Sunday, March 7, 2010

An Interview with Amy Brecount White

1.This is a really original idea for a book, what made you come up with it?

I used to write a lot of articles for newspapers and magazines -- mostly lifestyle and travel pieces – so I was always on the lookout for cool, new ideas. I found out about the language of flowers from a book about tussie-mussies, which is the Victorian name for symbolic flower bouquets that send messages. Once I knew about it, I started seeing the language everywhere. I also gave some good friends symbolic bouquets using the flowers from my own garden. My friends love the “tussies,” and I definitely wished that the messages I was sending through the flowers came true. So for me, it was an easy jump from wishing to imagining real magic in the blooms. It was great fun to create the blooming world of Avondale and play around with flower magic. And I definitely believe a special magic is released into the world any time anyone gives flowers!

2. Are there any other flower-related books that you are writing?

Not currently, but I hope I will revisit the world of Forget-Her-Nots in a companion novel. (I have it all plotted out!) My WIP, String Theories, does have an eco component to it, but it’s more about streams than plants this time.

3. What’s next?

More novels, I hope! I’ll be on the YA panel at the Virginia Festival of the Book on 3/20 with some awesome writers. Then, I’ll take a little time off to work on my own garden this spring and let my ideas gestate. After this winter (I live in the DC area), we deserve an amazing spring! I also miss my freelance writing a bit, although I’ve been doing tons of writing for my blog and others. I’ve been in touch with bookstores, several gardens, and conservatories around the country, so I hope to make appearances there and at bookstores. Conservatories can be a real life saver for flower lovers during a winter like this one!

4. Do you have any suggestions for aspiring authors?

Read as much as possible. I try to find writers whose style I admire and want to emulate and read all their stuff. Then I’ll read my favorite novel several times. Plots and storylines take a lot of time and thought to work well, so spend time not just reading the novels, but seeing how they are put together chapter by chapter and scene by scene.

5. Who is your favorite character in Forget-Her-Nots?

I love them all. I think an author has to love all her characters – even the mean girls or villains -- in order to do a good job telling their story, although it’s not the main story. I do have a special place in my heart for Rose, Laurel’s smart and sassy cousin. She was lots of fun to hang out with. J

6. Is there anything you would like to add?

I’d love to thank everyone at YA Roundup for inviting me and being such an awesome force for YA in the world. I’d love to send white bellflowers, sage, and sweet basil to the entire YA blogger community. I’ve been amazed at how hard you all work and how many hours you put creating awesome blogs! I am so grateful.

1 comment:

Elie said...

Great interview. I am getting a bit of Spring fever, I am inclined to check the meanings of flowers before I plant them. Definitely no Marrigolds.