Celebrating Debutantes 2016 is on its third week and today we have author Ashely Herring Blake to answers few questions about her upcoming debut novel, SUFFER LOVE. Ever since I have read the synopsis of this contemporary novel from goodreads and saw the cover art, I know I have to read the book myself. It’s a star-crossed lovers story, with maybe a more realistic set-up than Romeo and Juliet, plus the glowing review from Kirkus and Publisher’s Weekly it is basically a must read for me. So I’m trilled that Ashely joined our event and have an author interview with her. It’s always a treat to know more about the author and some information beyond the published novel we love to read.
I hope you guys enjoy the interview, and don’t forget to to check the bottom of the post for all the details about Ashley, Suffer Love, and international giveaway!
Interview with Ashley Herring Blake
What pushed you to pursue writing as a career? How did you know what story you want to write about? How did the inspiration for Suffer Love come?
I’ve wanted to be a writer for a long time, but I never thought I could, you know, really do it. Honestly, what really pushed me to finally try was my mother’s death. I know, that’s a really sad topic and I don’t want to make anyone sad, but it’s the truth. After she died, I felt very fragile and lost and writing became home for me. It felt like grabbing onto life and holding on, whether I fell or flew. I got the idea for Suffer Love on a walk—I had this picture in my head of a guy sitting in a class and this girl walks in. For some reason, he was both fascinated and terrified of her. So, as I explored that idea, I discovered Sam and Hadley and the secrets between them. I was very interested in pursuing the idea of what happens when one tells a lie with good intentions.
Suffer Love is written in dual perspectives of both male and female protagonists, giving readers a much-appreciated peek of both narratives. What kind of preparation did you go putting yourself in the mindset of two different characters? Which is easier to write, Hadley or Sam? and why?
Oh wow. I actually did not want to do dual POV. I was terrified of it. I’m a firm believer that more than one POV is only needed if you absolutely cannot tell the story without both (or all, if it’s multiple POVs). I convinced myself I only needed Hadley’s POV, but after writing the first chapter, I knew I needed Sam too. I decided to try chapter 2 from his POV and just see what happened and I’m so glad I did. Sam’s voice came so easily for me and I absolutely loved writing him. He was definitely easier to write. I didn’t really do much preparation other than his basic character outline—like I said, his voice really leaped off the page and grabbed me.
Hadley and Sam’s story is one star-crossed romance. Which romantic couples in fiction top your all time favorite list?
I love Captain Wentworth and Anne Elliot from Jane Austen’s Persuasion, and Ellen Olenska and Newland Archer from Edith Wharton’s The Age of Innocence are two of my favorite lovers who never really were lovers—star-crossed, if you will. In YA, I absolutely adore Simon and Blue from Becky Albertalli’s Simon Vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda, Elyse and Christian from Sarah Ockler’s The Summer of Chasing Mermaids, Bri and Vanessa from Dahlia Adler’s Under the Lights, and Lace and Cluck from Anna-Marie McLemore’s The Weight of Feathers.
Suffer Love is an intense and heart-wrenching read. How was the experience writing the book? Thus it ever affect your own mood? Is there a part where you actually cried writing a particular scene? If yes, can you share it to us?
There were definitely some intense moments while writing. Writers pretty much assume the emotional roller-coaster that their characters go through and there were definitely tears. I cried at a certain scene with Hadley and her dad, during one with Hadley and Livy, and I teared up during the last scene. 🙂
If one of your characters could turn the tables on you and write a story based on your teenage years, what would the title of that book be and what would be the first line?
What a great question!
Title: Chorus Girl.
First line: They met on the bridge at midnight.
Are you working on any project right now? What we should expect from you in the near future?
I am! Right now, I’m working on edits for How to Make a Wish, which will release in spring of 2017 and is about a girl struggling to break free of her toxic relationship with her mother while navigating a new and intense romance with another girl. I’m also working on a new book, but I’m going to be all mysterious and say I can’t talk about it yet. 😉
Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
I’m so grateful you’re interested in Suffer Love and, if you choose to read it, I am so honored and excited and I hope you enjoy it. But, hey, even if you don’t, I’m still grateful and think you’re cool. Thank you!
Thank you so much Ashley for stopping by today and for taking the time to answer all my questions above. Looking forward to the released of Suffer Love this May 2016 and How to Make a Wish in 2017.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ashley Herring Blake lives in Nashville, TN with her her husband and sons. When she’s not writing, she reads and drink coffee and wastes hours in coloring books.
ABOUT THE BOOK
Title: Suffer Love
Author: Ashley Herring Blake
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: May 03, 2016
Format: Hardcover, eBooks
Hadley St. Clair’s life changed the day she came home to a front door covered in slips of paper, each of them revealing the ugly truth about her father. Now as her family falls apart in the wake of his year-long affair, Hadley wants everyone-her dad most of all-to leave her alone.
Then she meets Sam Bennett, a cute new boy who inexplicably “feels like home” to Hadley. Hadley and Sam’s connection is undeniable, but Sam has a secret about his family that could ruin everything.
Funny and passionate, Suffer Love is a story about first love, family dysfunction, and the fickle hand of fate.
What’s up for Grab?
- Suffer Love Swag Pack (bookmarks and magnets)
- Open to International
- There will be one (1) winner
- Winner will be chosen and announced by rafflecopter
- Winner will be contacted thru email & should response within 48 hours
- Ends March 23, 2016
- Prizes will be sent by the author
To enter fill out the rafflecopter form
Treat yourself to a complete #CelebratingDebutantes2016 experience. Click the image below for the full list of schedule and links to each feature post!