Interview with Novelist Bev Stout (Secrets of the Realm)

Secrets of The Realm can be purchased at http://www.amazon.com/Secrets-Realm-Bev-Stout/dp/1484832280/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=
secrets_of_the_realm.jpgInterview with Bev Stout:

Q.What is the general theme and tone of “Secrets of the Realm“?  

A. The main theme is survival and being true to oneself, even in the worst of circumstances. The tone is more uplifting than dark. 

Q.Why should people buy your novel?  

A. It will transport you into a not-so-gentle world of tall ships and fine manor homes. The cast of characters will keep you entertained and on the edge of your seat. Secrets of the Realm is an adventurous tale of Annie Moore, a stubborn eighteenth century girl, who is blamed for her uncle’s death. This fifteen-year-old will make you laugh. She will make you cry. Sometimes, she will even make you angry, but you will never give up on Annie and her quest for a better life. 

Q.How would you describe your novel in just two words?

A. Daring Journey

Q.What movie have you seen the most in your life? 

A. The Sixth Sense

Q.Was being a novel writer something you’ve always dreamed of doing?  

A. I never dreamed I would one day become an author. Annie’s story had played out in my head for many years before I finally put it down on paper. Originally, it was intended only for my family, but it took on a life of its own, being read on five continents and in over fifteen countries.

Q.Do you have an all-time favorite novel?  Have you read a novel more than once? 

A. It is a toss up between To Kill a Mockingbird and The Human Comedy. I read The Human Comedy first as a child, then as a teenager, and as an adult. I got something new from it each time I read it. 

Q.What motivates you to write? 

A. Nothing in particular motivates me to write. A story simply pops into my head, and I need to write it down. I’m putting the finishing touches on My Name is Nissa, a contemporary adult fantasy. I’m also finishing up Return of the Realm, the sequel to Secrets of the Realm.

Q.What artist would you love to have dinner with? 

A. Van Gogh. I would like to know more about his life, the people in his paintings, and when he fell into the abyss of mental illness. I would also love to know how he feels about becoming famous after he died, and what he thinks of the exorbitant prices his paintings have gone for at auction.

Q. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about? 

A. Tennis is one of my biggest passions. I have played since a young child. As an adult, I have played in tournaments. It is a sport I continue to enjoy with family and friends. My greatest passion, though, is just spending time with my family.. 

Q.Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers? 

A. Write what you are interested in. Push forward each day. Don’t stop writing until you get to the end.  Once it is finished, you can go back and edit, and do more research if needed. Write for your own enjoyment. Being published is a bonus, but doesn’t need to be the end goal. But if you want to be published, I suggest getting into a critique group. I did. It was quite helpful.

******

NOVELIST BIO: I grew up in San Leandro, a city across the bay from San Francisco. I have always enjoyed being by the water, whether it is a lake or the ocean. One of my fondest memories is clam digging with my family at Pismo Beach when I was about ten years old. I remember the cold surf rushing around my legs and the sand squishing between my toes. Now, I enjoy visiting the seaside town of Cambria, California, where I can explore the tide pools, kayak, and whale watch. It is a slower paced way of life.

I was eighteen when I married the love of my life, a young sailor named Dick. He went up the ranks to later become a lieutenant in the Navy.

We have lived in California, Colorado, and now in beautiful Arizona. We have two children and six grandchildren. 

I have had various jobs, including working for IBM, being a dental assistant, and teaching piano. I have always enjoyed working with young people, and am currently involved in a Christian outreach program for children, ages 4-13, on Saturday mornings. Also, I volunteer in my granddaughter’s third grade classroom once a week.

I like taking our rescue dog, Milly, for walks around the lake near our home. She came into our lives shortly after our beloved Thunder, a golden retriever, died. Milly was one wild dog when we first got her. She would slide across the dining room table chasing our cat, Jasmine. After obedience classes, she has become a calm and well-mannered dog. I cannot imagine not having a dog or cat in my life. A number of our dogs and cats were rescues.

Reading has always been an important part of my life. My mother encouraged me to read at an early age. My favorite gifts as a child were books she gave me. I read everything I could get my hands on–fiction, history, science, even the encyclopedia.

Now, excuse me while I get back to my writing.
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Interviewer Matthew Toffolo is currently the CEO of the WILDsound FEEDBACK Film & Writing Festival. The festival that showcases 10-20 screenplay and story readings performed by professional actors every month. And the FEEDBACK Monthly Festival held in downtown Toronto on the last Thursday of every single month. Go to http://www.wildsound.ca for more information and to submit your work to the festival.

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