Interview and Giveaway with Maria V. Snyder!

Recently I asked the talented author of the recent YA novel, Inside Out, and coming soon, Outside In, to answer a few questions on the blog! She graciously agreed and has also offered a SIGNED copy of the upcoming Outside In to one lucky winner!
**Giveaway is now closed. Thanks so much to everyone that entered and for welcoming Maria to the blog!**
Please welcome Maria to the blog!
My Bookish Ways: I read in your bio that you went to school for Meteorology. Did Meteorology choose you or did you choose it?
PhotobucketMaria V. Snyder: I learned about meteorology/meteorologists when I was in 6th grade and thought it sounded cool. I always loved watching storms (from the comfort of my house), and I was good with math and science. Plus most adults at that time didn’t know what a meteorologist was –so I could be a smart alec teenager.
MBW: About how long did it take you to go from Meteorologist to writer,and what were some of your stumbling blocks along the way?
MVS: I worked as an environmental meteorologist for a consulting firm for six years after I graduated from college. That job tended to get busy in waves and in between storms 😉 I wrote short stories to avoid boredom and really enjoyed writing. Once my son was born, I kept writing to keep my sanity and haven’t gone back to meteorology since!
At that time, my stumbling blocks were trying to find the right information on how to submit stories and where to submit them. The Internet was in its infancy. Also convincing my family that writing wasn’t a hobby anymore. My husband and kids were always 100% supportive, but it was my extended family that couldn’t make the transistion. It took a couple published books before my mother stopped calling me during the day!
MBW: Poison Study is one of my all-time favorite novels, and I find it fascinating that your husband’s work as an expert chocolate taster helped you in your research. can you tell us more about that?
PhotobucketMVS: I can also credit his job as my inspiration for the story idea. I was reading Orson Scott Card’s book, How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy. In chapter 3, Card tells the writer to consider some questions before choosing the main character. He mentioned that the story doesn’t have to be from the King’s or Queen’s or Prince’s point of view, but a side character who is close to them. I thought of a food taster because of all those years listening to my husband talk about taste and flavor and texture and recipes. When I expressed more interest in the science and art of “tasting” food, he brought me home a huge stack of research articles! LOL –I learned more about the tongue that I really wanted or needed to know!
MBW: Your knowledge of fighting is obvious in your writing, and I read that you’re a brown belt in Issinryu Karate. What made you choose that discipline over others?
MVS: I’d like to sound smart and say I choose it because the fighting style matched my personality, but really it was the only affordable school close to my apartment. I did know I wanted a more “hard” style. Fancy kicks are fun to do and watch, but in a fight, they’re impractical. My instructor always said, “hit and git” because I’m not going to go toe to toe with some guy for three minutes. I enjoyed learning the self-defense techniques the most because in reality that’s what I would use. If someone grabbed me, I would fight to get free and then run like a rabbit.
MBW: I noticed that you’re a very hands on researcher for your books! Do you do all of your research for your novels, or do you have help?
MVS: I do all my research myself. I always try and do as much hands-on research as possible in order to be able to translate the experience for my readers. As for other research, I’ll learn what I need to know and try not to get sucked in too deep. Writers frequently procrastinate by doing too much research.
MBW: Is there anything you absolutely have to have in order to write?
MVS: I need music playing in the background and a cup of tea next to me.
MBW: On a personal note, your bio says you love to travel. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?
MVS: Maybe I should list the places I wouldn’t like to go – it’s much shorter! But if I could go anywhere right now, I’d go back to the United Kingdom. I’ve been to London and loved it, but I’d like to visit Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
MBW: Inside Out, your YA science fiction thriller, has been wildly popular! What made you decide to write a dystopian novel, and what was your inspiration for Trella?
PhotobucketMVS: I didn’t really decide on that story. I dreamt the whole story, including plot, characters and even the twists! I’ve never had a dream like that before or since, and I’ve been wracking my brain to remember what I had for dinner that night. And here’s the funny thing, I really didn’t think of the story as dystopian until after it was written and my editor mentioned that there was this new dystopian book out called The Hunger Games and how it reminded her of my dystopian story. I was surprised, and I think the reason is I tend to focus on the characters that the world is just the stage for them.
MBW: Can you give us a teaser for Outside In?
MVS: Outside In picks up about 12 weeks after the end of Inside Out. The world of Inside has been turned…er…upside down, and there are many changes and problems involved with the aftermath. Trella feels she has done her part and can now relax and explore, but soon trouble drags her back into the thick of things. And there’s a new threat from the Outside. I have the first chapter up on my website, but I must warn everyone that if you haven’t read Inside Out yet…DON’T read this chapter!! Or even the cover blurb!! There are spoilers that just can’t be helped. Click HERE to read the first chapter!

Read my review of Inside Out


  1. I wonderful interview! I LOVED hearing about Snyder's research. I didn't know any of that before reading Poison Study! Plus, I just got "Inside Out" so I had to enter the giveaway for her new book. So, looking forward to it!

    Thank you, Kristin!

    AubrieAnne @

  2. That was a great interview! I loved the both the Study and Glass series. Cannot wait to read this newest series.

  3. I love Maria V. Snyder's books! Thanks for the chance to win and for the great interview.

  4. Thanks for the opportunity to win, and thanks for the interview as well.

  5. I would love for you to come to my I'm a new blogger and was sick during the Bloggiesta so I missed out on a lot of valuable information. I'd welcome any suggestions, positive or negative :O]

    Your site is loveley, easily to move around on-very user friendly and full of information. A site to be proud of, for sure.

    I love to see you like Maria V. Snyder's books; I do and I'm able to share them with my nieces as I so all my YA PNR/UF books.
    Thanks for participating in this giveaway!

  6. Can't wait to read this book! Thanks for the interview and for writing great dystopian fiction!

  7. I loooove Maria V. Snyder's work!!! The study series is one of my favorites!! Thank you so much for the opportunity<3

  8. Great giveaway, I mentioned it at the end of your book signing post on my blog. Thanks for participating!

  9. Jess (Gone with the Words)

    Thanks for the interview and giveaway!! I love her books!!

    I just reviewed Outside In, if you'd like to read it…

  10. Thank you! I am very excited about this. I love her work. Plus I had no idea her husband was a food taster and that inspired Poison Study. How neat.

  11. I like your site. Thanks for the opportunity to win her book. Love her writing!

  12. Amazing giveaway hon and a great interview. I love what Snyder said about having music when writing. Same here. I can't write when it is completely quiet or my brain goes all over the place. Music is a great focal point. And traveling to Scotland is my dream 🙂 Thank you for the post 🙂

  13. Thanks so much to everyone for stopping by and being so welcoming to Maria!

  14. I can't seem to submit the form . .

  15. Anni-use your wheel or your down button to scroll down the form…

  16. I don't know why the form didn't embed with the scroll bar, so I put a disclaimer at the top:)

  17. I have Poison Study by her but haven't read it yet. Inside Out has been on my WL, so if I won this one then I'd definitely go pick up the first one right away!
    Great interview! And actually I'm thinking maybe I'll read Poison Study now instead of the book I was just starting. I don't think I can wait any longer!

  18. Thanks so much, I really can't wait to read this book! 🙂

    Genna from Reading, Writing, and the World of Words (

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