Friday 15 November 2019

A Conversation with Historical Fiction writer, Annette Valentine #amwriting #HistoricalFiction @annette_author

A Conversation with Historical Fiction writer, Annette Valentine.

Mary Anne: Welcome Annette to The Coffee Pot Book Club! Before we begin, please tell us a little about who you are and what you write.

Annette: I’m Annette Valentine, author of the Southern historical fiction novel, "Eastbound From Flagstaff." I love writing and the research and hard work that goes into becoming a published author. It is such a creative and rewarding career, and it follows my 34-year career as a professional interior designer. Both creative endeavors have given me a deep sense of accomplishment and both have allowed me to invest God-given talents and in turn to see how the results are enhancing the lives of other people.

I’m the mother of a son and daughter, and the grandmother of six too-quickly-growing-up grandchildren. My husband and I happily reside in Brentwood, Tennessee.

Mary Anne: What inspired you to write "Eastbound From Flagstaff”?

Annette: My father’s life—actually the life he lived that I knew very little about—was the inspiration for writing a story set in the 1920s. I wanted to find the man that deserved my honor, and I launched an all-out search to learn more about him. Originally, the story was going to be a different one, set in a much later time period—the 1960s. By happenstance, I was redirected to change it to the young life of Simon Hagan.

Mary Anne: What were the challenges you faced in researching this period of history?

Annette: I love architecture, so I wanted to include as many possible landmarks as I could in the locations depicted in the novel. From a small town in Kentucky to Detroit to Albuquerque, the places had to come alive on the pages of my book. That meant finding every detail to bring into view for my reader the building’s character—its flavor and its flair. I’ve not been to but one of the buildings. Even so, I feel like I’ve made them come to life because of research. Whether a challenge or an adventure—I loved the

Mary Anne: There are many books set in the 1920s. Can you tell us three (3) things
that sets your novel apart?

Annette: "Eastbound From Flagstaff" is intensely personal. I sincerely believe the reader gets a valuable opportunity to walk alongside an intensely
fascinating young man living in the 20s, and, in walking the walk, the reader has a unique opportunity to embrace a relationship beyond a storybook character. That’s two!

"Eastbound" is more than 1920s entertainment. It’s undergirded with a rich
and meaningful message. Simon Hagan’s the main character. He’s real. He
does a lot of living that’s imbued with inspiration. And who can’t use
inspiration for living?

So: personal, relational, inspirational.

Mary Anne: It has been so wonderful talking you today. One last question, can you tell us what you are currently working on? 

Ah! So glad to be able to say that I just last week completed the manuscript for the second novel in the My Father Trilogy: "Down to the Potter’s House." This is the story of two distinctly different patriarchal influences and the legacy that is passed down. It is a continuation of Simon Hagan’s life with the introduction of the person who will change his direction for-ev-a!

Eastbound from Flagstaff

A love story based on the author's father, Eastbound From Flagstaff portrays an individual who comes to recognize the significance of family, loyalty, and the richness of his heritage.

Simon Hagan is running from a lie, intent on believing his own efforts and perseverance can overcome anything. He abandons roots that are his foundational strength and hides behind his charm, living every moment as if life’s daring him to fail―again. He’s reckoning with his father’s God who could have delivered better outcomes but didn’t.
This first installment in an epic trilogy that begins in the 1920’s, unique in its purposeful illumination of the human condition and its ideological indifference to God, asks the question: “Why was God silent when I needed him?” Simon’s return to the notion of forgiveness is the catalyst for a new beginning as it reunites Simon to the place he once thought was the impossible dream. The answer for Simon isn’t blowing in the backwinds of his dream chase; rather, it unfolds in the outstretched hand of a villain.

Pick up your copy of
Eastbound from Flagstaff

Annette Valentine

Annette Valentine is an inspirational storyteller with a flair for the unexpected. She graduated with distinction from Purdue University and founded an interior design business which spanned a 34-year career in Lafayette, Indiana and Brentwood, Tennessee.

Her design expertise went from the White House to a Habitat For Humanity house to the house next door with everything imaginable in between. Annette advocates for victims and survivors of human trafficking and speaks in public forums in an effort to raise awareness on issues which might preclude the joy of abundant life. She currently resides in Brentwood, Tennessee.

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See you on your next coffee break!
Take Care,
Mary Anne xxx