Sunshine Somerville is from the beachy side of Michigan. She self-published her first book in college in 2004 and has been evolving The Kota Series since she was nine, basing the story on childhood fantasies derived from watching too much X-Men and Star Wars and reading too much Chronicles of Narnia and A Wrinkle in Time.
A Fairly Fairy Tale is Sunshine’s first MG Fantasy book. She got the idea from her family’s crest, which portrays a dragon shooting flames from both ends, and from a little girl whose second favorite word is farts.
Who are your favorite authors?
I loved C.S. Lewis and Madeleine L'Engle as a kid, and I still think they're most influential to my own writing. I love the usual suspects like Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, and George RR Martin. I've also really enjoyed reading indie authors, and some of those favorites are S. A. Hunt, Christina Moore, and Blake Rivers.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
1 -- Speaker for the Dead, by Orson Scott Card. This was the first book I remember reading and thinking, "Ah-ha! I want to do this!" I'm usually good at seeing twists coming, but this one blew my mind. 2 -- The Complete Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe. I love his use of language, wit, and dark moodiness. 3 -- Freedom in Exile, by the Dalai Lama. I was mad at China for probably too long after reading this. But I loved this insight into a religion and culture I'd know little about beforehand. And the Dalai Lama is a wonderful human being. 4 -- Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Bronte. I don't reread books often, but I've reread this book many times. It's just a great, in-depth look at a multi-layered character. I get something different out of it each time, as I age and grow. 5 -- Dune, by Frank Herbert. Hands down the sci-fi book I'm most in awe of. And jealous of. I love good world-building, and this one is the absolute best, in my mind.