Q&A with Tare, Or: “Could You Not Ask Me That?” (Part 1)

So here, as promised, is the interview with Tare! He wasn’t happy about it, but he cooperated (mostly), so I’m pleased.

(Really, Tare, you can’t blame me for the questions. I wasn’t the one who came up with them.

Tare: “You didn’t have to ask them, though.”

Author: “Oh, shush. Questions are for being asked.”)

There ended up being quite a few questions, so I’m going to post half of them today and half in my next post. If you have anything else to ask him, I’ll do those then as well!

Anyways, without further adieu, here is Part One of the interview with Tare, a main character in my Kedran’s Wood series (The Owl of Kedran’s Wood, The Secret of Kedran’s Wood, and a third currently titled The Shadow of Kedran’s Wood.) Enjoy!


1. How old are you?

“19. Ish.” Tare shuts his eyes. “It’s complicated.”

2. How would you describe yourself in one word?

Tare raises one eyebrow. “’Me’.”

3. Where do you live?

“In an abandoned apartment on the abandoned side of town right next to the wood. And no, I’m not giving you my address.”

4. How does your home reflect your character/personality?

“Alone, quiet, dark and unwelcoming.”

5. If you only had three days to live, what would you do?

He glares and narrows his eyes. “I spent such a long time assuming I had less than that to live, every day, that–” He breaks off. “I don’t know. I’d just live. Could you not ask me questions like that?”

6. What’s your favorite food?

“Seriously?” He sighs. “Um. Meat.”

7. Have you ever considered getting a motorcycle? I can just picture you with one. That would totally work. You should get one.

He clears his throat and says carefully, “I . . . have . . . had one.”

Jacket8. Three things you could absolutely not live without?

“Food. Water. Air.”

(Author: “That’s too literal!”)

“Fine. Jacket, weapons, brain.”

9. Do you like cats?

“Not really. I don’t know. Does it matter?”

10. Do you like animals in general?

“It depends on the animal. And whether it wants to kill me. Or is annoying. Otherwise, I’m mostly indifferent.”

11. Do you like handwriting or typing better?

“I don’t do either much so I’m not worried about which I prefer. Typing is faster but takes more work because there has to be something to type on. So probably handwriting unless I have a lot to say. Which I usually don’t.”

12. What’s your favorite time period?

“Now is fine with me.”

13. Favorite activity?


14. What’s your biggest pet peeve?

He gives an accusatory look. “Probably, people asking me questions.”

15. What do you think about your author?

Tare looks at his author for a long moment. “What do I think…?” He taps a finger against his chin. “How long have you got?”

(Author: “Okay, I’m realllly not sure I want to hear this, but it’s the last question for today and technically…” *checks clock* “we still have awhile left. So answer away.”

Tare: “And you won’t interrupt or edit my answer?”

Author: “Okay, okay.”

Tare looks skeptical but partially satisfied and begins.)

Arm“Well… for one thing, she has the attention span of a squirrel. Seriously, she’s so easily distractable it would be amusing if it wasn’t so irritating. She’ll work on my story awhile, and then go dashing madly off to work on other stories without any warning, and without coming back for forever. I hear from her other characters that I’m the best of all of them at getting her to come back quickly, and that she’s always neglecting them for me, but I don’t believe a word of it.”

(Author: “It’s true, actually.” *cough*)

Tare continues. “She also procrastinates endlessly about actually writing, instead choosing to dream away about it. Which effectively means that all the stuff that happens to me happens multiple times because she’s always plotting it over and over, instead of just putting it on the paper so it happens once. A lot of things that happen to me aren’t exactly a ride on the merry-go-round, and are bad enough happening once, let alone half a dozen times in subtly different ways. In other words, I’m quite nettled at her about this.”

(Author: “My goodness. I never thought about that!”

Tare: “Well maybe you should START thinking about it.”

Author: “You didn’t tell me!”

Tare: “You should have known without me telling you. And stop interrupting; you promised.”

Author: “But this was important… Okay, never mind. Carry on.”)

Tare sighs and runs his fingers through his hair. “Let’s see. She’s also annoying, impulsive, sentimental, impractical, flighty, and too fascinated with my backstory for her own good. Overall, though . . . she’s harmless.”

(Author: “Except when I threaten.”

Tare: “Except when you threaten. But you don’t always mean it.”

Author: “Ha. Like you can tell when I’m bluffing.”

Tare: “I usually can.”

Author: “What if I said that I’m going to extend this interview even beyond next time’s post?” *laughs maniacally*

Tare: “First of all, your maniacal laugh needs work. Secondly, I know you’re bluffing because for one thing you’re out of questions, and for another it’s Camp NaNo and you can’t waste all day doing random things instead of writing.”

Author: “That’s never stopped me before…”)

A Postcard from Camp

Which should be “A Letter from Camp” because it’s not postcard length. But “Postcard” sounded better.

If I were actually at a real live Camp, here is a letter such as I might send from it.


Bullseye! …Almost.

Dear Friends,

I’m writing to you from the panoramic site of Camp NaNoWriMo. It’s lovely here except for the mosquitoes. And the bears. And my characters I’ve brought along, who outshine both with their formidableness . . . You see, neither of the main characters I’ve brought along are much enjoying camping. Let me tell you what’s been happening…

I brought along Tare and Bremask, planning on working on their stories (The Secret of Kedran’s Wood, and The Invisible Mask). But lo and behold, for the first week, I didn’t write them at all. Instead, a great black griffin from another story of mine happened to fly by, and I got distracted writing about him instead.


Tare and Bremask were naturally put out that, after dragging them all the way out into this wilderness and making them camp outside, I was ignoring them.

Not that they weren’t doing their fare share of ignoring, themselves. They outright refuse to acknowledge each other’s existence. This is actually a good thing, because if they interacted, somebody would probably get hurt.

I had brought along two tents for them, intending to take the cabin myself, but ended up stranded in one of the tents anyway. Bremask, nobleman that he is, breezily commandeered the cabin for himself. His words? “It’s no mansion, but I suppose it will have to do.”


Bremask’s view from the cabin window. Lucky dog.

Tare refused the tent I offered him, electing to sleep outside, wrapped in his leather jacket, sitting up in a tree. His words? “There’s no bears up here.” (Since I told him he’d be arrested if he shot any of the bears — which is discouraged at a retreat like this — and the only way for him to keep from killing a bear if it attacks him… is to not let it attack him in the first place.)

So throughout the week, while my two characters sulked and glared and generally were brooding and dark, I would sit in my tent, writing away, and would occasionally go out to talk to the griffin, who in his spare time — i.e.: when he wasn’t hunting — perched on the cabin roof (Bremask ignored that).


Bremask looking self-satisfied over something, as usual.

The first night, I tried to make s’mores. This was not a success. Neither Bremask nor Tare could see the point of putting the ingredients together, finding them far more interesting on their own. This was nonsense, of course, but they would not be persuaded otherwise.

Bremask ate all the chocolate while I wasn’t looking — apparently it was rich and fine enough for him–and seeing no point in the marshmallows or crackers, or the company of Tare and myself, left the campfire circle because he was no longer interested.


What Tare is doing to me right now.

Tare skewered most of the marshmallows on a long stick and roasted them at the same time. I told him part of the point was to do them one by one, but he apparently thinks his way is more efficient. This, of course, left me with nothing but the graham crackers, which were bland anyway, so I ended up feeding them to the griffin.

As for singing campfire songs… well, let’s just say that didn’t go over well. These unsociable dark-past brooding types aren’t the sort to randomly burst into song, and furthermore do not appreciate when others do.

IMcover3Finally, at the end of Week 1, I finished the griffin’s chapter, and moved on to writing The Invisible Mask. Bremask was pleased (as pleased as he’ll let on to be, anyway).

Tare, on the other hand, was annoyed at me for not writing him, but I told him I couldn’t write about him because I didn’t have the rest of The Secret of Kedran’s Wood plotted, and wasn’t going to work on such a massive plotting project during Camp. So Tare waited, biding his time, while I wrote about Bremask.

Then I finished the scene where Bremask left (in the story, that is; he’s still grandly occupying the cabin in case I need him again).

At that point, Tare, knowing I was susceptible to lack-of-awesome-character-itis, coolly stepped out of the shadows and handed me some key plot points of his second book that I’d been unaware of.

KW2coverPThe consequence was that for the next couple days I forgot it was Camp, dropped my writing, and madly plotted away, trying to fit all the puzzle pieces together. Effectively letting Tare take over my life for over 48 hours.

(Tare, stop being smug. Stop it. And don’t look over my shoulder while I’m writing a letter to my friends. It’s not polite.)

I still haven’t started writing him again, and he’s not pleased with me about that — or about the fact that the one scene I have written in his story featured the laid-back-blond-haired-golden-retriever-type-fellow Adrian, the closest thing Tare has to a rival…

This brings us to the end of the second week of Camp NaNo, and I’m at 8,000 words, just 2K short of reaching my official goal. So aside from character problems, things have been going quite well around here! I fully intend to keep writing after hitting my goal, as long as there’s scenes that still want writing. Perhaps Tare will even get written, who knows?


Stats Graph day 14

I’ll be posting an interview with Tare himself next week. If you have any questions for him, leave them in the comments or drop me an email! 🙂 I can ask him the questions during late nights around the campfire when I’m not writing… That will teach him to act like he wants attention. Ha. (He hates being interviewed, but *I* quite enjoy it!)

Meantime, I’d better give this letter to the carrier pigeon who’s waiting impatiently for it — I think he wants to be well underway before it starts raining. So I shall pass it on and go back into my tent, to write away in my notebook to the sounds of rain pattering on the tent-roof and — if they’ll start acknowledging each other’s existence — my characters arguing…

And of course, if any random plot bunnies happen to hop on by, I’ll have to let them inside to join me, because I just couldn’t leave them out in the rain . . .

Cheers from Camp NaNo,

-Deborah O’Carroll

P.S. Please send chocolate; I’m quite out.

Dragons, Darcy, and Daring

[or perhaps that should be “Toothless, Thornton, and Trying”]

Oh, hey, did you hear that? If you’ve been lurking around the blog, you probably did… That was the sound of… well… of silence. *cue old Simon & Garfunkle music*

What’s been up with you? Myself, I’ve been quite busy, but such busyness is not an interesting topic, so I shall tell you of the fun things I’ve been doing. Mostly, in my spare time all I’ve wanted to do was read, due to some library trips, a library sale, and finding a secondhand bookstore I’d never been to before. So not so good about remembering to blog. Reading allll the things.


recently read, currently reading, to-read soon

I also have been watching things, like:

How to Train Your Dragon 2 (twice!! :D)

Toothless is the most adorable thing EVER, it was lovely going back and seeing all the characters again, the music was AAAAAAAAAAHHHHH ❤ and aside from one or two parts of the plot that I didn’t like (mostly because *spoilersnevermind* *cries*), it was one of the very best movie sequels I’ve seen! Go watch it. Seriously. (Because TOOTHLESS!!!)

There’s really only one way to sum that movie up:


The other main thing I finally saw recently…

North and South

Richard Armitage should SERIOUSLY play Mr. Darcy. Seriously. Perfection. The Mr. Darcy’s I’ve seen on the screen (while I like them) have never quite measured up to my mental casting of that gentleman when I read Pride and Prejudice for the first time. Armitage, however, would fill that role quite adequately, methinks. I’ve thought it ever since I first saw him act, and seeing Mr. Thornton in North and South only served to strengthen my position, because let’s face it, he’s the epitome of what Mr. Darcy should have been (without, y’know, the non-romance part of the N&S plot… which I found to be mostly blah).

Just look! ThorntonDarcyBremask! [Bremask is one of my characters in my WIP “The Invisible Mask”]

10 44 83 48 109

Ahem, I believe I got distracted…

In other news, I joined some online sites on a whim, mostly in order to follow certain people… Not doing too much with the sites but poking tentatively through their shallow waters in my non-existent spare time. What I REALLY want to do is join Pinterest, but I’m saving that for a special occasion/reward for catching up on stuff, because I know it’s going to be extremely epic, awesome, and… time consuming.

Anyways, new places: (in case, y’know, you’re on them or interested…)

Twitter: https://twitter.com/OCarrollDeborah

Tumblr: http://deborahocarroll.tumblr.com/

Shelfari: http://www.shelfari.com/deborahocarroll

So, meanwhile, I have some more projects coming up. You see, aside from all the normal busyness, and trying to get back into studying and things, I’m also… daring to do Camp NaNoWriMo again.


*cue cheers and applause to cover up the groans from the back of the audience*

Yeah… Sorry. But yep, it’s true. I know you’d think I’d had enough of it for awhile, but nope… I’m jumping write right back in for more awesomeness! I’ll be taking the opportunity to make myself write words to a goal. (I’m set for 10k, but I hope to be able to go above and beyond; it just depends on my schedule.)

What will I be writing about? I’m not 100% sure, but I’m not going to hold myself to just one story if there’s scenes from a few different ones that want to be written… And with so many WIPs and things-to-write-someday, I’m sure I’ll find something…


However! This does not mean that poor little bloggy will be abandoned in July! Far from it. I actually (for once) have plans for weekly posts, hopefully more interesting and/or writerly than my latest ones, so as long as I actually write them and post them on time and stuff, there should be postses. *nods seriously*

I was, for instance, tagged with the Writing Process blog tour thingamy some time ago, so look for a post on that next week (assuming I survive the first week of Camp NaNo!).

In the meantime, Camp starts… well… tomorrow. Somehow. Huh. I wonder how that happened. So I’d best “pack my bags”; that is, do some more plotting so I know what on Earth–or elsewhere–I’ll be writing about tomorrow!

Camping! (not-really)

In April I’ll be hopping onto the Camp NaNoWriMo bandwagon — though just with a low goal of 10,000 words. I want to get myself writing something and I figured it would provide a good push.

What am I going to be working on? Eh. That’s still undecided. But I figure that with all the stories I have in the works, there should be something to write each day… right?

Here are my most-likely candidates for working on in April, as described on my Camp page, in this edition of OPERATION WRITE SOME WORDS THIS MONTH.

CampApril14coverSong of a Pirate
A nautical medieval fantasy novella I worked on for both of 2013’s Camps, featuring pirates, gypsies, memory-loss, and possibly a giant crab.

Snowfall at Kedran’s Wood
A contemporary-fantasy Christmas novella sequel to my latest finished novel. I say novella because I’m pretending it’s going to be short — I’m obviously a delusional person. Contains a hilarious group of friends and one of my favorite characters ever, complete with black leather jacket.

The Invisible Mask
A fantasy novel with mansions on windswept moors and fine people going about in carriages. Think “Pride and Prejudice”, with action, from the point of view of the fellows instead of the girls. Starring Richard Armitage.

I may end up working on any, all, or none of these, and if anything else rears its head and begs to be written, I’ll not complain. 😉

Is anyone else doing Camp NaNo this April?

What are you currently writing?

(Also, I keep not posting any of the posts I keep planning to post — colds have a way of making your brain not want to function — but I’m determined to get to them soon.)