Here are a few answers to some of the questions I get asked often. If you have any additional questions, please ask! I'm happy to answer them.
How do you pronounce your name?
It's not really as exotic as some people make it out to be. Someone once addressed me as something that sounded like KAHN BOO-lock. Please do not do that as you will probably sprain your tongue. My name is pronounced SIN BAY-log. The "Cyn" is short for Cynthia. And I've come to learn that Balog is Hungarian for "left-handed."
ARE you left-handed?
Will there be a sequel to Fairy Tale?
Unfortunately, probably not, any time soon. Although I've often thought about where Pip, Cam, and Morgan end up after the last page of the book, I'm reluctant to put anything on paper. So many readers have given me their ideas.... and I love that! I love that the ending makes you think, and I really don't want to ruin that. But for those of you who want to shake me and say, "That isn't enough!", remember, it's called Fairy Tale. They all live happily ever after.
Will there be a sequel to ANY of your books?
Maybe. I get distracted by bright shiny objects, and as soon as I finish writing one idea, I rush onto the next. I haven't ruled anything out, though. If a story requires a sequel, I'll do it. I just haven't felt that any of my books so far do.
Fairy Tale requires a sequel, can't you do one for that? I need to know where they are 5 years from now!
I know there are unanswered questions in some of my books, but that's because I want the reader to fill in the blank! Where do you THINK they are 5 years from now? If you can not, okay, I'll tell you. Scroll down...
After 5 years, I send all my characters on a Cruise to the Bahamas.
Okay, maybe I just said that because I want to be on one.
How come your books are so darn short?
Because I like reading short books, and I write the books that I want to read.
Why did you do that to (insert character name here)? I cried all night!
I am so sorry. Let me get you a tissue, and we'll talk about it.
Are any of your books going to be made into movies?
Only if you will star in them. Actually, Hollywood has not come knocking on my door yet. They seem to have ignored the bright red "PICK ME!" sign I have posted on it. Though I HAVE attracted the attention of every powerwashing business and door-to-door magazine salesperson in the country.
How do I get an autographed copy of one of your books?
I don't do many appearances anymore because of my busy schedule, but if you send an email to me, I can mail you out a nifty signed bookplate that you can attach to your copy of my book!
Will your books be available in any other countries?
Yes. Fairy Tale is available in Germany and Italy (called Fairy Love), and will soon be available in Hungary from Konymolykepzo Kiado. Starstruck is available in Italy (called Moonlight). My Italian publisher is Mondadori and my German publisher is Arena. Drowned is also available in Germany from Darkiss, and is called Herrscher der Gezeiten there, and will soon be published in Dutch. I am currently making plans for world dominance, but it turns out that it is quite difficult and time-consuming.
Where do you get the ideas for your books?
I was at a conference a few years back when I was told that the average person gets most of their ideas during one of the 4 B's... Bed, Bath (getting ready in the morning), Bus (commuting), or Beer. And it's true-- I got a lot of ideas one of those ways! I got the idea for Fairy Tale when lying in bed one morning, trying to think of a way to turn a story about a human learning they were a fairy on its head. I got the idea from Sleepless while commuting home, listening to Aiken Drum on the radio with my daughter sleeping in the back seat. Starstruck I got when I was watching a newscast on TV about the H1N1 virus. Touched, I got from Wikipedia.
How did you find an agent?
I believe very firmly that networking is the key to getting published. Being as shy as I am, the Internet was a godsend. An agent I followed had a blog that I read religiously. I followed all of her followers, because I knew they were also writers. One day, one of those unpublished writers, Mandy Hubbard, put out a call for critique partners. She read my work and loved it, and referred me to her agent, who was the blogger I mentioned earlier. We hit it off, and she sold Fairy Tale a year later. Oh! BTW, Mandy became an agent a few years later, and a few years after that, I decided to make her MY agent. She decided to accept me, too. She's top-notch.
Oh, well, you had it easy.
Hello? This is a page for Frequently Asked Questions, and that's not a question! Okay, yeah, I will admit that sometimes the stars just align, and I DID have it easy to get an agent without sending out a single query. But I fully believe that angst and hardship adhere to the theory of displacement... you'll have things easy in one part of your life, but hard in others. That's usually the way I deal with professional jealousy... it may look like someone has it all, and that you have nothing, but I guarantee that appearances are deceiving. Concentrate on what you HAVE, not what you're lacking, and always do your best, every day.
That was very philosophical. Do you have any other words of wisdom for writers?
Just to keep at it. Writers always feel like they suck and their work isn't good enough. Stop listening to that inner voice that wants to shoot you down, and just get the words down. I believe in you!
I wrote a book. Will you read it and tell me if it's any good?
If you'll make dinner for me and clean my house. Honestly, I don't have a huge amount of time. Sadly, while I'd love to read your book, I'm not able to do so right now. I have critiqued a number of very successful books, though, and I do provide publishing consultations and critiquing services, for a fee. I will also write a whole book for you, if you pay my fees (I need to put food on the table). If you're interested, please email me.
Who is Nichola Reilly? Your evil twin?
Oh, Nichola! No, I am not yodeling on a mountaintop. She is one of my favorite people. So pretty and charming. Actually, she is me. She is my pen name for a post-apocalyptic fantasy series called DROWNED. The first book was originally published by Harlequin, but when Harper Collins bought them, they decided to dump a number of series, the DROWNED series being one of them. So they never released the sequel, BURIED (*sadness*)! Since then, I have released the book under my own name, including a prequel, BURNED, available on Amazon. The two remaining books, BURIED and REDEEMED, are actually sitting on my computer, fully complete, and may be released one day . . . I hope. If you are one of the many people who have been emailing me to find out when, I am sorry it's taken so long! BTW, I get this question asked more than any other, so you are not alone.
Is it true you once ate a box of 12 Twix Bars in one sitting?
Why, yes. Yes it is.