Lu Ann, how has your family background affected your writing, if it has?
My mother was a writer, although she had never had anything published. She wrote poetry for every family occasion, happy and sad. She wrote letters to all of us, no matter how spread across the country. She wrote her life story in a journal. I think my mom would have embraced the internet and used it as a means to touch, teach, and love. Although she told me I’d never make a living as a writer, she still supported my dreams. She once arranged for me to work at the Anderson Herald though the Explorer program so I could learn about the newspaper business. My grandmother was also a writer. She had huge dreams of writing the All-American novel someday, and although she wrote short stories, to my knowledge the only thing she had published was a poem about the sinking of the Titanic a few days after the tragedy. Her poem, “The Lost Ones,” was published in the Chicago Herald American. She always gave me gifts that would teach me how to write and expand my vocabulary. Both she and my mother were avid readers, as I turned out to be.
What gave you the nerve to attempt your first novel? (more…)