Interview with Mirriam Neal

Hello!  Today I have the pleasure of interviewing Mirriam Neal, author of the just-released novel Paper Crowns.  Mirriam has a been a huge inspiration for me over the past few years and ever since I beta-read Paper Crowns a few years ago, I was hoping it would be published. Now I can finally reread it in all its published glory!  The cover is gorgeous and the writing inside is even more so.  So, if you haven’t checked out Paper Crowns on Goodreads yet, you should!

Without further ado, I give you the lovely Mirriam Neal.

  1. What inspired you to write Paper Crowns? My inspiration process usually resembles some kind of brew. I’ll toss in one ingredient, then another two weeks later, then another a month after that. The first ingredient for Paper Crowns was Julie Kagawa’s ‘Iron Fae’ series – which I disliked, but in a way that made me want to play with the idea myself. Another piece of inspiration was John Howe’s quote, ‘The world of faerie is a dangerous place,’ as well as my good friend Hannah George asking me if I believed in faeries. I gave her my answer in the dedication.
  2. When you’re not writing, what do you like to do? When I’m not writing, I’m usually trying to write anyway, or illustrating a client’s art commission. Art is my second great love.
  3. What was the most fun part about writing/publishing Paper Crowns? Finishing, and realizing I had written it in a month. And it wasn’t even NaNoWriMo! The entire process was a huge blast, though. It was completely delightful. Usually novels are as trying as they are enjoyable, but not this one. It behaved so well it was almost eerie.
  4. Were there any particular songs/albums/soundtracks you liked to listen to while writing Paper Crowns? I listened to a lot of Novelette and Soley, as well as the soundtrack for ‘The Mortal Instruments’ (the movie, not the show). Anything with a simple but haunting sound worked well for me.
  5. The whole cast of Paper Crowns is delightful (especially a certain wysling) but who are your favorite/favorites? (I know it can be hard to choose.) I’m going to have to say Azrael – which is probably obvious, since he snatched is own sequel right from under my nose.
  6. What are you currently working on, and what do you hope to publish next? I’m currently writing The Dying of the Light ( a futuristic samurai retelling of Robin Hood ) and editing Dark is the Night ( a novel about humans, vampires, and werewolves set in modern South Carolina ). I’m trying to convince my other novel ideas to stick around until I have time to put them to paper. I’d like to find a traditional publisher for Dark is the Night next, but we’ll see – it’s a tricky genre to fit.
  7. And finally, do you have any parting advice for fellow writers?  Keep writing fun. Don’t view it as a career – that makes it stressful. It’s what you love, not a chore.


Ginger has lived in seclusion, with only her aunt Malgarel and her blue cat, Halcyon, to keep her company. Her sheltered, idyllic life is turned upside-down when her home is attacked by messengers from the world of fae. Accompanied by Halcyon (who may or may not be more than just a cat), an irascible wysling named Azrael, and a loyal fire elemental named Salazar, Ginger ventures into the world of fae to bring a ruthless Queen to justice.

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Mirriam Neal is a twenty-two-year-old Northwestern hipster living in Atlanta. She writes hard-to-describe books in hard-to-describe genres, and illustrates things whenever she finds the time. She aspires to live as faithfully and creatively as she can and she hopes you do, too.

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