AUTHOR: Kanara Ty
ISSUE: Spring 2013
“Marie Lu is at her best in Prodigy, the sequel to her New York Times bestseller Legend, giving us the most exciting follow-up to a debut novel the young adult genre has seen in a long time.”
Cat Seto is known for her whimsical aesthetic, which started out as a charming paper goods line and has now expanded into a boutique and studio. So when fellow mom and entrepreneur Meg Mateo Ilasco approached her about co-authoring a book, she jumped on board. The result, Mom, Inc.:The Essential Guide to Runninga Business From Home, draws on the pair’s own experiences, as well as interviews with successful mothers like DwellStudio’s Christine Lemieux, to reveal the ins and
outs of running a business while still staying focused on home and family.
ISSUE: Summer 2012
DEPT: Plugged In
STORY: Daisy Miclat
PHOTO: Ruby Press
Audrey Magazine: How did you and Meg come up with the idea for the book?
Cat Seto: Meg’s known for this very popular series of crafting books, and she knew I started a whole bunch of businesses. I had stationary cards, wedding invitations, my own shop and a website dedicated to entrepreneurial women. She looked at my website, MomIncDaily.com, where a community of women get together to talk about biz how-to’s on topics from production to design. She knew that I would have some great tips and be helpful in creating a book about business for mothers.
AM: What were some memorable experiences while writing this book?
CS: There were definitely “mommy” moments during conference calls. My son would be yelling while Meg’s kids were falling and creating banging noises. Our calls would be really funny, but were really productive.
AM: What was your inspiration for Mom, Inc.?
CS: This book was inspired by both of our mothers. They were both workaholics who loved their families and took joy in doing what they love to do. My mother passed away while I was a pregnant with my son Nolan. It was a very difficult time for me. But it was very helpful to be supported by this community of women who went through similar experiences and were able to get through it. This book helped me to preserve the memory of my mother for both my- self and my son.
— Daisy Miclat
Mini Review: Legend
ISSUE: Summer 2012
DEPT: Plugged In
Dystopian young adult novels are all the rage thanks to the popularity of The Hunger Games, but Marie Lu serves up a novel that brings something new to the table: an Asian American literary male character who packs a lot of swag, has major ass-kicking skills with a heart of gold, and charms the socks off the leading female character (myself included!). How’s that for your lead character in a debut novel? With two warring states (the Republic and the Colonies) set as its backdrop, Legend follows two teenage star-crossed lovers, Day (the AA hero) and June, who each come from very different backgrounds — one is a wanted criminal with not-so-malicious intentions, while the other is a rising elite military officer. They cross paths in a cat-and-mouse chase, as Day is framed for the death of June’s older brother, Metias. Eventually, the two join forces to uncover the mysteries of his death and the secrets of the Republic, the governing body of the West Coast.
— Kanara Ty
ISSUE: Spring 2012
STORY: Janice Jann
The next big name in post-apocalyptic teenage angst coming to a bookstore (and a big screen) near you? Look no further than Marie Lu.
Yes, Marie Lu’s debut novel Legend is set in a bleak, distant future where, yes, there are warring factions and, yes, precocious teenagers must face obstacles where lives are at stake, but don’t think Lu is just another writer jumping on the Hunger Games bandwagon.
The 27-year-old Chinese American author was actually in the middle of shopping around another book — a novel centered on Mozart’s sister —when she decided to write Legend, a post-apocalyptic, Les Miserables-inspired saga. Though Lu never intended to write a young adult novel, she says, “ever since I was in high school, my protagonists have always been teens. It’s a very interesting time in life where you have more responsibilities, and mixing it up with hormones makes for fun ways to explore characters.”
The book’s film rights were scooped up within weeks and Legend has been receiving rave reviews for its well-blended combination of substance and suspense. Lu is grateful for all the positive response. “[The feedback] has been really good,” she says. “I love hearing most from teens. They’re so direct with their answers. ‘I like this character, and I don’t like that one.’”
Lu may seem young to already have found such literary success, but the payoff resulted from years of hard work. Since the age of 14, Lu would begin writing around 4:30 each morning. She wrote during her undergrad years at USC, wrote throughout her stint as a video game art director, and continues to keep her early-bird writing patterns even though now she can actually afford to spend all day behind her desk. “I got into a rhythm,” says Lu. “Now I can’t write past noon.”
Lu is currently working on the second and third book of the Legend series while juggling a writer’s tour, but she’s handling the pressure in stride. She considers her success icing on top of analready scrumptious cake. “This is something I would have done regardless if I got anywhere with it or not,” she says, “so I just think of that when I write.”