A group of published UK-based authors and illustrators of picture books, children's and YA.

Book Birthday Interview – Emma Pass interviews Kate Ormand about THE WANDERERS

The Wanderers

Happy book birthday to you and THE WANDERERS, Kate! Can you tell us a bit more about the book?


Thank you! Flo travels with a circus made up of orphaned children with secret shape-shifting abilities. Once Flo turns sixteen she must perform, but she doesn’t feel ready. When hunters start attending the show, the tension in camp rises, and Flo makes a deadly mistake…


Your debut novel, DARK DAYS, was a dystopian thriller. THE WANDERERS, which Kirkus Reviews called “a swoony romance with a massive body count” (yay for a good Kirkus review!) is quite different. What inspired you to write it and what was that process like?


I got the idea when I saw a circus poster, and I said, “What if I wrote a circus book where all the animals were shape-shifters?” And then I couldn’t stop thinking about it!

I wrote it shortly after finishing DARK DAYS. The idea had been in my mind for a while by the time I got to sit down and write it so I was eager to get going. I wrote the first draft pretty quickly, then spent quite a long time editing it on my own and getting it ready to go.

My agent, Isabel, and consultant editor, Alice, then worked with me to edit the book few times over before it went out on submission. Then Nicole at Sky Pony offered for it and I worked with Nicole and Adrienne to edit and prep the book for publication. I’ve lost count of how many edit rounds this book has gone through! But it’s all good.


What is your favourite line from the book and why?

I really struggled to choose one. That was a mean question. So this is one of my favourites, not my actual favourite because that’s too hard. Hmph.


I wish I could stay here with him until the water turns violet.

Because Flo’s life is pretty hectic and this feels like a real deep-breath moment where she can relax and just enjoy the colour of the ocean and sky and being away from camp for a few hours.

What’s your typical writing day like?

I don’t really have a routine. I have breakfast, get what I call “dressed”, but is actually black pyjama pants and a T-shirt, and get settled at the desk. I write until about 6pm when the house starts filling up again and it’s too distracting to work.


What do you do when you’re not writing?


I read – a lot! I have so many books on my TBR and I’m not a particularly fast reader. I like walking too, and going for tea and cake at the farm shop, or having lunch in an old pub. Also Netflix.

What are you reading at the moment?


Right now I am reading EXTRACTION by Stephanie Diaz, the start of a really great dystopian trilogy. I have all three and plan to read them fairly close together. I’ll likely be finished by the time this interview is posted so future me will be reading CROW MOUNTAIN by Lucy Inglis as that’s next on my pile!


And finally… if you were a shape-shifter, what animal would you be and why?


I think I’d be a parrot like Lola and Kanna. Because – flying!

Me too! Thanks, Kate – I hope everyone loves THE WANDERERS as much as I did, and that it’s a huge success!

kate-ormandtwKate Ormand
Kate Ormand is YA author of DARK DAYS and THE WANDERERS. She lives in the UK with her family, her partner, and a cocker spaniel called Freddie. She graduated from university with a first class degree in Fine Art Painting. It was during this course that Kate discovered her love of reading YA books, prompting her to try a new creative angle and experiment with writing. Kate also writes children’s picture books under the name Kate Louise. Kate is represented by Isabel Atherton at Creative Authors Ltd.

Emma Pass PhotoEmma Pass

Emma Pass has been making up stories for as long as she can remember. Her debut novel, ACID, will be published on 25th April 2013, followed by another stand-alone thriller for young adults in 2014. By day, she works as a library assistant and lives with her husband and dog in the North East Midlands


This entry was posted on September 1, 2015 by and tagged , , , .

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