Monday, March 28, 2011

♥.•*¨ Author Interview: Introducing . . . Elana Johnson! ¨*•.♥

Bio: Elana Johnson’s debut novel, Possession, will be published by Simon Pulse (Simon & Schuster) on June 7, 2011. Her popular ebook, From the Query to the Call, is also available for download. School teacher by day, Query Ninja by night, you can find her online at her personal blog or TwitterShe also co-founded the Query Tracker blog and contributes to the League of Extraordinary WritersElana is represented by Michelle Andelman of Regal Literary.


Elana is one of the most cool, motivated people I've met. I decided I wanted to find out more about her and braved asking her for an interview. And she said yes! How cool is that?

Thanks, Elana, for humoring me!

Without further ado, Elana Johnson!

What is an average day like for you?

In two words: Pure insanity.

In more than two words: It’s a lot like everyone else’s, I imagine. I sleep too late, rush to get ready, pack a lame lunch of canned soup (because I MUST eat something hot for lunch), drive too fast to work, work a lot, constantly check email, and return home.

Then I sometimes cook, sometimes clean, sometimes read with kids, sometimes run them to their activities, sometimes watch TV, sometimes laugh, and sometimes write, and sometimes sleep.

It’s exhausting. The only thing that saves me most days is my Google calendar.

What is your day off like?

I clean my house on Mondays. Do all the laundry. Go to lunch, and take my daughter to school. Then I have approximately 1.3 hours before my son gets home from junior high (dang you, short days!), and I commence with the “average day” up above.

How did you develop your keen sense of query-writing?

I studied and printed and evaluated what worked in successful queries. And we all know if something is interesting to read or not. If we’re confused or not. So it just sort of bloomed from there.

What scene did you enjoy writing most in Possession?

Ahhh, excellent question. I rewrote so many of them, that it would be hard to choose. But there’s this one scene with Zenn and Vi that makes me a little weepy every time I read it. I can’t really tell you about it, because it’s sort of a spoiler, but it really shows the depth of emotion between the two of them. And I love that.

What have you discovered as the most effective marketing tool?

Uh… I don’t know. For me, it’s been my blog. But for someone else, it might be their relationships on twitter or the connections they’ve made on Facebook. I think, in the end, YOU are the most effective marketing tool. So just be yourself.

What is the perfect formula for forming a logline?

Well, “perfect” is hard to come by. And I think of a logline as a hook. So the hook should do two things: 1. Sum up your entire novel and 2. Prompt the reader/listener to know more. This can either mean they read more or your query, ask you a question, or go buy your book to read it!

Words to live by?

“Never give up! Never surrender!” ~Galaxy Quest

I had so much fun learning about Elana, thank you so much for letting me interview you!  If you haven't visited her blog, you're missing out. Stalk her right here!


  1. Elana is great!! Love her logline answer. And yes, "Never give up! Never surrender!"

  2. Yay for quoting from my favourite film ever!!!!

    Thanks for the fab interview of amazing Elana Jonhson, Elizabeth!!!! Very inspirational! Good luck with Possession!! Take care

  3. Oh I love this! Elana is so cool. Thanks for this interview.

  4. Thanks for such a fun interview! I can't wait to read Possession.

  5. This was a fun interview and I too love the logline answer.

  6. I love that quote too! The book sounds awesome, I'll get it!

  7. I love that quote!

    I totally understand the insanity of life you lead. I feel like I'm constantly running around.

    Great interview.

  8. All success to Elana! Loved reading how you attacked the query process. I'm still studying.

  9. what a great interview! Can't wait for her book to come out.

  10. Salarsen, she is!

    Jennifer, thank you! ;)

    Em, I'm glad you enjoyed it!

    Meredith, thank you!

    Kari, she's a genius, isn't she?

    Silvina, itll be fun. :)

    Clarissa, oh how right you are!

    Mary, thank you! l wish you the best on that.

    Marcy, me too! : D

  11. Oh, I'll say it again: I LOVE THAT COVER! Best of luck to Elana. When is the release date?

  12. I like your description of your day especially the 'sometimes sleep.' That fits me too.
    Loglines are tough and I make note of every piece of advice I find. Thanks.

  13. Michelle, isn't pretty? I love it too!

    Susan, yes, I agree that Loglines are tough little guys, too! :)

  14. Elana is super cool. Thanks Elizabeth for this great interview.

  15. Good interview, informative and interesting. Thank You.

  16. Great interview - what an inspiration!

  17. Rachna, thank you! I really admire her, too! :D

    Anthony, I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    Laura, I agree, thank you! :)

  18. Elana is amazing. Great interview!

  19. I loved the interview. Informing and funny. I think my TBR list grew.

  20. Thanks, Elizabeth! Sorry I'm lame and so late. I've been so sick, but I'm starting to come out of it now. :)

  21. Really great interview with Elana. I have read Possession and recommend it to everyone. It rocks just like Elana. I think I know that weepy part she is talking about because I felt the connection there too. Can't wait for more. Elana is such a great motivator.

  22. Cynthia, that's always an exciting thing! :)

    Elana, *HUGS* I hope you feel better soon...

    Regina, So great to hear that, thanks! <3

  23. Those are perfectly nerdy words to live by. :-)


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