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I Belong

Fantastic Fables Interview: The Art of Wishing by Lindsay Ribar

Fantastic Fables continues today with debut author Lindsay Ribar. Her novel, The Art of Wishing, hits the shelves today (March 21, 2013)!  Want to know our thoughts on this novel? Read Michelle’s review here.

One lucky reader will win a copy of The Art of Wishing. This giveaway is provided by Penguin Books!


Welcome Lindsay!

DFT: Could you start things off by telling us a little about The Art of Wishing?

Lindsay: But of course! The Art of Wishing is the first in a contemporary paranormal YA trilogy about a young lady named Margo McKenna (high school senior, amateur singer/songwriter, professional control freak) who meets a young man named Oliver Parish (high school sophomore, amateur photographer, professional genie).  At least three wishes are made.  Far more than three kisses are shared.  Shenanigans ensue.  Oh, and did I mention the life-threatening danger?

DFT: Could you tell us about your main characters in The Art of Wishing?

Lindsay: The two main characters, Margo and Oliver, are polar opposites on the surface, but complement each other in ways that neither one of them really expects.  Margo is smart, ambitious, and more than a little bit entitled; she believes that things should always go a certain way, and when they don’t, she gets… let’s say tetchy.  Oliver, by contrast, is a genie.  He has lived his entire life bound to one master after another, granting wishes that he has no control over – and, for the most part, he likes it that way.  He has a laid-back, “que sera sera” approach to life that completely perplexes Margo… at least until she gets to know him well enough to see what beneath his easygoing exterior.

And that’s not even counting Naomi Sloane (Margo’s popular, bossy best friend), Vicky Willoughbee (a shy girl who makes a very misguided wish), George the Music Ninja (high school musical director by day, frontman of a local band by night), Simon Lee (the far-too-attractive star of the high school musical), and Xavier (a homicidal blast from Oliver’s past, whose motives aren’t exactly what he claims they are).

Want to know which character you’re most like? Why not take a quiz over at the PenguinTeen Facebook page and find out? Click here.

DFT: Who is your favorite character in this book and why?

Lindsay: While Margo is the character who drives the plot of the book, Oliver is where the book’s heart lies – and that’s probably why he’s my favorite character.  As a mind-reader and a granter of wishes, he has seen the best and the worst that humanity has to offer, yet he still enjoys what he does.  He’s a little less jaded than he thinks he is, but also a little more scarred than he lets anyone believe he is.

DFT: Do you have a favorite scene or line in The Art of Wishing?

Lindsay: I do; in fact, I have one of each!  I won’t describe them here (spooooilers), but I will say this:

1. My favorite scene is at the very end of Chapter 22.  I added it fairly late in the game, during my last round of edits, and now I can’t imagine the book without it.  It’s a huge turning point in Margo’s relationship with Oliver.

2. My favorite line is on page 160 of the hardcover edition. I don’t have a deep reason why, other than that it makes me giggle.

DFT: If you were granted three wishes, what would you wish for?

Lindsay: Wouldn’t you like to know!

DFT: What was your favorite part about writing The Art of Wishing?

Lindsay: My favorite part of the writing process was inventing the genie mythology! Well, I say “inventing.”  It was more like “pulling bits and pieces from every genie story I’ve ever read/heard/watched, then filling in the blanks.”  While I was writing the first draft of the book, the mythology unfolded as the characters did, and letting each influence the other was incredibly fun, if occasionally traumatizing for my poor characters.

DFT: Do you have a long term plan or goal for this story universe?

Lindsay: I do… sort of.  When I first started toying with the idea of turning The Art of Wishing into a trilogy (long before it sold to Dial, and long before I signed with my agent), it was because I knew there was a bigger story I wanted to tell, and one book wouldn’t give me enough room to tell it.  However, I’m the kind of writer where nothing ever lands on the page exactly the way I see it in my head – in other words, there’s no telling what the story will be until I actually write it.  So while the bare bones of the trilogy are still there in the back of my mind, I’m not yet sure how it’ll all play out.  Kind of makes it more exciting!

DFT: Do you have a particular writing process or ritual?

Lindsay: Not really, other than “butt in chair, fingers on keyboard.” (Keyboard optional. I’ve definitely been known to pull out a notebook and a pen on the subway.)

DFT: What influences and inspirations (both literary and non-literary) do you draw from while writing?

Lindsay: Reading other people’s books definitely inspires me – which is lucky, because I’m a literary agent by day, so 90% of my job is reading other people’s books.  Most of what inspires specific elements of my own writing, though, is music.  I don’t listen to music while I’m actually writing, but when I need to hammer out plot/character stuff, there’s nothing better than plugging my headphones in and going for a really long walk.

As a result, there are some songs that I can’t listen to anymore without associating them with The Art of Wishing.  “Stinging Velvet” by Neko Case is Margo’s favorite song (she even says so in the book).  “When I’m Up” by Great Big Sea is Oliver’s theme song.  “Bound” by Suzanne Vega illustrates Xavier’s relationship to Oliver.  Listening to Carbon Leaf’s “Seed” was how I figured how the ending of the book.  I could go on.  I won’t!  But I could.

DFT: Which genre do you prefer to read? Do you have any favorite authors or series?

Lindsay: I read in all kinds of genres – sometimes for work, sometimes for fun.  But my favorite is the genre that I write in: young adult.  I love a good paranormal romance, and I love a good contemporary.  I even dig a dystopian once in a while.  Some of my current favorite YA series (aside from those by my own clients!) are: Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready, Divergent by Veronica Roth, The Curse Workers by Holly Black, The Seven Kingdoms by Kristin Cashore… and many others.  I’ll also read anything ever written by E. Lockhart or David Levithan.  Or J.K. Rowling, because obviously.

DFT: What can you tell us about any other projects you are working on?

Lindsay: Not a lot, mostly because my current trilogy is taking up most of my headspace right now.  But I do have ideas for future projects involving things like evil mirrors, trees that curse you, mysteriously disappearing voices, and also cruise ships.  Don’t tell anyone.

DFT: What creature are you afraid of the most? Why?

Lindsay: Bedbugs.  If you’ve ever had them, you don’t need to ask me why.

DFT: What is your favorite faery tale? Why?

Lindsay: You know, I don’t think I actually have a favorite! Although Aladdin (in its many incarnations) has been eating my brain ever since I started writing The Art of Wishing, so does that count?


About Lindsay:

Lindsay Ribar grew up in New Jersey, where the only logical thing to do after high school was to move to New York. She majored in drama and English literature at NYU, and now works in book publishing, where she reads other people’s novels by day and writes her own by night. She owns approximately twelve bazillion CD’s, attends far too many concerts, and mainlines nerdy television shows like it’s going out of style. She is fond of wine, Ireland, musicals, long walks around Manhattan, and the color blue.

You can visit Lindsay around the web here: Website | Twitter


This giveaway is provided by Penguin Books!

One lucky reader will win a copy of The Art of Wishing by Lindsay Ribar

Available March 21, 2013 from Dial Books for Young Readers/Penguin

About this Book:

He can grant her wishes, but only she can save his life.

Margo McKenna has a plan for just about everything, from landing the lead in her high school play to getting into a good college. So when she finds herself in possession of a genie’s ring and the chance to make three wishes, she doesn’t know what to do. Why should she put her life into someone else’s hands?

But Oliver is more than just a genie — he’s also a sophomore at Margo’s high school, and he’s on the run from a murderer. As he and Margo grow closer, she discovers that it will take more than three wishes to save him.

A whole lot more.

Click here to read an excerpt

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3 Responses to “Fantastic Fables Interview: The Art of Wishing by Lindsay Ribar

  1. Chelsea B.No Gravatar

    An unlimited amount of chocolate. What?

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  2. NatashaNo Gravatar

    A new house.
    Thanks for the chance to win!

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  3. Christiane C.No Gravatar

    For a never-ending supply of food for the homeless…Thanks :D

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