The Lady of the Vineyard Blog Tour + Character & Author Interview

This is an exciting post because I get to be one of the blogs that opens the blog tour for The Lady of the Vineyard, a novella by Kellyn Roth, who you may know from her blog, ReveriesYou also may have noticed her from the rather long comment chains we tend to make responding to each other’s posts.

Kellyn is a homeschooled author and she’s already self-published one novel, The Dressmaker’s Secret, which is a historical fiction novel. BUT that is not what our post is about. This post is about The Lady of the Vineyard, which…is also a historical fiction novel.

TLOTV cover.png
and can I just take a moment to flail at you about how a cover I made is going to be on a published book? *MUCH FLAILING*

By now I’m sure you’re absolutely dying to hear the synopsis of the book, so no more waiting, I’ll just give it to you:

Judy has lived with her egocentric mother since her parents divorced when she was a baby. When her father, Troy Kee, shows up at her sixth birthday party and whisks her away to his vineyard in France, Judy is more than happy to go with him. But Adele, Judy’s mother, isn’t quite ready to give up her daughter. Can Judy forgive Adele? More importantly, can Troy?

The Lady of the Vineyard tells an amazing story of change, growth, and love, and it’s going to be published on September 10th–in two days! But if you don’t want to wait that long, you can preorder the Kindle version on Amazon.

And now, to the fun stuff! I was able to interview both a character from and the author of The Lady of the Vineyard for the blog tour, and so I chose to interview Judy, the serious six-year-old girl this story is about.


Interview with Judy

Did you ever think about your father much before the story began?
No, I guess not. I knew he was somewhere … but nobody ever talked about him. I mean, Aunt Lola did sometimes, but she didn’t visit all that often.
What is your favorite thing about your mother? Your father?
My favorite thing about my mother is that she is beautiful. My favorite thing about my father is that he is wonderful.
Would you rather spend time with other people, or on your own?
I’d usually rather spend time with other people, but I like being with Daddy a lot.
What is your favorite childhood memory?
I don’t think I have one yet.
What do you want, more than anything else in the world?
I just want to stay in one place and have everything be the same. I don’t want things to change all the time anymore.

But change is fabulous and that is what this story is about–how hard change can be…and then how amazing the results can become! Isn’t that awesome?

Afterward, I got to interview Kellyn Roth, the author of The Lady of the Vineyard, about…well, author-y things!


Interview with Kellyn Roth

What inspired the characters in The Lady of the Vineyard?
I think for once I made character to fit a story instead of visa-versa. 🙂 Of course, they ended up jumping off the pages eventually, but y’know, their basic personalities were pre-determined.
Who really encouraged and inspired you to publish?
My friends, especially my friend Bailey, were always encouraging me too, and then NaNoWriMo (YWP, of course) is so awesome for encouraging young writers to write and write and write! But I think mostly if helped a lot to get my blog set up and feel like I was official.
What book(s) are you currently working on?
Ivy Introspective (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy, Book 2) is really what I need to focus on what now … but I’m also plotting out At Her Fingertips (Book 3). And … writing random bits of writing based on every plot bunny I can catch.
What was the biggest thing you learned while writing The Lady of the Vineyard?
The Prohibition didn’t happen in England. Or France. XD
Not really. But that’s a hard thing to pinpoint. I suppose one of the things I learned is that oftentimes my philosophical rambles don’t make sense – at least not outside of my head – and it’s sometimes better just to do something that actually makes sense.
And … that didn’t make sense. 😛
What is the best part of writing and being an author?
Being able to control everyone. *evil laughter*


Be sure to head on over to Reveries and congratulate Kellyn on the publishing of her novella and to check out the rest of her blog tour! And if you’re looking for a short and sweet story to read, The Lady of the Vineyard is just the book for you.

The Rising Authors Tag

By my order, this week is decreed The Week of Blog Tags, in which I shall gift you with a blog tag each day (in an attempt to finish all the ones I have been tagged for). Therefore, I shall not tag anyone, else there be a multitude of tags. If you wish to be tagged, you are! Thus ends the decree.


I still feel like there’s a tag I’m missing…? But oh well. I can’t remember it so I just snatched this tag from Fin @ Spiel since she said anyone could take it. Thanks, Fin! It’s, obviously, about rising authors which sounds kinda like the zombie apocalypse with writers but I think it’s supposed to mean aspiring authors…? The really fun part is that I get to share a 150 word piece/excerpt of my writing! (Now I just have to choose which excerpt to post…)


Rules:
1. Write a post thanking the person who tagged you: include the tag, the 11 questions asked, your answers, and, in reply to the request for a small piece of prose or poetry, share a 150-word story.
2. At the end of the post, provide 11 new questions.
3. Request a brief 150-word story from the people you tagged.
4. Tag at least one person, and include a link to their blog.


Q&A with Fin:

  • What’s your favourite genre to write in?

Fantasy is what I’ve written from the beginning, but I’m working on an epic science fiction series right now, and I’m really liking it so far, so I like that too. I’ve also always wanted to write a fractured fairy tale (which I suppose could fall under fantasy) but have never actually finished one.

  • What are your favourite writing blogs, or writing websites?

My favorite writing website is definitely the Young Writers Program for NaNoWriMo–everyone is so friendly and awesome, and participating in NaNoWriMo is just awesome in general.

  • Give three pieces of writing advice that you’ve found helpful!

Ooh, hmm… 1. Have fun with your first draft and don’t worry about it making sense–just make sure to love it. 2. A good ramble about your own writing never hurt anyone, and can actually be really helpful. 3. Chocolate always helps.

  • Do you listen to music when you write? If so, what do you like to listen to? If not, well, why not?

Yes, if I remember to turn it on, haha. I usually listen to “epic music” on youtube, which can alternately be non-distracting background music or an inspiring fountain of story ideas.

  • Do you eat or drink while you write? If so, what do you eat/drink?

Hmm, not usually, actually. When I procrastinate from writing, though, that’s when all the chocolate and candy and random snacks come out…

  • Out of curiosity, what’s your typing speed?

I’m not sure; I haven’t taken a typing speed test in a while. I think generally my typing speed if I’m going as fast as possible is about 70 wpm, but when I’m writing it’s a lot less because I have to think. I think if I’m writing as fast as possible I can get to around 500 words in 15 minutes, which is about…33 wpm. And that’s when I’m trying to go fast.

  • Do you give much thought to your antagonist?

I haven’t really, before, but I’m planning on digging down deep into my antagonist for Enhanced (and hopefully, into all my other characters). I want him to be a realistic antagonist, so I’ll have to work on him for a while.

  • Do you write more females or more males?

Probably more females… I try to balance it out but I think I just end up with more females because I’m female and that’s who’s easier.

  • Which do you think you write better?

Females, definitely. I don’t feel like I have enough deep friendships with boys to be able to write them properly.

  • What’s your idea of a perfect place and time to write?

Ooh, interesting question. I don’t know, usually I just sit on my couch when I write, which is fine, and I think it’d be weird to write anywhere else now since I hardly ever do. And a perfect time? I actually tend to stay up late writing, but I don’t like it. I’d rather write earlier in the day when I’m better at thinking and will actually be able to get a decent amount of sleep that night.

  • If you could do one thing to make your writing life easier, what would it be?

I’m not really sure. I think part of the fun and reward of writing is the challenge of it. I mean, having no procrastination would make my writing life so much easier…but I think it makes me feel closer to my novels when I realize how much time and effort I’ve spent on them. Yeah, I don’t know…maybe I’d just tone down the procrastination a bit.


Writing Excerpt:

Since I was too lazy to actually write something new for this, and didn’t want to use something from the old Enhanced, I decided to take an excerpt of an excerpt I wrote for these writing practice things I was trying to do months ago. It’s the end of a conversation (well, argument) between Kai and Taira, and I doubt it’ll even go anywhere in any of the novels, but I like it, so I’ll stick it in here. (Oh, and feedback is always appreciated!)


Each of her words cut, and with them, a desire to cut her back burning stronger and stronger. “You’re the one who’s being insulting. You may have gone through some pretty terrible things, but that doesn’t mean you have to be rude to everyone else about it! You have a choice—a choice to be whoever you want to be, and you just chose to be bitter about it.”

Taira turned a cold glare back at him, but in those eyes, he could see the pain that he’d inflicted. She was hurting too, now. “You have no idea what I’ve been through. So you can just go now. I can’t believe I even started talking to you in the first place.”

His heart pumped, pulsing against the wounds she’d caused, blood spilling through him. Guilt pumping through his bloodstream. Realization pooling around him.

She didn’t hurt any less than he did.

But it was too late to say he was sorry now.


Questions:

  1. When did you first start writing, and was there ever any real reason why?
  2. What is your goal as an author?
  3. What writing project are you working on right now? What is it about? (Extensive rambling is highly encouraged.)
  4. What new plot bunnies have you had recently?
  5. Do you prefer wide-ruled or college-ruled notebooks? Trust me, this is a very important question.
  6. Is there any specific kind of pen or pencil that you like to write with the best when you’re writing on paper?
  7. Since this is the Rising Authors Tag, what heights have you risen to in your writing that you never thought you would? Also, have you ever been a zombie?
  8. How many books do you read on average in a month?
  9. Would you rather write a first draft, or revise one?
  10. Do you have any writing rituals?
  11. Do you ever put inside jokes or easter eggs in your writing? Tell us about them! Give us all your secrets…

Remember, if you want to be tagged, you are! If any of you do this tag, I’d love it if you’d post a link in the comments so I can read it! If you don’t, you should totally answer the questions in the comments. Especially the zombie one.

The Joy of Writing

A long, long time ago, I wrote my very first novel. Okay, so it wasn’t that long ago, but it has been almost 3 years since then. o.O waht it can’t have been that long. My novel was called Raven, finished at about 35,000 words…and I was absolutely convinced it was awesome.

Guess what? It really wasn’t that awesome.

But the great thing is, I thought it was. I loved writing that novel more than I think I’ve loved writing any other novel since. And I was absolutely exhilarated once I wrote that last word on April 29th–I’m pretty sure I told everyone five thousand times in the next week that I’d finished a novel.

Now, reading over it, it makes me laugh. A lot. Mainly because it’s really stupid and cheesy, but I thought it was wonderful, and that’s just funny. Here, I’ll show you a random excerpt, and you try to believe me thinking that this is some of the best writing ever written.

Kergan and the monster come to stand next to me. I become aware that the beast is right next to me. I look over at him, and he seems to grin, and I think I see the fangs wiggle just a bit. I turn away, trying not to notice the flippers that are waving right next to me.

I take a deep breath, then immediately wish I hadn’t. The creature, Balkarr, has an overpowering stench, and I resist the urge to pinch my nose shut. Now I really wish I hadn’t eaten so much. I position my nose as far away as I possibly can, and hope that I won’t be able to smell Balkarr too much.

Yep, there’s pages and pages and pages of this stuff. (Also, a lot of my “jokes” seem to deal with smelly things. I’m not sure why.)

Anyway, the point is that even though the writing itself, as well as a lot of the scenes and ideas, were not very good at all, I loved it, and I enjoyed the writing process immensely.

As you may have heard me mention before, about a year ago, I went to a writing conference, where lots and lots of different authors talked to us. So I ended up hearing the “writing life stories” from many authors, and they all seemed to have something in common.

Almost every author, when they talked about their writing career, they talked about a portion where they fell away from writing for a while, because they stopped enjoying it. Sometimes locked into a series and contracts from publishers, and sometimes just unable to find enjoyment in what they were doing.

So they stopped writing for a little while. And then, what did almost every one of them say?

They said they decided to write a novel for themselves. One writer wrote a mystery when she’d never written that genre. Others just got a new idea and went with it. They thought that this novel, since it wasn’t what they normally wrote, wouldn’t be any good.

But they were good. They were better, in fact, than what they’d written before. Those novels were the ones snatched up by agents and published.

Those were the novels that were loved by readers, because they were loved by their authors first.

Enjoyment and love of writing, I think, is key in writing a good novel. Of course, writing is hard. I know, personally, that sometimes it’s hard to get started writing, especially if a scene isn’t working out, or your characters are being annoying. *glares at Cren*

But at the end of the day, when we’ve finished our writing, we should have found enjoyment in it. Because if we don’t, why are we even doing it? There’s no point in writing if you don’t love it, but when you do…there’s every reason to continue on, even when times get hard.