Interview with E.C. Myers, author of Fair Coin, plus giveaway!

Today we’re uber excited to have the very dashing E.C. Myers joining us for a drink! E.C. Myers was assembled in the U.S. from Korean and German parts. When he isn’t writing, he reads, plays video games, watches films, sleeps as little as possible, and spends far too much time on the internet. FAIR COIN is his first young adult novel.

Fair Coin

Sixteen-year-old Ephraim Scott is horrified when he comes home from school and finds his mother unconscious at the kitchen table, clutching a bottle of pills. The reason for her suicide attempt is even more disturbing: she thought she’d identified Ephraim’s body at the hospital that day.

Among his dead double’s belongings, Ephraim finds a strange coin—a coin that grants wishes when he flips it. With a flick of his thumb, he can turn his alcoholic mother into a model parent and catch the eye of the girl he’s liked since second grade. But the coin doesn’t always change things for the better. And a bad flip can destroy other people’s lives as easily as it rebuilds his own.

The coin could give Ephraim everything he’s ever wanted—if he learns to control its power before his luck runs out.

Read on for some fabulous interview answers from the author himself, plus the chance to win a copy of the book and some swag of your very own! And the competition’s international!

1. Welcome to Pub Crawl! We’re so excited to have you on board! We have to know: when you started writing FAIR COIN, what was the inspiration behind it? A dream? A musical clip? Plain, old-fashioned brainstorming?

I don’t remember what first sparked the idea, if anything, but an image popped into my head of a boy flipping a coin into a wishing fountain. A ripple spread out from the fountain, changing the world around him to conform to his wish, but leaving him unchanged. It played out like a scene from a movie with CGI effects. A lot of my story ideas begin visually, possibly because I’ve always been a TV and film junkie, and my first serious attempts at writing were all screenplays.

2. That’s a fantastic image! And we here at Pub Crawl are pretty big TV and film junkies ourselves! Tell us this: what was the biggest challenge in writing FAIR COIN?

Figuring out how the coin works and then explaining it clearly enough for readers to follow. The coin had to have very specific rules and limitations, which varied with the conditions in which it was being used. Plus, every time Ephraim uses the coin, the world changes, which turned plot and character continuity into a logistical nightmare. I usually don’t outline my novels, so I was working out many details as I wrote the book; I actually reached a point 3/4s of the way through the first draft where I had to stop and get everything straight. It took me three days of brainstorming to work it all out, and I was getting pretty nervous because I realized that if I couldn’t come up with the answer, I didn’t have a book. The ending was also difficult to write; it changed completely between that first draft and the revision.

3. Oh wow, that’s enough to make my eyes cross! Tell us a little about your journey to publication?

Sometimes it felt like hauling the One Ring to Mordor. But it actually was rather typical, a textbook example of how most authors probably get published—the timeline varies, but the steps are generally the same. I wrote and published many short stories for six years before writing Fair Coin, which was my first attempt at a novel. I did four revisions before I started querying agents. It took seven months to an offer of representation, and I worked on one more revision with my agent before we went on submission. Then we had some near misses and a lot of rejections, and two years later we sold it to Pyr. From that point, it was only another fifteen months before the book was finally published. While all that was happening, I wrote three other novels, the sequel and two standalones, so I consider it time well spent.

4. Ha! Lucky you didn’t run into Gollum on the way! And we’re very happy you made it to the end! Now, spill! If you were transported into your book, which scene would you most want to reenact?

The “Rabbit season! Duck season!” scene between Ephraim and Zoe, which was of course itself a sort of reenactment of a classic Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck short.

5. A reenactment of a reenactment. You’re awesome. Turning away from FAIR COIN for a moment, what are you reading right now?

I’m reading Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore—one of the perks of having friends in publishing who are kind enough to share their ARCs with me. I loved Graceling and Fire, and I’m really enjoying this one so far.

6. You have excellent taste, sir. Now, let’s test it a little further: if you could spend a night at the pub with any 3 authors (alive or dead) who would it be and why?

I’m going to choose authors who unfortunately are no longer with us, because I hope I still might be able to buy drinks for those who are still living. Definitely William Sleator, because his book Interstellar Pig introduced me to science fiction, and that genre has shaped my tastes in reading and writing so much. He’s had a big influence on my work, especially his darker, provocative books Singularity and House of Stairs.

I’d also like to chat with E. Nesbit, who probably informed my ideas about fantasy and magic—and particularly the unforeseen consequences of wishes—as much as Sleator did for science fiction. And Robert C. O’Brien, because he only wrote a handful of books, and I wonder what other stories he might have told if he had lived longer; maybe he could give me some ideas. The Silver Crown worked its way into my head the way I hope one of my books will for a young reader someday.

7. You have amazing taste! But wait! Pub Brawl!!!!! What weapon are you wielding?

I’m gonna need a melee weapon, and if I can choose anything—since this is a fantasy after all—I’m going with the Sword of Omens from Thundercats. That should clear the room pretty quickly, and with style.

Guys, he’s not kidding: look, he has the sword! Guess who we’re taking to our next big fight?

FAIR COIN is on sale right now — you can grab it on Amazon, IndieBound, Book Depository, or at your favourite bookstore. OR you could win it right here! Here’s what’s on offer:

  • A copy of FAIR COIN of your very own!
  • A limited edition coin case (with chocolate coin inside, nom)!
  • A signed bookmark!
  • A FAIR COIN postcard!

Fill out the form to enter and tell us what wish you’d like granted to enter!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

        

46 Responses to Interview with E.C. Myers, author of Fair Coin, plus giveaway!

  1. Christina Kit. Apr 19 2012 at 5:30 am #

    My wish would be to have all my wishes granted – that way it’s a wish that keeps on giving;)

    Thanks so much!

  2. Tal Apr 19 2012 at 6:18 am #

    My wish will be to be happy 🙂

  3. Meagan Spooner Apr 19 2012 at 7:03 am #

    Um, can I just say how awesome it is that you actually HAVE the Sword of Omens? Thundercats, HO!

    Ahem. Anyway, awesome interview! Far Coin’s always sounded awesome to me. It’s definitely on my to-read list. 😀

    And hm. One wish? All publishing-related wishes spring to mind *cough*book sales*cough* but I think my ultimate wish would be to be able to stop time. So I could read books to my heart’s content, in the time between one second and the next.

    • E.C. Myers Apr 19 2012 at 10:08 pm #

      Thanks, Meagan! I actually have *two* swords. I bought the licensed toy from the 80s, and painted one on my own using a knockoff toy that copied the mold. (That’s the one in the picture). I *really* loved the show when I was a kid 🙂

      Being able to freeze time would be so convenient. I might actually get enough sleep for a change! Just remember that your wish includes the ability to *unfreeze* time…

  4. Christina Franke Apr 19 2012 at 8:24 am #

    One wish? For everything in life to go a little more easily? I’m guessing that’s cheating, but you totally didn’t specify any rules!

    Maybe a time turner, so that I had enough time to do everything I want to do!

  5. Von Peralta Apr 19 2012 at 8:26 am #

    I wish to be contented. It’s really hard for me if I can’t get things I want.

  6. Annabelle H Apr 19 2012 at 8:35 am #

    Hmm, I would wish to get one of my novels published.

  7. Rebecca Apr 19 2012 at 8:48 am #

    My wish: to be cured

    • E.C. Myers Apr 19 2012 at 10:09 pm #

      I hope that one comes true.

      • Jezreel Vicente Jun 4 2013 at 11:02 pm #

        When will this book become a movie?! BECAUSE THAT WOULD BE TOTALLY AWESOME!

        • E.C. Myers Jun 7 2013 at 9:47 am #

          There’s nothing concrete in the works yet, but I agree it would be awesome! As soon as I have any news to share, everyone will hear about it 🙂

  8. johann Apr 19 2012 at 9:03 am #

    Good interview!

  9. johann Apr 19 2012 at 9:05 am #

    And a wish? Telepathy.

  10. Tim Apr 19 2012 at 10:01 am #

    My first thought was to wish for the Sword of Omens, but then I thought I could get that later if I had…infinite genies.

    • E.C. Myers Apr 19 2012 at 10:10 pm #

      Infinite genies… Ingenious. What could possibly go wrong?

  11. Sooz Apr 19 2012 at 11:02 am #

    You had me at INTERSTELLAR PIG. That book…all of Sleator’s books, really, MADE my childhood! Like you, he was my first foray in to sci-fi, and I haven’t looked back since!

    Great interview! FAIR COIN sounds *amazing*–a little like GREEN FUTURES OF TYCHO, which is another one of my favorites from Sleator!

    • E.C. Myers Apr 19 2012 at 10:11 pm #

      That’s a pretty good call. I didn’t read TYCHO until after a friend pointed out the similarity, but I am thrilled when anyone compares me favorably to Sleator’s work.

      • Sooz Apr 20 2012 at 1:22 pm #

        Well, I’m sure FAIR COIN is very different, but I feel like the simple fact that the premise sounds just a wee bit similar to my fifth-grade favorite (yes, I DO remember GREEN FUTURES being my favorite book when I was 10), makes me want to read FAIR COIN all the more.

        Also, I never gave my one wish! I’d definitely wish for balance in my life. I need to learn to spend less time writing/obsessing about writing and more time just enjoying my life! 🙂

  12. Zara Alexis Apr 19 2012 at 11:19 am #

    One wish? I’d wish for a perpetual amount of wishes! Easy-peasy.

  13. alicia marie Apr 19 2012 at 3:36 pm #

    one wish? i’d wish for my recovery from my car accident 2 years ago would finally be over : )

    • E.C. Myers Apr 19 2012 at 10:12 pm #

      I hope that happens soon! I was hit by a car once. Not fun.

  14. Judit Apr 19 2012 at 4:05 pm #

    I’d like the Fair Coin!

  15. Vivien Apr 19 2012 at 5:50 pm #

    I would wish for good health!

  16. Lexie B. Apr 19 2012 at 5:51 pm #

    I’m going to be honest . . . I’d be selfish. I know I could wish for something really great, like to save the environment, instill world peace, but . . . if I were given one wish, I’d wish that I didn’t have my aversions. My whole life would be different, and a million times more fantastic.

    • E.C. Myers Apr 19 2012 at 10:14 pm #

      For all you know, that *would* make the world a better place for others too… 🙂

  17. Caitlin Vanasse Apr 19 2012 at 6:24 pm #

    Oh my goodness William Sleator! I keep telling people The Maze Runner is like Lord of the Flies meets House of Stairs (but really more like House of Stairs) and they never know what I’m talking about ! (well they know Lord of the Flies, of course.) I’ve always thought it would be cool to be able to fly AND I am always sad I can’t afford to visit my friends across the country more so I would wish for flight (human flight if that’s allowed, but if we’re doing scientifically plausible wishes only can I just have unlimited frequent flier miles or something?)

    • E.C. Myers Apr 19 2012 at 10:16 pm #

      That’s true! I thought of House of Stairs when I read Maze Runner too, and there’s definitely some Lord of the Flies action going on too. I try to recommend Sleator whenever I can.

  18. Tezza Apr 19 2012 at 8:10 pm #

    my one and only wish would be to always be financially stable enough to support my son and be able to care for him as best I can!! Darn-toot’n that’s my wish!! humph *^_^*

    • E.C. Myers Apr 19 2012 at 10:20 pm #

      As the son of a single mom who worked really hard to get me everything I ever needed, I want to hug you right now!

  19. Elizabeth Briggs Apr 20 2012 at 2:25 pm #

    Can’t wait to read this! My wish would be to win a copy of this book. 😉

  20. dalainy Apr 20 2012 at 6:34 pm #

    my wish would be to be able to accomplish all goals that i set 😀

  21. Angie Apr 20 2012 at 10:25 pm #

    I would wish for my mom to stop having asthma attacks so often.

  22. Ara Apr 20 2012 at 11:23 pm #

    My wish would be to have a time machine and travel back to the early 90s and go to all the concerts I never got to see in person, natch. 😉

  23. M. Dee Apr 20 2012 at 11:35 pm #

    I have to say that I was instantly hooked when I read the blurb for Fair Coin . If I had one wish, it would be to have the drive to to continuously improve myself , to keep going to achieve my dreams and somehow through doing what makes me content/happy reach others. Can all that count as 1 wish?

  24. DB Graves Apr 21 2012 at 10:43 am #

    What an awesome giveaway!!! What wish would I want granted? Oh geez… How about, I wish to maintain my sanity while my son is potty training. LOL

  25. Cialina Apr 21 2012 at 6:43 pm #

    Right now, I’m just wishing for a good Saturday evening.

    Looking forward to Fair Coin! I’m hearing a ton of buzz about it lately.

  26. Tiffany Drew Apr 22 2012 at 11:15 pm #

    Hmm, just one wish? Is wishing for unlimited wishes cheating? Ok, ok. I’d wish for my mom to have no more pain, she has a ton of health issues and suffers daily 🙁

  27. Rachel Chan Apr 23 2012 at 3:22 am #

    I could say the cliché I want a million more wishes, so I’d probably have to say win thirty million dollars in the lottery and buy all the books I’ll ever want! Bwa ha ha!

  28. Justine Apr 23 2012 at 2:53 pm #

    I would wish for all of my family’s loans to be paid off, e.g. mortgage, home equity, student loans, etc.

  29. Avry15 Apr 24 2012 at 5:58 am #

    I would wish for contentment.. So that I wouldn’t wish for a wish again..lol

  30. Anne Michaud Apr 24 2012 at 12:27 pm #

    My wish is to write as long as I can.

  31. Teri C Apr 24 2012 at 3:48 pm #

    I want teleportation already!

  32. Artemis Apr 25 2012 at 7:36 am #

    Only one wish, I would like my family and myself to be healthy.
    Thank you for the giveaway!

  33. E.C. Myers Apr 25 2012 at 7:52 am #

    You all are so good at wishing! Keep them coming, and I hope many of these come true for you.

  34. Melissa Sep 16 2012 at 5:17 pm #

    After checking out a number of the articles on your website, I
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  35. Replica Watches May 16 2013 at 2:23 pm #

    I wanted to thank you for this good read!
    ! I definitely loved every bit of it. I have got you book marked to look at
    new stuff you post…

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