Laurie C. Lewis, what makes you passionate about writing?
Oohh, there I have so many triggers, Anna. Current events, a setting that fascinates me, or an interesting plot, idea can send me off daydreaming and plotting a new chapter or an entirely new book. Meeting an interesting person can do it too. Thatâ€™s why I love traveling and meeting people. My current book was actually born in a swimming pool one night. I love that scene in the book.
I can see you in the pool. 🙂 Do you have a writing routine?
During my â€œFree Men and Dreamersâ€ series days I blocked out the morning and the evening for writing, but that was hard on my family, and I burned out after eight years on that project. As a result, I let things swing the other way. I was only writing when no one else needed me. I missed the steady adrenaline of the creative process, so now, Iâ€™m writing, editing, or working on media and marketing for a portion of every day except Sunday. I protect those days.
Me too. What is the title of your book?
My current release is â€œThe Dragons of Alsace Farm.â€ â€œDragonsâ€ is the term the main characterâ€”a French WWII survivor named Agnesâ€”uses to refer to her fears. It ties back to the Nazis and the war. Agnes has dementia, so when she canâ€™t put her fears into words, she calls them dragons.
That is very interesting. What genre does your book fall under?â€¨
Itâ€™s Book Club Fiction or General Fiction. I have a list of book club questions in the back of the book, and Iâ€™m offering to video chat with books clubs because Iâ€™m anxious to hear the discussions they will launch.
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
One screen writer has approached me about adapting the book into a screenplay. I donâ€™t think weâ€™re there yet, but it makes this question especially interesting. As I write, I do â€œcastâ€ my characters. Iâ€™d love to cast Elyes Gabel and Katharine McPhee of Scorpion fame as Noah and Tayte, and Faye Dunaway or Blythe Danner as Agnes.
How fun… What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Circumstances bring a broken young man and a distrustful young artist together to help an eighty-year-old French farm woman suffering with dementia, who proves that despite all she has lost, she still knows volumes about what matters mostâ€”courage and love.
So powerful. Is your book self-published or represented by an agency?
Iâ€™m self-publishing â€œThe Dragons of Alsace Farm,â€ but I contracted with my former Covenant editor, Angela Eschler, and publisher Beth Bentley, to make sure the quality of the book was on par. I hope to attract an agent, but right now, self-publishing allows me to control my writing schedule, and to get this book out more quickly to my readers.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
The first draft was completed in about a year, but I dragged the edits out two more years while I wrote a second novel. I plan to release them in quick succession.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I call it Dear John meets Still Alice. Noah Carter opens his wary heart to three people who each prove to be high risks for the previously abandoned loner. He learns that love leaves us vulnerable, and requires us to accept people as they are, which is a theme in Nicholas Sparksâ€™ novel, Dear John. For Noah, that means dealing with Tayteâ€™s inability to trust, Agnesâ€™s dementia, and Uncle Johnâ€™s cancer. We also get into Agnesâ€™s point of view as she deals with the dragon chewing away at her memories and cognitive function, much like Aliceâ€™s challenge in Still Alice.
Awesome… Who or What inspired you to write this book?
My mother was diagnosed with dementia about six years, ago. We excused her symptoms for years until it was impossible to ignore. She had a farm she adored, so Mom is the inspiration for â€œDragons.â€
What else about your book might pique the readerâ€™s interest?
Two delicious mysteries are subtly woven through the book, and readers say they never saw the resolutions coming. But for me, the greatest value in the book is the insight into Agnes, and recognizing that our loved ones with dementia are still in there.
Where can we find your book? (Please live links work best)
“The Dragons of Alsace Farm” wentÂ live as an e-book on July 1st.Â Pre-orders are available now.Upcoming release: The Dragons of Alsace Farm”
Posts Tagged ‘general fiction’
Lisel Spann has dreamed only of wonderful things in her future. Living with her father, sister, and brother in a cramped apartment in Berlin, the small family shares what seems to be an unbreakable spirit of love and security. However, with the rise of the Nazi party and approaching dark clouds of war, any kind of future grows increasingly uncertain. Knowing little of hate and destruction, Lisel is ill prepared as the storms of battle erupt in full fury and loved ones are taken from her as her beautiful city is reduced to rubble.
With fear and despair rising within, it is through her quiet, compassionate father that Lisel discovers faith and hope. Now, in a desperate journey to find her sister, Lisel and her neighbor flee Berlin and the advancing Russians for Frankfurt, a city under the protection of the Allies. But their flight to safety is filled with pain, hunger, and terror. However, with spiritual lessons and blessings from her father, the support of departed loved ones, and her tried but undying faith in a loving Heavenly Father, perhaps Lisel can emerge like the fireweedâ€”rising strong and beautiful from scorched earth â€”transforming bitterness and despair into a charity that never faileth.
Terry, what makes you passionate about writing?
Telling a story that helps a reader think about a concept from a different perspective. Perhaps that perspective affirms her own beliefs about herself or her world or someone elseâ€™s world. Perhaps it doesnâ€™t. Maybe she gains understanding and develops a clearer vision because sheâ€™s seeing it through the eyes of a character sheâ€™s never encountered before. What I love is helping someone turn over a few rocks and looking underneath.
Do you have a writing routine?
Some days I do but sometimes that doesnâ€™t work out the way Iâ€™d like. Now, writers have to do so much more than write. There are promotional things, like blog interviews, websites and author pages to maintain and press releases. There are discussions with people in the industry and meetings to attend. Then, there is the market news to keep up with. If only it was just writing!
The routine I do try to maintain is built around what is going on in my family. Meals, dishes, laundry, school attendance and activities for the littlest kids. Plus, our daughter is a cancer patient and requires quite a lot of tending. Itâ€™s just hard sometimes to keep to a routine.
What is the title of your book?
Fireweed. With a subtitle of A Novel of World War II.
What genre does your book fall under?
Historical Womenâ€™s Fiction is the one I use most often to describe it. It is also a coming-of-age story of a teen-aged girl so it could be Young or New Adult. Or, maybe just General Fiction, if that exists anymore.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Fireweed is the story of an LDS German family trying to survive in Nazi Berlin during World War II.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I suppose any story that is set against a backdrop of war and concerns the challenges of being a woman in that place and that time.
Who or What inspired you to write this book?
I was doing research on the evacuation of American LDS missionaries from Nazi Germany at the time Germany invaded Poland during the first week of September of 1939. When I interviewed some of those evacuees, they had family members sitting in on the interviews and some of those family members were Germans who had lived in Germany during the course of WWII. Frequently, I asked a question the interviewee couldnâ€™t answer from his/her memory. Theyâ€™d excuse themselves to go into the next room to retrieve a journal or an album. While I was waiting, the German family members or friends would say, â€œNow, let me tell you what happened to me.â€ A writer never lets anything go to waste so I began taking another set of notes from the stories I heard. That led me to believe there was a story to be told about the LDS Germans living in Nazi Germany during the war.
Oh, the book Mine Angels Round About, which is the compilation of stories from the missionaries evacuated out of Nazi Germany will be available in the next few months. If youâ€™re interested, watch for it at Amazon.
Great, thank you. What else about your book might pique the readerâ€™s interest?
Itâ€™s not hard to find a story about World War II, told from a male soldierâ€™s point of view and especially one from an American viewpoint. This story is told by, first, a teen-aged German girl, then by her maturing self as she sees her country and people destroyed and vanquished. It shows how she comes to the conclusion that the worst thing her countrymen ever did was to themselves through arrogance or ignorance. She also learns that hope endures, love endures, and family connections endure. Self endures.
Where can we find your book?
You can pre-order a print book through Amazon now for the release on October 5. Iâ€™m told a Kindle book will also be available soon. (Iâ€™m only the author and donâ€™t get to hear these kinds of things. J)
Tags: American LDS missionaries, coming of age, Fireweed, general fiction, Historical Womenâ€™s Fiction, LDS author, LDS German family, Mine Angels Round About, new adult, September of 1939, story of a teen-aged girl, War Ya, World War II, ya, young
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Michelle Bellon is aÂ Winner of the Wise Bear Digital Book Award for Fiction â€“ Suspense, 2013
Rogue AllianceÂ Back cover Blurb
Shyla Ericson escaped a horrific past to start a new life as a tough, sassy cop in the hustle and bustle of LA. She is chosen for the case of a lifetime that will throw her into a world of organised crime, deceit and betrayal. The only problem is; it will take her back (more…)
Tags: amnesiac man, chick lit, chick lit crime thriller, crime thriller, general fiction, horrific childhood, Michelle Bellon, Rogue Alliance, romance suspense, secret government institute, women's fiction
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