Saturday, July 16, 2011

Author Interview: PJ Hoover

P. J. Hoover first fell in love with Greek mythology in sixth grade thanks to the book Mythology by Edith Hamilton. After a fifteen year bout as an electrical engineer designing computer chips for a living, P. J. decided to take her own stab at mythology and started writing books for kids and teens. P. J. is also a member of THE TEXAS SWEETHEARTS & SCOUNDRELS. When not writing, P. J. spends time with her husband and two kids and enjoys practicing Kung Fu, solving Rubik's cubes, and watching Star Trek. Her first novel for teens, Solstice, takes place in a Global Warming future and explores the parallel world of mythology beside our own. Her middle grade fantasy novels, The Emerald Tablet, The Navel of the World, and The Necropolis, chronicle the adventures of a boy who discovers he’s part of two feuding worlds hidden beneath the sea.


How did you come up with the idea for Solstice?  It seems like you had a good idea of the summer that was in store for us this year!

Oh, you aren’t kidding! We are having a crazy hot summer with total drought conditions. It is so Solstice. Of course I wish I had the vision of the Fates, but it’s not the case J
When I decided I wanted to write a mythology-based young adult novel, the Hades and Persephone story was the one I decided on. But rather than a retelling, I wanted to do more of a “what happens after the myth” kind of thing. And so I came up with Solstice.

I love this twist on the story of Hades and Persephone; it seems more like true love than she was tricked or kidnapped.  How did you decide to take this route?

LOL! I can totally see teens falling in love and parents not wanting them to be together. And if the mom happened to be psychotically protective of her daughter, she might spin any lie she needed to for her gain. I love the idea of twisting the myths around a bit and seeing what happens.

Since I enjoy mythology, and LOVED Solstice, I’m dying to know, will have any more modernized mythological stories for us in the future?  If so, can you tell me a little about what to expect?

Thank you! You are the best! I totally have plans to write a sequel to Solstice and most likely a third book, too. The world of Solstice is such a great place to write. It has so much possibility. As for other myth stories, I’d love to explore this route more but haven’t quite yet.

What project are you working on now?

It feels like I’m working on so many things and yet nothing specific. I do have another middle grade story that I’m finishing up, and this summer I also plan to come to some state of completion on another young adult story, more based in reality but still with a fantasy element. But I never talk much more about works-in-progress than that. I’m definitely not a kiss-and-tell kind of girl J

Are there any plans for Solstice to come out in print, or will it remain an e-book?

Yes! Solstice is in the process right now, and a print version should be available sometime this summer. As much as I love ebooks, I still am super excited to have the print copy of Solstice to include on my bookshelf at home!

I wish I had been able to attend ALA so I could have met you.  Do you have any events planned in the future that you will either be attending as a reader or writer?

I would have loved to meet you at ALA! I adore author events and am of the mentality that the more the better. They are great places to talk to readers and others in the industry. I’ll be at a few librarian conferences in Texas this fall which should be fun. Also in January I’m planning on going to ALA Midwinter in Dallas, Texas. But I think the event I’m most excited about is Austin Comic Con which is November 11-13. Seven other authors and I will be getting a booth and selling our books. It should be a blast, and any excuse to dress up is always a great one.

What made you go from being an engineer to a writer?  How long did you work on Solstice before it was published as an e-book?

When I started writing, I found it to be a lot like engineering in many ways. The discipline is much the same. The idea of setting goals and working on projects. And I loved using my brain in both ways.
As for Solstice, I worked for almost three years before it came out as an ebook. It’s hard to believe that much time went by, but in the writing world, time either drags of flies by.

And, since I’m known in my family for my random questions, what is your favorite dessert?

Oooh, I love random questions! And I love dessert!
My favorite may be pecan pie. Or tiramisu. Or flan. It’s so hard to decide. But if I had to pick one, I’d go with pecan pie. How about you???

Me: My favorite dessert is anything chocolate, but i LOVE carrot cake like my grandma and mom used to make. 

Thanks for taking the time to share a little about you and Solstice and I look forward to reading more from you soon!

Thanks so much for reading SOLSTICE and for the opportunity to hang out with your readers! I really appreciate your support!

You can find PJ Hoover at her website: 
on Twitter: @PJ_hoover 


  1. Thank you for hosting me! I'm thrilled to be here!

  2. Great interview - thanks for sharing! Sounds like a great book. I'm waiting for the print version!