American Title IV Finalist: Lexie O'Neill

1) Tell us a brief bit about yourself.

Lexie O'Neill is a professor of psychology, and has a husband, two kids, a cat, a dog, and unfortunately, no longer a turtle. Sheldor grew too large for the tank - but we hope she's happier in the lake.

2) What's your story about in a nutshell (ooo look, it's me in a nutshell!)?
In Backwoods Invader, a prince from another planet and a mountain girl who's too smart for her own good collide - neither fits in where they come from, but can they find they fit together wherever they are?

3) Is it true you write in a trance?

I only write in a trance when I'm really into a story, which could be often, but who's counting?

4) Don't you secretly wish the other contestants would just drop out?

Of course. I have to be honest, right? Wait, I'd hate for them all to drop out because we're really having a wonderful time getting to know each other on these loops and interviews and I'd hate to lose that. There, how is that? (It's actually the truth, too, talk about paradoxes).

5) What is your favorite paranormal being and why?

I keep wanting to say God and Jesus are my favorite paranormal beings, but I know that's not what you mean. My other favorites are elves (who don't appear whatsoever in Backwoods Invader), but they are in my new manuscript and run the gamut from slovenly to superb).

6) Ever had a paranormal experience yourself?

I have had paranormal experiences. One of which occurred when I gave a Halloween party. I was thirteen and invited several friends and my sisters to my grandmother's old, empty farmhouse. There were real dead birds, mice, and an unhinged door propped open to fall. We were in the last upstairs room when the lights went off, in the whole house. My loving friends ran out and slammed the door shut. I was trapped, the door wouldn't open and I don't know I heard behind me. Suddenly, the lights came on and the door opened and I was safe. Who knows?

7) What's your writing ritual?

My writing ritual is to write, anywhere, any time. Since I work full time and Mommy, rituals aren't an option.

8) How much are you going to pee yourself if you win?

Um, none. But my daughter and I will do a happy dance. We did one when I got the news that I was a finalist. The men in the house are too macho to join in, but, oh well.

9) If you could mud-wrestle any author, who would it be and why?

Well, Brad Paisley made one of his songs into a little book, does that count?

10) What kind of underpants would your main character wear?

She'd wear the ones that look like Victoria Secret's, but you can buy the same damned thing at Walmart for half price.

11) You have to pick two cartoon characters to duke it out in a colossal battle, Godzilla-style. Who would you pick and how would it throw down?

I'd choose Kim Possible versus the Powerpuff Girls. Women rule. They'd quit fighting after a few minutes and go shopping. I mean, why take the chance on breaking a nail? Okay, my characters do fight, but not the good guys!

12) Alliance or Horde? Peas or carrots? Franks or beans?

The Alliance sounds like the good guys, so that's my motif and I'm sticking to it. LeSeur peas with a creamy tarragon sauce. Beans, but they'd have to be fresh from the garden. I mean, my characters (and I) may come from the hills, but we can have good taste!

Thanks Lexie! For more information about Lexie and Backwoods Invader check out Lexie's website at


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