Guest: Author Clarissa Johal

Today Clarissa Johal is visiting my blog. She answered some questions for me. If you have a question that I didn’t ask, you can ask in the comments.

I shared information about her book Pradee on Tuesday in case you missed it.

Thanks for being here, Clarissa.


Clarissa Johal headshot

When did you decide to be an author?

We moved a lot when I was a kid. Consequently, I was extremely shy. I remember writing this story for a class assignment. My teacher read it aloud and I was mortified. But afterwards, some of the other kids came up to me after class and said they liked it. I think it was at that point I realized that writing was a way to make a connection. It didn’t occur to me I could make a living at it until many years later.

What was your first piece published?

My first published pieces were my two short horror stories, PIGEONS and THE ROPE. They were both published in the literary magazine, Susurrus.

What character is most like you?

Hmm, in PRADEE I think Wex is most like me. He’s always trying to do the right thing, but oftentimes gets into trouble because he’s so impulsive!

What was the first story you wrote as a child?

I wrote a lot of poetry when I was a kid. But my first story was one I wrote in grade 3. It was a story of a shark attack and was quite bloody and terrible.

Do you have any advice for anyone writing a book?

No matter what anyone says, your book is awesome. You just need to 1) write it and 2) find people that like and support your writing style.

Who is your favorite author?

Neil Gaiman. If you haven’t read The Graveyard Book yet, go pick up a copy!

What technique do use write (make it up as you go, plan it)?

I allow the characters to tell me their story. I never know how it’s going to end and I basically write what they tell me to.  If I don’t write what they tell me to, they end up having tantrums, which is never nice for anyone.

What piece are you working on now?

I’m working on a supernatural horror titled STRUCK. I’m also working periodically on the second installment to the PRADEE series. It’s called DATARD, but I’m unsure of when it will be finished.

What is your favorite book?

I have several!  In the adult fantasy genre, it would be Mythago Wood by Robert Holdstock. In the young adult genre, I really like the Fablehaven series by Brandon Mull, the Skullduggery Pleasant series by Derek Landy and the May Bird and the Everafter series by Jodi Lynn Anderson.

Did you receive any awards for a book of yours?

PRADEE was a second round finalist in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest 2012.

Check out more on Clarissa Johal here:

Author website:

Author Blog:



PRADEE buy links for and Barnes&Noble.

Clarissa Johal has worked as a veterinary assistant, zoo-keeper aide and vegetarian chef. Writing has always been her passion. When she’s not listening to the ghosts in her head, she’s dancing or taking photographs of gargoyles. Clarissa shares her life with her husband, two daughters and every stray animal that darkens the doorstep. One day, she expects that a wayward troll will wander into her yard, but that hasn’t happened yet.

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19 Responses to Guest: Author Clarissa Johal

  1. Thank you for hosting me, Gaea!

  2. lizzielich23 says:

    This was a great interview! Lots of great questions. 😀

  3. sharonledwith says:

    Nice set of questions, Gaea! Great answers, Clarissa! Now I’m gonna have to buy The Graveyard Book! Cheers, gals!

  4. ssaradaniel says:

    Great interview Clarissa and Gaea! I was a super shy kid too.

  5. I very much enjoyed the interview, Gaea and Clarissa. I like the way Clarissa allows her characters to take control. Otherwise, the story might lose power. Thank you both.

  6. Stan (SSHampton, Sr., Musa author) says:

    Nice post, and nice looking blog!

  7. Rhea Rhodan says:

    Good interview. I was happy to hear more about the mysterious “Pradee,” Clarissa (and always more about you :>)). Nice blog, Gaea!

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