About Me

My photo
Hello, my name is Valorie. I have a Master's Degree in History and a license to teach-- I have been both university professor and public school teacher. Currently, I am a middle school social studies teacher. I love horror movies and spooky things. Every day is Halloween. I am also a passionate book blogger.

Blog Archive

Featured Post

Book Review: 23:27 by H.L. Roberts

Monday, July 20, 2009

Author Interview: Carolyn Wada (For Cory's Sake)

Yesterday I reviewed the book For Cory's Sake, and today I have the pleasure of welcoming author Carolyn Wada to Epeolatry for an interview.

Q: I read from your website that the reason you wrote For Cory's Sake was to write a book believable enough that people would buy it and make profit that you could donate to organizations for neglected and abused children. What made you choose writing a book to accomplish this?
A: I initially wrote the book because I had characters and a story in my head, and a compulsive urge to get them out into a Works doc. When I first wrote out my story, the first version, I had no particular plans for symbolism, or to publish, or to accomplish anything beyond the storytelling. As I was revising my 300-page story, however, I was simultaneously agonizing over the problem of child abuse, how little I thought was being "done about it" (comparatively speaking) and what, if anything, I could do about it. Themes I was thinking about in real life worked their way into my revision. I finished my more meaningful version of For Cory's Sake, decided to make my one unique product available to the public, and donate any generated income to my most important cause.

Q: Is For Cory's Sake meant to be a dystopia novel? When you wrote it, were you trying to make a statement about current political and societal conditions?
A: Yes, my characters do "lead dehumanized and often fearful lives in an imaginary place" (merriam-webster.com). A couple of readers have slotted my novel in the same sub-genre as 1984. Again, my obsession with the problem of child abuse thematically influenced For Cory's Sake. The planet of Cory has been enslaved by "Fear itself," which was brought on by a Great Threat. This threat has stopped its voice. They need outside champions to provide a voice and find a solution. A fundamentally violent man comes into power and overshadows the lives of an entire generation, with his emphasis on control by means of violence. I place "strong father" scenes contiguous to "weak father" scenes and invite the question of who really "controls" his child(ren)? The main plot twist of For Cory's Sake is a statement about the freeing power of knowledge. Dictators of all sorts limit or control knowledge. The resulting darkness leads to fear; access to key pieces of information can very suddenly open up the path to freedom.

Q: What do you do to prepare to write? What is the process that gets you ready to sit down a lay out a story?
A: I work on my stories, in my head, every night before I fall asleep. I'll spend half-an-hour to two hours every night working on stories. I wake up ready to write, and have to consciously and with great effort force myself to even eat breakfast first.

Q: How much of yourself do you put in your characters? Are they extensions of you, or are they independent creations that take on a life of their own after coming from your imagination?
A: I put parts of myself into William, both Kerrys, Terrence and Jeffrey. As this is Morbid Romantic, I think it's fitting to admit that the neurotic parts of myself got scattered between these five characters. William got my tendency towards excessive worry and self-questioning. Kerry Bentler got my impatience with apathy, among many other things. Boy Kerry got my escapist tendency to sleep all day when I'm depressed. Like Jeffrey, I can be very impulsive when I'm emotionally worked up about something. Terrence and I both have social anxiety (self-diagnosis), but because of the testosterone differential, it expresses in very different ways. We are very tough in certain key ways, though. Terrence is actually my favorite character because he's the one who got the most of the deepest parts of me (again, morphed by masculine chemistry).  I fear that laying it all out at once, like this, will make me look like a total head case. I am actually a good, fully functional member of society who for the large part saves neuroses expression for her writing. I promise.

Q: What is the most valuable piece of knowledge that you've picked up throughout life that you think everyone should know?
A: Simultaneously owning black cats and white shirts can lead to embarrassment, especially if you're not in the habit of looking in the mirror before leaving the house.

Q: What is one thing you've never done but would love to do?
A: You know, I have never been out of this country. I almost went to Canada once; I was directly in front of the Detroit/Windsor tunnel (think that's what it's called), but I didn't have the two IDs I'd need to get back stateside. Think I'll start my world exploration in County Kerry, Ireland. See some green rolling hills and take pictures of town signs as a funny.

Q: Finally, could you share with all of us a quote that you love?
A: "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good people to do nothing." (attributed to Edmund Burke) My characters approve this message . . .

No comments:

Post a Comment