I'm thrilled to be hosting author Susan Wiggs at A Bookworm's World today. Susan has just released her latest book - Return to Willow Lake - the ninth installment in the Lakeshore Chronicle series. Susan was gracious enough to do a quick Q&A session!
1. What do you feel is the appeal of an ongoing series for a reader? And as a writer?
SW: As a reader, I love the feeling of returning to a familiar place with people I’ve “met.” It’s very involving. I’m hoping readers of Return to Willow Lake will enjoy the glimpses of past storylines, but that the story of Sonnet and Zach is fresh and fun.
2. Return to Willow Lake is the 9th book in The Lakeshore Chronicles. When you wrote the first book, did you envision there being a number nine? Did you start with a long range plan or does the story evolve with every addition?
SW: I knew from the start that there would be many books. When I started the series, I made a mural on the wall with images I’d clipped–faces and places, things I could picture in stories. The thing just kept growing. I don’t really have a detailed plan but I’m usually thinking a book or two ahead. I knew what I wanted for Sonnet while I was working on Marrying Daisy Bellamy.
3.What characters are near and dear to you? (Daisy?) Are any based on real life persons? Is the town based on somewhere you've lived or visited?
SW: Daisy, of course. But the main characters of any novel are near and dear to my heart, since I work with them every day I work on the book. They definitely share a piece of my heart. The town of Avalon is based on any number of small towns I’ve known and loved. Phoenicia and Catskill in upstate New York, my hometown in Washington state, the little western New York town where I was born, called Olean. What they all share is a tight-knit community, a closeness to nature and a charming layout. Avalon is so real to me now that the new book features illustrated maps of the key places in town.
4. Anything else you'd like to share with us? New projects?
SW: I’m loving all the action on my Facebook page! I hope readers will join me at facebook.com/susanwiggs.
Thanks for stopping by Susan! And I have a copy of Susan's book Return to Willow Lake to giveaway to one lucky winner. Open to US only, ends Sept16/12. Simply leave a comment to be entered.
"Return to Willow Lake centers on Sonnet Romano, whose life is almost perfect. She has the ideal career, the ideal boyfriend, and has just been offered a prestigious fellowship. There’s nothing more a woman wants – except maybe a baby…sister? When Sonnet finds out her mother is unexpectedly expecting, and that the pregnancy is high-risk, she puts everything on hold – the job, the fellowship, the boyfriend – and heads home to Avalon just until things back on track. But when her mother receives a devastating diagnosis, Sonnet must decide what really matters in life, even of that means staying in Avalon and taking a job that forces her to work alongside her biggest, and maybe her sweetest, mistake – award-winning filmmaker Zach Alger. At once heartbreaking and uplifting, Return to Willow Lake plumbs the deepest corners of the human heart, exploring the bonds of family, the perils and rewards of love, and the true meaning of home.
Susan Wiggs is a three time RITA® Award winner, a #1 New York Times, Washington Post, USA TODAY and Publishers Weekly bestselling author, and winner of Dorothy Parker Award of Excellence."