Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Interview with Estelle Maskame, author of DIMILY

Hello, readers! Today I have a VERY exciting post for you: an author interview! I haven't done one of these in a really long time so it's great to get back to it! A few months ago I was sent an ARC of Did I Mention I Love You by the extremely talented young author, Estelle Maskame. I absolutely adored DIMILY and I'm so proud of everything Estelle has achieved- she is an example to adults everywhere that young people can do incredible things and achieve their dreams. 

Of course, when the opportunity came along to interview Estelle I jumped at it! I know Estelle has a huge fan base so I am so excited to be able to post this interview on Delightful Book Reviews. I hope you enjoy!

What inspired you to first start writing DIMILY?

I was really into reading YA books about teenagers who couldn't be together for one reason or another, but I always thought the reasons they couldn't be together were possible to overcome. I was never really satisfied enough and I began to think of more serious reasons why two people couldn't be together, and that's when I thought about the complications of step siblings dating. It's neither illegal nor incestuous, yet it's not considered normal and people tend to look down upon it. It was the idea of a  forbidden relationship that inspired me to write DIMILY.

How did your online success change the way you went about your writing and pursuing a career in that field?

When writing online, my aim wasn't to get a book deal, but the more attention my work got, the more I looked at a career in writing as a possibility. I definitely started to work harder and to take it all a lot more seriously as more and more people started reading it.

What is it like writing full time at such a young age?

There's a lot of pressure. In a way, it sometimes reminds me of exam seasons back at school, but much more intense. I feel lucky that I get to stay at home and do my hobby every day, but I do have to work hard and sometimes it can become a bit overwhelming! 

How do you come up with your story lines and characters?

I usually create my characters first and let them drive the story forward. I try to come up with complex characters who each have individual quirks, and I just write what feels right for them. 

What do your family and friends think about your publishing deal?

They're all so proud. Everything is just as exciting for my family as it is for me, and I'm constantly filling my friends in on what's been happening! 

How do you deal with criticism or bad reviews?

I don't mind them. I try to learn from criticism and I view it positively as a way to help me improve. Sometimes bad reviews do hurt, but I always just remind myself that it's okay for other people not to like my writing. I don't write to impress people, I write because I want to tell a story, and having people love it is a benefit, not the aim! 

How important is social media in modern publishing and getting your work out there?

There's definitely a lot more opportunities nowadays for people to get their work out there. Before, people only really read your work if you were traditionally published and your work was on shelves. Now, we can post our work, promote it, AND build up a following of fans just by using social media. It's amazing.

How do you feel about the DIMILY fandom? (fan accounts, ect)

I absolutely adore everyone who's ever taken the time to read my work, whether it be back 2012 when I was posting online or whether it be now as they stumble across the book in a store. I'm so grateful to have such supportive people who do read my work and do dedicate time to it, from promoting it online to asking friends to read it to making fan accounts and trailers. To put it simply, I'm kind of in love with my readers. 

What are your plans for the future?

Writing, writing and more writing. Whether it be a career or a hobby, I don't think I'll ever stop. I'm really looking forward to all the new novels I've got planned and I can't wait to start working on them! 

Describe DIMILY in three words.

I think "summer, secrets, stepsiblings" pretty much sums it up! ​

Thank you so much, Estelle, for being interviewed on my blog!

Check out my review of DIMILY here: http://delightfulbookreviews.blogspot.co.uk/2015/06/did-i-mention-i-love-you-by-estelle.html

Check out Estelle Maskame here: http://www.estellemaskame.com

Buy DIMILY here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mention-Love-DIMILY-Trilogy-Book/dp/1845029844