Interview with Author Carolyn Wada (Part 2)

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Q: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?

A: I put J.R.R. Tolkien in a class by himself, when it comes to my favorite authors. He combines an Oxford professor’s command of the English language with a beautiful, almost childlike world-view. What do I mean by this? Well, his books have real good, real evil, true love, true loyalty, and actually heroic heroes. Sometimes literature can be very cynical, morally ambiguous, and full of betrayal and profound pessimism. These experiences expand the mind, certainly, but make my heart feel icky. So I return to Tolkien and his beautiful world again and again, as if it’s a bubble-bath for my soul. (A bubble bath constructed by a Nobel-prize-winning chemist, that is)

Q: What was the hardest part of writing your book?

A: Definitely the first two chapters, the “development” part. The storyline is, um, quite different and figuring out how to lead the reader into it was very, very hard. Several readers have said varieties of “It was really hard to follow at first, but then wow.” In response, I have started something called “Bentler Universe” on my blog. It is a chance to get to know/follow the Bentler family characters on a “Facebook”-style wall. I am waiting to see if it will make “figuring out” the first two chapters easier. Feedback is appreciated!

Q: When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer? 

A: I don’t remember when I thought, “I want to be a writer.” I became a writer by writing, which was a product of my tendency to make up stories, which sometimes resulted in an original and interesting story, which had to be written down. The experience of writing For Cory’s Sake did make me realize this is what I want to do. It was such a challenging, interesting, and exhilarating process to actually focus on one huge writing task for so many years. Nothing else has ever compared.

Q: How long does it take you to write a book? 

A: With For Cory’s Sake, it was about six years from first-word-on-a-page to finished product, but I think I only spent about half that time actually working on For Cory’s Sake. I was working (still am) a full-time retail job, and holiday season is tumultuous and exhausting enough that it takes over my life for about six months out of the year. (Yes, holiday season does seem to last half-a-year or more, in my sector of the retail biz.) I probably spent three actual years writing For Cory’s Sake, before and/or after work during the retail “off-season.”

(Part 1) | Part 2

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