Today I’m delighted to welcome Erin Charvet to Me, My Books and I:
I was born March 5, 1985 in Atlanta, Georgia and am the oldest of 5 children. I enjoyed reading as well as writing from a very young age and won several awards at school for my stories and poetry. Music is a very big part of my life as well, and I played violin for several years and still play piano and guitar. I graduated from Georgia State University in 2010 with a degree in Journalism and a minor Psychology, and moved to Paris shortly after to attend French school and be with the man who recently became my husband. I’m passionate about travel and have been lucky enough to visit much of Europe and Asia, with a trip to South Africa planned in August.
To find out more:
Where did the idea for Newcomer come from?
It was pretty difficult to come up with a name for this book and spent months thinking about it, so finally I decided to keep it simple. I wanted the title to center around the villain – who is the link between all the other main characters – without giving too much away about him.
How did you decide on names for your characters?
I’d say that I didn’t choose the names of the other characters as much as they chose me. I’d envision the character in my head and think “this person feels like a Lucy” or “he looks like a Dwayne.” I don’t have children, but I guess it’s a lot like naming a baby – waiting until they’re born and seeing how their personalities are to pick a name.
If you had to write it all over again, would you change anything?
If I had to write “Newcomer” all over again there wouldn’t be so much hesitation, and I would go more with my gut upon arrival at one of those literary crossroads, ex: Does she follow the crowd or go her own way? Does this person live or die? Does the couple stay together or break up? There are also events referred to before and after the fact but never described in detail that I would flesh out a little.
Is any part of Newcomer based on your own personal experiences?
I think the book is based less upon my personal experience than upon a basic human condition – longing for the past and the overarching desire to change it. As do the main characters in the book, people that live with regret often have specific, critical turning points in their lives, where if they’d done this or didn’t do that then they wouldn’t be here now. My main goal was to explore the idea of changing one’s life by changing the past, and whether or not any price was too high for such an opportunity.
Why did you choose to write in your particular genre?
Once again, the genre chose me more than I chose it. I always found something appealing about the “deal with the devil” scenario, and I’ve always liked suspense that delved into the fantastic, so I suppose I wrote the type of book I would like to read personally.
What are you currently reading?
The list of books I’ve picked up but haven’t managed to get through is too long to put here! I’m a very schizophrenic reader, but right now I’m working my way through Anna Karenina and one of Stephen King’s short story collections on my Kindle. I also have Edgar Allen Poe’s “Tales of Terror” on my nightstand.
Who are your favourite authors and do you think they have influenced your own writing in any way?
I love classic writers Oscar Wilde, Edith Wharton, Dickens and the Bronte sisters. On the horror side of things I keep Stephen King, H.P. Lovecraft and Edgar Allen Poe close to my heart, because I can envy them a little bit while still enjoying their writing immensely. When I wonder how a writer could make me feel like I’m actually standing in the old scary house, running through the dark woods or feeling the ghost rush past me, it forces me to examine my own style and helps me diagnose my own weaknesses. So I think that it’s the writers that you admire that help you be a better one.
Do you have any writing quirks?
Quirks, hmm…I never read more than 20 pages at a time when editing because I think it’s the magic number of mistake prevention. And it takes me a really long time to write because I lack self-discipline, but I don’t know if that’s so much a quirk.
Do you have any party tricks?
Let me get back to you
Paperback or eBook?
I used to be against e-readers and would have said paperback before, but now I have a Kindle and think it’s the best thing ever.
Hot or cold?
Hot if it’s weather, cold if it’s beer
Breakfast, lunch or dinner?
Telephone or face-to-face?
Dogs or cats?
Any last words for your readers?
To my readers, I say thank you for supporting indie authors like me! Also, it’s never a bad thing to try reading something outside the genres you regularly do, you just might be surprised.
Thank you so much for being here today Erin, it was a pleasure to have you on my blog. I particularly enjoyed reading about how other writers have influenced your work.
Now check out the book:
“Welcome to Shivering Pine, Arkansas. Population: 219. The few visitors it gets are usually in search of a gas pump, quick meal or bed for the night. Most of them stumble upon it by accident, and they never stay long. Among those who call it home are Lucy, a struggling waitress with dreams of stardom, Carl, who drinks to forget his tragic past, Francine, an elderly woman with only her cat and her regrets for company, Travis, a teenager whose future is shattered in a moment of youthful recklessness, Rachel, a jaded housewife, and Dwayne, a timid garage mechanic whose rare gift is stifled by his domineering father. One day a mysterious stranger arrives carrying a worn, antique traveling trunk. He takes a room at the B&B, prepaying for the week. One by one, he befriends the unhappy residents. And one by one, he offers them the chance of a lifetime…”