Oct 9, 2015

INTERVIEW: LEYLAH ATTAR!


Favorite pastime?

I love observing nature. Whether it's the first, soft flakes of snow, or the sun setting beyond the ocean, it always puts things in perspective, and fills me with a sense of awe and wonder. I enjoy photography too, although if you ask my husband, it's mostly pics of food that I haven’t cooked :P


What's the last book you read?

The last book I read was Before We Were Strangers, by Renee Carlino. I'm currently reading The Wrath and The Dawn, by Renee Ahdieh, in paperback. On my kindle, I just downloaded The Air He Breathes, by Brittainy C. Cherry, and on my PC, I have a top secret manuscript by an author friend :)


Do you plan or go with the flow when it comes to writing?

It's a bit of both. I usually start with a beginning and an ending, and go where the characters take me in-between. I wish outlining the whole story worked for me, because it's kind of scary - taking a leap of faith, handing yourself over to the creative process and hoping it will fill in the blanks.


Most influential book you've ever read?

Every book I've read has shaped me in some way - some with the themes they tackle, some with characters that stay with you, and some with lush, evocative prose. There are some amazing books and authors out there that continue to inspire and motivate me!


Describe yourself in three words.

I'm a curious, constantly-evolving changeling.


Where did you get the idea for The Paper Swan? Were the setting/characters inspired by any person or place that exists in real life?

I like to play the devil's advocate. Consciously or subconsciously, we perceive the world through our own set of beliefs - rights and wrongs - that we imbibe socially, culturally, through our friends, peers and family. Could we ever identify with someone whose actions we would never condone? My first novel, 53 Letters For My Lover, was about a woman having an affair. The Paper Swan is about a kidnapper/murderer. There is no right or wrong way to feel about these characters. It's more about the experience, an exploration of your own psyche, learning who you are, what your limits are, what you can accept, what you will reject. A lot of the cartel-related characters and scenes in The Paper Swan are based on real-life articles that I came across while researching that part of the novel.


What's your favorite genre to write and/or read?

I will read just about anything, including how-to-manuals...lol. Sometimes I need a dark thriller, sometimes I need a steamy romance. It all depends on where I'm at and what I'm craving. Similarly, my writing tends to sprawl around a central love story. The tone will vary. It may have an HEA, it may not. 


There is some Spanish in The Paper Swan. Do you speak the language or did you research it? Were there any difficulties because of that when writing the book? (Here in Chatterbooks our first language is Spanish, and let us tell you: THE SPANISH WAS SPOT ON IN THIS BOOK!)

I am so happy to hear that! That was one of my biggest concerns and challenges while writing The Paper Swan. I wanted the cultural aspects and language to be as authentic as possible. I don't speak Spanish, so it took lots of research, and I will be forever grateful to the Spanish-speaking readers who chimed in with their feedback before publication. The online reading community continues to blow me away. It is filled with some of the most amazing, graceful, generous people I have ever met.


Tease us! What are you currently working on? What can readers expect from your next book and/or future works?

I have a bunch of ideas simmering for the next novel. I haven't decided which one to go with yet, but you can expect another epic love story, set in a different part of the world.


We love stalking authors! Where can readers find you? (Social media links and information about any future signings)

I love hearing from readers! You can connect with me here:
Website: http://www.leylahattar.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/leylah.attar
Twitter: https://twitter.com/leylahattar
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/leylahattar/
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8126161.Leylah_Attar



THE PAPER SWAN





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