April 19, 2013

The Chalice by Nancy Bilyeau - Author Interview

Publication Date:  March 5, 2013
Touchstone Publishing
Hardcover; 512p
ISBN-10: 1476708657

This is my first author interview and I am excited to have it have been Nancy. I enjoyed her books, The Crown and The Chalice and hope you will too. 

I know this is an often asked question but I would like to know where do you get your ideas for what to write about and how long does it take you to do your research?
The ideas come out of the air. I seriously don't know where the inspiration for The Crown came from, beyond speculation: "I wonder if I could write a thriller set in the 16th century..." I set myself a challenge in a fiction workshop. For The Chalice,  I had the characters and thought, "OK, now what would happen?" Research takes me a long time because I want to get it right. For The Crown, it took five years to research and write the book. For The Chalice, I took a year off from magazine work to concentrate on it.

What drew you to write historical fiction? What do you like most/least about it?
It was my favorite genre when I was young—I inhaled the books of Norah Lofts, Jean Plaidy and Mary Stewart. I’ve read it ever since, I think I love to escape into past worlds. Also, I am a huge history nerd. I’m interesting in many different periods and countries. I guess what I like least about it is that some historical fiction is a little corny or flowery. Although Ken Follett and Bernard Cornwell are proving that historical fiction can be quite action-filled, if not brutal.

What genre of books do you like to read in your spare time? Do you have a favorite author or book you would like to recommend to us?
When you become a professional novelist almost everything becomes fodder. I read historical novels or thrillers to keep up with the genre or to follow friends’ work. I read nonfiction to inform my writing. The best nonfiction books I’ve read in the last year were The Winter King, by Thomas Penn, and The Favourite, by Mathew Lyons. The level of the writing in both was outstanding.
I really don’t have much spare time, because I am a mother of two and a magazine editor. But I do have books that while I can learn from them, a lot of why I read them is for pleasure. I enjoy the Sookie Stackhouse books by Charlaine Harris, for example. Paranormal stories are fun.

What books and/or authors have most influenced your life most?
Anna Sewell’s Black Beauty, Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca,Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina, F Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, Edith Wharton’s The Age of Innocence, A.S. Byatt’s Possession, Robert Graves’ I, Claudius, and Antonia Fraser’s Mary Queen of Scots.

What do you think is the best/worst thing about being a writer?
It’s wonderful to be like a magician and invite people into a story I’ve created and know that each person will see Joanna and the rest of the characters a slightly different way. I find that fascinating. What’s the worst thing? Probably the uncertainty of it all. Although it’s no more uncertain than the magazine business.

If you could be any person in history who would it be and why?
Elizabeth I, because I so admire her: “If I were turned out of my realm in my petticoat, I would prosper anywhere in Christendom.”

Tell us five random things about you.
I can draw a horse.
I saw Bob Seger three times in concert before I was 21 years old.
I love gathering seashells.
I always cry when I watch A Christmas Carol and Scrooge’s sister dies after giving birth.
My favorite part of the weekend is making pancakes on Saturday morning.

Do you have anything you would like to say to your readers?
Thank you for taking this journey with me, and I am very excited about writing Joanna’s story. She’s real to me, and I hope that while you’re reading, she’s real to you too.

How can fans get in touch with you and where can they find your books?
My author website is a place to get in touch. The email there that people can use to connect with me is tudorscribe@gmail.com. My books are on amazon and in bookstores. The website has all the links to online stores, for both e-books and print. I am on twitter: @tudorscribe. 

Here is the link to  Nancy's website

Here is the schedule for the rest of the blog tour: 


Tuesday, February 26
Review at She Reads Novels
Wednesday, February 27
Review at The Wormhole
Thursday, February 28
Feature & Giveaway at Passages to the Past
Friday, March 1
Review at A Bookish Affair
Monday, March 4
Review & Giveaway at Broken Teepee
Tuesday, March 5
Review at The Broke and the Bookish
Review & Giveaway at Luxury Reading
Thursday, March 7
Review at Turning the Pages
Monday, March 11
Review & Giveaway at Peeking Between the Pages
Tuesday, March 12
Review at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!
Wednesday, March 13
Review at The Eclectic Reader
Interview & Giveaway at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!
Thursday, March 14
Review at Let Them Read Books
Friday, March 15
Interview & Giveaway at Let Them Read Books
Monday, March 18
Review at Peppermint, Ph.D.
Review & Giveaway at Flashlight Commentary
Tuesday, March 19
Review at Loyalty Binds Me
Review at Impressions in Ink
Wednesday, March 20
Review, Interview & Giveaway at A Bookish Libraria
Thursday, March 21
Review at Confessions of an Avid Reader
Friday, March 22
Guest Post at Confessions of an Avid Reader
Monday, March 25
Review at The Novel Life
Review at Devourer of Books
Tuesday, March 26
Review at Historical Tapestry & Adventures of an Intrepid Reader
Wednesday, March 27
Guest Post & Giveaway at Historical Tapestry
Thursday, March 28
Review at Layered Pages
Friday, March 29
Interview at Layered Pages
Monday, April 1
Review at Words and Peace
Tuesday, April 2
Giveaway at Words and Peace
Wednesday, April 3
Review & Giveaway at Always with a Book
Thursday, April 4
Review at CelticLady’s Reviews
Friday, April 5
Review at Griperang’s Bookmarks
Tuesday, April 9
Review at One Book at a Time
Review at Unabridged Chick
Wednesday, April 10
Review at Jenny Loves to Read
Thursday, April 11
Interview & Giveaway at Unabridged Chick
Friday, April 12
Review, Guest Post & Giveaway at Drey’s Library
Monday, April 15
Review, Interview & Giveaway at The Lit Bitch
Tuesday, April 16
Review & Giveaway at Ageless Pages Reviews
Wednesday, April 17
Review & Giveaway at Library of Clean Reads
Guest Post & Giveaway at The True Book Addict
Thursday, April 18
Review at The True Book Addict
Friday, April 19
Interview at Griperang’s Bookmarks
Monday, April 22
Review at Book Drunkard
Tuesday, April 23
Review at A Book Geek
Wednesday, April 24
Review & Giveaway at Review from Here
Thursday, April 25
Review at Historical Novel Review & Great Historicals
Friday, April 26
Review at Enchanted by Josephine
Guest Post & Giveaway at On the Tudor Trail
Monday, April 29
Review & Giveaway at Enchanted by Josephine
Review & Giveaway at Bippity Boppity Book
Tuesday, April 30
Review at Tea at Trianon
Review at Writing the Renaissance
Wednesday, May 1
Interview at Writing the Renaissance
Thursday, May 2
Review at Tanzanite’s Castle Full of Books
Friday, May 3
Interview & Giveaway at Tanzanite’s Castle Full of Books

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