**Author Peek** Interview with Anna Brentwood

  The Songbird With Saphire Eyes v.7

**AUTHOR PEEK** Interview with Author, ANNA BRENTWOOD

Before we get started talking about your writing, tell us a little about yourself, where you’re from, what you do for a living (if you’re not a fulltime writer) what hobbies you have, etc. Whatever you’d like to share.

I am originally from the West Philadelphia suburbs & the accent stuck even though I relocated to Southern California after college. I was an artist, illustrator and graphic artist and later worked in publications, education and business management until switching gears to writing and jewelry design upon moving to Oregon in 1995. I love to read, shop, do yoga, walk and keep in touch with friends. Currently, I work two days a week for Washington County and the rest of the time I juggle home, family, writing and promotions.   

1. How did you get started writing?

As a child I wrote stories and poetry and later as an adult took evening classes in creative writing but the series of dreams I had that later motivated me to write The Songbird With Sapphire Eyes was what turned a hobby into a passionate desire to write professionally.

2. What genre(s) do you write in and why?

My first book is historical women’s fiction with romantic and literary elements. The why is because I have always loved reading history, romance and biography and I wanted to create a cross-genre story that combined all of these elements in a unique way.      

3. What is your favorite part of writing?

When story and character start appearing to me, when I start writing and sometimes it just flows and when I am actually finished and ready to move to the next stage of the process. I also have enjoyed the experience of being a published author, bonding with other authors, meeting readers and getting positive feedback- that kind of support really means a lot and makes all the hard work worthwhile.

4. What is your least favorite part of writing?

Selling and having to hawk my wares.

5. Where do you get the ideas for your stories?

As a creative person, I always have too many thoughts and ideas and that is not necessarily all good, but when an idea hits me over the head like a lead balloon and keeps pounding at me relentlessly I pay attention. In the case of Hannah’s story, which is the basis for ‘The Songbird With Sapphire Eyes’, it was more of a mystery and definitely something I could not let go of until I explored it fully.

6. What is it that makes your writing different from all the others in your genre?

I don’t pick my stories, they pick me and when they do, I immerse myself in the characters, their story and history to the point of obsession. Not weird obsession as I function normally in my regular life, but the process is such that I have to allow it to fully unfold and remain creative. I am a stickler for research and populate my stories with real life events and people. Early in my career, as an artist, I chose a commercial path to combine art and making a living but lost the spontaneity and enjoyment I’d felt when art was pure so with writing, I don’t want to do that.

7. Are you an avid reader?  When you do read someone else’s writing, what is your favorite genre?

Yes, I adore reading and books! I always have a book and a digital story on both my kindle and nook at any one time. I will read almost anything but prefer reading suspense, paranormal, mystery and romance.

8. Tell us about your next book & when is it being published?

My next book will be a sequel to ‘The Songbird With Sapphire Eyes’ and will take readers on a journey through the 1940’s with Johnny Gallo’s son, wartime hero, playboy and New York mobster, Anthony Gallo. I hope to have it available early 2014.

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Annie-edit

Links to Anna Brentwood’s website, blog, books, etc.

I love to hear from readers and appreciate all your positive reviews. You may contact me at: annabrentwood@ymail.com or through my website at www.annabrentwood.com. Please like me at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Anna-Brentwood/447346295303805?ref=hl

Or add me on Twitter @annabrentwood and Facebook.com/annabrentwood.

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BE SURE TO COME BACK to read more about Anna and her historical women’s fiction novel, THE SONGBIRD WITH SAPPHIRE EYES, on Wednesday’s Karen’s Killer Book Bench!

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**SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT: Anna will give away a copy of her book, some flapper beads, and a chocolate cigar  to one lucky reader!!  Comment on either her Monday Interview and/or Wednesday’s Karen’s Killer Book Bench blogs for a chance to win.  Winner will be randomly selected and announced Monday, February 18, 2013.  Thanks, Anna, for sharing your stories with us!

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16 Responses to **Author Peek** Interview with Anna Brentwood

  1. Mary P. says:

    So interesting to read Anna’s comment “… Early in my career, as an artist, I chose a commercial path to combine art and making a living but lost the spontaneity and enjoyment I’d felt when art was pure so with writing, I don’t want to do that.”

    I”m currently in my chosen art field, but frequently think about changing careers. I joke that “I’ve already ruined one hobby. I’m not sure that I want to ruin another one!”.

    It’s nice to hear that other people have faced the same dilemma! Thanks for the great interview, Susan and Anna.

  2. Dear Mary,

    It is a dilemma, trying to combine what we love to do and make money at the same time but I think the GREAT challenge for all of us is to keep trying to find a balance. Luck to you on your path and thanks for your comments.

  3. JackieW says:

    I’m always on the lookout for new authors to read…think I’ve found one …your book sounds fascinating…I’ve added it to my books to get the next time I’m shopping.

  4. Joye says:

    Enjoyed reading about your book. I know I would like reading this story. Historicals are one of my favorite type of books to read.

  5. Anne Hendren says:

    The best news, Anna and Mary, is that “Songbird” was such a page-turner I’m happy to know that there is a sequel coming out soon.

    Anne Hendren

  6. Monica Britt says:

    Love the title – Songbird with the Sapphire Eyes. Sounds very interesting!

  7. I have already read this book and highly recommend it. Anna Brentwood truly captures the 1920’s era, including the music, the gangsters, the wealthy and the poor. This heart-rending story follows one woman’s rise from poverty to wealth and the trade-offs she makes in life and love to get there. I was truly amazed by the depth of the writing and the realism of the story. I was completely invested in the characters.

    My only problem is that the sequel cannot come fast enough as far as I’m concerned.

  8. Thanks, of course, I love historicals too. And, when and if you read it, please let me know what you think.

  9. Collin says:

    I don’t think historical based novels get enough limelight in the publishing industry and I am glad to see this one being pursued. Just like the film industry, the primary basis for most movies IS research, then plot, then characters (Not necessarily in that order). So it makes sense that I really enjoyed reading this book because I love movies. They shouldn’t be so divided in the industry. IT is interesting that so many movies are from book adaptations these days, AND many movies have their own book versions published afterwards.

  10. Kellie says:

    I LOVED this book!!! So glad to read about it on your blog!!!

  11. Pam says:

    I have read about 2/3 of this book and plan to leave it a multi-starred review, Assuming the ending is as good as the beginning and middle. 🙂 Aside from the interesting historical references, the other thing I really like is the dynamic the author builds between the two main characters. You know these two should get together but you’ll just have to wait and, well, the sexual tension is amazing.

  12. Thanks to everyone who has taken the time to comment and a special hug and thanks to those who have read it too. Your feedback makes all the hard work worthwhile because it certainly is not about the money and is all about fulfilling a dream, challenge, passion and doing something you love.

  13. Jon Roylance says:

    The review was really spot on, an excellent condensation and commentary on rich, compelling and complex historical fiction. Just great.

  14. Dani says:

    I read Anna’s book and I could not put it down!!! I cannot wait for the next one!

  15. Thanks everyone for the comments, I

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