1) Who is Lily Crussell?
Wow, that is probably the hardest question I have ever been asked. Lily is a strange girl who gets on better with imaginary people than real ones, hence the writing ;) She reads far too much YA fiction, despite being 28, gets excited by cute fluffy animals and eats too much popcorn. Oh and she's a Vegan. People always have a thousand questions about that!
2) What inspires you to write?
I unfortunately don't have a choice. I have had days where I have been at work, and my muses have DEMANDED I put pen to paper, so I have locked myself in toilet cubicles with a pen and scraps of paper, scribbling madly until my hand hurts. The problem with this is that when I get home, I can't usually read my own handwriting. There is also the fact that everyone at work thinks I have a serious illness from being locked in the toilets all the time. Being a writer is so glamourous!
3) Who helps you write the most?
I find people actually stop me from writing, but sometimes I 'steal' bits of people I see on tv or walking down the street. For example if they have a tattoo I like, or an interesing hair cut. Real people tend not to understand why I need to be locked away for long periods of time! My family certainly don't, and my last boyfriend didn't either bless him.
4) Who do you consider a mentor in writing?
I've never had a mentor, but some authors inspire me. Not because of the way they write, but due to their background etc. I love that J.K Rowling used to scribble Harry Potter in a coffee shop because she was incredibl poor. I love hearing about successful authors that didn't get English degrees, or educations and got their via hard work and not just because they were famous and were handed a book deal as a side effect.
5) What's your favorite paranormal Creature? Least?
Don't make me choose! That is a very mean question! I have always loved Vampires, and I especially love all the different takes on them. For example; read Twilight, then Interview with a Vampire, and then Bram Stoker's Dracula. They are about the same creatures, but they couldn't be more different! I never really got excited by werewolves, though every teenage girl needs to find a copy of a movie called Gingersnaps. It's about a teenage girl who is turning into a werewolf, but thinks it's just part of being a teenager (i.e getting more hairy, more angry etc) excellent film. I am also completely obsessed with zombies. I can not get my greedy little hands on enough zombie stuff! I adore The Walking Dead comic books and TV series so that is keeping me happy at the moment.
As for least favourite...I think the market is getting to be flooded with fae books. Obviously we've had waves of vampires, zombies, angels etc etc but fae never really excited me, and it hasn't helped that I have read some truly awful books about them.
6) What's your favorite genre to read?
YA Fiction. Paranormal romance especially. I think you need to write what you would want to read. All books that are aimed at my age group are all about shopping (boring!!!!) and drinking (I don't drink) and hold no interest for me what so ever. In fact I find them cringe worthy. Chic lit just...I can't even get past a page! I'm currently reading The Games of Thrones series and am over halfway through the first book after loving the series. (this is not suitable for teens imho though) Other favourite books include; Geisha of Gion, Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, How to be a Woman by Caitlin Moran, Battle Royale, and any teen cition that catches my eye. I loved the Twilight series, but it's been slightly over kill and I've lost enthusiasm for it, I also love The Hunger Games Trilogy (though I didn't enjoy the film very much)
7) Who was the funnest character for you to write?
Without a doubt, it has to be Lucifer. He is always telling me what to write for him (the character, not Satan obviously, that would be quite frightening) he's incredibly easy to write, and I always want to include much more of him than I do. I've had a couple of readers of 'Of Darkness and Light' tell me that they can tell I love him from the way he's written, and how he sneaks into more scenes than he's probably needed in. He is very much making his presence felt in the follow ups and I always end up smiling when writing his scenes.
8) When did you know writing was your thing? Was it a natural instinct or found later in life?
I have always loved writing. It was the only thing I was any good at in English, and my creative writing always saved my marks in exams. My teacher couldn't understand how I could turn out such in depth stories, when I made it more than evident that I couldn't have been less interested in the lessons. I didn't want ot read other people's writing, I wanted to do my own! I think English in school kills off a lot of enthusiasm for the subject. I really loathed every book we studied, even if I probably would have enjoyed them if I'd read them in my own time. They pulled them to pieces and over analysed them so much, there was nothing remotely enjoyable about them anymore.
When I was in my late teens, we had a school trip to Greece for Classical Civilisations class. I went to a girl's school, and the boy's school across the road were joining us. They basically didn't like us even talking to each other as they were convinced that we couldn't be trusted to mingle between the sexes! It was slightly hilarious. The problem was, I fell utterly in love with a guy on the trip. And he fell utterly in love with...my room mate. I had to endure the whole week of them being in love and sneaking off together. It was incredibly depressing and ruined the whole trip. When I got home, I wrote a diary of the trip, trying to purge all the feelings and get them out of my head. I then deleted it and wrote it from 'his' perspective. It was his realtionship with my room mate, but afterwards he fell for me! It was quite tragic! I've since read back on it, and despite the angst, it wasn't awful. It was readable, even though it had never been edited or proof read.
Ironically, he is now married to my room mate on the trip and they've just had a baby together!
It moved on to fanfiction of various programmes and my hard drive is clogged up with all kinds of random things. It's only recently that I've tried to pursue it as a career. I want to write. I don't feel I really have a choice, it's just something I do.