L.A. Fiore is the author of several books including: Beautifully Damaged, Beautifully Forgotten and Always and Forever. She's also the social secretary for her two children, a tamer of ill-mannered cats, the companion to one awesome dog and married to her best friend. She likes her wine red, her shrimp chilled and her social gatherings small and intimate.
Teagan Harper is barely ten years old when she finds herself orphaned and sent away to live at Raven’s Peak, a Gothic estate on the seaside cliffs of Maine. Soon, though, her heartache and loneliness are tempered by a blossoming friendship with the only other child living at Raven’s Peak: Kane Doyle, only two years older than Teagan and abandoned by his mother. Over the years, the pair grows inseparable. First they’re pranksters and confidants, but eventually their feelings change, and best friends turn into soul mates. On the cusp of Teagan’s departure for a university in Boston, they share a glimpse into their happily-ever-after and make promises of forever. But Teagan and Kane’s engagement and dreams of the future are shattered when Teagan returns home to find Kane gone from Raven’s Peak—and living with someone new. Devastated and heartbroken, Teagan cuts ties with her beloved adoptive home and tries to move on with her life. But years later, when the shocking truth behind Kane’s betrayal comes to light, Teagan must decide whether to embrace her new life and let go of her past once and for all, or fight for her dream life with the only man she’s ever wanted.
FULL INTERVIEW for Jeri's Book Attic ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1) What is the first book you read that comes to mind? Why is it so important to you?
The Harry Potter books. I remember waiting for the last book to release in book stores, read the entire book in less than 12 hours. These books have the ability to take the reader to another world, one that, at least for me, I found very hard to leave. What would it be like to ride on the Hogwarts Express? To receive an owl with your acceptance letter to the Wizarding school? Seeing Diagon Alley and having your wand select you? The power of the imagination is a beautiful thing and these books are a stunning example of that.
I have always had stories in my head, characters and plot lines. I'm also a curious person, often wondering about the people I see on the streets: what's a day in their life like? I may not know their specific stories, but I could create stories for them. I love the imagination, love being able to travel to places I may never travel in real life, or to create situations I may never experience in real life. In books, anything is possible.
3) How much of you and/or your surroundings is a part of your stories? Is the influence based on a conscious decision, or do you periodically recognize yourself in one of your characters and it wasn’t planned?
I don't consciously try to incorporate my surroundings or people I know in my books, but it rubs off. For instance, in Waiting for the One there is a lot of me in Saffron and there's a lot of my husband in Trace from Beautifully Damaged.
4) What author/actor or musician do you ‘fangirl/fanboy’ over?
I love Brad Pitt, he's mentioned in a few of my stories. I also adore OneRepublic and Fallout Boy, both groups' lyrics are amazing. And Nora Roberts, I'd probably faint if I ever met her.
5) What does your perfect writing day look like? Do you plan when and how long you write, or does it happen without planning?
When I have a story in my head, I write until the story is done, so that could be three weeks of eighteen hour days. A typical writing day consists of getting the kids off to school, grabbing a cup of coffee and heading to my office with my dog. I'll write all day, take a break to feed the family, and usually work until very late at night. When I'm not actively working on a book, I'm usually editing existing books through the various stages in the process: editing, copy editing, proofing. It isn't unusual for me to read the story dozens and dozens of times to ensure the story is being told how I want it to be told. There are those rare occasions, when I'm not writing, that I actually have the opportunity to read other authors' books.
6) What genre is the most intimidating when you think about writing in it? Explain why!
Paranormal/ghost/ love story. I'd like to write a ghost story, one based in the Bayou. I don't necessarily want horror, I want suspense and hair-raising, but to find that perfect balance of love story and paranormal, I think is the challenge because that genre, if not done right, can come across Scooby Dooish.
7) What do you like to do when you are not writing? What do you think your profession would be if you were not an author?
I love to garden, mostly perennial gardens with little order and lots of colors. I have done vegetable gardens but we recently moved and haven't quite gotten the soil where we want it. I think if I wasn't a writer, I'd own a garden center where I could play all day with plants.
8) What is the most touching reaction you have ever received from a fan?
One fan contacted me to share a photo of a tattoo she had done on her back, spines of her favorite books tattooed down her spine. Beautifully Damaged was one of her books. There are not words to express what that feels like, to have moved someone so much with my own words that she permanently marked herself with my book. Incredible.
9) In your opinion, what is the most important feature a book needs to have?
A challenge, whether that's love, a job, a stalker, a tragedy, there has to be something that the hero or heroine needs to conquer, hopefully with the help of others, which makes them stronger than they were at the start of the story.
10) What is the most difficult part of writing a book, (including the preparations and after-publication-process)?
The waiting. I can write a book in about three weeks and then the process begins, so by the time the book actually releases to the public, it can be six months to a year later. And sometimes there's a book that you just know is the best thing you've written and having to wait to see how it's received, is nail biting. For me, I love all of my stories. Beautifully Damaged was my first and I adore it, Always and Forever is fantastical and Waiting for the One is quirky and silly. With each book, I grow as a writer though and so my stories I think also grow. A Glimpse of the Dream, to me, is the best thing I've ever written, may be the best thing I ever write. And I so want it out there, hope that readers experience the same feelings reading it as I felt writing it.
11) If you had the chance to influence the questions people ask you in interviews, what question is the most annoying and you would love to never hear again? What question would you really like to answer that you have not been asked yet, and what is your answer to that question?
I've only done a few interviews, so I haven't yet had a question that I don't want to answer. And though it isn't a question, I do have a comment. Writing is a passion, authors write because we have stories to share and though there will be those who like what we write and those who don't, it is the relationship between writers and readers that's special. For me, I know I wouldn't have done nearly as well as I have without the help of readers/bloggers who have taken the time to not just read one of my stories, but to share what they've read with others. So I'd like to thank Jeri's Book Attic and all the other readers and bloggers out there that have a love for books and who have taken the time to share that love.
12) Name three characteristics of your writing style that are important yet different from other authors.
I like to put my readers through the ringer. I want you to have your HEA but I want you to experience as many emotions as possible to get there. I also tend to error on the side of fantasy over reality. I don't want the book to be too realistic—though a vein of reality is important to make the book relatable—because isn't that why we read fiction, to escape for just a bit? And I like my characters all to be flawed because in real life, no one is perfect and it's our flaws that make us unique.
13) Which of your characters seems to be the most independent, and has taken on a life of their own?
Kane Doyle, from A Glimpse of the Dream, because he's a remarkable character and with all that he goes through, he stays deep to the bone good.
14) What do you want tell your readers at the end of this interview?
It's a privilege to write, an honor to share my stories with readers. I'm living my dream and I wouldn't be without you, so thank you. And I hope that after you've read one of my books, you've cried, you've laughed and you've lost just a little piece of yourself in the story.
NEW COVER | JUST ME | COMING OCTOBER 6th 2015
What do you think?
Lark O'Bannion learned early that life isn't really like a fairy tale. Parents don't always love their children unconditionally. Damsels are usually left to deal with their distress alone and Prince Charming rarely, if ever, comes riding to the rescue. Happily-ever-afters are a lovely concept, but in reality are few and far between. When Sebastian Ross rolls into her life on his Harley, with his dark beauty and inked skin, Lark is willing to admit that maybe she doesn't know as much as she thinks she does. Sebastian wants nothing more than to get out from under the control of his parents and their desire to force him into a mold. Changing schools in his senior year isn't an act of rebellion, but his attempt to take control of his life by following his own path. One look into Lark's emerald-green eyes and control is taken out of Bastian's hands. He will discover that the only path he wants to follow is the one that leads to her.