Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Interview with Samantha Hoffman, Author of WHAT MORE COULD YOU WISH FOR

A big Thank You to Samantha Hoffman for so graciously accepting my offer to interview her on my blog. I met Samantha about a month ago and loved the story she told about her most recent book, What More Could You Wish For, published by St. Martin's Press.

Samantha Hoffman, Author of What More Could You Wish For
A fun side note...Samantha is an avid moviegoer and not only Rates but Reviews movies on her blog.

Please give us the title, genre, and a quick look at the storyline of your newest book.
My novel, What More Could You Wish For was published by St. Martin's Press in August 2012. It's the coming-of-middle age story of a woman who connects online with her high school sweetheart on the same day her significant-other proposes. Tough problem, right? But this is not a romance novel, it's about a story of woman who's at a crossroads, and a family tragedy causes her to re-evaluate her world and discover what she wants for the second chapter of her life. 

What inspired you to write this book and how long did the process take?
My father's death, and a year of making decisions driven by grief, were the inspiration for the book. I started writing about a year after his death and it took eight years. My second novel only took two and a half years which is a good thing because I'm not getting any younger.

You also have another book, can you tell us a little about that one?
I like writing about older woman who find strength in life's challenges. The Ones You Left Behind is about a woman whose husband mysteriously abandons his family, leaving her to figure out how to take care of herself and her thirteen year old daughter. This story has no direct inspiration from my life and I have no idea where it came from. I love when that happens.

Samantha Hoffman with Patty McNair

Who designed your book cover(s) and how do you feel about them?

St. Martin's Press designed the cover for What More Could You Wish For. It's charming, but not what I imagined for this story. To me it looks like a young adult book and I have concerns that it limits the audience. However, this is St. Martin's Press so I have to trust their judgement. That said, I hope I have more input on my second novel.
Screen shot of Samantha on CAN TV. (This is not a live video on this blog)

How did you arrive at titles for your books? Did you know what the titles were from day one or were they constantly changing as you wrote?

The title for my first book went through many iterations. It started out as Classmates.com because the main character finds her high school sweetheart on that website. I tried to get the company that created Classmates.com interested in the project and sent them about thirty pages of manuscript but they were indifferent (although one of the secretaries told me she loved it!). Ultimately they asked me not to use that name for my title (it was just short of a cease and desist order). So I changed the title and the name of the website in the book. From there the title became Mr. Right-Enough, then What More Could You Want, then What More Could You Wish For, which I think was a typo on the original contract but that's what stuck. 

The title for The Ones You Left Behind came to me when I was on page four. It's perfect and I hope no one wants to change it. However, if they pay me enough money they can call it whatever they want. I suppose I should be embarrassed to admit that. Oddly, I'm not.
I have just started my third novel but at this time it is unnamed. 
Book Signing

What do you enjoy the most about having a book(s) published?
Not to be morbid but I love that when I die my work will still be in the world. I don't have children, so this is my legacy; my words, my thoughts, the lessons I've learned.

Click to listen to Samantha Hoffman's Interview on WGN Radio 

Upcoming Events and Appearances for Samantha:
September 22, 2013 - Beverly Arts Center - "Get Booked" 2-5p
The September 22, 2013 issue of Printer’s Row Journal will have an article about Samantha written by Rick Kogan.
September 27-29, 2013 - Chicago Writers Conference, details to follow but I can tell you it will be fabulous (I'm on the programming committee, and we have some surprises in store...)! CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

To learn more about Samantha and here books check out the links below:
Website and blog: http://samanthahoffman.com/ 

Thank you Samantha for agreeing to do this blog interview and discussing your amazing journey as an author. I look forward to seeing you again.  Karen

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