This week I’m featuring two authors from the upcoming anthology, Circuits and Slippers, a fun collection of sci-fi fairy tale retellings. Today I have an interview with M.Z. Medina, the author of “Across the Stars,” a sweet, space-based love story inspired by a new-to-me fairy tale. After you read the interview, check out the giveaway at the bottom of the post for a chance to win a copy of Circuits and Slippers when it releases later next week.
Can you give us a pitch for your story?
- When bureaucracy gets Yue gets stranded in a spaceship, she’s sure the only way she’ll survive her homesickness is by playing and crafting in the online game shared by all passengers. But after meeting the head GM, perhaps being away from home is not so bad after all.
Why did you choose the fairy tale you used as inspiration for your story?
- It’s just such a beautiful tale, it’s always resonated with me. The two lovers separated by the milky way only able to see each other one day a year—as long as it doesn’t rain (depending on the version). How can you not respond to that? In this age of long distance relationships, I think it resonates with all of us in a way.
What’s your favorite fairy tale?
- I think it depends on my mood. I would say my favorites nowadays are “The cowherd and the weaver girl” (which is what I used for my retelling), and “Beauty and the Beast.” I do have certain fascination for “The twelve dancing sisters” too, but overall I’m not a big fan of the common Grimm fairy tales.
Who’s your favorite author?
- Victoria Holt is probably the author I reread the most, but I change favorites a lot! It really depends on what mood I’m at. For current authors, I really enjoy Ilona Andrews’ novels.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
- Write the stories exactly as amazing and colorful as they appear in my mind!
What’s your writing fuel of choice? Coffee? Tea? Sour Patch Kids? Tears of your readers?
- People will groan but… Caffeine Free Diet Coke. I know, I know! It’s just colored bubbly water slowly dissolving my stomach! But what can I say? I really like the taste.
What’s your process for writing short stories?
- I will look for (or stumble upon) an inspiration that makes me think: what if this type of character was in this kind of situation? From there on I kind of pants it in my mind until I find a suitable ending (if I can’t find one but feel strongly about the premise, I’ll free-write it anyway, see what happens as the scenes develop). It’s really easy for me to tell when an idea is a short story or a lengthier plot, so I have an easier time forming the scene/s in my mind then transferring them to the paper.
What are you working on now?
- I’m currently doing the last series of editing passes on a Contemporary Fantasy YA novel that I hope to start querying in the fall. I’m also in the plotting and world-building process for my next project, a High Fantasy YA.
Spaniard by birth and Tokyo resident by choice, M. Z. Medina has always been fascinated by all types of folklore and fairy tales. As a child, her first foray into the world of Sci-fi was at the hands of C. J. Cherryh and her strong heroines, something that still inspires her to this day. You can find her on twitter @KeepD, and tumbler at anidemzm.tumblr.com.
Leave a comment (I’d love to hear your favorite fairy tale), then click here to enter the giveaway. Winners will be drawn on release day (September 29). Don’t forget to also add Circuits and Slippers to your Goodreads list.