3 May 2014


Last month, the lovely Cathi Shaw popped by for a guest post, which you can find here. Now she's back for an interview! Before we get started, we'd just like to thank Cathi for allowing us to feature her and her book, Five Corners. Now, on with the questions...

What is unique about Five Corners?
Without doubt the characters along with the fact that there are three main characters in the book.  Mina, Thia and Kiara each play a significant role in the story of The Marked Ones. I’ve heard from readers that they really like the fact that there are three unique characters to follow in the book.

How did you come up with the setting for the story? Is Five Corners a real place?
This is a good question. I’m not sure where Five Corners came from – it just evolved as I wrote the book. Sometimes I wonder if it is a real place in some kind of alternate reality.

What is your favorite character from Five Corners and why?
I actually don’t have a favorite – I honestly don’t. It’s like trying to choose which one of your children you like best – it’s just not possible because they are all so unique and so wonderful. I love all of the characters in the book but my favorites are, of course, the sisters: Thia, Kiara and Mina.  I just love how they are each strong, determined young women but also so different from one another in their approach to life and conflict. It’s their differences that I love so much!

Do you have a specific song or playlist that you listen to when you’re writing?
I wouldn’t say I have a specific song or playlist. But when I am writing, I like to have music playing in the background. It can’t be too loud or distracting so I go for music that can blend into the room and not jar me out of my writing zone. The kind of music that might be changes with the weather! My son is a musician so I have a rather large iTunes library and a very eclectic mix of music. One day I might be listening to classical, the next jazz and the next some kind of indie or folk music.

What writing advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Write every day, no matter what. Make your writing time sacred and don't go to bed without doing some kind of writing.

What is the hardest part about getting published?
Not getting discouraged by rejection. I had 56 agents pass on my manuscript for Five Corners but two publishers were interested as a soon as I approached them. This tends to be the norm rather than the exception. Just keep trying even if you’re getting a lot of rejection (but if the rejections include advice for improving your story, definitely listen to it! Any feedback you can get is always helpful).

How can readers help to make Five Corners successful?
Tweet about it, blog about it, write reviews on Goodreads, Amazon, Chaptersindigo and other review sites. Share the book with your friends! The more people who hear about the book, the more successful it will be!

When can we expect to see Book 2?
Book 2: Finding Refuge is almost complete. I’m hoping it will come out in early 2015.

Growing up in a sleepy village untouched by distant wars and political conflicts, it was easy for Thia, Mina and Kiara to forget such horrors existed in the Five Corners. That is until the dead child is found; a child that bears the same strange birthmark that all three sisters possess. A Mark their mother had always told them was unique to the girls. Kiara's suspicions grow as their Inn is soon overrun with outsiders from all walks of life. Strangers, soldiers and Elders who all seem to know more about what is happening than the girls do. After Mina barely survives an attack in the forest, the sisters are faced with a shattering secret their mother has kept from them for years. As danger closes in around them, the sisters are forced from their home and must put their trust in the hands of strangers. With more questions than answers, Kiara finds herself separated from everyone she loves and reliant on an Outlander who has spent too much time in army. She doesn't trust Caedmon but she needs him if she has any hope of being reunited with her sisters and learning what the Mark might mean.

Cathi Shaw lives in Summerland, BC with her husband and three children.  She is often found wandering around her home, muttering in a seemingly incoherent manner, particularly when her characters have embarked on new adventure. In addition to writing fiction, she teaches rhetoric and professional writing in the Department of Communications at Okanagan College and is the co-author of the textbook Writing Today.

Contact Cathi:

Buy Five Corners:


  1. This is a really lovely interview! I really liked the writing advice, in particular, but I also found it very interesting to read about perserverance despite obsticals when it comes to publishing. That was helpful. Great interview!

    1. Thanks, Romi! Yes, perseverance is the key when it comes to being coming a successful artist of any kind! Just keep writing and sending the MS off. Improve it as you can but if it's truly good, it will eventually get published! :)

  2. ohh, I haven't heard of this book before. Sounds pretty neat. ;) I usually skip the ones with more than one narrator, though! Because I get confused so easily. >_< But if they're all really unique and awesome, gosh, I'm tempted. x) Great interview, it was totally interesting to read the answers to those fabulous questions!

    1. I haven't read it yet, but Cathi is honestly lovely so I can't wait to get my hands on it! If I get to it before you, I'll let you know what I think!

      x Ely

    2. Thanks, Ely & Cait. I am reluctant with difference narrators as well so I was careful in Five Corners to make sure that first, it worked (and all the feedback I've been given to day says it does), and second, that I was able to develop each character enough that it was obvious a different person was speaking. I'd love to hear what you think of the book when you read it! :)

  3. Thanks so much for having me, Ely! Sorry I'm so late in commenting - I didn't realize the interview up. So much fun chatting about books and the writer's life. :)