Saturday, July 03, 2010

Black Book Weekend: Interview with Cyn Balog (Sleepless)

It's July! And a few days from now...Sleepless will be released. So far I haven't encountered a YA book with Sandmen in it. I love dreams - the reason why I also loved the Dreamcatcher Series - so it's not a surprise that I'm interested in Sleepless. Today, I have Cyn Balog with me. Enjoy the interview!

What lessons will readers learn from Sleepless?

I don't really try to put lessons in my books. Maybe not to do anything in their bedroom when they think nobody's watching, because someone may be.

Where did you get the inspiration to write Sleepless?

I wrote a first draft of SLEEPLESS and my editor hated it. So I had to start over. I was 6 months pregnant at the time and thinking that this was the end of my career. Somehow I managed to psych myself up by telling myself this was the job I've dreamed of my entire life, and I was NOT GOING TO BLOW IT. So I managed to write it in 3 weeks. It's all a blur. I have no idea what I was thinking at the time. I didn't even have a critique partner read it, which I always do. It was amazing it was accepted. But since I wrote the book so quickly, the cool thing is that when I got the finished copies I was able to read it like someone else had written it. I didn't remember what it was about.

Why focus on Sandmen?

They're the new vampire, but sexier. Or at least, that's what I keep telling everyone.

How will you describe writing Sleepless in five words?

Three weeks of total chaos.

Was there a part of a novel that was hard to write?

I read a couple of novels before this that were told from alternating viewpoints, but both the characters sounded THE SAME. Sometimes I would get confused as to whose story I was reading. I really wanted to make the viewpoints of Julia and Eron different, unmistakable. Julia is unsure of herself, she has had a lot of trauma in her life and relies on her boyfriend Griffin to give her a sense of normalcy. Eron is the old-time gentleman.

How does your mood affect your writing?

I used to get depressed a lot, when I was younger. Writers do that, you know. We analyze things too much, including ourselves. It's only been in the past few years that I've learned to turn that analysis outward, toward other things, which strengthened my ability to write. Now my moods are much more even.

What are you working on now?

I just finished copyedits for STARSTRUCK, my 2011 novel, and I'm writing the first draft of LIVING BACKWARDS, my 2012 novel. I'm also tooling with a proposal for another YA paranormal set in upstate Maine, and revising my dystopian YA (everyone's writing one!).

Why did you choose to write for teens?

Teens are way more interesting. So many firsts. Every time I get a fan letter from a teen I am reminded why. They are so passionate about what they read. Adulthood and sophistication is boring and overrated.

What tips can you give to aspiring writers?

The first thing would be, never give up. The second thing would be to find the story only you can tell, and tell it well. Do not stress too much about what agents and editors want, or the "rules" of publication. Remember first and foremost that you are a storyteller, and your job is to impart and interesting story. Just find the best way to do that. That's all it comes down to.

What would you like to say to the people who have read Sleepless or have included your novel in their wishlists and/or to-be-read piles?

I am so grateful to you all. I am fully aware I would not have other books coming out if it weren't for you, and so for that I thank you.

Thank you Cyn!

*picture was taken from Cyn's Official Website.


  1. Lovely review - one of the best I've read! Now I'm even more stoked to read Sleepless. I can't believe Cyn wrote it in three weeks. That's insane!

  2. I'm dropping in from the CEP. Great interview, it really makes me want to read the book!

    I am a new follower, btw

  3. Ooh, before reading this interview, I never knew what Sleepless was about. Thank you for posting this! Sandmen thing sounds different and good to me, and because the book was written in three weeks... It makes me more curious. Awesome review! :D

  4. Here from the CEP. I also enjoyed the Dreamhunter Duet, so this sounds really interesting. Thanks for a great interview!

  5. This is such an amazing interview. LOL I love the They're the new vampire, but sexier. Or at least, that's what I keep telling everyone. Your interview makes me want to run out and by this book ASAP.



  6. oh wow how brave she is thanks for the great interview the book sounds amazing!

  7. Here from CEP!

    Well done interview! I enjoyed getting to know Cyn better. Sleepless is for sure on my TBR list!