Hiya peeps! Melange Books took a chance on me about five years ago and opened the door to make my publishing dreams come true. They've given many authors that chance since then, so I wanted to give props to Melange this month by interviewing several of their authors. You'll find some great insights, tips, and new books to read along the way. Enjoy!
Where are you from and what do you do when you’re not writing?
Hi everyone! My name is Victoria Bastedo and I live in a small city near Seattle. It’s so beautiful here, and the moist climate is gentle and varied. Outside my house a bend of the river turns a corner and travels towards our little mountain, Mt. Si. If you’re a Twin Peaks fan, you might recognize it. When I’m not writingI’m very busy with my large family, and with my two grandbabies! (If I sound cheerful with a fluffy inside I can’t help it.)
How did you come up with the idea for this book/series?
I came up with the idea for Roots Entwine in two ways. One is that I have experience with kids who have challenges, as in depression or A.D.D. or other monikers. When you have six kids you’ve earned an honorary doctor’s badge by the time they’re grown. We’ve had Dyslexia, M.S., M.E.R.S.A, something which none of the teacher’s at school have ever seen, and substances. (But no broken bones, praise God!) I wanted my main character to have a mind that works different from everyone else’s. Because he’s different he has a unique perspective and understanding. This ability he has can seem like a curse to him as it causes him pain and makes him be left out of the course of other people’s lives. But it can also be a gift. I wanted to say that a young person’s differences, when used to help others, can be something beautiful.
… Ha, ha, I’d also just become aware of the full scope of certain dystopian books out there for young people that I thought were about as miserable as misery could be. I thought, ‘isn’t it possible that young people might like an adventure book, one that has danger and sacrifice but nobility and heroes as well?’
Tell us about the writing process—what were your favorite and least favorite moments?
My writing process- well, I’m a linear writer, if that’s a term and I understand it correctly. Outlines. I hate them. I call them Inspiration Killers. My favorite part is finding the story as I go, letting it illuminate and fill out and create the world. All my stories have a happy ending, but despite being so fluffy I am willing to give my characters some hardship on the road to getting there! The worst part is when I feel that I’m not able to deliver the ending that the story deserves.
|Coming in late July!|
What’s your favorite cure for writer’s block?
My cure for Writer’s Block- sheesh. Good question. I’m in that place a bit right now, and it’s worrisome. The only way is to trust, to have confidence in yourself. One time my friend told me that I needed to weep, and she was right in that instance. The tears released (while I was driving, ha ha, I must’ve looked pathetic and a little off!) allowed me to unkink the nerves that had been holding me back. Also sometimes one needs to live for a while, and see some unusual things and reawaken the inner curiosity.
Can you please share an excerpt?
Can I share a poem instead?
When you have block, your mind is so hopeful.
Quivering, it searches, longs to live again-
You remember the first time you conceived it as a child, your own adventure,
That dreamland that belongs to you alone.
It’s bigger than the other people’s stories, vast and personal and free.
While there, you are anyone, raging through the important moments.
Your quest is rich, like mediaeval colors, tapestries of silky Cinderella dresses,
And swords, and leather man boots.
But all of that is a memory now, drawing you, calling like an old friend.
You have taken a sabbatical, you have left the area,
Like the way you outgrow your childhood friends,
Perhaps you need to change a little before you can return.
The questing road in your mind grows rocky and barren,
A bitter cold wind moves dust and snow flurries across the path.
Up in the sky creatures that you have never seen before hint of a new fantasy,
But fly off before you can catch them in story.
You search to create and find nothing but a feeling, unsatisfied, impatient,
And yet locked in waiting.
Until the day when the colors come back into your landscape,
When the quicksilver character passes by and winks at you.
Once more you feel the hard stone beneath your feet.
A glimmer… is it enough?
Poised, excited, you tell your loved ones,
“Get back and don’t interrupt me, don’t you get it? I’m writing!”
What’s your next/current writing project?
My next project? Well I have several starts. One is a romance in which I’ve written a full page. The other is a Crossover that I wish I could get going. Yes. The next project is a Crossover!
Here’s a totally random question for you:
Come up with your own silly haiku, but you must include the word “beer”.
Ha ha- a Haiku. Is that seven, five, seven? No wait- it’s five, seven, five! (That Dyslexia I mentioned might be inherited.)
Beer never be drunk
It tastes like essence of skunk
I don’t like it much
Thanks so much for stopping by!
Thanks so much for inviting me!
Victoria Bastedo has written a romance called Dear Miklos, published by Black Lyon Publishers. Fire and Ice Ya publishers has made me very happy, and I'm excited that Roots Entwine, a Young Adult Fantasy Adventure, will be coming out soon. I've also been published in two anthologies, two journals, and a zine. I'm a member of the board of my local writing group, surrounded by friends who give good advice! I'm a mother of six children, which has made me by association; a doctor, a teacher, an advice columnist, and a shoulder getting ever more cushioned by time.
When you look at this blog, you have to read from the bottom up! ---