Industry Q & A: Chantel Guertin, Author

Chantel taught me the basics of writing for magazines in Centennial College’s post-grad publishing program. She’s smart, savvy and sophisticated – and what better way to describe a woman who is editor-at-large at The Kit, a beauty expert on The Marilyn Denis Show, teaches publishing and writes novels? She’s also become my publishing mentor and a good friend.

That’s why I couldn’t be happier to say we’re giving away 2 copies of Chantel’s latest book, The Rule of Thirds, which came out this fall and was published by ECW Press. Following Pippa Greene’s adventures in high school, The Rule of Thirds blends the difficulty of losing a loved one with the fun of bonding with your best friend along with must-have elements of romance. To enter for a chance to win, comment below before December 27, 2013 and tell us: what is your favourite genre of book to read?


Name: Chantel Guertin
Genres: Chicklit, YA
Astrological sign: Pisces (this is very important!)

Q:  When do you get most of your writing done?

A: When I’m not online shopping or checking my emails.

Q:  What has the querying process been like for you?

A: I queried to get an agent for my first novel, Stuck in Downward Dog. Then my publisher bought my second book, Love Struck, on a partial manuscript. When I made the switch to YA, I sent the book out to a few editors, and my publisher, ECW Press, bought The Rule of Thirds in a two-book deal, asking if I’d consider making it the first in a series. The hardest part is definitely getting rejections. Even worse? Those form rejections where they didn’t even look at your book.

Q:  Do you do writing exercises before launching into your book?

A: No. I just write.

Q:  Who or what inspired you to become a writer?

A: I always knew I wanted to be a writer. Except for a brief spell where I thought I’d grow up to be a cashier, based on my love of the Fisher-Price cashier I had set up in my bedroom when I was 8.

Q:  How much time do you spend planning your story as compared to writing it?

A: It’s probably about equal! I tend to do my best planning while on a run.

Q:  When do you feel like your manuscript is submission ready?

A: When I get the first copies in the mail and know that making changes is no longer possible.

Q: Where do you do your best work?

A: Ideally, holed up in cabin in the woods with no internet or phones. It’s too cold to go outside, so I can do nothing but sit by the fire, drink wine, and write. When I can’t get that, I’ll settle for my bed, laptop on lap, headphones in.

Q: What is your favourite colour?

A: Easy. Blue. Just ask my fiancé. I just finished picking out 17 different shades of blue (that I was certain were very, very different) to repaint our new house, and every single room looks exactly the same.

Read Chantel’s blog or follow her on Twitter @chantelguertin.

Want to win a copy of Chantel’s latest book, The Rule of Thirds? To enter for a chance to win, comment below before December 20, 2013 and tell us: what is your favourite genre of book to read?


7 thoughts on “Industry Q & A: Chantel Guertin, Author

  1. Pingback: Industry Q & A: Chantel Guertin, Author | Leona Carver

  2. Even though I can’t enter the contest (sigh, the downsides of being a moderator), I am still super excited for this interview and give away. Thank you so much, Chantel, for your generosity with your time, your knowledge, and your books!

  3. Fantasy will always be my go to and favourite genre. I’ll branch in to others but there’s something about dragons, elves, unicorns and all those wonderful mystic creatures that fire up the imagination

  4. Great interview! Fellow Piscean here =) Your title Stuck in Downward Dog is very catchy, I’m going to browse around for it and have a look!
    My favourite genre of late has been classics. I was resistant to them as a youth, figuring they must all be dusty old political things and no fun at all, and was romanced back into reading the old stuff by a bargain store edition of ‘Pride and Prejudice’. It had me laughing out loud on a car trip at the silly social commonplaces of the Victorian times. Thanks for the contest!

  5. I’m a little surprised none of the questions were about camera work or modelling, which seems to be the central theme of the book.

    I’m also surprised to see so few comments. The book sounds intriguing to me.

    My favourite genre by far is fantasy. Children’s, YA or adult doesn’t seem to matter, though I do prefer fantasy set in other worlds to historical, and historical settings to modern day.

    (I also like SF, YA that isn’t fantasy, some Romance, some Mystery and some just Fiction.)

  6. It seems we have similar taste in books! I love fantasy too but also love YA. Mystery was my first love.

    I love Jane Austen’s novels too. If you enjoy them, you will also love Austenland and Midnight in Austenland by Shannon Hale.

    A winner will be selected and contacted shortly! Thank you all for participating and for the discussion.

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