Today we're excited to chat with Luanne G. Smith author of
The Vine Witch.
Read on for more about Luanne and her book, an excerpt, plus a giveaway!
Meet Luanne G. Smith!
Luanne G. Smith is the author of THE VINE WITCH, a historical fantasy novel about witches, wine, and revenge set in early 20th century France, and the forthcoming second book in The Vine Witch series, THE GLAMOURIST. She’s lucky enough to live in Colorado at the base of the beautiful Rocky Mountains, where she enjoys reading, gardening, hiking, a glass of wine at the end of the day, and finding the magic in everyday life.
Meet The Vine Witch!
~ Author Chat ~
What gave you the inspiration to write this book?
I'd been holding onto the opening chapter to the novel for a couple of years, but couldn't figure out what would make my witch special or different from other novels I'd read. As an unpublished author, I knew finding the unique element that would make the story stand out was crucial for breaking into the market. And then one day I was in a funk, lying on the couch and watching Netflix, and I came across a documentary about winemaking in France. A woman they featured, who believed in a very hands-on approach to growing grapes, began speaking about the phases of the moon and the importance of nurturing the vines, and I got one of those zap-your-brain lightbulb moments. I sat up, got my notebook, and wrote probably twenty pages of notes about witches who make wine.
Who is your favorite character in the book?
Are we supposed to admit favorites? I don't care, I have a soft spot for Yvette. She's a little unfiltered, a little irreverent, but oh so brave. Heart of gold, that one.
What scene in the book are you most proud of, and why?
I'll take the easy way out on this one and say it is the first scene of Elena's transformation. Opening chapters have to do so much work. You have to set the scene, set the hook, and gain the reader's trust so they'll keep reading the novel. You're making a promise to the reader that this is how the rest of the story is going to go. My first chapter is odd, a little dark, and yet full of beautiful magic, which I hope is how the novel reads.
What do you like most about the cover of the book?
It has a fanciful hand-drawn font in bright white. The style evokes an element of whimsy, which the book certainly has. But then the title is set against a black background with snaking vines and witch's herbs trailing around the edge where little hints of the story are tucked in, foretelling some of the more mysterious aspects of the story. It's quite striking.
What was your favorite book in 2018?
Circe by Madeline Miller! That novel floored me with its brilliant writing. There wasn't a false note in it.
What was the most difficult scene to narrate?
I had quite a lot of difficulty writing the emotional scene at the end. The big reveal. There were things I knew about the relationship that, for some reason, I had a hard time putting on the page. My developmental editor had to keep drawing it out of me, making me dig deeper to get that scene fleshed out. Still not sure I got the emotional balance exactly right, but I think the story payoff did what it was supposed to do there.
Which part of the writing process do you enjoy more: Drafting or Revising?
Definitely prefer revising, because that means I have a finished story. First drafts are HARD for me. I'm a very plodding, write-by-the-seat-of-my-pants writer, and so sometimes it's difficult to see the end in sight. But once the story is down and I can go back and shine it up, I'm a happy writer.
Is there an organization or cause that is close to your heart?
I hope it's obvious through the themes in the novel that the environment and animal welfare are things I'm passionate about. A hex on anyone who does intentional harm to either.
The Vine Witch
By: Luanne G. Smith
Release Date: October 1, 2019
One winner will receive a copy of The Vine Witch (Luanne G. Smith) ~ (US Only)
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