I had the honor of having Debra Anastasia stop by my Gchat to talk about her books and what inspires her to write. She took time away from writing the sequel to Crush Seraphim to give us insight into her thought processes and how she awesomely markets Poughkeepsie.
When you wrote Poughkeepsie, was it the [train] station that gave you the idea for a romance to unfold?
No! Actually I had been reading quite a few romance novels where the hero had a butt load of money and I felt like I wanted to get the message out that love doesn’t have to be about money. So I picked the exact opposite.
The train station was really just a place for the two to meet and from there it sort of became the novel’s touchstone.
Do you think that money has too common of a theme in novels today? That every hero/heroine has too much of it? And if so, why do you think that is?
I think it has always been a draw for fictional romances. Everyone wants to escape in a book. reading about paying bills is just flat out boring. But as time passes in my life, the reality of love is that money comes and goes. In the end true love is something that money can’t buy or fix.
Also, another thing that I noticed with Poughkeepsie and with Crushed Seraphim is that both Livia McHugh and Seraph Emma are very strong willed women. Do you see a lot of yourself in the both of them?
I hope so. There were too things that stood out when I was a kid, the first was when I was in Catholic school and I learned about Jesus being crucified. I was heartbroken that the crowd allowed it to be done. I was in like third grade and I really wanted to be a person that would stand up in that situation and try and stop it.
And the second was when a student in my class, again like, when I was in second grade, very young, he was attacked when the teacher left the room. The exact scene that Mouse goes through, and I was too scared to stand up for the little boy, thinking they would do it to me. Ever since I saw that moment, I decided never to stand by and watch again.
And as far as I can tell, I haven’t. I wound up in detention more times than I can count because of it.
I just never want that regret again.
You seem to have a huge heart. You are always cheering for others, especially when they are working hard on a project or trying their best.
Aww. thanks, I wish I had more time to do that kind of thing. Ladies are great cheerleaders for each other
Let’s switch gears a little bit and talk marketing. When I received your package the other day, I was blown away by what I found. You really thought of everything to promote Poughkeepsie, from the bracelet representing the Becket, Cole, Blake and Mouse to the leaves in the forest where Livia and Blake had a few moments. Even the temporary tattoos. I would have to say that the cardboard piano tour is an amazing idea. Where do you come up with it all?
I’m always so grateful that anyone reads my nonsense, if they choose to do so and get excited about the story; I want them to feel that the story loves them back. I’ve been writing this story for what feels like a million years, so I always have it in the back of my mind. I buy the leaves whenever I see them, the bracelets were an extension of doing bookmarks. I wanted to do more. I guess I like to give bits of the story to the reader to hold. The temporary tattoos are my favorite. Every once in a while I will wear one.
The cardboard piano was just sitting with my writing stuff and I thought it would be cool to get the reader’s autographs and it developed a tour from there!
It really reminds me of going into a book store and on display is a series of books with accessories to go with it. It really seems to remind the reader of the characters and the memories that go along with the items. I know when I saw the leaves I nearly cried.
Time is the most important gift a reader gives the story. We are all so busy, I’m so grateful to spend time in imaginations, playing.
Do you think having a good publisher who does great promotions helps too?
Omnific does a great job giving their authors wings. They will explain the tools and provide guidance. They are ready to take risks.
So yes, I think they are a big part of it
What do you think is lacking in the world of books today? What would you like to see written?
I actually love the new wave of self published and small publisher books. I think we need the raw goods delivered with as little watering down as possible. I want to see every lady that has ever had an inkling to write give it a whirl. Now is the perfect time. (I’m all for the dudes too, but sometimes us ladies need permission to do things for ourselves.)
Okay, I want one more thing out of you and I’ll let you go for the day, you’ve been an amazing inspiration to not only me but to other writers out there who were afraid to take that first step towards writing. Would you mind doing a round robin 10 word association for me?
Okay here it goes:
Flower – Power
Squirrel – nuts
Love – hugs
Pain – loss
Cooler – Coke
Music – fun
Road – travel
Ending – sleep (wow, I’m boring at this)
No actually there is a psychological reasoning behind word association believe it or not.