I'm delighted and honoured to be joined today by Genevieve Graham, author of Under The Same Sky and Sound Of The Heart, two of my favourite historical adventures! Genevieve is here with us today to talk about her recently released sweeping adventure romance, Sound Of The Heart, as well as share some priceless insights into the writing process. Enjoy the interview and don't forget to check out my review of Under The Same Sky, as well as Sound Of The Heart (the last one has a prize pack giveaway going on, you might want to check it out - it's awesome!)
1. Welcome to Bookish, Genevieve! Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to talk to us today! I had a wonderful time reading your fabulous adventure romance, Sound of the Heart! Would you mind telling us what/who inspired you to write it?
Thanks, Evie. It’s great to be back here with you. Who inspired me to write “Sound of the Heart”? That’d be my editor. And it wasn’t so much an inspiration as a request! I was absolutely thrilled and jumping all over the place when Berkley Sensation/ Penguin contracted my debut, “Under the Same Sky”, but I had to sit down when I heard the second part of the contract. They wanted a companion novel.
Of course I said, “Yes! Absolutely! Coming right up!” Then I considered the problem for a bit, chin in my hands. “Companion”? From what I understood, that meant they didn’t want a sequel, but something related to the first story. “Under the Same Sky” was the first thing I’d ever written, and I hadn’t considered writing anything else. To be honest, I was a little concerned.
Fortunately, Dougal, the brother of the hero in my first book, is a friendly fellow who loves not only attention, but telling a good tale. I’d been so caught up in Andrew’s story in “Under the Same Sky” that I’d been unaware that Dougal had such an adventure himself! And he was more than willing to tell me all about it.
2. Sound of the Heart has some fascinating historical facts worked through it. First, a Highlander regiment fighting on behalf of the English? Secondly, white slavery? You definitely hit on some big points. Did you learn a lot while you were researching?
A ton. And I really enjoyed learning about it. The 77th and 78th Highlander regiments really did exist, and really were a part of the English army. During the French Indian War (1754-1763), the English just kept losing. The French had made far too many allies among the native people. So the English called upon the defeated Highlanders. Being in the 77th or 78th was the only way the Scots were permitted to wear tartan, play bagpipes, or do anything typically “Scottish”. It also saved them from death or imprisonment.
White slavery was something I’d read a bit about in the first book, and its prevalence shouldn’t have surprised me. After all, slavery still exists in horrifying numbers across the globe. Hundreds of thousands of Scots were shipped to the colonies and sold as slaves, and this goes all the way back to 1630. Actually, early ancestors of the Scots, the Alba and Pics, were enslaved as early as the first century BC. Yes, many of the Scots who were shipped across the sea were indentured servants, but many, many were slaves, treated the same or worse than black slaves. In most cases black slaves were worth more, because they were more physically able to stand up to the incredible heat on the southern plantations where many of them worked, so the masters treated them with more care. White slavery isn’t something taught in schools, which is a little upsetting, I think. Now that I know about it, I think it’s something people should know.
3. How has it been, experiencing the success of your debut, “Under the Same Sky”, and how does this launch feel different?
It’s been surreal. On the day my book came out, I learned Penguin had printed an extra 1,000 copies, which was an absolute thrill for me. Since then I’ve been hearing from reviewers and readers, and every single message has been amazing to read. I just never imagined any of this before. It’s wonderful. This launch feels different because the book came about in such a different way. “Under the Same Sky” came from out of nowhere and “Sound of the Heart” was on request. And promotions for the second novel came out immediately after I’d finished promoting the first one, so I’m a bit frazzled! I plan on a nice, relaxing summer vacation soon ...
4. How do you approach writing a new novel? Are you a plotter or a pantser?
I’m a pantser. I have no real idea of what’s going on until it happens; however, lately I’ve realized it’s necessary to at least have a synopsis before I get going too far. I always run into the problem of having loose ends at the end which need to be tied up, and since I’m terribly disorganized in just about everything I do, that’s a challenge!
5. What’s next in line for you? Are you working on a new book now?
I’ve written the third book, “Out of the Shadows”, which features Maggie’s sister, Adelaide. I really, really love the hero in this one (ahh, Jesse). Penguin hasn’t had a chance to look at it yet. I just started writing a fourth in the same series last week, focusing on Janet MacLeod. I’ve also been working on a Historical Fiction based in WW1 time and focusing on a lobster fisherman from the small town where I now live.
6. Where is your favorite place for writing? Do you have any special writing rituals?
We have a little den in our house and last year my husband made it into my office. I love it in there. Private and comfortable, but with a window onto the road so I don’t miss out on everything. I usually light candles (except in the summer, when I sometimes get to work outside) and sip on tea. Doesn’t that sound dreamy?
7. Do you even experience writer’s block? If so, how do you deal with it?
I sure do. If it’s really bad I’ll just walk away, take the day off. Do something totally distracting like read another person’s book or watch a movie or something. But if it’s not too bad I start working on a different scene. Maybe I skip a section or maybe I go back to the beginning or something. If it doesn’t completely work into what I’m doing I can always adjust it later.
8. Which three of your favorite books would you recommend everybody to read?
“Outlander” is my all-time recommendation. “Into the Wilderness” by Sara Donati. “The Outsiders” by Penelope Williamson. But oh, there are so many! I listed a few of my very favourites on my site at www.GenevieveGraham.com/Books-I-Love.html.
- white or dark chocolate? = dark
- coffee or tea? = tea ... unless the coffee has baileys in it. :)
- favorite fictional character? = Jamie Fraser
- favorite movie? = Pride & Prejudice with Kiera Knightly
- favorite song? = too many to name.
- favorite TV show? = House - ebook
About the author:
Genevieve Graham graduated from the University of Toronto in 1986 with a Bachelor of Music in Performance (playing the oboe). While on a ski vacation in Alberta, she met her future husband in a chairlift lineup and subsequently moved to Calgary to be with him. They have recently settled in a small, peaceful town in Nova Scotia with their two beautiful daughters. Writing became an essential part of Genevieve’s life a few years ago, when she began to write her debut novel, Under the Same Sky. The companion novel, Sound of the Heart, will be in stores May 1, 2012.
Check out: http://www.GenevieveGraham.com/blog-tour.html for more tour stops!
❤ ❤ ❤GIVEAWAY❤ ❤ ❤
Genevieve Graham has generously offered to give away one signed copy of Sound Of The Heart! To sweeten the deal I'm also adding a hand-made book thong (made by me to celebrate the release of this wicked cool read!). The book will be sent by the author and the book thong will come from me, so one lucky winner will get two packages! Excited?! :)
Enter through Rafflecopter below!
Open to: US/Canada
Ends: May 31th
(ENTER AFTER THE PAGE BRAKE -> click: read more!)
(ENTER AFTER THE PAGE BRAKE -> click: read more!)
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About the AuthorEvie is the Blogger behind Bookish. She enjoys reading many different genres, especially YA, Paranormal, Contemporary Fiction and Fantasy.She loves talking to authors and is always happy to welcome them for interviews, and guest posts. She also likes spreading the love for awesome books and chatting with fellow book-worms.