I started writing because ... at some point when I was very little, I realised books didn’t just appear in the library by magic – real people wrote them, and those people got to make up entire universes in which they built and decided literally everything. The idea of writing books, and especially of making up a whole fantasy world, appealed to this very specific cross-section in me where daydreamer meets control freak.
The best part of writing Nevermoor ... was the non-writing part… the pre-writing part, the madcap freestyle “And then THIS THING could happen!” part, where there are no restrictions on authorial lunacy, no need to actually figure out how something will work within a narrative structure and no need to find the exact right words to express it on the page. The writing bit is the worst.
Nevermoor was inspired ... in part by moving to London in my early twenties. I grew up in a very chilled beach town and wasn’t really expecting to like London very much at all. Morrigan’s experience reflects what I felt at that time – she lands in a magical, vibrant city that takes her by surprise yet somehow instantly feels like it belongs to her.
When I’m not writing ... I really ought to find something else to do. The thing is, writing used to be my extracurricular obsession to the exclusion of all other hobbies. Now it’s my full-time job, so I probably need a new hobby. Suggestions on a postcard, please.
My favourite character in Nevermoor is ... Fenestra the Magnificat. She is the unfiltered, devil-may-care, snark-filled beast I secretly wish to be.
Meet Jessica Townsend as she celebrates the release of Wundersmith!