Author Interview - Adam McOmber!

by 12:30 AM 2 comments
Adam McOmber is the author of The White Forestl! - Today he stops by to have a chat with us!

Describe The White Forest in 3 words!

Supernatural Victorian Mystery

Sounds super intriguing!
Were there any road bumps in the story process?

I don’t know that there were any specific bumps.  The act of writing might be considered one big bump.  There are days when ideas and images flow, and then there are other days when I really had to push myself.  There are certain strange and magical elements in the The White Forest—and to write about those things, I really had to open my mind.  I allowed something other than logic to guide me, and that was a very interesting experience.

What was your inspiration for The White Forest?

Inspiration for The White Forest came from many places.  I ready countless Victorian ghost stories, which helped me with the tone of the piece.  I also did a lot of research on the period.  Art too brought inspiration—especially the paintings of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, nineteenth century founder of the Pre-Raphaelite brotherhood. 

The primary inspiration though came from a vision I had one day on my way home from work.  I was walking down a street near my home in Chicago, and an image suddenly appeared in my mind of a young woman in a dark Victorian dress.  She was walking across an open grassy field.  Her head was down, and I knew that she something had troubled her greatly.  I also knew that she was dangerous.  She could hurt people if she wanted to.  I wanted to learn all about her.  She became the main character of The White Forest, Jane Silverlake.

Were there any scenes that were harder to write than others?

Without giving too much away, the scenes where the main character talks with the cult leader Ariston Day were somewhat difficult to write.  I had to find the right voice for Day—I wanted him to seem intelligent and philosophical but also capable of doing great harm to Jane.
The scenes in the White Forest itself were also difficult at times.  Writing them took an extreme amount of creative willpower because they are so otherworldly. 

Who would your dream movie cast be for The White Forest?

That’s a really hard question.  I tend to pay less attention to actors and focus more on directors.  I think Guillermo del Toro, Tim Burton or Sophia Coppola would make a really cool White Forest movie.

Fingers crossed we get to see that movie then!
Did you always want to be a writer?

I did.  I’ve been writing since I was very young. 

Future books in the works?

I’m working on a new novel right now.  I can’t say too much about it because I’m in the process of creating it.  But it has an intense storyline with a unique supernatural element that I think people will really enjoy it.

Random Questions!


I’m a big film buff.  I also really enjoy reading about mythology and history.

Special Writing Habits?

I write every day.  I don’t really have any rituals or habits though.  For the most part, I sit at the desk in my office and let my imagination drift.  I’ve also been known to write on the train while going to work or to even stop on the street while I’m walking and scribble down a scene in my notebook.  Whole passages from The White Forest were composed on the streets of Chicago.

Favourite Book (Apart from your own of course!)?

There are so many!  But since you’ve asked for one, I’ll say The Stand by Stephen King.

Author Bio:

Adam McOmber’s novel, The White Forest, will be published by Touchstone, an imprint of Simon and Schuster, in September 2012.  He is also the author of a book of short stories, This New & Poisonous Air (BOA Editions, 2011).  His work has appeared in Conjunctions,StoryQuarterlyThe Fairy Tale Review, Third CoastQuarterly WestThe Greensboro Review and Arts and Letters .  He has been nominated for two 2012 Pushcart Awards and received an AWP Intro Award.  He lives in Chicago and teaches at Columbia College where he is also the associate editor of the literary magazine Hotel Amerika.

Author Links:

The White Forest - 
Adam McOmber
Released: September 11, 2012
Publisher: Touchstone

Synopsis: In the bestselling tradition of The Night Circus and Sarah Waters’s The Little Stranger, Adam McOmber’s hauntingly original debut novel follows a young woman in Victorian England whose peculiar abilities help her infiltrate a mysterious secret society.

Young Jane Silverlake lives with her father at a crumbling family estate on the edge of Hampstead Heath. Jane has a secret—an unexplainable gift that allows her to see the souls of manmade objects—and this talent isolates her from the outside world. Her greatest joy is wandering the wild heath with her neighbors, Madeline and Nathan. But as the friends come of age, their idyll is shattered by the feelings both girls develop for Nathan, and by Nathan’s interest in a cult led by Ariston Day, a charismatic mystic popular with London's elite. Day encourages his followers to explore dream manipulation, with the goal of discovering a new virtual reality, a place he calls the Empyrean.     

A year later, Nathan has vanished, and the famed Inspector Vidocq arrives in London to untangle the events that led up to Nathan’s disappearance. As a sinister truth emerges, Jane realizes she must discover the origins of her talent and use it to find Nathan herself, before it’s too late.    

Adam McOmber, whose short story collection This New and Poisonous Air earned glowing praise for its evocative prose, here reveals a gift for fantastical twists and dark turns that literary fans will relish.

You can find the rest of the blog tour here!

Claire Blennerhassett

Reader, Blogger

Twenty-something | book-blogger | tea-drinker | procrastinator | wannabe-writer | student


  1. Awesome interview!

    Thank you for participating.

  2. Great interview. I like the three words he used to sum up the book - definitely makes me interested in reading.


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