First off, list three random facts about yourself.
- I’m a former Spanish teacher.
- I was born with a hole in my heart.
- I’m listed as an organ donor on my license.
Compelling, emotional, hopeful.
Can you describe your two main characters- Eagan and Amelia- in a sentence each? Also which one are you most like?
Eagan is hard-driving, competitive, and stubborn. Amelia is quiet and reflective. I’m not really like either one, but perhaps a tiny bit of both. I play tennis competitively, but I’ve always been kind of shy and quiet.
If In a Heartbeat had a theme song, what would it be?
My Heart Will Go On by Celine Dion (theme from Titanic)
I love that song along with the Titantic! =) Anyway, How did the title In a Heartbeat come to be?
The title was a suggestion by my agent. I’d originally had the title, Sounds of the Heart, but I wasn’t in love with that title. When she suggested In a Heartbeat, I liked it better than the one I had.
When my nephew died in a motorcycle accident, we discovered that he had signed up on his license to be an organ donor. They weren’t able to save his heart but many of his other organs were donated. When I was able to write again, I found that this was something positive that came out of his death and that’s what I wanted to write about. I’m sure it was therapy for me, a way to write through my grief.
How do you come up with your characters’ names? Is it something that comes to you easily, or do you go through many before deciding on the perfect one?
Both. Sometimes I just know the character’s name, other times I have to search for it. I had to search for Eagan’s name and ended up using the name of the town where my book group meets. Amelia was just a name that came to me, that I knew I wanted.
What part of the writing process to you find to be the most challenging?
Revision is always hard for me. Maybe it’s because I don’t always trust that I can do it – it’s always daunting. I end up retyping the whole thing so that it gives me more freedom to move away from my original manuscript, to go in new directions and go deeper.
What’s up next for you book-wise?
I’m working on a novel about a boy with a perfect memory who can’t forget – it’s a curse in many ways and it interferes with his daily life.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
This is my first blog tour, so thank you, Lauren, for being part of it and for this interview! For more news or to read sample chapters of In a Heartbeat, visit my website at: http://www.lorettaellsworth.com/. Or to see the book trailer, visit: http://www.custombooktrailer.com/.
Thanks so much, Loretta!