Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Interview with Marie Lamba PLUS FREE book!!

Today I've got an interview with the fabulous Marie Lamba!

Her paranormal/famtasy novel Drawn was released this past January!



About the Author:
 

Marie Lamba (marielamba.com) is author of the young adult novels WHAT I MEANT . . . (Random House), OVER MY HEAD, and DRAWN, and her work appears in the short story anthology LIAR LIAR (Mendacity Press) and the anthology CALL ME OKAASAN: ADVENTURES IN MULTICULTURAL MOTHERING (Wyatt-MacKenzie Publishing). Marie's articles appear in more than 100 publications, including national magazines such as Writer's Digest, Garden Design, and RWR. She is also an acquiring Associate Literary Agent at the Jennifer DeChiara Literary Agency in NYC (jdlit.com).

Now to the interview!
 
The Romance Bookie: Describe Drawn in 2-3 sentences, please.

Marie Lamba: She's the artist that finds him in her drawings. He's the medieval ghost that conquers her heart. And their time is running out. 

TRB:  How did you come up with the concept behind Drawn? Any inspiration?

ML: In addition to being a writer, I've also studied fine art (I actually created Drawn's cover). In high school, a woman visited our art class and showed us her paintings of an historic house. In the paintings were Revolutionary War figures buried in the shadows.  She said she never tried to paint them, but that they just appeared. That she seemed to channel them somehow.

Years later, I studied in England for a semester, and kept a journal full of my observations and sketches. It all got me thinking: what if you could draw spirits? What if you could somehow make contact with someone from the past?  

In Drawn, I take that idea further. Not only does Michelle the teen artist draw and meet Christopher, the young man from the past, but she also stumbles upon a medieval mystery that threatens his life.  It's all tied up with murder, lies, and a curse that's still felt in the castle during modern times.  Toss in a serious attraction between the two, and you've got Drawn.  I guess you could say I found myself creating spirits through art, too.
 
TRB: That sounds awesome!

TRB: Does Drawn take place in the past, present, or future? (If you answered this one the description of the book (#1) then I might omit this question in the final interview. :))

ML: Drawn is set in present day England, and also in England during the 1460's.  Time travel pulls modern-day Michelle into the past, and the novel bends our notions of present, past and of fate.

TRB: Oooh time travel is always fun!!

TRB: Is Drawn a stand alone or the first in a series?

ML: It's a stand alone for now. However, I do have ideas for future related novels, and I've planted some unfinished business in the first novel just in case...  For example, just where is Michelle's mother?  Hm...

TRB:  Did you have to do any research before or while writing?

ML: Tons of research! When you write a time-travel novel, you have to make every part of it as believable as possible. Because the novel has a main character from the 1400's, I wanted to go beyond the dry history books to really get a grasp on the mindset of someone from that time. That meant uncovering poetry, ballads, letters, and other personal details about the people who walked through the castles and manor houses of that time. I did so much reading, traveled to castles, did extensive online research too.  And I also had to make sure my modern British characters were accurate. That meant running dialogue and scenes past several British readers. 

It was very time-consuming, but such a blast too. And all the research seems to have paid off. Reviewers have praised Drawn's setting, and mood and sense of history. For example, Clean Romance Reviews said, "The characters are all wonderful, filling in two worlds with real people and making you feel like you’re there." And Moonlight Book Reviews said, "What I enjoyed the most was: the ease of the time traveling jumps and the imagery. Marie Lamba has taken the daunting task of creating two different worlds with different rules and done a breathtaking job." 

TRB:  Which do you prefer: hard copies or ebooks? Why?

ML: I don't have an ereader yet, but I love ebooks because they have made books instantly accessible to so many people. Someone recommends a book to you? Click a button and you have it in your hands. Meet an author at an event? You can immediately go online, search that author's titles, and have their books.

I have to say that I do love the feel and artistry of a printed book. There's a design element to the cover, the paper, and the type that creates a mood even before I've read the first word. There are piles of books in my house everywhere you turn, and my dream is to one day have one of those glorious libraries in my house. You know, the type with floor to ceiling shelves, a beautiful fireplace, and that all-important window seat. Sigh. 

TRB: Yes, there definitely is something about seeing everything about a printed book! :)
 
TRB:  Any advice for aspiring writers?

ML: Forget "write what you know."  Write what you love. Also, ask any successful author, and you will discover just how hard they work, how they are constantly trying to improve their craft, and how many failures and rejections they had to overcome.  If writing is your passion, keep working at it and don't let anything ever stop you.

TRB: Great answer! Hear that readers? Write what you love!
 
 
 
Doesn't Drawn sound like an awesome book?? I'm definitely looking forward to reading it in the near future!! And guess what SO CAN YOU!!

August 8th & 9th!! Drawn will be FREE on Amazon!!  That's right!! Free!!!!

 

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