In 2016, I had the chance to interview Victoria Aveyard for The Star. The article, ‘Red Queen’ author Victoria Aveyard on her wild success left a lot of our conversation out, so here’s more of the interview for your reading pleasure.
First, do read Part 1: Writing the Red Queen, where I spoke to Victoria Aveyard on how she began her writing and publishing journey.
In Part 2, Victoria talks to me about how she feels about her books being adapted into a movie and more about life as an author.
How does it feel to have your book adapted into a movie?
(laughs) It's really cool. Because I'm also working on screenwriting and i work in the film industry ñ I kinda understand what expectations to keep and not to get too caught up in it either. Right now I'm hopeful a film adaptation happens. If it doesn't I've already had a great experience.
Do you have a dream cast? This is a question from one of your fans.
No, I don't I'm not a casting director so I don't have any .. it's not my job. (she laughs)
How involved are you with the production of the movie?
We are still very early. We are technically not in production yet. But so far I've met the writer, director and a bunch of producers ñ everyon'es been very inclusive and very clear that they want me involved that they're happy that I'm around. But so far my experience has been really great.
Do you prefer novel or screenwriitng?
It depends on what I'm working on at the time. If i'm writing a book I’d say screenplays if i'm writing a screenplay I'd say books.
Would you consider self-publishing?
I have no experience in self-publishing. I don't think i could personally do that. It's so much work on the other end. I need to having the weight and the experience of a publishing house. There's no way I can do what they do by myself.
Are there any favourite movies of yours in terms of movies and author?
I'm a big movie person. I have a lot of favourite movies. I love steven spielberg movies and a big fan of jurassic Park, Indiana Jones and of course, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Gladiator and those are some of my real favourites. I love Tolkien and I'm a big fan of Harry Potter and JK Rowling and I'm also a big fan of the Song of Ice and Fire series by George RR Martin.
It must be very cool to have your books be part of that universe now?
Yes, it's very cool and very weird!
How do you balance the demands of your writing life with your social life?
It's kinda easy. I work during the day. I try to keep regular work hours so weekends I mine, evenings are mine. It's nice that my full job is writing so it's not that I have to go to a 9 to 5 job and then come back and write.
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Thank you so much to the @emirateslitfest, @emirates, @americanschooldubai, my fantastic moderators Rachel and Steven, fellow panelists, organizers, volunteers, and especially the readers who came to say hello. I wish I had photos of everyone! You made this unforgettable for me, and more importantly, my dad. 😘
You must get a lot of feedback from fans such as on Twitter, Tumblr. How do you feel about it?
I really like it. I think it's great that authors can feel a little bit more connected to their readers now because we have these social media. Writing is a really solitary job its mostly me by myself all day long working and that's nice to be able to connect to people very quickly and easily and hear what they say about my book. But at the same time you cannot get too caught up in it. It can be very distracting. So sometimes I have to separate sometimes.
There must've been a lot of pressure on you because of the expectations. How did you plough through it?
When I first came home I just sort of did my work. Lived my life. I have a bit of a safety net because of my aprents for helping me but I did have college loans which was looming and that was a good motivator. And afterwords, after the first book made a splash, I was kind of nervous and hope that the second book would do as well.
I can't control how people react or how the book lands so I focused on what i can work on which is my own writing.
What advice can you give writers?
My big advice for writers is first of all finish what you're working on. You can't sell a book or a screenplay unless you finish it. It's always so much easier to edit something once you've finished it. Even if you have to leave it with a couple of nuts it's much easy to go back and rewrite something once everything is done.
You have to have a thick skin. With your life you can't really write accurately if you're always holed up in your room writing. I know that's a stereotype of writer but It's important to do other things as well and have various hobbies and interests.
Any message for your fans?
I'm so floored that you guys exist first of all and thanks so much for supporting me and hopefully the books keep getting better!