Howdy there folkerinos.
Looks like we made it to Friday again, the weekend just can’t come soon enough!
Just a quick note before we get started properly. I link to a lot of other articles in my posts, so WordPress users please check your Spam folders in your Setting Menus and approve any links/pingbacks that you find from me to improve the visibility of your own blog posts, as well as mine, it’s a win win for us both 😉
And now on to the main event.
Tonight’s star of the show in the ongoing Author Interview Series in none other than author Suzy Vadori, who takes us on a journey through her celebrated Fantasy series “The Fountain”, along with bringing us up to speed on the latest book in the series (released earlier this month), along with sharing her interests, passions and writing advice.
Have a fantastic weekend peeps, have a jolly good read and I’ll see you all again real soon 🙂
Hi there Suzy, a very warm welcome to you, great to have you here today to discuss your influences and your writing.
Let’s start with your debut Young Adult novel “The Fountain”. Tell us more about your heroine Ava Marshall as she quests to find out her mother’s secret past, the fantasy/paranormal aspects of your novel and the magic/mystery/romance combination at its core that makes it so endearing to your readers.
Ava’s got a good head on her shoulders, but is faced with an impossible situation. She doesn’t believe in magic, and yet it’s clear that a wish has changed the entire world around her. She has been dating the same guy for years, and yet, she knows that he’ll never believe her story. And then there’s a boy who does. Her world is a mess, and so is she.
The Fountain is really about the consequences of the choices she makes, and what she decides to do about it.
Although Ava lives in a world where magic isn’t obvious or talked about, the school she attends is steeped in it. The Fountain only scratches the surface of the mystery. The West Woods (Book 2 in the series, released earlier this month) will answer many questions, and delve more into the magic of this world.
If your series was to be made into a film or TV series, who would you cast in the lead roles?
Such a tough question! The characters in the series are such a mash-up of different personalities, they really aren’t based on anyone. Ava might be played by a combination of Spencer from Pretty Little Liars, and Rory Gilmore from Gilmore Girls – but both actresses would be too old to play her now!
Courtney is the character that’s been the most fun to explore, because she is so terrible when we meet her in The Fountain from Ava’s point of view, but then in The West Woods, we learn her motivations, and all the pieces fall into place. Whoever plays her has to have fiery red hair and a temper to match, but also has to be brave and clever.
You are also the Program Manager (Young Adult/Children’s programming) for When Words Collide (WWC), a literary festival held in Canada. What goes on at this event and what type of readers and writers would get the most out of this event?
When I first started writing seriously, I looked for a community of Young Adult writers in Calgary that I could belong to. I didn’t find one that was active and met regularly – but I met the amazing team that organizes When Words Collide. At the time, they didn’t have a strong Young Adult attendance, and they challenged me to build one.
As a new writer, this seemed a daunting challenge, but with the strength of the WWC committee, I was afforded the opportunity to reach out to many Young Adult authors I admire. Five years later, we have a full complement of Middle Grade and Young Adult programming, including thirty-two hours of programming during our weekend festival, and involving more than 50 authors. I now have a thriving Young Adult author community to belong to that stretches across North America, many of whom I consider close colleagues.
When Words Collide is repeatedly recognized for its accessibility to readers, aspiring writers and those who have achieved notoriety in the writing world. It’s an incredibly inspiring weekend festival. I would encourage anyone who is looking to get more involved in the writing world to come check it out. You won’t be sorry.
What do you find the most difficult thing about writing? And what do you find the easiest?
The most difficult thing about writing is finding the time to keep going when the muse is speaking. My life is incredibly busy, and I fit it all in between the day-to-day grind. But when deadlines loom and I don’t want to come up for air, I don’t get much sleep.
The easiest thing about writing is interacting with readers. There is nothing better than having someone read your books and connect with something you’ve written. Readers are the reason I write.
Who are some of the authors and historical figures that inspire you?
There are so many. Over the years, I’ve read Gordon Korman, Libbra Bray, JK Rowling, John Green and more that tickled my imagination with books in boarding school settings. The Fountain Series started with a boarding school setting, and I thank all the authors that have explored this place before – where kids are on their own.
What sort of research do you do to write your books?
Although historical fiction is my go-to reading choice, my writing tends to be an escape from the day-to-day, and I don’t engage in much research – at least the historical side. I tend to write about settings I know, or complete fantasy when I don’t. The Fountain Series is set in a small town in New England, close to Boston, where I went to elementary school.
The research I do is more about relationships. Primarily I write about relationships between people, and for that I have four decades of research!
Why do you write? What inspired you to become a writer?
I’ve always written. My family likes to haul out some of my early writing projects that my mother kept. Early in my career (which has nothing to do with writing), I toyed with the idea of writing more seriously. It was a growing, nagging feeling that wouldn’t go away.
On maternity leave with my third child (she’s six now), I sat down and started writing what became The Fountain, and I haven’t looked back.
What keeps you motivated during creative slumps? How do you deal with writer’s block?
There are lots of aspects to having a career in writing that don’t involve writing at all. There’s reading (you bet – I try to read everything in my genre to keep on top of what’s happening), there’s tons of communication with bloggers, reviewers, readers…you name it, there are lots of ways to procrastinate while still furthering your author career.
As for true writer’s block? I’ve been there, but I choose to write through it. I write in a style I like to call quilting. Because I rarely have large chunks of time to write from start to finish, I start with a detailed outline, including chapter summaries. Then, when I have time to sit down and write, I look at the outline, and choose something I’m inspired to write. I tend to try to write based on my mood for first drafts. So, if I’ve had a hard day, I write a scene where the characters are feeling that way too. If I’m over the moon, the characters have a great scene. I end up with a bunch of scenes that I have to weave back together (thank goodness for a strong outline).
I don’t recommend this method. It creates extra work, and rework as I try to smooth it all out. But, the end result is writing that’s packed full of emotion, which is what my readers tell me time and again. And, it works with my crazy schedule and keeps the first drafts moving forward. So, I’m not planning to change my style anytime soon.
You have access to a time machine. What advice would you give to your younger self?
I might try to feed my younger self some tips on the stock market, or housing trends. But, as for the rest? My younger self can take care of herself. I’m okay with the decisions she made – they led me here, and that’s a pretty good place to be.
How do you spend your free time when you’re not writing?
I’m a busy mom of three and most weekends you’ll find me at the rink with my kids, who play ringette and hockey, or at the gym, with my girls who are in rhythmic gymnastics, or at the baseball or soccer fields. For myself, I run half marathons and do sprint triathlons. I swim with my eldest (she’s eleven), and we try to take over a lane to swim side by each, drafting my next series together as we go, keeping our heads above water.
Tell us more about your upcoming projects. Are you working on anything specific or have plans in the pipeline?
Book 3 in The Fountain Series is well underway, and picks up the romance between Ava and Ethan where The Fountain leaves off.
I also have a new series in the pipeline. It’s still young adult, with a heavier fantasy component. I can’t wait to share more details about it.
Finally, are there any nuggets of wisdom you can impart to other inspiring writers?
Be fearless. Show your writing to anyone who will read it and take their feedback seriously. Meet every writer you can that you admire and learn from them. And lastly, learn everything you can about the changing publishing industry. Find your niche, find your moment, and that’s when you will shine.
And that’s a wrap! It’s been a real pleasure having you here, thank you for stopping by, I’ll bet we all can’t wait to get stuck in and dive straight into The Fountain 🙂
Suzy is the Author of The Fountain Series, published by Evil Alter Ego Press. Book 1 in the series was a Finalist for an Aurora Award for Best Young Adult Novel in 2016. Book 2 is called The West Woods, and was released in September, 2017.
Suzy’s long career building companies lends her a unique perspective in the literary world.
Suzy lives in Calgary, Canada with her husband and three children and is an involved community member. Currently, she is the Program Manager, Young Adult/Children’s Programming for When Words Collide (WWC), a literary Festival held in Calgary each August.
You can connect with her via the following Social Media channels:-
You can buy her books here:-
If you too would like to be interviewed on my blog at TooFullToWrite and you have a book or a series of books that you would like us to chat about then fill out the Contact Me form here with your details and we can arrange a future interview slot.
Still want more? I can hardly blame you, of course you do! Well, since Suzy just launched The West Woods, Book 2 in her “The Fountain Series” then we might as well embrace this particular theme. For more articles on the theme of ‘Launch’ then check out the links below:-
1. Myammy! Moving in together at 50… – 45’s Puerto Rico Golf Course…
2. perferviddreams – What A Coincidence – 15 Prompts, 1 Post..!!
3. Sailing Past The Pain – Leigha Robbins
4. Webbed – Words Got Wings
5. Sending Dreams – Debbie Gravett
6. Middleburg Film Festival 2017 – Sup, Nerds!
7. yi-ching lin photography – window seat
8. The launch of the youth – Sarahs Crazy Mind
9. Launch – mental health inspiration – @MoreThanDSM5
10. What Next? – whitericegirl
11. Such fun: Booby Fellacio comes out to play! An Imminent Launch! – Chronicles of an Orange-Haired Woman!
12. Avoca Street – Melinda J. Irvine
13. A world of Everything-ness – Oh, border!
14. A Diary of A Single Man: His Gift Her Acceptance – Harlem Cafe
15. Out-of-the-box shoes – Black ink & white words
16. Cloud 9 – Lenticulars
17. copypower – Launch: It’s all about being yourself
18. Write to be Wrong – Write Away
19. Valentine Day – Pristine Path
20. The Home Of DJ Sung Mo Koo – Launch at The Launch Pad
21. midlife woke – morning flow
22. The College Search – Tips – Positively Un-broken
23. Launch – wordsareallihavesite
24. Time for Lift Off – five things
25. Launch – Random Thoughts
26. Donald Trump Proves Math is Important – A lot from Lydia
27. Fair Warning… – Beauty Mirrors Beast
28. Launch – Hello Mira Belle – The Daily Post
29. Launching a new obsession – Mindflight
30. Taken away – By Sarah
31. Flood Zone – By Sarah
32. The Hockey Mom Fit Life – The Struggle is Real
33. Daily Haiku / Senryu : Launch – Cactus Haiku
34. No Time to Launch! – My Imperfect Life
35. Heartache Launched by Your Eyes – authoranonblog
36. Launch Me – mizrella
37. Rocket – Storie Cantabile
38. Launch Yourself – On a mission
39. yi-ching lin photography – feathers
40. y – let us launch into
41. Why Does My Brain Do This To Me! – The Tango of Pen and Paper
42. ~270 Of 365~ – ……….365 Days………..
43. The Constant Struggle – A Beautiful Mess
44. Edition Emma Publishing – A personalized book campaign
45. Cage Dunn: Writer Author Collaborator – Take Two: A Re-Launch
46. For Much Deliberation – Thinking ~196…
47. Burying the Cat I – hannah t.k.
48. The Next Launch is Coming – A Unique Title For Me
49. JDI – Just me and us blog
50. Launch, The Title. – Honing skills and loving the ride
51. Darla Dishes about domestic couple$ – DARLA DISHES
52. I’ll Take You There – Love it Now
53. Life On The Skinny Branches – A Tea Time Rebellion
54. The Search… – Success Strategies
55. Harvest Moon – Kim K. McCrea
56. I Am Michael Buble’s Overwhelmed O-Ring – Mah Butt Itches
57. Free Verse: Swamp Princess – Urban Poetry By Linda J. Wolff
58. Swell Time – The perfect pass
59. Spock’s Brain, Acts 4 and 5 – Writing in Any Genre
60. Launch yourself to the top – Travelling Psychologist
61. World War III: Icarus Allsorts – The AAAmazing Phoenix by Alan Grace
62. Canadian Maritime Provinces: Launching – A New Day: Living Life Almost Gracefully
63. Queen’s Park to The Elephant – Sean Hogan
64. Karen Lynne Beads – Launch
65. Launch(ed) A New Life Regime: A Life Free From Cigarettes. – Much To Tell About Nothing
66. Nan’s Farm-Inside Out – Almost a wash out
67. Launch – damswriter
68. Launch – Author Flawed to Perfection
69. Everything and anything – Being in the Right Place
70. Half Baked Log – Launch Defense Mechanism
71. juantetcts – Daily Post
72. Kara, Chapter 2 – Meander Marquee
73. Launch: The Star Inside – Bonnie Kelso & Creating Your Experience
74. A Life Retired Blog – killing two birds with one stone
75. Homage to the Daily Post – The Mind of Nox
76. Launch – The Bag Lady
77. Sandmanjazz – Departure
78. Don’t – Words in verse
79. Success Inspirers World – My album launch
80. Launch – Tachispeaks
81. Writer Sanctuary – How I Successfully Started My Writing Career
82. In Low Spirits – the thoughts keeper
83. Narutomath96 – Trade-off
84. My Opinion – Happiness is your own decision…
85. A little help for happiness… – A Ray of Sunshine
86. SERENDIPITY – READY TO LAUNCH?
87. Na’ama Yehuda – Time To Launch
88. Musings of a Random Mind – Mission to Mars
89. September Poem 58: Tennessee Rocket Fuel – therichardbraxton
90. We sit watching the lizards with the human skins, playing victims till the flames set in. – Individual expressions of a naive mind.
91. Unplugged From Life – Sketches By Nitesh
92. To Control or to Be Controlled – This, That, and The Other
93. ~X~Y~Z~ – Are we who we are?
94. Musing I Can Blog – The Launch that Failed
95. Launch – Covert Novelist
96. Don’t Fight Alone – Stew Rd.
97. lifelessons – a blog by Judy Dykstra-Brown – The Face
98. An Upturned Soul – Pluto Direct(ly) and Indirectly
99. Weekly Photo Challenge: Autumn Windows – whippetwisdom.com
100. Free Verse: The Crying Brown Paper Bag – Urban Poetry By Linda J. Wolff
101. Elevation – Kiyo, the Dreaming Lady
102. What’s Going in that Tiny Mind of Yours? – Sara Khan
103. A Silent Wish – Written Frames
104. Fearing to Launch – A Poet’s Journey
105. Plausible but Imaginary Dialogue Around Actual Events – I’m a Writer, Yes, I Am!
106. You’ll Float Too – Akanksha
107. Scrambled, Not Fried – Away (Tanka)
108. Remember in September – Daily Post #28 for National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month – My Loud Bipolar Whispers
109. Launching my career – The Fantasy World of Tonei Nyx
110. Launch – Daily Prompt – Ladyleemanila
111. The Cat Chronicles – Daily Feline Prompt: Feline Launch
112. Forget Launching Something New, We’re Launching Stuff that’s Old – Wanderous.Life
113. sonja benskin mesher – pause a while
114. Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss – The problems of Launching
115. Day 18: Ruhaniyat – Painted in words
116. Bonkers Away! – Launch
117. All Systems Go – December Rose
118. Message In A Bottle Hunter – Launching Into The Wide World of Messages in Bottles
119. A Tormented Mind – Surviving Childhood Trauma
120. Cupid’s Awakening – Love Alchemy
121. Heaven’s Sunshine – Catapult to Radiance
122. Write Here: Write Now – Launch
123. The One Emotion That Is Above All- Gratitude – Zeckrombryan
124. Its better to have launched and failed, than…. – Vanita Maraj Lifestyle
125. To the stars ⋆ Obsolete Childhood
126. Lunch Packs For Hungry Children – Finding the Calm in Chaos
127. Scene: Then There Were None – MindEscapes
128. Introduction then Indoctrination – As I was saying…
129. My Launch Event – NancyBellaRose
130. How Will You Choose to Die? * Death and Dying Chronicles
131. Dronstad – Help, help, help!
132. Canon – Poetry in Pictures
133. Daily Prompt – Launch – Megha’s World
134. Gym And Bear It: Get Fit, Have Fun With It – The First Step
135. mylocalweb – Work is worship
136. the15thday – it’s not apple
137. Other Writing – The Stars, Moon and You
138. Queen of Pain – memoriter
139. It’s another blog birth – Parent Ergo Sum
140. Crafted To Create – emotionsoflife2016
141. It’s a Wonderful Life! – Just Writing!
142. THE DREAM”LAUNCH” – simple yet magical 🙂
143. THORNAPPLE – Between the World and Me
144. Giggles & Tales – The Daily Prompt – Launch!
145. Roller Coaster – stoneronarollercoaster
146. Launch – Anything Is Possible…
147. The Midwest Mermaid – the FLAVORED word
148. YOU WERE LOVE – Rainbow
149. Floral Blue – PKreation
150. Listening To You Breath – Redux Of Rex
151. 3, 2, 1 Blastoff! – Writer’s block
152. Plans – This Girl’s Got Curves
153. The Second Brick – Blog of Hammad Rais
154. The World Outside the Window – Pax
155. Teaser – Loose Ends (novel)
156. The Wandering Poet – A place
157. The Silence Is Ours – andsoitisborn
158. Designer Sophisticate – “Ignition sequence starting…”
159. Frank Prem – towards a naming
160. Cimmerian Sentiment – Presumptuous Plans – (Part- 36) Climbing Ivy
161. Launch – All About Writing and more
162. That Taut Feeling – AnneObure
163. Australia’s Same-Sex Marriage – writingrealities
164. Muse of the Day – Everyday Strange
165. Frank Prem – job done
166. Frank Prem – Search For My Soul
167. Don’t just think good, think out of the box – The Boringbug