Today I’m welcoming to the blogging studio a special friend…Brinda Berry. Not only is Brinda a published author who recently released her second book, Whisper of Memory, but she and I also have a unique relationship. You see, I used to work with Brinda’s husband several years ago and therefore knew her in a cursory fashion. But just last year we stumbled across one another at the Ozark Writers Conference and discovered our shared passion. I was so thrilled to finally have someone other than my wife to discuss writing related topics with and who shared a burning desire to become published. We hit it off immediately and I’ve been milking her expertise ever since. :)
Whisper of Memory, the follow up to Brinda’s well-received first novel The Waiting Booth, was released last Friday and she is now making the promotional rounds. So of course I grabbed hold of her and yanked her here today before anyone else could. I have a pretty good track record when it comes to interviewing authors…the last one (Shelli Johannes) ended up being nominated for GEORGIA AUTHOR OF THE YEAR. I’m just saying. *wink*
So Brinda…are you comfortable? Coffee made like you asked?
Did you say I have a chance at Author of the Year? Yes, the coffee is just the way I like it.
Great! Let’s get some basics out of the way first…okay? How tall are you?
Tall enough. If you ask my weight, you are in big trouble. You saw me on the treadmill the other day at the gym. I looked tall on it, didn’t I?
You bet! I’m just limbering up my questioning muscles. Are you allergic to anything?
Cats. *looking around*
Don't worry, you're safe. Okay, I think I’m ready to dive into the good stuff. How about you Brinda, are you ready?
Good stuff? You’re not going to ask me about my sleeping habits, are you? I’m sleeping better now that my book has been released.
Um...No...but I'm glad for you. So, in your book…Whisper of Memory…your MC has a medical condition called synesthesia. Tell us about it and how you came about using it as a character trait?
The name synesthesia sounds like something awful, but it really isn’t. It’s where your sensory perception overlaps. A person is born with this or can find himself experiencing it after an accident. Grapheme is color synesthesia and is only one form. Fro example, a person might see letters and numbers in certain colors. There are over 60 types of synesthesia and 1 in 23 people may experience a degree of it. My main character, Mia, has multiple forms of synesthesia. Her condition aids her in locating portals.
Some people assume that portal travel equates to time travel, and that's not the concept in your book. The portals exist as doorways between dimensions. Explain more about that concept to us.
You should imagine our world like an onion with layers. Each layer holds a dimension of life and activity. The layers that are next to each other have very similar activity and life forms. Pick at the layer (dimension) on the outside and near the core to see great differences in these worlds. In my story, there is an entity who believes they control travel between these dimensions. Portals are the access point.
I understand you originally pitched it as sci-fi, but your publisher chose to categorize as Young Adult Fantasy. How do you feel about that now?
I don’t have a problem with how it’s categorized. At first, I worried that readers might look for trolls or vampires in my novels. That doesn’t seem to be the case. It’s a good thing since they won’t find them.
I’m drawn to books that revolve around an ensemble cast of friends rather than a single character. Whisper of a Memory fits that mold, right?
Definitely. Mia is very independent, but she soon learns that she needs her friends.
Like many of my readers and other aspiring writers out there, you have a full-time job that leaves little time for writing, much less promoting. How do you make it work?
This is working? Just kidding. It’s a juggling act. I’ve had to give up some things. I’m sure everybody does. You can’t add writing to the mix and not replace some other activity.
I know you’re busy, and the way you’re squirming in your chair I’d say you need to visit the little girls room…so just one more question. What one piece of advice would you give my readers who are looking to become published that we haven’t touched on yet?
If you love it, don’t give up. It’s far easier to become discouraged than encouraged. Surround yourself with writing peers and mentors.
Once again, thank you for being here!
My pleasure! Thanks, DL.
That’s it kiddo’s. Run out and pick up Whisper of a Memory this weekend! You won’t be disappointed.