Interview with Feature: Maggie Stiefvater

So, I am completely an irrevocably in love with Maggie Stiefvater, I have been since page one of Lament. I love her work and she herself is awesome to just sit and talk with, and I got the opportunity to do just that a month or so ago when I went to her book signing in VA. She siad she wrote Shiver because she wanted to make you cry, that was the most hilarious and outrageous thing I had heard from an author in a long time and I loved it. That is Maggie's personality. After the signing people who stuck around just say and chatted with her about whatever popped up in out heads, it was the first time I have had the opportunity to do that, and I loved it. SO in honor of Maggie S. and her work, here is a feature, and interview and a giveaway! Check it out!

The Books

Book Blurb: Sixteen-year-old Deirdre Monaghan is a painfully shy but prodigiously gifted musician. She's about to find out she's also a cloverhand—one who can see faeries. When a mysterious boy enters her ordinary suburban life, seemingly out of nowhere, Deirdre finds herself infatuated. Trouble is, the enigmatic and conflicted Luke turns out to be a gallowglass—a soulless faerie assassin—and Deirdre is meant to be his next mark. Deirdre has to decide if Luke's feelings towards her are real, or only a way to lure her deeper into the world of Faerie. 

Book Blurb: Nuala is part muse, part psychic vampire. While the freedom to sing or write or create is denied her, her mark across history is unmistakable: a trail of brilliant poets, musicians, and artists who have died tragically young. She has no sympathy for their abbreviated life spans; every thirteen Halloweens she burns in a bonfire and rises from her ashes with no memories of what has come before other than the knowledge of how her end will come.

Book Blurb: For years, Grace has watched the wolves in the woods behind her house. One yellow-eyed wolf—her wolf—is a chilling presence she can't seem to live without. Meanwhile, Sam has lived two lives: In winter, the frozen woods, the protection of the pack, and the silent company of a fearless girl. In summer, a few precious months of being human... until the cold makes him shift back again. 

Now, Grace meets a yellow-eyed boy whose familiarity takes her breath away. It's her wolf. It has to be. But as winter nears, Sam must fight to stay human—or risk losing himself, and Grace, forever. 

(BBB): Did you enjoy writing The Books of Faerie or The Wolves of Mercy Falls more?

(MS): Now see, this is like asking me to tell you which of my children is my favorite. I know how that works. You pick one and then the other one grows up warped and evil and stabs you in your bed while you’re sleeping (why yes, I learned everything I know about life from horror moview, why do you ask?)

I guess they scratch different itches. The faerie books are lovely and mythic and full of the mythology that I loved growing up. The Mercy Falls books are the closest to realism that I’ll ever write and they are full of hard choices and angst and kissing. So . . . I love writing them both in their own ways.

(BBB): The characters in both set of books are totally different, do you have a hard time stepping out of one world into another while writing?

(MS): Oh, I’m a very simple creature. I can only write one book at a time. For every novel, though, I create very dedicated music playlists that I listen to while writing, and that way when I step out of one novel and into another, I can just put on that book’s music and voila. I’m back in that world.

(BBB): Do you have any writing rituals?

(MS): I sacrifice two kittens while singing the latest Lady Gaga single, and pass my computer twice over a burning circle of marshmallows.

Actually I don’t think I have any rituals. I mean, I have to have music playing, or I can’t focus. And I really ought to have a cup of tea. But otherwise, there’s no dancing around widdershins or anything really sexy, I’m afraid.

(BBB): If you had to pick between all the young men in your stories who do you think you would pick?

Or young women. ;p Let’s be equal opportunity here. Are we talking love slaves or best friends or who I would like to be? Because all of my characters are pretty messed up. Luke’s got baggage. James is a megalomaniac. Sam is an EmoPet. Cole has fascinating relationships with substances. Basically, you just can’t make it into my novels unless you have a host of great issues.

I think the guy I’m actually with is Koenig from Shiver. I’m happy with him, thanks.

(BBB): Did your Wolves take as much research as the Faerie series?

(MS): Well, the faerie stuff doesn’t really count as research for me. As a small, strange child, what I loved more than anything was traditional faerie lore, and so I was always buried in mythology books. So the number of hours I spent reading stuff that was useful for the faerie books . . . countless. But hours spent reading stuff actually for the faerie books? Negligible.

On the other hand, I watched so many documentaries on wolves that my Jack Russell Terrier learned to howl in her sleep. No joke. She may murder me in my bed.

(BBB): We see poetry through out your books, do you yourself enjoy poetry, who are some of you favorite poets?

(MS): Like everything else in life, I’m picky and snotty about my poetry. I don’t like very much of it but what I do like I love with a fiery, unbridled passion that would set fire to haystacks. I’m a fan of Yeats and Rilke. I’m trying to expand. But it takes me a long time. Mandelstam has some pretty stuff.

I’m also very much into intelligent song lyrics. The Shins are fascinating. Love Fleet Foxes’ lyrics. Of Montreal is crazy and fun. I used to read album sleeve notes all the time because I loved the way lyrics looked printed out. I still like playing around with words on a page and white space, like song lyrics.

(BBB): Do you have any favorite books or authors?

(MS): I have a fearsome and voracious appetite. I post my favorite books on my Goodreads page, here. But it’s safe to say I love Diana Wynne Jones, Audrey Niffenegger, and Melina Marchetta.

(BBB): Your wolves are different from others, do you enjoy the other legends and stereotypes for werewolves?

(MS): Will you send out pitchforks and kill me in my bed (yes, I had to work it in three times, three’s a lucky number) if I say no? I actually never thought that I would write about werewolves, because I’m not a huge fan of them. They slobber, they shed, they smell . . . they just happened to work perfectly with what I was trying to do with Shiver. But for me it was more a book about wolves than werewolves. Sam says once in Shiver that there is no such thing as werewolves, just wolves, and humans, and humans on their way to becoming wolves. Or something like that. He probably said it in a catchier way. But I think that’s what’s important for me. For it to be about people. And real wolves.

(BBB): In relation to The Books of Faerie, what were you primary sources of information?

(MS): Mmmmm. I’m trying to remember some of my favorites. The Golden Bough. An Encyclopedia of Faeries. Anything by Katharine Briggs. Those are good places to start.

(BBB): Did you have any say on any of your book covers?

(MS): I actually had a lot of input into the Ballad cover -- the original concept of the flame on black was mine -- and I got right of refusal on the Shiver covers. Meaning I could run and scream if I hated it. Luckily, they keep creating beautiful ones, and I have never had to scream like a crazy person.


Want to win a signed set of Maggie Stiefvater novels? Hurry! This giveaway ends at midnight 15 April. Click the 'Giveaway Time' icon to take you to the contest page!

Copyright The Bibliophilic Book Blog 2009-2010


  1. OK maybe it's because I am so tired, and maybe it's because Maggie is so darn funny but I just laughed my self onto the floor reading this, and I am NOT afraid to mention that! :) Wonderful interview...great questions! :)

  2. This is one of the funniest interviews I've ever read. Maggie sure know how to make her readers laugh. She sure worries a lot about being stabbed LOL

    Great interview, Monica!

  3. LOL!! i just howled reading that, Maggie is a funny lady!

    Awesome interview!

  4. Maggie, I loved the interview. I was LOL and enjoying myself.

    Monica, Your interview was really great.

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

  5. Great interview. I still think Maggie could scream...if she wanted... ;)

  6. Great interview!! Hmmm I wasn't planning on starting Lament tonight, but maybe I have to :)

  7. I heart Maggie :)

    I love her writing, her art, her persona. Can I take her home with me?

    (My word verification is "busties" LOL)


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