Thursday, June 23, 2011

Interview with Lesley Livingston for the Once Every Never Tour!

As you will see by the main characters name, Clarinet Reid, Lesley Livingston, is a hoot.  Once Every Never is about Clare and her special ability to travel back in time, way back like two centuries ago, after touching an ancient artifact. Lesley has an amazing ability to bring scenes to life, I loved seeing the old world - especially one with Druids & a hot Celtic warrior ;)  I'm excited to be part of her Once Every Never tour and today I have an interview to share! (On a side note, earlier this week I was fortunate enough to attend the book launch party thanks Penguin & Lesley! I'll have a post about it next week, but I must say that she is one of the sweetest authors (and maybe quirkiest) ever, spending oodles of time chatting with each & every person.)

Hi Lesley, thanks for taking the time to chat with me!

Thanks for having me here, Mel, and for being part of the ONCE EVERY NEVER blog tour!

Having a background in Arthurian lit & Shakespeare, means you've spent quite some time hanging out in the past. Did you find the first century easy to connect with & learn about?

I’ve spent a lot of time hanging out in the past! Sometimes I think I was born into the wrong time – but there are so many other eras that fascinate me, I wouldn’t know which one to choose if I had to live in the time period. (Plus, I’m fond of indoor plumbing and refrigeration…) I found the world of the ancient Celts almost effortless to slip into and connect with. It was a fascinating culture and – contrary to popular belief – these people didn’t live barbaric lives in dark smoky huts, but had rich artistic traditions and, in some cases, downright opulent surroundings. They were skilled artisans and gifted storytellers and musicians and were very fond of the finer things in life like jewelry and clothing.

What sticks out as the most fascinating from that time period?

First century Britain is one of those periods of history that I’ve been fascinated with since I was young. It was wild and dangerous and a land and people on the cusp of dramatic change coming forcibly to their way of life by way of an invading empire. For some reason the plight of the Celts has always sparked in my imagination, especially the story of Boudicca and her revolt against Rome. She was an incredibly brave and driven figure, but that’s not to say that what she did was always on the side of right. In fact, it’s very possible she perpetrated some pretty heinous crimes in the name of rebellion that were really more acts of vengeance. She’s both an incredibly sympathetic figure… and, in some ways, an unforgivable one.

What was your favorite part to write - the bog bodies coming alive OR the Druid's?

Ha! It’s tough for me to choose. I’m very fond of my boggy men… they are tragic and horrible and awesome all at the same time. But I’m also very fond of my Druids because they area mysterious and powerful and, at least in one particular case, kinda smokin’!

Clare is a lucky girl, having two hotties in her life, one a brain, the other a warrior. Who did you use for inspiration (we want pics!)

Oh, forgive me on this one! Milo and Connal actually showed up in my brain as fully formed characters all by themselves. I don’t have any visual references that I used when I was writing them. But I’ll tell you what—I’d be very interested to see who you guys would “fantasy cast” as Clare’s two hotties. How about it? :)
(I'm thinking Jonathan Rhys Meyers for Milo and maybe Stuart Townsend for Connal - but they may be a tad too old!)

If you could time travel, where would you go & what would you do?

Fifth Century Britain. I’d like to spend an evening or two hanging out at King Arthur’s dinner table. I’m pretty sure he would have a few really interesting stories to tell. Also, of course, first Century Britain—although maybe a few years before the Romans got Boudicca all riled up… just so I could experience that culture at it’s height. The feasts were apparently epic! I think Shakespeare would have been a lot of fun to hang out with after rehearsals in the pub. I’ve also always been fascinated with Hatshepsut so a trip to Ancient Egypt might be in the cards, too…

Do you believe in curses?
Shh!! Do you want to be cursed!?!!

Thanks so much Lesley!

And thank you, Mel! It was lovely to meet you at my launch the other night, by the way! Thanks for coming out and I hope you enjoyed the festivities – and the Celts and Romans!

Oh and a big congrats on the recent announcment that Once Ever Never is book one of a trilogy!!!
About the book:

Clarinet Reid is a pretty typical teenager. On the surface. She's smart, but a bit of a slacker; outgoing, but just a little insecure; not exactly a mischief-maker... but trouble tends to find her wherever she goes. Also? She unwittingly carried a centuries-old Druid Blood Curse running through her veins.
Now, with a single throughtless act, what started off as the Summer Vacation in Dullsville suddenly spirals into a deadly race to find a stolen artifact, avert an explosive catastrophe, save a Celtic warrior princess, right a dreadful wrong that happened centuries before Clare was even born, and if there's still time - literally - maybe even get a date.
This is the kind of adventure that happens to a girl once every... never.

You can find the book at,,

About the author:

Lesley is a writer and actor living in Toronto, Canada.  Captivated at a young age by stories of mythology and folk lore, past civilizations, and legendary heroes, she developed into a full-fledged Celtic Mythology Geek, steeped in stories of the Otherworld, Faeries and King Arthur. Lesley went on to earn a Master’s Degree in English from the University of Toronto specializing in Shakespeare and Arthurian literature.

For almost three years, Lesley hosted weekly late-night movie marathons on the nationally broadcast television show, SPACEBAR, as the Waitron-9000, a sparkly holographic waitress with an encyclopedic knowledge of obscure B-movie trivia. She is also a founding member and principal performer with Tempest Theatre Group. Find out more by visiting or following her on Twitter


  1. Lol, love her answer for the curses question :)

  2. I have Once Every Never in my reading pile and am hoping to get to it soon since it already been released. Good to hear that the series will be a trilogy.

  3. Love that interview. I was lucky to meet Leslie at an event in Kitchener last year.