Monday, April 25, 2022

Q&A with Stacy Hackney




Stacy Hackney is the author of The Sisters of Luna Island, a new middle grade novel for kids. She also has written the middle grade novel Forever Glimmer Creek. She lives in Richmond, Virginia.


Q: What inspired you to write The Sisters of Luna Island, and how did you create your character Marigold?


A: I was inspired to write The Sisters of Luna Island because I wanted to write a story about sisters.


I am extremely close with my own sister, and I've always been interested in the relationship between siblings--the natural bond formed by growing up together, the conflict and closeness, and the way we define ourselves by who our siblings are or are not. I wanted to explore the complications and the emotions of that relationship.


I also wanted to write from the perspective of the youngest sister, which is how the character of Marigold came along. I was determined to write a book where the little sister saves her big sisters as a tribute to my own little sister who has saved me so many times throughout my life.


Marigold's character developed as I considered the influence of Marigold having magic she doesn't want, being the youngest of three girls, and growing up on a small island.


But a good bit of Marigold's character simply came to me fully formed; her determination and grit, her natural optimism, and her desire for harmony were all characteristics that existed immediately in my mind. 


Q: The novel is set in North Carolina--how important is setting to you in your writing?


A: Setting is very important to me in my writing. I think it establishes the tone for the entire book!


I live in the South and my novels are set there as well because I love the quirky and friendly nature of small Southern towns. I also am happiest when I'm near a body of water, which is why my books tend to take place in towns near oceans or rivers. 


Q: The Kirkus review of the book says, “This is a captivating fantasy with a touch of mystery centered around family.” What do you think of that description, and what do you see as the role of fantasy and magic in the book?


A: I was delighted by the Kirkus review! That quote does a great job of capturing what the book is about--magic, family, and yes, a little mystery.


I like to use fantasy and magic in my writing as a way of addressing tougher issues in a more lighthearted manner. In this book, magic is used as a way to discuss personal responsibility and the consequences of decisions, as well as the importance of remaining true to yourself and your own nature.  


Q: What do you hope readers take away from the story?


A: A major theme of the novel is standing up for yourself and being proud of who you are. I hope readers will take away the message that it is important to celebrate your differences and your own unique talents.


Q: What are you working on now?


A: I'm working on a new middle grade novel. It's got a touch of horror and mystery, and also deals with grief and recovery from loss. 


Q: Anything else we should know?


A: I love writing for the middle grade age range! This is the time when kids really learn to love reading, and it's an honor that my books get to play a small part of that journey for some kids. 


Thanks again for including me on your blog! 


--Interview with Deborah Kalb

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