Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Interview with Laurie Lewis, author of Awakening Avery

Last month, I reviewed Awakening Avery (here) and I am happy to to have this opportunity to interview author Laurie C Lewis today as part of her novel's blog tour. Read yesterday's post below to learn how to win a copy of Awakening Avery.

I love the ocean and am a collector of shells. To honor Awakening Avery's therapeutic tale by the sea, I will be giving away four shells from my collection (separate from the book drawing). To win the shells, leave a comment on this post and become a follower. Winner will be announced on my wedding anniversary, June 12.

Joan: Welcome Laurie! I loved reading Awakening Avery. I found it refreshing and therapeutic. You have several previous novels to your credit. Is there one person in your life that has had the most influence on you to become a writer?

Laurie: I really did it to make my children proud of me and to inspire them to reach for their own dreams. I was a housewife who had to go back to work when my husband lost his job some years ago. Since I never completed my college degree, the jobs I could get were limited. My writing lifted my spirits and reminded me that we are all so much more than the sum of what we do everyday. I wanted my children to know that as well.

Joan: What ideas prompted you to write Awakening Avery?

Laurie: My husband, Tom, suffered a heart-attack seven years ago, (He's fine now!) While riding to the hospital in the ambulance, so many thoughts flooded over me--Who would I be? Where would I go? What would I do if something happened to him? And what would I say to the children? It's every spouse's worst nightmare. That's where the seeds of "Awakening Avery" were sown.

Joan: There are so many fun and touching scenes in Awakening Avery. I laughed out loud in places, and cried in others. What is your favorite part of Avery’s story?

Laurie: I have several favorites--I love the breakfast scene with Avery, Teddie, Rider a
nd Gabriel. It still cracks me up. And I laugh over every scene with Emilia and Gia and the flamingo rug. My favorite tender scenes are probably the letters. I really wanted them to feel real. And I'm partial to George's lines. He's priceless.

Joan: I loved those scenes too. Why did you choose Maryland and Florida for the setting of your story?

Laurie: Wow, good questions! These are two important sites I love and know. I live near Baltimore, and the Inner Harbor area is very familiar. We go there frequently. I fell in love with Anna Maria Island and the Ca d 'Zan over a four year period when we went to Florida each spring to watch our youngest son pitch for Indiana University in an annual tournament at Bradenton. I went back to tour the Ca D'Zan with a notebook and pen to capture the details. I always knew I would set a book in those places.

Joan: I love the ocean and appreciated that you set the story by the sea. What are your feelings about the ocean? Calming? Healing?

Laurie: Yes, both. The sound and smell of water takes me back to my childhood. We camped on a river and we boated in the bay. I feel at peace by flowing water. Anna Maria was a healing place for me. I explain below.

Joan: What advice would you give to unpublished authors desiring to be published?

Laurie: 1. See who is publishing books like the one you want to write and submit or query to them.
2. Strengthen your core skills--vocabulary, grammar, punctuation.
3. Get a notebook and jot down great words, great characters, settings, ideas, dress, etc. Pull from here when you write.
4. Write about something you know or at least love enough to get the details right

Joan: What is something about you that most people don’t know, that you’d like to share?

Laurie: I was a kidney donor for my daughter five years ago. We started the process a year earlier but we ran into a lot of snags as we worked to get me cleared to donate. It was a very emotionally trying time, and it coincided with our trip to Florida. Tom had to return home for work, and I spent most of that week walking the beaches of Anna Maria alone, praying for a miracle, and calling doctors to see if I had been cleared yet. Clearance didn't come during that week, but Anna Maria calmed me and brought me peace at a time when I needed peace desperately.

Amanda gave birth to a beautiful baby boy last year, and she and her husband are expecting a baby girl on July 29th, the fifth anniversary of her transplant. Poetic, isn't it?

Joan: And how good it is to hear she is doing well. What a gift you gave her! Thank you, Laurie, for a great interview.

Visit Laurie's blog and website, .
Laurie is also the author of the Free Men and Dreamers Series Featuring
Volume One: "Dark Sky at Dawn",
Volume Two: "Twilight's Last Gleaming", and
Volume Three: "Dawn's Early Light", due October 2009.
Double Finalist in the National Best Books 2008 Competition
Read the following post to learn how to enter to win a copy of Awakening Avery.


  1. Beautiful interview with Laurie, Joan. Thank you!

  2. Great interview, ladies! I really enjoyed Awakening Avery too.

  3. Excellent interview!! I felt like I was experiencing the writing process with her. So many great ideas and inspiration. Thank you both!

  4. Wonderful interview. It is nice to get to know the author better.
    Thanks Joan and Laurie.

  5. Really great interview! I've heard so many positive things about this book.

  6. The winner of the seashell drawing is Nichole Giles!

  7. Love those seashells, Joan. Lucky lady, Nichole! Thanks for a great interview, Joan. It was great!