Friday, August 7, 2015

Interview: Sara L. Daigle, Author of Alawahea

Welcome to this stop in the 
Alawahea Blog Tour,
sponsored by
Reading Addiction Virtual 
Book Tours!

For my stop, I'm featuring an 
interview with
author Sara L. Daigle!

(The Azellian Affairs, Book 1)
Sara L. Daigle
Trade Paperback, 478 pages
Merry Dissonance Press
July 15, 2015
Romance, Science Fiction

Tamara Carrington always felt different. One event in high school left her wondering if maybe she really was a freak, although she'd managed to leave that experience in the past-buried deep within her psyche.

With the arrival of exchange students from the planet of Azelle to her college, Tamara's long-buried memories threaten to erupt. As Tamara's emotions build and her friendship with the Azellians grows, so does the knowledge of secrets within her own family.

With the deterioration of her mother's health, Tamara doesn't know where to turn for answers or solace. What has her family been hiding? Why does she feel inexplicably drawn to the Azellians? What will happen if she unleashes her long-suppressed passion? Will she survive or even recognize herself afterwards?

Author Interview

Maria: What is your background as a writer?

Sara: I have been writing for years, since I was eight. I have a few creative writing classes and tutoring sessions by English teachers to my name, but most of my experience has been in reading lots and writing for my own amusement and that of my friends.

Maria: Who are your favorite SF writers?

Sara: I tend toward urban fantasy/fantasy more than pure science fiction now. Recent authors I love: Robin McKinley, Karen Chance, Kim Harrison, Keri Arthur, Diana Gabaldon, and Patricia Briggs. I started out with the old classics (which I still love and will re-read over and over: Anne McCaffrey, Marion Zimmer Bradley, Julian May, Katherine Kurtz, Andre Norton, Alan Dean Foster, J.R.R. Tolkien, and David Eddings. Those classic authors really influenced my writing style and interests during my developmental phase, when I was in my teens.

Maria: Have any of your life experiences influenced the plot of Alawahea? If so, in what way?

Sara: Not directly, in that I've never met aliens in college (that I know of), but there are quite a few pieces of Tamara's internal journey that definitely resonate in my own life. My journey to increased confidence, my discovering my own inner strength, and my awakening awareness of a larger perspective within me has definitely been the same as what Tamara has gone through.

Maria: What qualities does Tamara possess that make it easy for readers to relate to her?

Sara: She is very much like all of us: a woman just learning about who she is, and what she can do. She's finding the connection to herself, and although she might not be all that far along yet (she's got a few more adventures in store for her), she's well on her way. It's a very powerful lesson we all learn as the years go on, particularly for women.

Maria: Do you think we will someday encounter beings from other planets?

Sara: Why not? It's difficult to believe that we are the only sentient beings in an infinite universe. It's just a matter of time before we find another species. After all, there are several good candidates for sentience here on Earth (dolphins, whales, elephants, even other great apes). Why wouldn't there be on other planets?

Maria: In your opinion, what's the bet thing (or what are the best things) a writer can do to ensure that readers will love his/her book?

Sara: Let its (and your) heart shine through. People may or may not like your book, but when you have birthed it in love, it will carry that resonance to those who are ready to read it. And if you love and support yourself, the opinion of others doesn't matter.

Maria: What attracted you to science fiction?

Sara: It's always felt natural to me. I love astronomy, and even as a child, worlds like Saturn's moon Titan fascinated m. I would imagine what kind of life we could find there, and write stories about it. That morphed into writing about other planets in other solar systems very easily. Now, I find the science fiction/fantasy environment is like home to me. I have a much harder time writing a story without a sci-fi premise than I do with one.

Maria: When and where do you find it most comfortable to write?

Sara: Any place that I'm comfortable and relaxed will do. Most frequently, it's my home office, and sometimes the couch in the living room. Anywhere there is music is a great place to write. Music helps me focus and block out distractions.

Maria: What attracts you most about a novel you're reading -- the prose style, plot, setting, characters, or all of these elements at the same time?

Sara: All of them are very important, but I am most attracted to characters and prose style. Inconsistent characters will turn me off immediately, as will a prose style that jerks me out of the story. Plot and setting are gravy if you have strong characters who carry the story, and an easily flowing prose style.

Maria: What are you currently working on?

Sara: Book number two of the Azellian Affairs. It's going to formal editing process in October, and I'm getting a jump start on my side of the editing process now. I have a couple more projects in the initial stages, but most of my concentration is going toward getting Book 2 out in the next year.

Interviewer's Note 
 I'd like to thank Ms. Deigle for a
    fascinating and very informative interview!       

Purchase Links

 Sara L. Daigle has been creating stories since she first forayed into the world of writing at the age of eight. As an avid reader, growing up in a small town without much access to a library, and before the birth of the Internet, Sara devoured her mother's extensive stack of science fiction and romance novels to keep her literary thirst quenched. Soon afterwards, she began writing her own stories and entertaining her friends by composing plays for them to act out. A passionate interest in astronomy, anthropology, and linguistics, coupled with this early background in science fiction and romance, led Sara to merge the two fields and create a series of interlinked stories built around a fictional planet's culture and its interaction with ours.

Sara currently lives in Denver, Colorado with her husband and three very loving but energetic dogs.

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  1. Such an interesting and insightful interview.

    I am struck by how many of today's writers, and fans of these newer fantasy genres, grew up reading the same writers such as McCaffrey, Tolkein, Norton, etc. I too spent a good part of my youth reading these writers.

    it almost seems that those of us who did, share a kind of cultural connection.

  2. Hey, Brian!

    On behalf of the author, I thank you for your compliment on the interview. I loved her detailed answers, and they were indeed insightful!

    I agree with you regarding the reading tastes of the newer fantasy & SF authors: they all cut their teeth on writers like those you've mentioned. Not surprising, though, since these writers really set very high standards for these genres. And those of us who read do indeed share a culture connection!

    A great big THANK YOU for your own very insightful comment!! : )


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