Kristy Woodson Harvey Q&A
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moving onto the Q&A
With southern literature, there's so much emphasis and value on sense of place. How do you usually choose the settings for your novels and are any of the settings from your novels personal to your own upbringing/ home environments?
Absolutely! For Peachtree Bluff, the setting of Slightly South of Simple and The Secret to Southern Charm, in particular, Beaufort, NC, where I live, was a major inspiration. But I loved creating a fictional world where I didn't have to adhere too strictly to the truth. My debut novel, Dear Carolina, was set in Kinston, NC, where I was living at the time, and Lies and Other Acts of Love, my second novel, was set in Salisbury, NC where I grew up. But I think what binds them is the thing that I have found in all of them, that real sense of community and family, of being a part of something bigger than yourself and relying on each other. I'm so lucky that I've always had that and I love writing it.
What other authors do you think you're similar to? Similarly, if you were a bookstore owner and you were making a "if you liked this, read this" kind of shelf, what kind of books would you pair next to your own?
In reviews I am compared to Patti Callahan Henry a lot as well as Nancy Thayer, Dorothea Benton Frank, and Elin Hilderbrand, which I find hugely flattering. I hope that's true because they are all authors I have read forever and admire tremendously!
What are you reading right now?
I'm reading The Optimist's Guide to Letting Go, Amy Reichert's charming May release, and Family and Other Catastrophes, Alexandra Borowitz's laugh-out-loud debut.
From your books, they offer a great feeling of "escape." In a complicated, always busy world, what are your own escapes?
Books, for sure. We also try to take a really relaxing vacation at least a couple times a year. I love to have a totally unplugged spa weekend and then a longer trip somewhere on a warm beach where it's cold back home, preferably where my cell phone doesn't work! Day to day, just being outside, riding bikes with my son and husband and getting fresh air help me unwind. And writing, really. It would be impossible for me to express how much I love writing novels, how much joy it brings me. It's the best, and I'm so lucky I get to do it!
What does a regular writing day look like for you? Like do you start with a particular drink, do you write while in bed or at a desk, do you take short breaks or go through long chunks of your novel, just to get the ideas out and then hash out details afterwards?
Every day is different for me, honestly. I told someone recently that I'm sort of a "binger." When I'm writing a first draft, I like to be all in. Sometimes I'll write for the entire six hours my son is at school. I tend to write first drafts really quickly, in a matter of a few weeks. Similarly, a few months before a new release I am completely absorbed in publicity and work only on that for a few weeks. In the in between times, I'm editing, keeping up with social media, freelancing here and there to get my journalistic fix--and I write the blog Design Chic with my mom every day. It's our business, so it can't get left out!
We have this huge picture window on our third floor with an L-shaped window seat that has an expansive view of the water. I write there a lot as well as in my office, at the dining room table and, in the summer, at the beach club while my son is at camps. I always drink this concoction I make with matcha green tea, maca or ashwagandha, a little collagen for my skin, cocoa powder, Brain Booster Moon Dust and a few drops of chocolate stevia and a dash of cashew milk. It's so extraordinarily delicious and healthy! (And some readers might be able to see where the inspiration for Coffee Kyle's weird potions come from!) I travel for book events constantly, so when I'm writing on the road I drink Four Sigmatic Mushroom Hot Cocoa. It's so yummy! I may be the only writer in the known world who doesn't drink coffee... But I'm really serious about my warm, cozy beverages when I'm writing! I think the combination of writing and my warm drink is so incredibly relaxing!
Hope you guys enjoyed the Q&A
Remember, Kristy will be at The Bookshelf, April 9th at 6:30 PM
Hope you come join the discussion!
Also, the Kristy Woodson Harvey giveaway is still active though it will close on the 9th, so make sure you go and comment with your fellow book lovers to enter for a chance to win!
That's all from me, have a wonderful day!