Thank you once again to Gail for answering our blog questions!
If you's like to learn more about Gail Carriger and her books click here to go to her website!
1. Did you start out intending to write three separate but linked series?
I didn't even intend to write one series. The Parasol Protectorate just kinda happened. The second Finishing School series, was intentional and by then I was on a roll and really enjoying playing in this world. So the third series came naturally. I've always admired writers like Lackey and McCaffery who do this kind of world play, so I'm delighted to be writing it.
2. Have you considered expanding the series out from the center of the empire, to say Canada, India or Australia?
Yes! In fact, Prudence, the first in my new Custard Protocol adult series, takes my characters to India. It's really fun to explore world building in other parts of the empire, not only how vampires and werewolves are different, but also how the steampunk technology has evolved in different parts of the world.
3. Have you any thoughts on writing Lord Akeldama’s origin story?
I know it, and, since he's a famous historical person, so do you if you've studied ancient history. So I guess you could say: I don't need to write it because it already has been.
4. Some authors write highly detailed outlines when plotting their books, others write down vague ideas in note books and some simple sit down and let the words flow out of them without any plan at all. What style plotting do you do?
I’m a militant outliner, to the point where sometimes I plan for events to occur on specific page numbers. A Victorian era setting can get bogged down by social convention, so I have to watch pacing. I also came to writing via YA, so I like plot to be neat, tidy, and clear. I keep notebooks with timelines, chapter outlines, gadget listings, outfit & place sketches, battle scenes, historical research notes, and general ideas and inspiration. These also include cast lists and character profiles (once a character is written). Characters are one of the few things that aren’t planned. Sometimes a character will surprise me by becoming more important, or introducing himself/herself unexpectedly. They usually know what’s going on better than I do, so I let them do it in defiance of my outline.
5. Have you ever had to throw a whole book out because you couldn’t make it work?
Like many authors out there, I've had to throw away a lot of books. I think I am up to at least a dozen now.
6. Do you keep a hand in your previous career as an archeologist?
I keep in touch with them over social media and the occasional lunch, and I follow a number of arch specific news blogs, but I'm not longer as involved as I would like.
7. If you were stranded on a desert island with your favorite & least favorite fictional characters (outside your own series) who would they be?
I am in a quandary. Many of my favorite characters, while great in a fight, might be a little challenging to live with on a desert island (like Tamora Pierce’s Alanna or Tanya Huff’s Staff Sergeant Kerr). Are we on this island vacationing? Is it a pleasure jaunt? If so, then I’m going to choose quite civilized companions. P. G. Wodehouse’s Bertie Wooster, Mara from Feist and Wurt’s Servant of the Empire series, Terry Prachett’s Death, Douglas Adam’s Ford Prefect, and Jasper Fforde’s Thursday Next. That ought to be quite the merry little gathering. And Jeeves would organize it all.
8. What is your highest pinball score?
Somewhere in the region of 800,000
9. Any question you wished to someone would asked in an interview and never have?
What's your biggest dorkiest obsession?
10. Any Final Words?