Interview with Stephanie Burgis

Today I’m excited to welcome author Stephanie Burgis to Bart’s Bookshelf, to discus, The Unladylike Adventures of Kat Stephenson a Regency fantasy trilogy for ten- to fifteen-year-olds. The first book in the planned trilogy: A Most Improper Magick; will be published August 1, 2010 in the UK and April 5, 2011 in the US (as Kat, Incorrigible).

Welcome to Bart’s Bookshelf, Stephanie, can you let us know a little about yourself so start with?

Stephanie Burgis: I’m 33, a happy book addict with a wonderful writer-husband, border collie, and young son, and also many, many bookcases overflowing with books (plus a whole bunch more still packed in boxes from our last move). I live in a small town in Wales and spend as much time as possible in coffeeshops.

I’ve been reading your blog, and it’s clear you like your heroines, can you tell us a little about your own heroine, Kat?

Stephanie Burgis: Kat is loyal, loving, headstrong, smart, skeptical, energetic and brave. She’s determined to solve her family’s problems no matter what it takes – even if she has to learn forbidden magic and battle highwaymen along the way!

And what trouble does she get up to in the book?

Stephanie Burgis: Some of her adventures include: breaking into her late mother’s cabinet of magical secrets (which was locked up by her stepmother many years ago); chopping off her hair and dressing up as a boy; and matching wits with an ancient and secretive magical order.

Now… Did Kat get up get up to any mischief while you were writing the book? The type of thing even you wern’t expecting? ;o)

Stephanie Burgis: Yes, constantly! 🙂 I started the book knowing only the first couple of paragraphs, but was swept along by the adventure all the way through. The most surprising moment for me was when the highwayman showed up – I really wasn’t expecting him at that point!

Other than Kat, who do you think is the most interesting character (hero or villain) and what is it about them that intrigues you?

Stephanie Burgis: I love all three of Kat’s siblings. We don’t see much of her brother Charles in this book, but her older sisters, Elissa and Angeline, are both important characters, and my favourite scenes to write involved all three sisters together. All three girls are strong and intelligent, and of course they all love each other, but they all have completely different ideas of how to solve their family’s problems, and they each think they know best…so in other words, there’s a lot of fun conflict to write!

What’s your writing area like? Neat and tidy or covered with Post-It notes and the like?

Stephanie Burgis: I do most of my writing while lying on the couch with my laptop on my knees, a cup of Earl Grey tea and a bar of dark chocolate sitting on the floor beside me, and printed-out manuscript paper scattered all around me. I also have a Jane Austen action figure standing nearby as inspiration, and on days when I’m feeling insecure, I wear the sparkly tiara from my wedding to give myself a boost of confidence!

Can you share a few words on your writing process? What is the most rewarding aspect of writing for you?

Stephanie Burgis: The most rewarding part for me is writing first drafts, when I get to just have fun and explore the world alongside my heroine, throwing her into more and more trouble and more exciting adventures, which I discover at exactly the same time she does. (I generally have a very vague outline in my head – I know the important issues that will need to be resolved by the end of the book – but I find out what happens along the way just by writing the story.) After that, I do loads of revision for consistency and smoothness, which is less fun to do but just as important.

Can you tell us what you’re working on next?

Stephanie Burgis: A MOST IMPROPER MAGICK is the first book in a trilogy, The Unladylike Adventures of Kat Stephenson. Right now, I’m nearly finished revising Book 3 in the trilogy (verrrry tentatively titled A RECKLESS AND DEADLY MAGICK), and Book 2, A TANGLE OF MAGICKS, will be published in the UK next year. Kat goes to Regency-era Bath and gets swept up in an adventure with scandalous rakes, Stepmama’s snobbiest relations, her brother Charles’s disreputable university friends, and the dangerous wild magic tied into the old Roman baths…

That just leaves me to thank you for stopping by to chat, but before you go, is there anything else you’d like to share about yourself or your work?

Stephanie Burgis: Thanks for having me! 🙂 And I’d just like to make sure everybody knows that you can read the first chapter of A MOST IMPROPER MAGICK online on my website:

A Most Improper Magick is released on 1st August 2010 in the UK; buy a copy from your local bookshop or buy online from The Book Depository.

Stephanie can also be found on her website, blog, twitter, facebook, lj & goodreads

2 thoughts on “Interview with Stephanie Burgis

  • July 28 at 8:09 pm

    A great interview 🙂 This definitely sounds like a good book. Thanks to you and the author for sharing this with us.

    Good luck to all the giveaway entrants! 🙂
    Nikki-ann recently posted…The Blackhope Enigma – The ReviewMy Profile

    • July 29 at 11:04 pm

      Glad you liked the interview. 🙂

      Good look in the giveaway!

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