
Pop, Pop, Pop! Rapid Fire Questions:
★ Favorite movie? Pride & Prejudice (BBC Version).
★ What’s on your iPod? Weird Fishes – Radiohead, Mirrorball – Elbow, My Weakness – Moby.
★ Ron Weasley or Harry Potter? Ron Weasley (redheads have to stick together, we are after all facing extinction!).
★ Cake or ice cream? Cake, I’ve never been into ice cream
★ Favorite season? In Ireland we don’t have seasons…we just have weather.
Over to you…who do you think should be the next inkpopper of the Week?
Erika (aka inkpoperika)