Today I am welcoming Joyce Anthony, author of the spiritual fantasy novel Storm. This is Joyce's first book and it is already winning over reviewers with its real and vibrant characters and beautiful words.
Cheryl: Joyce, thank you for joining me today. I am thrilled to be the one who starts off your book tour!
Joyce: I'm happy to be here, Cheryl. This promises to be a very exciting month.
Cheryl: While you’ve written numerous articles and short stories, Storm is your first novel. How does it feel to see your book on store shelves and at Amazon.com?
Joyce: It feels incredible. I see my book and it is almost hard to believe I actually wrote the book. It is a feeling I don't think I will ever get used to.
Cheryl: Storm has received rave reviews. The Book Peddler called it “one incredible read” and Marvin D. Wilson, author of I Romanced the Stone, said it was “…a breath of fresh air.” Did you expect such an enthusiastic response to your novel?
Joyce: Not really. I spent so much time worrying that nobody would like it, that it didn't occur to me people might love Storm :-) Every incredible review I receive is so special to me!!
Cheryl: Your novel revolves around Storm, who is abandoned as an infant and raised by a lighthouse keeper. During Storm’s journey to discover his true identity, he meets a variety of people and changes their lives forever. How did you weave spirituality into your novel without coming across as preaching?
Joyce: The same way my spirituality is a part of my life, without me preaching. Just as people know where my faith is by how I live, by what I say and do, they are able to see Storm's spiritual beliefs, the faith of the other characters, simply by seeing how they relate to those around them. I'm a firm believer in example being the best teacher.
Cheryl: How long did it take you to complete Storm and what was your writing process like?
Joyce: Storm took two years to write once I started putting words on paper. I write everything longhand, and the experience was often like automatic writing--the words flowed so steadily. My biggest surprise was how strong I reacted emotionally as I wrote--I found myself laughing, crying, getting angry. It was a whole new experience for me.
Cheryl: A portion of your royalties from Storm will be donated to Stop It Now! an organization working to prevent the sexual abuse of children. How did you become involved with this organization?
Joyce: I was doing research one day and came across their website. I was very impressed by their approach to the subject--it is unique and I believe whole-heartedly in what they are trying to achieve.
Cheryl: If you could only give one piece of advice to aspiring writers, what would it be?
Joyce: Don't give up and don't force it. Your characters will guide you if you allow them that freedom--and they know exactly where your story needs to go.
Cheryl: You are currently working on another project. Can you tell us a little bit about that?
Joyce: Spirit of the Stallion is a non-fiction account of a bipolar child. In addition to his story, which is incredibly inspiring, there is practical advice for those with bipolar children in their lives. So often, existing books don't address the practical, everyday issues involved. This book will cover those issues.
Cheryl: Is there anything else you would like to share with us today?
Joyce: I'd just like to invite readers to visit my site and to make a note of my tour stops and chats for the month. I'd love comments :-)
Once again, thanks for stopping by Joyce. We enjoyed learning more about you and Storm. I wish you great success in your future endeavors.