Author Revealed

About Claire Legrand

Q. What is your birthdate?

A. 5/2

Q. Previous occupations

A. Grad student, librarian.

Q. Favorite job

A. Writing!

Q. High school and/or college

A. Lewisville High School (Go Fighting Farmers!) and the University of North Texas.

Q. Name of your favorite composer or music artist?

A. I'm a huge Tchaikovsky fan. Also, Stravinsky. Also, Mahler, Rimsky-Korsakov, Rachmaninoff. Also a fan of film score composers like Hans Zimmer, John Williams, Danny Elfman, James Newton Howard, Alexandre Desplat, Carter Burwell. Favorite musical artists: Broken Bells, Spoon, Alela Diane, Basia Bulat, Arcade Fire, Tori Amos, Emiliana Torrini, T. Rex, Britney Spears.

Q. Favorite movie

A. Just one?? Oh gosh. Um um um Stranger Than Fiction. That was an impossible question, but I just went with my gut answer. And now that I think about it, Stranger Than Fiction is probably accurate.

Q. Favorite television show

A. Okay, I can't possibly narrow this down. Friends, Firefly, 30 Rock, Star Trek: Voyager, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Big Bang Theory, Will & Grace, Project Runway.

Revealing Questions

Q. How would you describe your life in only 8 words?

A. Nerd, ninja librarian, Browncoat, dreamer. Only occasionally crazy.

Q. What is your motto or maxim?

A. "Whatever happens is best." My dad told me this one. As someone who is way too hard on herself, this helps me remember to breathe, chill, and take a step back to find perspective when things are at their most hectic.

Q. How would you describe perfect happiness?

A. Knowing, understanding, and accepting who you truly are and what you have while always striving to better yourself and your life.

Q. What’s your greatest fear?

A. The fear of mediocrity and failure.

Q. If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?

A. With everyone I love in one giant, food-filled, book-filled commune.

Q. Which living person do you most admire?

A. My mom. She has been through so much in her life, so much that could have derailed her, and yet she has triumphed despite those obstacles. She is the strongest, most open-minded person I know, and I hope that I can achieve even a fraction of her grace in my lifetime.

Q. What are your most overused words or phrases?

A. Awesome. Delightful. Fart. Unicorns.

Q. What do you regret most?

A. I try not to regret things. Every mistake that I've made or opportunity I didn't take, every path I went down or passed by, has made me who I am today, and I wouldn't change who I am today for anything.

Q. If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?

A. Dancing. All kinds of dancing -- ballroom, break, ballet, tap, modern, all of it. And I would never, ever stop.

Q. What is your greatest achievement?

A. Is it clichéd to say "getting published"? Because it's true. That's been my dream since I was little, and I worked hard for it. It sounds cheesy, but achieving that has made me feel like I've finally become the person I was meant to be.

Q. What’s your greatest flaw?

A. I am far too hard on myself. When I make mistakes or don't succeed on the first try, I feel like such a failure that it brings everything to a screeching halt as I overanalyze and agonize about what went wrong. I'm working really hard to overcome that tendency.

Q. What’s your best quality?

A. The positive side of that hard-on-myself coin is that I work extremely hard and push myself until I make the success I set out to find.

Q. If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?

A. I'd be me, but with a unicorn.

Q. What trait is most noticeable about you?

A. Probably either my workaholicism, friendliness, or nerdiness. I'm a happy, hard-working nerd!

Q. Who is your favorite fictional hero?

A. Without a doubt, Lyra Belacqua from Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials. This girl is fierce, stubborn, curious, smart, and unstoppable. Whenever I feel discouraged about something, I ask myself, "What would Lyra do?" Answer: She would stop whining and get the job done.

Q. Who is your favorite fictional villain?

A. Severus Snape. He's not really a villain in the end, but he was the first "villain" to make me sit up and take notice on an intellectual level. I adored trying to figure him out as the books progressed.

Q. What is your biggest pet peeve?

A. Aside from grammatical errors, when people are disingenuous. Don't fake it to make it; play nice and be true.

Q. What is your favorite occupation, when you’re not writing?

A. Doing my librarian thing! Rearranging furniture and decorating. Absorbing as much nerdery as possible. Long walks with good music. Buying awesome boots.

Q. What’s your fantasy profession?

A. I would love to be a foley artist. Or an interior designer with oodles of money to spend. Or a wildlife photographer -- in another life when I'm not so afraid of bugs.

Q. What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?

A. Compassion. An open mind. An honest heart.

Q. If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?

A. My first instinct was PIZZA -- yes, in all caps -- so I'm gonna go with that.

Q. What are your 5 favorite songs?

A. Oh gosh. It totally depends on my mood. I'm gonna go with: "Cornflake Girl" by Tori Amos, "Mathematical Mind" by Spoon, "You Can't Always Get What You Want" by The Rolling Stones, "Hey Jude" by The Beatles, and "Cosmic Dancer" by T. Rex.

On Books and Writing

Q. Who are your favorite authors?

A. Neil Gaiman, Robin McKinley, Roald Dahl, Madeleine L'Engle, Philip Pullman, J. K. Rowling, Laini Taylor, Peter S. Beagle, Virginia Woolf, Ray Bradbury.

Q. What are your 5 favorite books of all time?

A. His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman, the Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling, Plain Kate by Erin Bow, A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle, Atonement by Ian McEwan.

Q. Is there a book you love to reread?

A. A Wrinkle in Time, The Last Unicorn, the Harry Potter series, Atonement (only the first part).

Q. Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?

A. Read as much and as widely as possible.