Today's author interview is with Laura Whitcomb, author of the YA novels A Certain Slant of Light and The Fetch. I just posted my review of The Fetch which you can read here. Laura was kind enough to talk about her new supernatural romance, The Fetch...
To begin with, can you tell us a little about your new book, The Fetch?
THE FETCH is a supernatural romance about Calder, who is a death escort or Fetch. He breaks his vows and leaves heaven to come to earth. He falls in love, but his leaving his post has caused an imbalance in heaven, on earth, and in the Land of Lost Souls (where the ghosts dwell.) Calder has to make things right.
What inspired you to write this story?
I was walking my Min Pin puppy in the park one day when the idea came to me that there were three very interesting characters in history that were all part of one chain of dramatic true events: Rasputin, the controversial holy man who was confidant to Russian Emperor Nicholas II and his family; Anastasia, youngest daughter of Nicholas and famed for the rumor that she survived after her family was executed; and her brother Alexis, heir to the throne and a victim of hemophilia. I love writing the paranormal understory of a slice of history or a piece of well-known literature, so I decided to write a story about these three real people and offer the supernatural "what if . . . " version of their adventure.
Have you always been interested in Russian history/the Romanov family?
I've always been intrigued by the Romanovs and Rasputin, but I hadn't done much reading on the subject.
The Romanov Family
Did you have to do a lot of research for the book?
Yes. I read several books, watched three films and read parts of many other books. And I spent hours on the Internet finding little facts that were not in the other sources. I even emailed a history professor to ask a couple of tricky questions.
The Fetch had a very well developed plot line - how long did it take you to write?
I thought about the plot and took notes for a few months before I started really writing. The first draft of the novel took about 7 months. And rewriting went on for over a year with the help of my editor. (A not so well-kept secret about novelists -- most of the time we spend writing is rewriting.)
Did exploring death and the afterlife through The Fetch cause you to evaluate your own beliefs (or even consider your own mortality)?
I've thought about life and death and heaven and hell and God for decades. I've loved reading various authors like C.S. Lewis, George MacDonald, Madeleine L'Engle, and others, on the subject of the afterlife. It's not a frightening concept to me. I've known many people who are on the other side now. My gut instinct is that there is great good and much love in that place we try to, but can never truly, imagine.
And finally, what can we look forward to from you in the future?
I am just starting now to work on a sequel to my first novel, A CERTAIN SLANT OF LIGHT. I hope to write more about Calder and to continue creating supernatural understories about historical events or pieces of literature. And I imagine most of them will include romances. I so enjoy writing love stories.
Thanks so much Laura! You can read my review of The Fetch here! :)