Sunday, August 16, 2015

Interview with Natalie O'Neil, author of Guardian House

Thanks for joining us today. First question

Can you tell us a little about your book? When did it come out and where can we get it?
Guardian House, the 1st in the Curious Adventures series, follows a curious young woman forced to uncover her past in order to pave the way for adventures in her future. This urban fantasy mashup follows Alice as she learns she's involved in much more drama than whether or not her crush likes her back. With the support of her bestie, Dorothy, and her clique of misfit orphans-with-excess-baggage, she ventures beyond her comfort zone to unlock the mysteries surrounding Guardian House, the legend of the Red Queen, and her connection to the world she doesn't remember. Peppered with magic and mystery,Guardian House is full of snark & sass, and will leave readers curious for more!
​It is available on Amazon on August 14 in print and digital copies.​

So, what inspired you to write your book? How did you get into writing urban fantasy?
​              As​ a child, I loved hearing stories about Alice in Wonderland & Dorothy in Oz, but as I got older, wondered what they would be like in modern times, or if they were a little older. I also felt that since they had similar experiences, they could probably connect well. I know how difficult it is for teenage girls to fit in and find a true friend, and decided that Alice and Dorothy would be a perfect platonic match!

What, do you feel, sets this book apart from other books in the genre?
​              Guardian ​House uses 21st Century teenage issues such as fashion, flirting, and frivolity to attract young adult readers. But it is also grounded in the myths and legends that today's adults remember and love. This version of Alice and Dorothy combined with magic, fantasy and mystery entice readers of all ages to follow them on their adventures into adulthood, friendship, first loves, and the fears that have since been dormant in Guardian House. 

I'm sure readers are curious about your next writing project. Can you tell us what you've got cooking up now or is that a secret?

​I'd love finish up the sequel to Guardian House. And after that, who knows where the Curious Adventure series may go!?​

Curious. That’s the one word Alice uses to describe herself in her Group Therapy sessions. She thinks it has a nicer ring to it than the crazy her parents called her before they abandoned her at Guardian House with other unwanted misfits. Thanks to a childhood incident, Alice can’t remember if she actually visited the fantasy land that appears in pieces of her memory. But she knows her instincts are trying to tell her something is up at Guardian House, and she is too curious to avoid it. 

After years of struggling to find her own kind of normal, Alice has found a sense of sanity with some of the patients, especially her best-friend-she’s-basically-family Dorothy, and her hunky crush Tim. Alice’s goal, aside from finding the courage to let Tim know how she feels, is to be discharged and leave Guardian House. That is, until mad Hattie reminds them of the legend of the evil Red Queen. Aided by quirky Therapy friends, secrets of the mysterious Dr. Wize, and a little magic, Alice must fight to save her friend’s lives – even if it means betraying the only thing she has grown to rely on.

Author Bio: Natalie O’Neil is proud to announce the publication of her first novel, Guardian House, an urban fantasy mash-up of her favorite childhood mischief-makers. Enticed by the bizarre, Natalie’s unconventional predilections have been know to lead her down more than one path not frequently taken, and she’s always up for the adventure.

Natalie is fascinated by the Victorian Era, Steampunk, and alternate realities, allowing her to often romanticize about a time and place that never actually existed, except for in her mind. This magical, whimsical, and sometimes frightening imaginary world inspires both her writing and her real life.

A graduate of Rutgers University, Natalie taught high school English & Creative Writing for many years before becoming an innovator in educational technology. As a Technology Coordinator, Google Certified Teacher and Trainer, Raspberry Pi Certified Teacher, and Adjunct Professor, Natalie is passionate about sharing the benefits of technology and the arts with educators around the world.

When she isn’t traveling, Natalie can be found at home in New Jersey with her husband, often spoiling her American Eskimo pup, refinishing shabby chic home furnishings, or finding creative ways to entertain and educate. 

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