Interview with Charlotte Ibarra

What are your five favorite books, and why?
Oh this is a tough one, too many books to choose from. Ha ha! Three of my favorite books right now have to be old classics: Frankenstein, Dracula and just old fairytales in general. The other two are Ring by Koji Suzuki and Serpent Box by Vincent Louis Carrella (a must read, in my opinion).
What do you read for pleasure?
For a fun-yet-engaging read, anything lighthearted and humorous. Not exactly romance, but also an option.

Guilty pleasure reading… well that's another thing entirely.
Describe your desk
A cycle between extremely neat and organized for a week or two, until absolute chaos descends on it and I spend the next few months debating whether to clean it or not.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
Not exactly the first but certainly the one I'll most remember. Niña Bonita by Ana María Machado, about a silly white rabbit that finds black beautiful and the dark skinned girl that helps him. A short children's book, but it was the first book I was ever gifted and I'll always hold it close to my heart.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Without spoiling, fairytale retellings and LGBT relationships. What can I say? I'm weak for these things.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
My phone. Probably because I'm blind as a bat and need a device as close to my face as possible. Besides, the ability to adjust light and tone is a godsend to my myopic eyes.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Puerto Rico, the metropolitan area sadly, and it did influence my writing a lot. My family has lived all over the island and I gather a lot from their experiences and stories. Not to mentions that the culture of my home tends to show when I write my characters sometimes, the way I see the world most of all. I like to believe it adds more… color. A spark if you want.
What do your fans mean to you?
The world. Especially considering they deal with me, of all people. You guys are the best.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Reading. A LOT. All the time in fact. I also love catching up on my TV shows, doing some internal tourism, listening to music and dicking around with family and friends.
What is your writing process?
Numero uno: sit down and relax, this is detrimental.

B: put some ambient tunes. Or just any song that matches the tone of what you want to write.

Trois: map. it. out. For me this is detrimental. I need to lay down how everything will go, even if I change it later on. It helps me concentrate

四: understand that everything won't always be perfect and you should just work on doing your best and telling the story that needs to be told. (Note to self: try and do this all the time.)

Finally: don't stress the flow. The best things come out when you least expect them, not when you pressure yourself to think of something.
When did you first start writing?
Again, as a child. Serious writing began when I was maybe 9 or 10, and I started to make a full length book. I backed out once I realized it was terrible. It's currently my newest work I progress.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The ability to share my creativity with others. To know that one day, someone could read anything I've written and think “hey, this is what I want to do too”, I think that's what makes me happy more than anything.
Published 2018-12-19.
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