Monday, May 30, 2011

INTERVIEW WITH DEBRA BROWN

Debra Brown is the author of "The Companion of Lady Holmeshire"
to be published in 2011 by World Castle Publications

1. What aspects of being an author do you most enjoy?

I love how the story churns out in my mind. If I can just get the first pages started, the rest of it pours out. It becomes an exciting part of my life during that creative part of the project.

2. What aspects of being an author do you least enjoy?

I hate that I cannot get it all down on paper the first day. A writer can only do so much at a time, and it seems to take forever. And after it is written, it seems to take forever to get the book out there for the public.

3. What moment as an author have you experienced that you are likely to remember 20 years from now (good or bad)?

I would have to say that it was the "Wow, I can write!" moment. And the shock of being accepted by a publisher. I will remember my writing time; the solitude and the being with my characters, whom nobody else even knew.

4. How many hours a week do you spend writing?

I hate to answer that question. I'm a complete workaholic. Of course, a lot of that time goes into other related efforts. But yes, I write a lot.

5. How much research do you do?

With my first book, I spent a lot of time researching the time period. There was so much to learn, because it was a time of great change and I had to get the decade down. It was Victoria's first years on the throne, following the Empire times and the Regency. Victoria was the first young monarch in a while and the first woman for some time. Industry was changing everything. Agriculture was fading out and people were moving to the cities. The telegraph was just coming in, and the railroads. Fashions changed. Attitudes changed. My first book involved a lot of variety: a country home, a village and then London during the Season. There was so much to learn, and I fear having missed something that was important. My second book did not require much, because the exact date, styles, and even social customs do not matter. It is a setting that could occur at any time in history. I am keeping it in the early Victorian times just because I am familiar with that now, but it really doesn't matter.

6. Tell us about your latest book.

Thank you for asking! I am soooo excited about this book! If you read the first chapter, which is on my website, you see that it is about a mother and her young adult twins, a young man and lady. The two are very close, and the mother is very strange, keeping herself seated up in an attic-like area most of the day. The room is full of years worth of her diaries and a locked chest that is labeled "For the Skylark." She goes over house rules with the young ones weekly, and it becomes apparent that their lives take place entirely within the enclosure of their estate. They are not even allowed to talk to the servants. Over the period of the book, changes develop in their thinking and then the big shock. I'd love to tell you the whole story here and now, but I really ought not!

7. How long did it take to write?

I am still writing it. Maybe I should have been talking about the first book. The first took me five months. During that time, I also had to restudy grammar and punctuation rules, so it was a full time effort.

8. What was your inspiration?

Running out of period movies. During the years that I made jewelry, I watched all the period movies I could get my hands on. The economy took out my business at the same time that I ran out of movies, leaving me free to write my own, initially just for the fun of it.

9. If you could spend one week with one of your characters who would you choose? What would you do?

I think maybe that I would spend it with Genevieve from The Companion of Lady Holmeshire. She was a strong young woman who knew what she wanted in life, and I like the way she took control of it. I feel like she and I could go have fun and feel a lot of freedom. I suppose we would shop a lot. With her money.

10. What has surprised you the most about your experience of being published?

I was so sure that there was no chance of that happening that I did not even intend to try. I was going to self-publish. However, someone convinced me to submit my manuscript, and it was accepted! I guess that I am as surprised that I submitted it as anything!

11. How much social networking are you into?

I really only do social networking online in relation to my book and blogs. While I do not chat with my personal friends online much, I have gotten to know many wonderful people in the book industry. What a supportive group of people! But that is time consuming. Between promoting myself by blogging and tweeting and supporting others, as they do for me, it can take hours a day.

12. Who is your favorite author? Favorite book?

It is a real toss up. I love Jane Austen and her Pride and Prejudice, but I also love Charles Dickens with his humor and strange characters. I loved Miss Havisham from Great Expectations. That is who I modeled "Her Ladyship" after in For the Skylark.

13. Give us your Website address.

It is http://authordebrabrown.blogspot.com/. Thank you so much for the interview

2 comments:

Debbie Brown said...

I'm glad to see that my beautiful book cover has replaced that helmeted cat at the top of your blog. :D Many thanks!

Teresa Thomas Bohannon said...

Great interview Debra. I enjoyed reading about your creative process and the road that brought you to writing.
Smiles,
Teresa