Interview with Colleen McMillan, Author of The Falls

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What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write The Falls?

I’ve been working on this story for over a decade, starting with short stories set in Sterling Falls. I’ve always wanted to delve into the small Midwest town dynamic, since my mom grew up in a very small town. Secrets are such a precious commodity when you live in a small town. I wanted to add my penchant for sci-fi/horror to that kind of setting and see what the characters would do.

If you had to pick theme songs for the main characters of The Falls, what would they be?

I love these kinds of questions! I actually had a playlist for writing, with songs devoted to all the characters. Maddie would normally have a more upbeat rock song as her anthem, but for writing this, her song was a cover of “The Scientist” by Willie Nelson. Billy is “Life on Mars” by David Bowie. Fletcher’s is “Sympathy for the Devil” by The Rolling Stones.

What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?

I love genre fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, horror), and that’s usually what I prefer to write. I love immersing myself in a new world, as well as world-building for my own work.

What books are on your TBR pile right now?

Um…too many to list! I actually have a TBR shelf, but the ones on my nightstand at the moment are Circe by Madeline Miller and Ronin by Emma Mieko Candon.

What scene in your book was your favorite to write?

I really enjoyed writing the early sections of Part One when I introduce the town and characters. I stretched my writer muscles there for sure. Otherwise, anytime that Billy and Maddie talk were fun to write. I love their rapport, the closeness of their relationship. Billy was my favorite character to write.

Do you have any quirky writing habits? (lucky mugs, cats on laps, etc.)

I have a few little talismans by my desk that I like to look at. I suppose my main quirk is that I like having a little noise while I write. Music at home, but I also love writing in cafes and hearing all the little conversations that go on.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

Just Keep Writing. Also, don’t listen to critics… unless you trust their opinion.

If you could choose one thing for readers to remember after reading your book, what would it be?

The Falls is technically a sequel to another story that I am working on now. I also have a sequel for The Falls planned. So be ready for more Sterling Falls drama!


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