Saturday, February 16, 2013

Interview with Author Laura M. Kolar


Give us a quick introduction on yourself and your book.
I live in beautiful northern Michigan with my husband and daughter, and if you looked up the definition of 'hopeless romantic' in the dictionary, you'd see a picture of me with a caption that reads Sappy coffee commercials and the National Anthem make her cry (even when Christina Aguilera forgets the words). My new book is about a girl whose paintings come to life and the boy who is trapped in them.

What inspired you to write your first book?
The first novel I wrote was actually inspired by a difficult time for my family, let's just say I lost a lot of people in a short amount of time. It took me about a year to finish it, and while it will probably never see the light of day, it started me on my journey to become a published writer.

Do you have a specific writing style?
I'm not sure if I'd call it a style, but everything I write has to have a romantic element to it and most of it has some sort of family twist or secret involved.

How did you come up with the title?
Well, it's amazing how handy a thesaurus can be. The story is all about a boy being trapped in a painting, so I looked up words similar to 'trapped' and came up with 'captured', which lead me to titling it CAPTIVE ART.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Hmm…this is a hard one since I don't want to give anything away. How about? Trust your instincts.

How much of the book is realistic?
The part about England, you know, it really is a country, but that's about it.

Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
CAPTIVE ART is entirely fiction. The characters, the setting, the events that happen, are all things I dreamed up.

What books have influenced your life most?
ANGELA'S ASHES by Frank McCourt, a funny, heartwarming and heartbreaking story that was pretty much the first novel I read by choice. And, don't laugh, but the Twilight Saga. I read them during a very difficult time in my life and they helped me escape the reality I was living in. They also helped me to realize I loved the young adult genre of books.

What book are you reading now?
A project by Erica Lucke Dean about a voluptuous witch and a sexy magician, very fun and very romancy!
And THROUGH THE EVER NIGHT by Veronica Rossi. I loved her first book, UNDER THE NEVER SKY. I also love her writing style. If Rossi is describing a forest, you can smell the pine and feel the sap!

Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
A.G. Howard just came out with a book titled SPLINTERED. It's a dark retelling of Louis Carroll's ALICE IN WONDERLAND, and it was amazing! (Exclamation point times a million!)

What are your current projects?
Other than editing CAPTIVE ART, I'm working on the next book in that series as well as a story about a high school hockey player and the aftermath of a one-night-stand, tentatively titled CROSSING THE BLUE LINE.

Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
By far, it is the on-line literary community, from writers to readers to agents to publishers. They are the most supportive, encouraging and enthusiastic people I have ever met. Without them, I would not be where I am today. (Special shout-out to Charlie and the Angels on Twitter, you know who you are!)

Do you see writing as a career?
I see myself as never loving any career more than writing, so even if I don't make enough money to quit my day job, I'll still write, no matter what.

If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Um, I would have done more of what my editor has told me to do from the start, so that the editing would go faster.

Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
Yep, my husband was in a play that was only sixty pages long, and was eventually turned into a movie, and I thought to myself, "I could write a sixty page play," and the rest is history.

Can you share a little of your current work with us?
His face turned in my direction and my breath caught in my throat. The darkness of his hair perfectly matched his dark eyes.
I could never paint those eyes, deep indigo, almost black. But I'd love to try.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Time. There is never enough time to just sit and write for hours on end like I want to.

Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
Wow. How about my top five? I mentioned Veronica Rossi above, but I also love Cassandra Clare, Richelle Mead, Cynthia Hand and Mandy Hubbard. Each of these ladies has influenced how I write, and their books are permanent fixtures on my nightstand.

Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
Not yet, but I love to travel so I hope someday soon!

Who designed the covers?
It's being designed by Streetlight Graphics and I can't wait to see it.

What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Again, the time. The story came easy, but finding the time to write it down was hard.

Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
That you have to love and believe in you're writing or it won't be worth all the work you put into it.

Do you have any advice for other writers?
Write what's in your head. Whatever it is write it down and save it somewhere. It might only be a single line, but if you don't write it down, you'll forget and be mad at yourself later. If you haven't felt like quitting, your dreams aren't big enough.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
I hope you'll love Libby and Dean (the main characters) as much as I do!