Monday, March 21, 2011

The Authors We Meet

This weekend has seen the third of four ZOVA author events at the Ovitt Family Community Library in Ontario, CA. Each Saturday during the month of March, we're joining one of our favorite authors to discuss writing, reading, and the place of women in the book industry. The first weekend featured publisher Molly Lewis alongside veteran mystery novelist Jeff Sherratt, for a rousing discussion on the development of the writing craft and the changes in the book industry. Teresa Burrell followed the week after, discussing legal suspense and the integration of life experience and fiction. Both weeks were fun and informative, providing a helpful introduction to both the industry as a whole and the day-to-day work of a writer.

This past Saturday was given to our celebrated children's novelist, Jenny Bellington. For nearly two hours, writers from all walks of life threw out their questions, asking everything from "how do you build your fantasy world?" to "how do you motivate yourself to write everyday?" It was educational, inspirational, and occasionally even a bit funny. Bellington's debut novel, East to Adonia, is a perfect introduction to the art of fantasy, as her young mapmaking protagonist, Mercator, finds himself as lost and confused in the strange "other" world of Threa as the reader does.

We're just as excited about this coming Saturday as we have been about the past three, although this one is particularly exciting. Michele Scott, the well-loved (and frequently imitated) author of the Wine Lovers' Mystery Series, will be discussing the art of writing everything from mysteries to children's fiction to general literary fiction in one of her first appearances following the release of Happy Hour this coming week.

Happy Hour follows the loosely intertwined stories of four women in Napa Valley who, despite the rich, restful beauty of their surroundings, struggle with everything from divorce to illness, bankruptcy, rebellious children, and a host of things in between. It's a story for every woman - and the men who love them. Already hailed as the first beach read of the season, we expect Scott's newest novel to be gracing the laps of book club readers across America before the summer's well underway. Next week promises to be a rare but special opportunity to hound the author with all the questions you've always wanted to ask a successful writer. Be there.

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