tHe crooKed WorD

As of April 30, 2014 we will no longer be posting reviews on tHe crooKed WorD. Reading is like breathing for us - and discovering new books and authors has been a wonderful adventure - but the time has come for us to move on. Thank you for your support, for allowing us into your lives, and for letting us influence in some small way the contents of your bookshelves.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Author Interview: Teresa Lo

Author Teresa Lo has been kind enough to drop by the blog to be interviewed! Please stay tuned for our upcoming review of her new book, Hell's Game. I learned we share a favorite book (Bridge to Terabaithia), which immediately endeared her to me.

I know, you don't want to go through my babbling, so let's jump to the questions!

What influences your story lines and settings?
The Midwest greatly influences my stories and settings because I grew up in a small town in Kansas. I like to write about real people, about what makes them happy and sad, and about what makes them afraid. When I write horror, I try to avoid cheap thrills, but instead, I think about what I’m the most afraid of, such as losing a loved one or getting injured, and I try to bring that out through characters that a lot of people have met in their lives.

Do you prefer to outline extensively, or are you a more organic writer (a pantser)?
I attended the USC School of Cinematic Arts to study screenwriting. With screenwriting, I learned how to write complete stories by starting with an outline, and from that outline, I can figure out if my plot is working and where to move beats to create the tightest story possible. Since screenwriting is an art that has been ingrained within me, I use the same method with my prose.  When I wrote Hell’s Game, outlining really came in handy because the story is heavily reliant on plot and the twists of the game.

What was your favorite book as a child, and what do you enjoy reading now?
When I was a child, my favorite books were A Bridge to Terabithia and The Westing Game. Bridge was very dark, and I remember having an emotional connection to tomboy Leslie and feeling very sad with what happened to her. The Westing Game was another favorite, and it also featured a very strong, young female character. I loved how spunky Turtle Wexler was, and the mystery elements and interwoven storylines were wonderfully done. As an adult, I still find myself being drawn to dark stories and stories with a lot of surprises.

Have you always wanted to be an author?
I wanted to be an author since I was a teenager. I wrote books in high school, and I remember how I would query agents and publishers only to face rejection after rejection. It was really disheartening, but I’m glad that I never gave up writing!

If you could choose any book to step into, what would it be? Why?
I definitely would not want to be in my own book, Hell’s Game, because I wouldn’t survive! If I could step into any book, I’d pick a world that stimulated me mentally but posed no true physical danger (see question one: I’m terrified of injury!) That’s why I’d like to be a character in The Westing Game.  I’d like to solve an intricate puzzle with a large group of quirky characters, and all the good people in the book had a happy ending. 

Are you intrigued? Find out more about Ms. Lo at her website:

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