Mikaya Heart Interview

Widely travelled author, Mikaya Heart, talks to fellow author, Elaine Beale.

As an author and educator herself, Elaine Beale knows only too well how hard it is to balance her commitments to both her writing and teaching, and therefor probably has the perfect insight when it comes to interviewing fellow author, Mikaya Heart.

Elaine Beale: Your most recent book, My Sweet Wild Dance, recently won an award from the Golden Crown Literary Society. How does it feel to get that kind of recognition for your work.

Mikaya Heart: It means a lot to me, I’m very excited and pleased about it. Writing is easy for me, and I enjoy it, but I don’t write for myself, I write because I have something to say to other people. So it’s important to me to have my writing recognized by others, and in this day and age, when so many people are producing books, it’s not easy to make that happen. The judges who chose my book had never heard of me – I was a complete unknown to them. So the fact that they picked me out for an award really says that my book spoke to them. I want my writing to speak to people, and I’m delighted when it does. Hopefully, my writing will get noticed more now that I can say I am an award-winning author.

Elaine Beale

Elaine grew up in East Yorkshire, England and has an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia.

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Stefani Deoul Interview

TV producer, turned author, Stefani Deoul talks to us about herself, and her writing

Rehoboth area resident and long-time television producer Stefani Deoul (Dresden Files, Missing, Dead Zone) may be up in Canada producing the new television series Haven for the SyFy network, but she’s also flying back and forth to the U.S. to promote her debut novel The Carousel, published by A&M Books (www.aandmbooks.com).

First of all, Stefani, I wonder if you could just give us some background about yourself for our readers.

I was born in Brooklyn, grew up on Long Island in New York, and went to the University of Maryland to study film and right after graduating drove across the country to Los Angeles, California determined to “make movies”. I worked my way up to “producer” and realized while I love producing, I also needed to write.

Alexandra Wolfe

Alexandra is the founder, owner, and publishing editor of the Kissed By Venus web site and magazine.

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Lucy Jane Bledsoe Interview

Women explore new territory in Lucy Jane Bledsoe’s fiction.

In her latest novel, The Big Bang Symphony (University of Wisconsin, 2010), three women—a composer, a cook, and a scientist—work together in Antarctica where the extreme climate exposes people to each other and themselves. In an earlier novel, Working Parts (Seal, 1997), the frontier is closer to home—adult literacy classes at the protagonist’s local library—yet equally challenging. Not only does the protagonist have to learn to read, she has to learn to be honest with people. In Biting the Apple (Carroll & Graf, 2007), the charismatic heroine, a motivational speaker and secret kleptomaniac, doesn’t push boundaries so much as cross them. But when one ex-lover refuses to bail her out and another stalks her, the protagonist is forced to decide which of her reinvented selves is authentic.

The complicated relationships in these novels do not necessarily end happily, but hope is present in the form of emotional growth for the flawed yet sympathetic characters. Lucy Jane’s books are also exceptionally well crafted and full of sly humor. She is, deservedly, a recent recipient of the Sherwood Anderson Foundation Fiction Award, as well as a four-time Lambda Literary finalist and one-time winner of the Stonewall Book Award.
 
 

Nairne Holtz

Nairne Holtz is the author of "This One's Going To Last Forever" and "The Skin Beneath" both from Insomniac Press.

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Emma Donoghue Interview

Accomplished is the word that comes to mind when thinking of Emma Donoghue.

At the age of twenty-five, she published her first novel, Stirfry (Hamish Hamilton, 1994), while working on a PhD in English at the University of Cambridge. Today, she has published five novels, three short-story collections, two plays, and two books of literary history, with another novel and a third work of literary history coming out this year. In addition to her prolific writing career, she is the co-parent of a six-year-old boy, and a two-year-old girl.

Emma’s work gallops across genre, history, and continents. She writes about men, women, children, and, in Kissing the Witch (Hamish Hamilton, 1997), fairies. Her fiction is set in England, Ireland, Canada, and the United States. With unselfconscious ease, she captures the vivid physical details of an era as well as its social and cultural framework. In her best-selling novel, Slammerkin (Harcourt, 2000), Emma transports readers to late eighteenth century England, where readers are introduced to a prostitute whose obsession with sumptuous clothes and elegance leads to murder. In the more contemporary Landing (Harcourt, 2007), which won a Golden Crown Award, Emma creates a lesbian love story full of wit, banter, and pithy observations about love and identity in a global world.

Nairne Holtz

Nairne Holtz is the author of "This One's Going To Last Forever" and "The Skin Beneath" both from Insomniac Press.

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Elaine Beale Interview

“I think one of the requisites for anyone who teaches creative writing should be that she actually writes herself. Otherwise, it’s not really possible to understand the challenges that face a writer. After all, it entails a lot more than mastering the various aspects of craft.”

Garnering a number of well-received reviews for her first novel Another Life Altogether from Lambda Literary and the Boston Globe, not to mention being selected as one of only ten books to watch in March 2010 by none other than Oprah Magazine, you would have to say author, Elaine Beale, has definitely started her writing career with a winner.

You’ve gone from teaching creative writing to actually writing, what prompted you to finally take the plunge and write?

I was actually doing my own writing well before I started teaching. In fact, I think one of the requisites for anyone who teaches creative writing should be that she actually writes herself. Otherwise, it’s not really possible to understand the challenges that face a writer. After all, it entails a lot more than mastering the various aspects of craft. On the other hand, not every writer is suited to teaching. Teaching definitely has its own set of requisite skills. I trained as an educator in Britain and have been teaching and training in various fields for a long time. I love teaching and get tremendously inspired and energized by my students. It really helps to feed my own work. And it’s also nice to get away from the computer and the necessary solitude that is the writer’s life. Being out in the world with other people every once in a while is probably good for my mental health.

Alexandra Wolfe

Alexandra is the founder, owner, and publishing editor of the Kissed By Venus web site and magazine.

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