My first success story comes from North Carolina author Joyce Hostetter, who happens to be my extremely talented writing buddy and co-publisher of Talking Story. I'm honored that she's chosen my blog as her cover reveal for her next book, AIM, scheduled to be published by Boyds Mills Press fall, 2016. Since tomorrow, March 1, marks the 10th anniversary of BLUE's publication, this is a very special occasion for Joyce.
I know some of you won't be able to stand the suspense and will scroll down to see AIM's beautiful cover (caught ya!). Just make sure to come back and read the amazing backstory of how this book was conceived and written in under a year.
Take it away, Joyce!
CAROL: I know Boyds Mills Press (or was it Carolyn Yoder?) approached you about writing a prequel to Blue and Comfort. Can you tell us a little about that process? What did they ask for?
JOYCE: My editor, Carolyn Yoder, suggested the prequel but the idea was generated in committee—a prequel to begin with the letter A - so we’d have an ABC set. I thought that was the oddest idea ever!! (to start with a letter of the alphabet for a title before I had a story concept) I joked with my hubby that I’d call it Annoyed! Or Aggravated!
CAROL: How hard was it to come up with an idea for the prequel? How about the title? Did that come to you early on in the process?
CAROL: What were the challenges of writing a prequel?
Being consistent from one book to the next—in characters, speech, and small details. If I’d known there would be a prequel I’d have set it up in Blue and Comfort. Ann Fay was fairly self-absorbed in those books. But she did have opinions about Junior Bledsoe. He knew everything and everybody and when it came to helping people he didn’t know how to say no. It was a fun challenge for me to portray him at fourteen as opposed to how she saw him at seventeen.
CAROL: What was the most thrilling/exciting/fun part about writing this book?
CAROL: I know you had a stiff deadline for AIM. How was this different than Blue or Comfort?
CAROL: Any thought about a “D” book?
JOYCE: Junior Bledsoe’s father dies, leaving him and Momma to piece together some respect for the family name. Overwhelmed with extra responsibilities and questions about his family’s dysfunction, Junior makes some unfortunate choices. His mistakes get him into trouble but also enable him to discover new aims for his life.
AND NOW....the moment Joyce Hostetter fans have all been waiting for (drum roll please...) Here is your first look at AIM!
Since I read one of the early drafts, I can authoritatively say that you will love this book! I can't offer a giveaway since I don't have the ARC in my hot little hands yet. But be assured, that after reading and reviewing it, I'll give it away here. (After my husband's uncle reads it. He was first introduced to middle grade historical fiction when he read BLUE and has been a fan ever since.)
I'm going to start my giveaway list now. If you want a chance to win my ARC later this spring, leave me a comment with your contact information if I don't have it. After I post my review you can leave a second comment and I'll enter your name twice. Your chances to win will increase if you share either post on social media or become a new follower of my blog.
AND--it always helps an author to pre-order her book, so here's the Amazon link. Let's show Joyce our A-B-C support by pre-ordering!