Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Neat Stuff!

This is brand-spanking new for me, so please be patient.  I've been invited to be part of a author "blog-hop."  For those of you who are old enough, like I am, to remember "sock hops"...well, this is nothing like that.

Dr. Barbara Lavi contacted me on Author Central in FaceBook and asked if I'd like to participate in a blog hop. I replied, "Sure!...What is it?"  (Note to self:  it's usually better to reverse the order of those two clauses.)  Anyway, I discovered through Barbara's patient tutelage that it's an opportunity for readers to meet new authors of all different genres--fiction and non-fiction alike--by linking information on our work to each other's blogs in kind of a serial fashion.  Right.

Actually, it looks like fun to me, but maybe you can leave a comment telling me how far off the deep end I've gone after the dust settles on this.

The object of the game?  Well, I answer ten questions about my most recent book, and I ask a few other authors with blogs to do the same on their most recent books.  I post my answers--along with other pithy stuff like this concise and coherent introduction--answer the questions, and then provide links to the other authors at the bottom of the page.  As the reader, once you've become enraptured by my clever answers and simply can't imagine yourself not reading onward, buying thousands of copies of my book, and then clicking the links to the other authors' blogs and do the same for them.  Well, okay, maybe not thousands, but you get the idea.

Sound easy?  Sure, easy for you.  But now I've got to find other author-bloggers who are either naive enough to dive in like I did, or astute enough to know that things like this can really be fun.  For your sake, I'll try to find more of the latter than the former.

So, here are the questions and here are my answers:

What is the working title of your book?

A picture is worth a thousand words, so here:

Where did the idea come from for the book?

 For Maria is the sequel to Katia.  It follows to minor characters from that story, characters who are really only briefly mentioned, but are very important.  For those of you who have not yet read Katia, click this link (if you like video trailers, here's one for Katia).  It automatically orders a copy from Amazon, so feel free to click it several times.  I'm kidding, I'm kidding!  It only takes you to the page on my website where you can read a synopsis of the book and see some great photos of scenes that are included in the story.  To read more about For Maria, click this link.  Go ahead.  I dare you.  :-)

What genre does your book fall under?

For Maria is actually a hybrid contemporary-20th-century historical.  There are parallel storylines in both settings.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

There is no question that Amy Adams has to play Madeline, the main character from the contemporary storyline.  That's my only prerequisite to the many Hollywood producers who I'm sure are on their way here this very moment to line up at my front door.  (Note to all:  Steven Spielberg gets first dibs).  As far as the main character from the historical period, Rosa Dudek, I'd have to say...hold on a minute, let me ask my wife...................okay, Jodie Foster; excellent actress and the eye color is perfect.  What do you say, Jodie?

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Madeline Sommers, a young journalist, makes it her single-focused mission to find her grandmother's long-lost twin girls, who disappeared in WWII, before it's too late.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

My book was recently released by OakTara, LLC, a small traditional publisher.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

Interestingly, it only took me 30 days to write the first draft of teh prequel Katia, but it took me nearly a year and a half to get For Maria down.  The subject matter was very research-intensive and, frankly, emotionally exhausting.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I'd have to say that Sarah's Key is closest, but For Maria is far more uplifting.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

As noted, For Maria is a sequel, so events from Katia inspired the idea.  However, the impetus to involve the Kindertransport in the historical storyline was due to research, which included making some wonderful friends of some of the people who lived through the events I portray in the book.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

If you like stories with a great balance of drama, romance, action, and humor, then you'll enjoy both Katia and For Maria.  Historically accurate, poignant, and honest, you'll remember these characters long after you turn the last page.

There!  That's me, now let me introduce you to three more authors whose work may interest you.  I cncourage you to visit their blogs by clicking their names.

Mr. Markus Heinze, non-fiction, who has written a must-read for parents on the controversial topic of infant immunizations and serious side-effects.

Mr. Bernie Dowling, from Down Under, who blogs to introduce readers to different styles and genres of books.

Mr. Tommy Ufert, a 46-year-old quadriplegic who writes and speaks inspirational messages has self-published a book, Adversity Builds Character.