Her answers are below in bold. Let us know what makes Hilary like you in the comments.
Hilary on Writing
- I've written 4 manuscripts, and 2 have seen the light of day (if you count a nonfiction book that was published in 2010).
- My favorite type of scene/character/setting to write is:
- Scenes where everything is both breaking apart and coming together.
- Characters whose experience of reality is intense and peculiar.
- Settings I can picture precisely—so far, this means I write stories set in cities in which I have lived, although I look forward to creating a completely imaginary setting some day.
- No matter how long I've been writing, I still have issues with structure. My drafts always start out quite wonky, and it takes INFINITE revision to pull all the pieces together.
- A typical comment from my critique partner is "the writing is beautiful but why do these 22 subplots not resolve?"
- The book I wished I wrote is The Edge of the Alphabet, by Janet Frame.
Hilary on Getting Published
- If my agent really knew how crazy I was, she would find out that my feelings about whatever manuscript I'm working on swing from despair to elation not weekly or monthly, but hourly.
- When I was querying, I felt like my boyfriend was so overconfident that everything would work out for me that I had to be over-serious and pessimistic to make up for it.
- The biggest mistake I ever made querying was allowing myself to get stressed at all.
- The craziest thought I've ever had while being published is "this is a mistake, I should have waited ten years until I was a better writer before publishing a novel" (is this a crazy thought or a sane one? I'm still not sure!)
- When I got "The Call," my first thought was relief that the "on sub" part was over, followed by paranoia that the deal would fall through.
Hilary on Life Outside Writing
- If I weren't a writer, I'd probably be a musician. I studied piano for 18 years, and am now beginning lessons in north Indian music.
- Secretly, I'm terrified of never finding a home. I've been a drifter for several years, and yearn to find a place I really belong.
- Sometimes, when no one is around, I talk to plants and mushrooms. Nothing too strange, I just say hello and tell them how pretty they are.