Sunday, September 21, 2014
Angela Lam Turpin's blog tour
Thanks go out to Angela Lam Turpin for inviting me to participate in this blog tour. I’m proud to have my novels discussed alongside Angela’s stories. She writes from her heart. I knew that as soon as I read the first story in her collection The Human Act and Other Stories (written under the name Angela Lam). Ashes to Angels is about a young woman, Adele, who is living a life limited by poverty and by choices made by others in her family. But Adele is blessed with a talent for math, a blessing that turns her life in surprising ways. Angela lives in California with her husband, a daughter, and a son. She is an artist as well as an author and writes nonfiction as well as fiction, primarily articles on real estate and finance for SFgate.com. Like many other writers I know, Angela gets up early to do her writing at dawn. Her stories cover topics including sexual identity, poverty, romantic love, parenthood, eating disorders, infidelity, and family relationships. Turpin’s writing is emotional and uplifting, a joy to read. As well as The Human Act and Other Stories, Angela's books include of Out of Balance, Legs, and Blood Moon Rising. Here are the questions she posed to me about my own writing: Angela: What are you working on? Steve: I am working on my past life mystery series, of which Motherless Soul is the first, White Horse Regressions is the second, and I’m currently writing the third. The books are set in my three favorite places: Motherless Soul in a church (a place to think about the universe and God), White Horse Regressions in a community theater (a place to watch actors making characters interesting), and the third book at a lake (a place where peaceful water can sooth and inspire). Choosing those settings helps make the process pure joy and at the same time I’m adhering to the old writing axiom to “write what I know.” Angela: How does your work differ from others in the same genre? Steve: My books fit into at least two genres: mysteries and historical fiction. They are different from other mysteries because the detective is a hypnotist who brings out people’s past lives. Clues from different time periods are used to solve the crime committed in the present and since the various lifetimes share people with the same souls, determining who is who is a second, intriguing mystery. As works of historical fiction my books relate to time travel books, because they have a plot during the present time that leads the reader into similar situations in the past. But time travel books always have something that doesn’t quite add up. My work travels back to observe, but not to change. Angela: Why do you write what you do? Steve: I am interested in the continuity of life, which is why I find the concept of past lives so fascinating. It's also why I'm interested in historical fiction both as a writer and a reader. For the most part, people are alike in different places and times. So it's fun and thought provoking to put characters in different situations then see how they respond. I hope my readers enjoy these situations as much as I do when I'm reading the works of other writers. I also hope it gives them something to think about.Angela: How does your writing process work? Steve: I think about the characters and the situations until something interesting comes up then I write it down. That becomes the core I work with. After that I rewrite when ideas hit dead ends or just need imporving or when a something occurs that conflicts with something else. I think the hardest lesson I needed to learn after I decided to become a writer was how to identify and throw out the sections of my work that don't advance the story, even if they work on their own. I want to thank Angela Lam Turpin again for inviting me to participate in this blog tour. Next week, discover the writing of Jean Rodenbough. GATHER WITH THE SAINTS is a series of stories narrated by the 12-year-old daughter of an enlightened Baptist preacher. She tells of the strange funerals and residents of her home town of Wheeler, NC. SIGNS OF HOPE contains stories of loss, a description of the grief process, and a fantasy about Butterfly's journey into the Valley of Sorrow. PREACHER'S DOZEN is a collection of sermons preached during the fall of 2008. TREE features poems about trees through the seasons, to accompany color photos. NOW AND THEN is a chapbook of recent poems. ICE ON A HOT STOVE is a re-publication of an earlier collection, updated. Published by All Things That Matter Press: RACHEL'S CHILDREN:SURVIVING THE SECOND WORLD WAR tells the stories of those who were children during WWII, with poem commentaries, reflections, and narratives about the war. BEBE & FRIENDS: TAILS OF RESCUE: Stories of rescued animals is a collection of heartwarming stories which also provides information about rescue organizations and statistics about rescues. Poems serve as commentary, and contact information for organizations is included. The author lives in Greensboro, NC with husband Charles, also a writer listed on Amazon's Author Central. Their four children and families all live in the Greensboro area. They have a Beagle-Jack Russell, Katie, who gives them a hard time.