Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Day 2 with history lover Roseanna M. White

Welcome back for our second day with Roseanna White!

Roseanna, what first drew you to writing historical fiction? What keeps you doing it?

I have always loved history. Throughout middle and high school, when I took notes in history class it wasn’t to pass the test—it was on how to incorporate the facts into story ideas. I’ve written some contemporaries over the years too, but my first love was historicals, and I’m so thrilled that those are what I’ve sold thus far. I just adore going back in time and finding the unchanging heart of humanity that shines through every era.

Some writers love plotting, some like writing that first draft, and others enjoying researching or digging into the revisions. What's your favorite part about writing a book?

I love the brainstorming stage, when I’m first fleshing an idea out—if it’s a good idea, it usually comes in the course of a day. I then sit down and pound out the first few chapters, which is always so quick and fun…unlike plodding through the rest of it, LOL. So those beginning days are undoubtedly my favorites. Right along with when I’m flying through the last bit toward The End. ;-)

What are one or two of the most interesting things you’ve learned while researching a novel?

For this book, I was having a blast picking out a vintage car for Justin to drive…but a little perplexed by how my chosen vehicle—the Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost—actually functioned. I figured I’d take a shot in the dark and contacted the British Motor Museum with my questions, since I saw they had one in their collection. Not only did someone answer my questions, he scanned in the owner’s manual they had for the car so I could see diagrams and instructions!

Very cool! You never know what you might learn until you ask. If you could be a character from one of your favorite historical novels, who would you be and why?

If I could be? Whatcha talking about? I am those characters…for about 350 pages at a time. ;-) I think if I had to pick just one though, it would be Anne Shirley. She and I are kindred spirits, to be sure. ;-)

When you’re not writing, you can be found designing book covers for other authors. How do you think being an author yourself helps on that creative side of things?

I like to think that knowing all sides of the publishing industry gives me a definite edge as a designer, especially when working 1-on-1 with an author on a cover. I know how important it is to feel like the cover captures the essence of your book. And I’ve gotten pretty good at figuring that essence out from a cover questionnaire and a few emails with the author. ;-) I really love having a way to be creative even when the words aren’t flowing, so it’s been awesome to grow my design business this past year!

Yes, that is a great way to dovetail your creative sides! What advice would you offer to other creatives who might want to work with authors on book promotions or other special projects?

The best thing you can do is study the effective products you see—the best ads, the most stunning covers, etc. Study what fonts they use, what effects, how they layer images and textures, where they leave empty space, etc. Play around in your chosen program (I use Photoshop) and take advantage of the many YouTube and blog tutorials on how to do new things in it. (Just search for “how to do x in Y-Program” whenever something stymies you.) Then volunteer to do some for free for your friends to get started. ;-) When you do a good job, word will get out!

Great advice! Thanks for joining us, and for sharing about The Lost Heiress and other projects. Best wishes from Novel PASTimes!

And, visitors, don’t forget to enter our drawing for your own copy of The Lost Heiress! Click below to enter through Rafflecopter, or leave a comment answering this question from Roseanna:

What’s your favorite book written between 1860 and 1915?

If you enter by comment, be sure to include your name and email address (spelling out ‘at’ and ‘dot’ to help cut down on spam). The winner will be announced on Friday.

To learn more about Roseanna and to keep up with her books, you can find her online:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for stopping by and we’ll see you soon!