Ready for some more The Healing Spell love? I know I am! Kimberly Griffiths Little was sweet enough to take time out of her day to answer some of my review questions. I'll give her the floor!
1) I always like to start my interviews off with a challenge! How would you describe The Healing Spell in a tweet? (140 characters)
A girl with a guilty secret, annoying sisters, sprinkles of magic, and a little baby gator. Oh, and there’s a cute boy who chops wood. :)
2) On Goodreads I saw you mention that this story was close to your heart because it took you so long to finish. What would you say was the number one thing that kept you coming back to it?
I believed in Livie (she’s a lot like me at that age!) and she feels like she’s emotionally and spiritually lost her way in life and her family relationships. I had to see her triumph over that pain and insecurity and I think it’s an important story about guilt and faith and family. Livie is like myself, my little sister, or the daughter I never had (I’ve got three sons) so I couldn’t give up on her! Just like I hope the important people in my own life don’t give up on me!
3) What led you to set Livie's story in the Louisiana Bayou?
The bayous and swamps are GORGEOUS! I am absolutely captivated by the setting and the culture and just *had* to try to bring it alive in my story. I love to use those small details and find just the right word or phrase that makes it real to my readers. It’s a challenge, but so satisfying when people in Louisiana and the South tell me that it felt like they were right there with Livie in her pirogue on the water. I love it.
4) I love that there is a mother/daughter reading guide for this book. Do you hope that mothers and daughters will share this book?
Absolutely! I think it’s such a great book for girls and their moms as well as the whole sister theme within the story. And don’t forget Aunt Colleen with whom Livie clashes and tries to hide from. There are so many female relationships to explore and I hope that moms and daughters and sisters and grandmothers will enjoy getting together with the other women/girls in their lives to discuss it. The guide that my sister helped me create has great discussion questions, a mom/daughter game and a recipe for beignets for refreshments!
5) Where do you go for inspiration when you are writing?
I love to take walks along the Rio Grande which I live close to. I still live on a dirt road with big cottonwood trees all around and sandhill cranes that migrate overhead in the autumn. Getting away from my desk and having time to think really helps to solve story problems or get my characters *talking* to me. Sometimes my pillow works really well, too!
6) I can see that you tend to write for the younger crowd. What do you enjoy about writing for this age group?
8-12 or 8-14 has always been called The Golden Age of Reading. I devoured a book a day when I was that age. Books were my best friends and made such an impact on me and I think they still do for any child. Stories are powerful and meaningful, help us learn about life so we don’t feel alone in our problems, and make us laugh and cry. What a better way to spend a few hours? I love the fact that kids are reading more than ever the last few years and sharing books and talking about books – and that reading has become “cool” again.
7) What advice would you give to hopeful writers out there?
Write because you love to write, because you love “story”. Worry about publishing after you learn the craft and hone your writing skills. Most of all, take joy in the process because publishing can make you neurotic!
8) What is one thing you hope that your readers take away from The Healing Spell?
That love and faith and family are the most important gifts we have in this life.
And now, A GIVEAWAY!
To win a copy of The Healing Spell by Kimberly Griffiths Little, simply have a U.S. mailing address and leave me a comment below! Don't forget to include your email!
Giveaway ends January 3rd at 11:00 pm PST.