Monday, April 18, 2011
FEATURED AUTHOR: Adora Bennett
She has travelled around the world extensively, lived in several cities across Europe, and divides her time between homes in Boston, MA and the South of France.
How did you start out your writing career?
I can’t recall a time when I didn’t write. I worked as a copywriter for several years before and after attending business school. I was encouraged to write a novel by a school classmate who is herself a successful writer. While we haven’t seen each other since we were 12 years old, we started corresponding about five years ago and she played an instrumental role in my beginning to write novels. I have written several pieces in different genres, including Young Adult and short stories. Allegro is my first published work.
What did you learn while writing this book?
I was responsible for book development (among other things) at the newspaper where I worked. Although it would seem that I should have known a lot about the process, it’s very different when you’re the author. I also found the editing process fascinating…and a little intimidating at first, but it definitely made the book better.
What did you hope to accomplish with this book?
Well, there were personal goals—I wanted to prove to myself that I could create something worthy of being published. I had also spent a lot of time reading blogs and comments from readers who were saying that they wanted to see some older romantic leads in the books they read. So I hoped to write a novel that was interesting and enjoyable for that market, but still appealing to anyone who enjoys a romance novel.
Which character did you have the most fun writing about?
I enjoyed writing about Jada, of course. Many of the scenes where Jada is interacting with her boss and her colleagues rang very true for me. But I found that I really enjoyed developing the character of Katrina (nicknamed Renie), Jada’s best friend. She is such a great counterpoint to the more serious and buttoned-up Jada. She’s a loyal friend who likes to poke and prod Jada—but she never crosses the line to become mean or overbearing.
What has surprised you most about becoming a published author?
It may sound strange, but when I wrote the book and learned it would be published, I didn’t think about what it would be like when people other than friends actually read it and reacted to it! I worked as a copywriter, so it’s not that I was afraid of negative comments. But, you have no idea what the general reaction will be. I’m happy to say, the response thus far has been great. I guess the happy surprise is that people have had such a strong, positive reaction to the book.
What aspect of writing do you love the best, and which do you hate the most?
I love it when I have an idea and the words just seem to flow. Most of the time I write longhand first, and then I edit onto my laptop. It’s a lot of fun when it all seems to come together. It’s probably not surprising that what I dislike the most is when this doesn’t happen. I get distracted easily when I write, so I need to have the right space around me to be productive. When I can’t make that happen, it’s extremely frustrating.
What are three things you wish you’d known before you reached where you are now?
1) I wish that I’d realized how supportive friends and others would be of my writing. 2) Consequently, I didn’t make an effort to dedicate more time to writing. It always seemed that writing time got compromised by other things since it was just something that I was doing “just for me”. 3) Each step of the process has brought with it enjoyment and a learning experience. While writing a book is daunting, it’s also fun and there are new insights in each step along the way.
Can you give us one do and one don’t for those aspiring to be a writer?
Do try to write as often as possible—no matter what it is you’re writing. I think writing is like a muscle and it works best when it stays exercised. Don’t throw what you write away. I have a good friend who is a fantastic writer and she deletes/tosses anything she doesn’t think is good. Those fragments can often come in handy down the line. (I think I’ve finally convinced her not to throw stuff away.)
What one thing about writing do you wish other non-writers would understand?
Sometimes I think family and friends assume that because you enjoy writing, you can write anything at any time, at the drop of a dime—whether it’s poetry, a letter to the insurance company, a novel. If you’re a writer, you can just sit down and, “Poof” something brilliant ends up on the page. If it were only that simple! So, I wish that non-writers would understand that while they may not see all of the process, it is indeed a process that takes time to do well.
If you could be a character from any book you've read, who would you be?
One of my favorite books ever is The Alchemist, by Paolo Cohelo. I read it at least once a year. I think I would like to be the shepherd in that story because he had great adventures and learns so much about himself and life along his journey. It’s not all happiness and cheer along the way, but the end result is inspiring.
When you're not writing, what do you like to do in your spare time?
I enjoy traveling and spending time at my home in the South of France. There’s no place like it in the world—a wonderful quality of life, fantastic weather and amazing food. I also have great friends there who have been very supportive of my writing.
What do you do to interact with your readers?
It’s all still new for me, but I’ve got a Facebook Fan Page and a Twitter account. I have also got some signings in the works—both here and hopefully over in the UK where I used to live and have some family and friends.
Our theme for this month is Ebooks. Do you own an ereader and if so, what the last book you downloaded? If you don’t own an ereader, do you see yourself purchasing one in the future?
It’s kind of funny that I don’t own an e-reader because I worked with one of the big e-reader companies on getting my company’s newspaper formatted to be read on one. I tend not to be an early adopter of technology. I wait for all the glitches to be worked out before I buy. I also admit to liking the touch and feel of paper—newspapers and books. While the convenience of an e-reader is appealing, the idea is less so for me. Nevertheless, I’m sure I’ll jump on the bandwagon soon enough.
Oprah always asks, What do you know for sure?
Hmm. My first impulse is to say, “Not much!” But, I’ll try. I think that writing is something that I’ve always wanted to explore but time and circumstance always got in the way. I know for sure now that if there is something you were meant to do, it will happen, no matter how you might try to ignore or deny that aspiration. Situations often have a strange way of aligning themselves in your life, but align, they do.
Can you give us a sneak peek of your next book?
I have a couple of book ideas. One is a sequel to Allegro. But I have also started work on another story with a different twist. It’s still very much in development, so I don’t want to say much more than that. I could wake up tomorrow and decide that it was all a very bad idea!
How can readers get in contact with you? (mail, email, website)
* A website: www.adorabennettromance.com
* A Facebook Fan page: Allegro by Adora Bennett
* A Twitter account: @AllegroBook
Post a note on my Facebook page!
At 45, Jada Green has made it to the top of her ad agency, Honoraria, through her smarts, determination and hard work. She has learned how to swim with the sharks and not only survive, but thrive. Still, like most of her girlfriends, Jada’s love life is non-existent and the prospect of love hardly even seems worth hoping for. Until she meets Lucca Alessandri, a tall, strikingly handsome Italian company president—and a prospective client.
Their whirlwind romance takes them from the tony streets of Boston to casual greasy-spoon diners to the breathtaking vistas of Torino, Italy as Jada and Lucca discover the depth of their passion…and a rival’s passion for revenge.
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