Today, we kick off part 1 of our three-part exclusive Q&A with Unmarked author Kami Garcia. We know Kami is SUPER busy these days, so we really appreciate her taking the time to chat with us. Tune in for part 2 on Wednesday and part 3 on Friday!
My superstitions influence everything I write, and they definitely found their way into Unbreakable and Unmarked. I have lots of superstitions about the evil eye and the power of a person’s eyes in general. Without giving anything away, I played with those superstitions in UNMARKED. Alara, a member of the Legion, is also incredibly superstitious, so her superstitions play into the story as well.
The Bram Stoker Award is the highest honor for horror and dark fantasy writing. As a girl who grew up reading Stephen King and Ray Bradbury, I was floored when UNBREAKABLE was put up for consideration in the Young Adult category. I never imagined the book would make it through another round of voting to become a nominee. Even though we weren’t nominated in the same category, it was a huge thrill to see my name on the same ballot with Stephen King’s. I’m also excited to be a guest of honor at the World Horror Convention in 2015 alongside Charlaine Harris.
One of the interesting questions that comes up in UNMARKED is family. How does your family influence your writing?
My mom’s family is from a small town in the South, which had a huge influence on my part in writing the Beautiful Creatures Novels. Both Margie and I borrowed stories and characters from our own families. The Sisters were based on my three great-great-great-aunts, and my mom actually rescued and raised baby squirrels. My family also influenced the Legion Series. I grew up in Maryland, outside of Washington, DC, and I attended middle school not far from Georgetown, where Kennedy lives with her mom in UNBREAKABLE. Though I love bringing my family into my stories, the one thing I’ll never do is name a character after someone in my family if I know that I’m going to kill them eventually (the character, not my family member).