Interview: Zara Hoffman, teen authorPosted: November 25, 2013
Today I’m interviewing Zara Hoffman, the amazing sixteen-year-old author of The Belgrave Daughter, which is being released…today! How exciting! Hi, Zara—welcome to my blog.
Your story has a combination of sorcery, angels and demons—three of my favourite things in a book! Tell us a little about Fawn, your main character.
Fawn is a strong young lady who values family, friends, and trust above all else. She’ll do anything for those she loves. She’s very intelligent, but tends to lose focus when Caleb is around. Oh, and did I mention she’s the most powerful witch on the planet? Talk about a heavy destiny to bear. And she’s only twenty years old—but at least she has her best friend Ivy and brother Alec to help her along the way.
What’s Caleb like? I’m imagining a hot bad boy, with motorcycle leathers and a pair of sunglasses—am I close? 🙂
Haha. I’m sure Caleb has taken up that appearance at least once or twice in his two hundred years as an angel, but he’s more of a laid back, jeans and a t-shirt guy when he’s with Fawn. He’s actually very similar to her in that he, too, loves his family more than anything and is willing to do many morally questionable things in his quest to reunite with them. But here’s a secret: he’s my favorite character of the story.
How do you want your readers to feel when they turn the last page of your book?
I want people to feel…hopeful? I’m sure when readers reach the ending they might want to throw things at my head, but I want people to feel disillusioned from the perfect romance that is in a lot of romance books, YA especially, and know that relationships are hard work—but not unattainable, and worth fighting for.
I know you researched traditional publishing extensively before choosing to self-publish. What was the thought process behind that decision?
My decision was in the making for a long time. While I loved the idea of being chosen by a literary agency or a publisher, the creative independence I’d be giving up didn’t seem worth it. For my first book, I wanted the story to be my vision, not some transformed version that wasn’t my intention. Also, I’m creative enough to know what I want on the cover and to format myself, and entrepreneurial enough to promote my own book, so I decided to go the self-publishing route. Maybe later in my writing career I’ll try for traditional, or maybe not. Only time will tell on that one.
What is the most important thing you’ve learned on your self-publishing journey?
That rushing is the death to creativity and progress. Okay, maybe that’s a bit melodramatic, but rushing through something just for the sake of being able to say “I’m done” only creates stress and hassle. It’s not worth it. Take the extra time, turn out a better book, and be happier in the end.
What advice would you give to other teenagers who are writing their first novel?
I would say to write the story in your heart. If that happens to be one that caters to a popular trend, or completely goes against it, just write it. You’ll only be happy with a project that inspires your enthusiasm. How else would you be able to survive the long haul of writing a novel? And don’t expect it to be perfect. Revisions and edits are necessary. It’s a fact, but even though it’s long and involves lots of work, you can make it fun! And it’ll be worth it!
The Septemgeminus Prophecy states: “A powerful sorceress with blood laced in gold sevenfold shall determine the fate of the world.”
Fawn Belgrave’s magical powers are the coveted prize in a bet between God and the Devil.
When she meets Caleb, the dark angel assigned to seduce her, Fawn’s life is turned upside down.
Zara Hoffman is a teen author. She spends most of her time doing homework and writing new stories. When she isn’t wrapped up in projects, Zara can be found relaxing with friends and family, listening to music, reading and writing, or playing with her dog, Riley. You can find her at her website, on Facebook or on Twitter.