Book Title: The Swan Bonnet
Author: Katherine L. Holmes
Release Date: July 16, 2013
Genre: YA Historical Fiction
Interview with Katherine L. Holmes
When did you start writing?
My first writing was in childhood. I wrote a few family editorials, my thoughts on household events, that my mother put on the kitchen wall. I also made up riddles and jokes to read after dinner to my family. I thought I was funny. Stories came later.
What is your favorite writing style?
That’s a hard one – but it would be a style that feels comfortable and not contrived, expressing author personality. My favorite authors are from George MacDonald to Tolstoy and Dickens. I like authors who can handle imagery well and those who have wit. In college, I was asked to pick short story writers for papers. I chose Dylan Thomas and Virginia Woolf. That might have caused me trouble later – I liked a more florid style when I didn’t know short story authors that well.
Where do you get your ideas?
They come from my life and from dreaming about things. I am a creative writer that works from obsessive issues and puzzles, problems in life that I want to explore.
What?s the best thing about writing?
I think it brings out the best in me. It forces me to be fair to others or to make that attempt, and it forces me to come to terms with shared realities.
What?s the worst thing about writing?
The efforts put in if you want the traditional writing rewards. If you want that, there is agony and self-abasement. That’s when I wonder if it is worth it because there are many writers out there these days.
What do you do when you?re not writing?
I work with used books. I have a store on eBay and had good training for this at stores with used books and antiques. So I attend many estate sales and neighborhood sales too. I enjoy walking when it’s convenient. I list hundreds of books and magazines.
Do you like reading?
Yes, I’ve always been a reader. I am a regular reader rather than a person that reads for hours. Reading time is generally designated and I always have three or four books to read.
What are you reading right now?
The Dream by Emile Zola. Tesserae by Denise Levertov. Four Days with Hemingway’s Ghost by Tom Winton.
Swans are endangered in 1920s Alaska. Unbeknown to Dawn, her grandfather has shot an old swan out of mercy. In their coastal Alaskan town, her father buys the swan pelt, preventing her Uncle Alex, a fur trader, from selling it for export. Dawn’s father surprises her part-Aleut mother with a hat she helped to make and also with an idea to catch poachers. Dawn and her mother become involved with the suspicious effects of the swan bonnet besides its haunting effect. But after they encounter women from a ship and find out about a hunting party, they ride to the inlet. There are townspeople roving the shore too but who is the vigilante and who is the poacher?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Katherine L. Holmes’ first published book was The House in Windward Leaves, an MG fantasy which became an E-book Finalist in the 2013 New Generation Indie Book Awards and a Juvenile Fiction Finalist in the National Indie Excellence Book Awards. Also, she won Prize Americana for her short story collection, Curiosity Killed the Sphinx and Other Stories, published by Hollywood Books International. In April 2013, The Wide Awake Loons was released by Silver Knight Publishing. The Swan Bonnet, a historical novel, will be published in July, 2013, by GMTA Publishing. Katherine has worked with used and rare books in the last years. She lives in Duluth, Minnesota.
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