The Ruins of Noe Blog Tour: Interview with Danika Dinsmore

Today I am happy to be hosting a spot on the Ruins of Noe blog tour. The Ruins of Noe is a middle grade to young adult fairy book which is so cute and adventurous! Check out my review later!
Right now I am extremely happy to be introducing Danika, who has answered a few questions for me.

Hi Danika, thank you for being here today! Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

Danika DinsmoreThanks for having me, Jade.  
That's a really open-ended question. Let's see... I have an MFA from the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado. I'm not kidding. I'd love to get my PhD some day, but in a foreign city. And it would have to be a non-stoggy sort of program. I want to teach kindergarten at a University level. I don't like rules. If someone tells me something can't be done, it makes me want to do it. My favourite word is pamplemousse (my favourite animal name-word is hedgehog). I can't imagine living in a house without a cat. I'm doing what I love to do and am grateful every day for it.
How's that?

Can you describe The Ruins of Noe in three words?
Ack! (wait, does that count?). Imaginative, suspenseful, heart-breaking

What was your inspiration for the series?
Several years ago I decided I wanted to write a coming-of-age story about two faerie sisters. I wanted kids to be able to relate to them and for the faeries (and the children) to go on a true adventure. I've always loved coming-of-age stories and quest stories, and especially love stories that have both: character arc and adventure.

I originally wrote it as a screenplay, and I wrote it while working with two girls (who had a Himmy/Briggy kind of relationship, even though they weren't sisters) on the set of a film called Desolation Sound. It was in an isolated area in the forest. Talk about giving me the inspiration to write the story. One of the girls gave me the idea for the giant caterpillar.

What is it that you do on set?
I've done everything from writing and producing to transportation and set dec in the indie film world. In the service film world, I'm a Studio Teacher, which means I'm in charge of the health, safety, morals, and education of children while they are on set.

Did you originally plan to write a book targeted at a younger audience ?
Like I mentioned above, it was originally a screenplay. And yes, I wanted something for a younger audience because my (former) agents kept asking me to write something more commercial. Seriously, this was meant to be a commercial family film so I could finally sell a screenplay. Little did I know I would fall in love with it and that it would take over my life.

Who is your favourite character in the White Forest books and why?
Well, Brigitta has to be my favourite because we're growing up together, so I feel extremely close to her. However, if you asked me to pick my favourite non-Briggy character right now it's Ondelle. There's a big part of me in her. I understand her best, but the reader never knows what's going on internally with her, because it's Briggy's story. I've had to convey her internal world with her action and dialogue. BUT, all that's about to change with Book Three (she says mysteriously).

What was the biggest difficulty in getting the book published?
This is not a career for the faint of heart, the easily ego-bruised, or the gotta-get-rich-fast crowd. I'd say getting published isn't the difficult part in the long run. I believe anyone, if they commit to it, can get published. It's selling the book afterward that is the hard part. It is 75% of my job right now. Why should someone who's never heard of me spend their money on my book rather than on a latte and a slice of pizza or on 500,000 other books about there? Books are an investment of time and energy (and pizza tastes good now). So, I try to connect with people in person as much as possible (students, parents, teachers, librarians, etc) in schools and at events. It takes a lot of effort. But I'd rather be doing this than anything else!

Who is your biggest inspiration?
Children. They never cease to amaze me. And they are wise. They are onto us. The world's gonna be okay. (I love that answer!)

What books being released this year are you dying to get your hands on?
The fourth book in Cinda Williams Chima's Seven Realms series. I thought it was a trilogy. I literally cried out when I got to the end of Book Three and realized I had to wait ALMOST A YEAR until the 4th one was released.
I want to check out China Mielville's new YA novel RAILSEA. It sounds great (although I was not a big fan of Un Lun Dun, his middle grade book, I do know that wasn't his best work)
I'm also curious about J.K. Rowling's adult novel THE CASUAL VACANCY. I'm not sure what to expect. It intrigues me.
John Green's THE FAULT IN OUR STARS just came out a few months ago. I've yet to read a book of his with a female protag, so I'm glad he's done it. Plus, it sound wicked funny in that John Green way.
Lastly - Libba Bray's THE DIVINERS! 

Thanks for being here, anything else you would like to say to my readers?
We couldn't be authors without you. :-)(Nawwwh!)


Tell me your thoughts on the post, the book, the world. I like volcanoes, feel free to tell me about volcanoes.