Traveling to Teens Tour with Michelle Zink author of Prophecy of the Sisters

Today I am participating in hosting a T2T tour for Prophecy of the Sisters. Prophecy of the Sisters or (POTS as I will sometimes call it) is written by debut author Michelle Zink. POTS is an amazing novel that slowly creeps into your conciousness and takes root, never letting you go. A story about twins sisters that discovers their roles in an ancient prophecy that turn them against one another in the battle between good and evil.

Come and join me while I interview Michelle about Prophecy of Sisters, her writing advice and favorite reads and maybe a bit about her next book :)

RR: Are you a twin? What inspired you to write a story about twins and a prophecy that sets them against one another?

MZ: I'm not a twin! I don't even have a sister! I'm just fascinated with that dynamic (probably because I DON'T have one) and thought it would be interesting to take that bond - really, one of the closest bonds two people can share - and place a tremendous conflict (or two) in the middle of it.

RR: Prophecy of the Sisters is a gothic suspense novel set in 1800's. What kind of research did you have to do for this book? and what about that era appeals to you?

MZ: Believe it or not, I actually don't think of Prophecy as historical fiction. Instead, I've always thought of it as a fantasy that happens to be set in the 1890s. I did research as it was necessary to further the story - but I didn't spend too much time on it, because it always felt secondary to the actual story. The era is just really, really sensual - all that velvet and silk and darkness! What's not to love?!

RR: How do you feel about book bloggers?

MZ: Are you kidding?! Who do you think you're talking to here?! I LOVE book bloggers, generally speaking! They've expanded the world of reading and thinking critically about what we read. Really, an entire reading community has been sparked by book bloggers, and that community brings a lot to the table in terms of word-of-mouth and general discussion about what's on the market and where the market's lacking.

RR: What is your favorite read and why?

MZ: Without a doubt, it's White Oleander by Janet Fitch. First, because I was born in California and raised there for some of the most important years of my life, and Janet writes about California in the way that only those who love it can. Beyond that, it's just... powerful. And don't say you've seen the movie! It was good, but nowhere near as intense and moving as the book. Janet's a beautiful writer. She makes you FEEL things, and most importantly, those things never quite leave you. White Oleander is one of the very few books that I've read that truly resonates. It sort of becomes a part of your psyche in a really profound and important way.

RR: Where do you hope to be in 5 years?

MZ: Pretty much right where I am now! Except with books two and three of the Prophecy series out and hopefully another series in the process of being published.

RR: You are part of the word ninja group. Can you tell me what the group is about and who is involved in it?

MZ: Word Ninjas, Ink, is a group I started with Lisa Mantchev, author of Eyes Like Stars. It's the first collaboration of its kind between bloggers and authors, and basically we work together in a coordinated manner to spread the word about one new book each month!

RR: What advice to you have for future writers?

MZ: Read and write as much as you can. Seriously. Those are the most important things. When you read, your brain is subconsciously processing all kinds of things about sentence structure, syntax, pacing, etc. That stuff sticks with you even when you don't realize it. Later, when you're writing, you'll know when something isn't right, even if you're not 100% sure WHY. And nothing will teach you more about novel-writing than actually writing a book start to finish. Don't get sidetracked by stuff that isn't perfect or by doubling back to edit before the book's done. You'll never finish! Just FINISH it! That way you'll know you can, and you'll learn a lot about the process that will help you in future books. And the best part is that you'll keep learning with every book you actually finish.

RR: What is your favorite line in Prophecy of the Sisters?

MZ: That's like asking me to pick a favorite child! How about I choose ONE of my favorites... "The blackness that smothers me is total, and in the moment before everything falls away, I know what it feels like to be dead."

RR: What is the title to your next book in the Prophecy series? Can you give us a sneak peek into the next book?

MZ: The next book is called GUARDIAN OF THE GATE. It opens with Lia in London preparing to embark on an epic journey to find the missing pages of the Book of Chaos so that she can end the prophecy. Expect a sweeping adventure, a hot new guy, and an unimaginable betrayal.... DUN-DUN-DUN!!!

RR: How many books do you plan on writing for the Prophecy series?

MZ: The Prophecy series is three books at the present time, though I have recently become obsessed with a possible spin-off...

RR: I love Lia and James characters, will we see more of them together in the next Prophecy installment?

MZ: Lia spends some of the book contemplating her love for James in the context of her place in the prophecy, but a mysterious new guy causes Lia to second-guess her feelings for James while the increasing danger of the prophecy makes her wonder if a future between them is even possible - or if she'll even have a future at all.

RR: When is the next book due?

MZ: GUARDIAN OF THE GATE will be released around this time next year, and the third book in the series will be released a year after that.

RR: What inspires you while you are writing?

MZ: In the beginning of each book, it's a seed of an idea, usually something inspired by an ancient myth or legend. Once I start writing, though, my characters and the story itself really take on a life of their own. At that point, I'm just inspired to tell the story.

RR: Do you have aspirations of writing outside of the YA genre?

MZ: Not really! At least not right now. I mean, I've had ideas for adult books, but somehow my YA work always feels more... necessary, I guess. I LOVE writing for young people. It feels really natural for me.

RR: What are you reading right now? and whom do your recommend?

MZ: Right now I'm reading The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor. I picked it up after hearing my daughter and her best friend rave about it, and now I can see why. It's ingenious. As for what I recommend, it's really hard to choose one or two authors or books because there are just so many amazing books out there! I LOVE Melissa Marr, Holly Black, Libba Bray, Cassandra Clare, Carlos Ruiz Zafon, and of course, Janet Fitch. As for 2009 debuts, you can't go wrong with Lisa's Eyes Like Stars, Heather Duffy-Stone's This Is What I Want to Tell You, C. Lee MacKenzie's Sliding on the Edge, Jon Skovron's Struts and Frets, and Jennifer Hubbard's The Secret Year. But this is only a fraction of the amazing books out there!! I feel like I'm leaving a million out!

RR: How does it feel to see your work, your "baby" out on the bookshelves?

MZ: It's terrifying. And exhilarating. And surreal. I'm totally on the Emo Coaster right now. But I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world! :D

Thank you Michelle for coming by and answering my my questions. It is always a pleasure to chat with you :) Congratulations on Prophecy of the Sisters and it's recent release and may you have much success with the series.


  1. Yay Michelle! Love the interview, and I'm always excited to hear more about Guardian of the Gate. CANNOT wait to read it!

  2. I know.....I am way too excited about that. Michelle is such an excellent story teller


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