suzanne collins’ interview | author of the classic hunger games trilogy

Exclusive interview with hunger games author suzanne collins.currently best-selling author on kindlestore.

suzanne collins

http://bit.ly/wajIS1

Q: You weave action, adventure, mythology, sci-fi, romance, and philosophy throughout The Hunger Games . What influenced the creation of The Hunger Games ?

A: A significant influence would have to be the Greek myth of Theseus and the Minotaur. The myth tells how in punishment for past deeds, Athens periodically had to send seven youths and seven maidens to Crete, where they were thrown in the Labyrinth and devoured by the monstrous Minotaur.
Even as a kid, I could appreciate how ruthless this was. Crete was sending a very clear message: “Mess with us and we’ll do something worse than kill you. We’ll kill your children.” And the thing is, it was allowed; the parents sat by powerless to stop it. Theseus, who was the son of the king, volunteered to go. I guess in her own way, Katniss is a futuristic Theseus.
In keeping with the classical roots, I send my tributes into an updated version of the Roman gladiator games, which entails a ruthless government forcing people to fight to the death as popular entertainment. The world of Panem, particularly the Capitol, is loaded with Roman references. Panem itself comes from the expression “Panem et Circenses” which translates into “Bread and Circuses.”
The audiences for both the Roman games and reality TV are almost characters in themselves. They can respond with great enthusiasm or play a role in your elimination.
I was channel surfing between reality TV programming and actual war coverage when Katniss’s story came to me. One nightI’m sitting there flipping around and on one channel there’s a group of young people competing for, I don’t know, money maybe? And on the next, there’s a group of young people fighting an actual war. And I was tired, and the lines began toblur in this very unsettling way, and I thought of this story.

Q: The Hunger Games is an annual televised event in which one boy and one girl from each of the twelve districts is forced to participate in a fight-to-the-death on live TV. What do you think the appeal of realitytelevision is—to both kids and adults?

A: Well, they’re often set up as games and, like sporting events, there’s an interest in seeing who wins. The contestants are usually unknown, which makes them relatable. Sometimes they have very talented people performing.
Then there’s the voyeuristic thrill—watching people being humiliated, or brought to tears, or suffering physically—which I find very disturbing. There’s also the potential for desensitizing the audience, so that when they see real tragedy playing out on, say, the news, it doesn’t have the impact it should.

Q: The book’s premise is very brutal, yet is handled so tastefully. Was this a difficult balance to achieve?

A: Yes, the death scenes are always hard to write. It’s difficult to put kids in violent situations—Gregor is in a war, Katniss is in a gladiator game. Characters will die. It’s not fun to write, but I think if you can’t commit to really doing the idea, it’s probably better to work on another type of story .
Given that, you have to remember who you’re trying to reach with the book. I try and think of how I would tell a particularly difficult event to my own children. Exactly what details they need to know to really understand it, and what would be gratuitous.

Q: The Hunger Games tackles issues like severe poverty, starvation, oppression, and the effects of war among others. What drew you to such serious subject matter?

A: That was probably my dad’s influence. He was career Air Force, a military specialist,a historian, and a doctor of political science.When I was a kid, he was gone for a year inViet Nam. It was very important to him that we understood about certain aspects of life. So, it wasn’t enough to visit a battlefield, we needed to know why the battle occurred, how it played out, and the consequences. Fortunately, he had a gift for presenting history as a fascinating story. He also seemed to have a good sense of exactly how much a child could handle, which is quite a bit.

Q: In The Hunger Games , Katniss and Gale have an extensive knowledge of hunting, foraging, wildlife, and survival techniques. What kinds of research did you do, if any?

A: Some things I knew from listening to my dad talking about his childhood. He grew up during the Depression. For his family, hunting was not a sport but a way to put meat on the table. He also knew a certain amount about edible plants. He’d go into the woods and gather all these wildmushrooms and bring them home and sauté them. My mom wouldn’t let any of usgo near them! But he’d eat them up and they never harmed him, so I guess he knewwhich ones were safe, because wild mushrooms can be very deadly.
I also read a big stack of wilderness survivalguidebooks. And here’s what I learned: you’ve got to be really good to survive out there for more than a few days.

Q: You have written for television for young children and for middle-grade readers (the New York Times bestselling series The Underland Chronicles). Why did you decide to write for an older audience and how was the experience different?

A: I think the nature of the story dictated the age of the audience from the beginning. Both The Underland Chronicles and The Hunger Games have a lot of violence. But in The Underland Chronicles, even though human characters die, a lot of the conflict takes place between different fantastical species. Giant rats and bats and things. You can skew a little younger that way. Whereas in The Hunger Games , there’s no fantasy element, it’s futuristic sci-fi and the violence is not only human onhuman, it’s kid on kid. And I think that automatically moves you into an older age range.
I find there isn’t a great deal of difference technically in how you approach a story, no matter what age it’s for. I started out as a playwright for adult audiences. When television work came along, it was primarily for children. But whatever age you’re writing for, the same rules of plot, character, and theme apply. You just set upa world and try to remain true to it. If it’s filled with cuddly animated animals, chances are no one’s going to die. If it’s filled with giant flesh-and-blood rats with agrudge, there’s going to be violence.

Q: Was The Hunger Games always planned as a trilogy?

A: Not necessarily. But once I’d thought through to the end of the first book, I realized that there was no way that the story was concluded. Katniss does something that would never go unpunished in her world. There would definitely be repercussions. And so the question of whether or not to continue with a series was answered for me.

Q: How do you typically spend your workday? Do you have a routine as you write?

A: I grab some cereal and sit down to work as soon as possible. The more distractions Ihave to deal with before I actually begin writing, the harder focusing on the story becomes. Then I work until I’m tapped out, usually sometime in the early afternoon. If I actually write three to five hours, that’s a productive day. Some days all I do is stare at the wall. That can be productive, too, if you’re working out character and plot problems. The rest of the time, I walk around with the story slipping in and out of my thoughts.

Q: What were some of your favorite novels when you were a teen?
A: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, by Betty Smith
The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter, by Carson McCullers
Nineteen Eighty Four, by George Orwell
Anna Karenina, by Leo Tolstoy
Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut
A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle
Lord of the Flies, by William Golding
Boris by Jaapter Haar
Germinal, by Emile Zola
Dandelion Wine, by Ray Bradbury

Q: What do you hope readers will come away with when they read this book?

A: Questions about how elements of the book might be relevant in their own lives. And, if they’re disturbing, what they mightdo about them.

Adopted from Suzanne Collins website thehungergames.co.uk .


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Best practical ways | how to promote self-published ebook

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Self-published authors are likely to face great predicaments during promoting and marketing their titles unlike traditionally published authors or those whose titles are published by a publishing house.

you may want opt out of the self-publishing bussiness probably after your first self-published title due to the hectic task of pestering family and friends for reviews inorder to to get higher ratings thus emerge towards top selling titles,but how are you going to do that without spaming friends?

Well a traditional author may have a couple an upper hands from his company to promote and market his book so the author gets to just seat back and wait for loyalities.BUT, he never beats the advantages a self-published author has. (Discussed in this post .).Beyond reasonable doubt, the effort a self-published author invests is worth it!In details, i will describe the best ways, to promote your self-published ebook into a successfull sale genarator.

Here are the best practical ways to promote your self-published ebook
;

  • use social networks
  • Facebook and twitter are probably the most visted and used websites on the internet.Certainly the greatest portion of people you would like to promote your book towards, they have either a facebook or a twitter account.
    You will need to create a fanpage for your title or use any preffered name for your facebook page and share it on different related community pages to gain traffic and likes to your page.Increase your page fanbase or likes as much as you can. For the more likes on your page,the broader the outreach during promotion

    After a good number of likes, you can now post updates about you ebook, such as,retailer sites where your ebook can be downloaded and ask your fans to review your book at any site they download from.Use the page as a medium to market your book as well

  • create a twitter account
  • Twitter can be a powerful promotional and marketing tool if the notion is properly implimented.After creating a twitter account, nothing matters more than twitter followers. You will need to find followers who are analogous to friends or fans on a facebook account or page respectively.
    The easiest way and most common used system to get followers is by following people you would like to follow you.
    NOTE :you need to be selective of who to follow.

    simple tips on following

    listed alphabetically

    a)Search book groups or companies and follow a couple of people following the group,org or company.These people are probably readers or authors
    )b DO NOT follow people with excessive number of followers. 2000 plus. Your tweets wont probably be noticed.
    c)Unfollow non-followers to attract more serious follows.
    d)Use harshtags to find readers or subject and topic lovers.Eg, you can search #amreading to find users with a reading interest.
    e)Lastly follow those who follow you inorder to maintain your followers.Some twitter users will immediately unfollow you if they discovered you dont follow them.

  • Create a personal website or a blog as an author
  • For a free blog,you may experiement with wordpress or google’s blogger use the blog to post infomation about your books and upcomming releases. provide the blog or site url to friends as a place for all your work.Here curious readers may be eager to vist your site

  • make blog tours
  • Find different blogs related to writing and publishing and follow their posts.After try to contact the blog admin and ask them to dedicate an entire post to your (promoting title) by featuring your book and reviewing it.If you made t he right blog selection the blogger will be so positive about your request since you inspire content for his blog

  • Give away some free copies of your book
  • Here you can generate coupon codes from your retailer or distributor and then avail them to a couple of your fans either on your social network platform,by email or face to face encounter.A coupon code may be in numeral or letter formart or a mixture.eg ‘Ng823b’ and it is entered in the payment system, i may impart a partial discount or completely discount the ebook upto 100% thus making the book free!By offering free copies of your book,your increasing its popularity thus automated ads by those who have read your book recommending to others.

  • create a goodreads account
  • its one of the largest readers and authors website. With more than 7 million members.Here you can add friends and join reading forums. Make your book the topic in any group and get reviews direclty.Create an account here

  • join linkedIn groups
  • this is another social network where you can meet writers and proffessional authors. Share your ebook with them as well during your quest. Create a free account on linkedIn

    Above are the best practical and productive methods to promote your ebook according to several my conducted research in ebook promotion.I recommend you to read the tuturial and take note of every tip!

    You may want to enhance your ebook promotional course with this wonderfull self-help ebook How i sold 1 million ebooks in 5 months http://bit.ly/HyI60k<br  />
    by John Locke

    Buy a handy ereader from amazon for as low as $79 and enjoy a mobile library of more than 10,000 books in shelf on a just a cheap affordable handy gadget.Ereaders are the way forward so i have provided purchase links to amazon below for some of the best ereaders.

    https://i2.wp.com/siliconangle.com/files/2011/12/ipad-ereaders.jpg<br  />

    Click on ereader link to purchase any of the above; ;kindle , nook , kobo , ipad

    Join my facebook community of readers and authors join community
    You may also follow my twitter feed at @dickson_mug

    Posted by Mugerwa