Saturday, December 28, 2013

Interview with Author Maria Grazia Swan

Maria Grazia Swan
Phoenix, Arizona

Welcome to Vision and Verse, the Place for Art and Authors today, Maria Grazia.  We're happy to have you here with us.  Tell us a little about yourself and what you've written.
I have two series out at the moment, Mina’s adventures and what I like to call the Moon series, however my publisher refers to it as Lella York’s series. I also have a variety of non-fiction credits because I used to write relationships columns for singles who weren’t born yesterday and ended up with a book on the subject, Mating Dance. 

What is your favorite genre to write? 
I LOOOVE to write suspense with romantic elements, lots of romantic elements, but not enough to qualify as Romantic Suspense. Must be my Italian seeping through, I insert love in all my stories.

Favorite food. 
Can I say chocolate? If not, pasta. Pasta and bread are my comfort food. Except when a man invites me to a dinner date and asks the same question I say steak, potato and a glass of wine. The sure thing. How can you mess up a steak and a baked potato? I don’t want to spend my date-time discussing food, I rather discuss more personal subjects.

Tea or coffee?
Coffee. I’m Italian, remember?

Yes, I remember.  So am I!  Pizza or ice cream? 
I would pick pizza, not much of an ice cream person.

Where would you like to visit? 
I have Australia and New Zeeland on my bucket list.

Favorite musical artist. 
That’s a hard question. I tend to change my mind according to the mood, the weather, the daily news…and the person sitting next to me.

Do you listen to music when you write?  
What? Nope, I need silence.

Me, too.  I am too easily distracted!  What makes you laugh? 
The older I get the more I laugh. Little things that would have annoyed me to death a few years ago, I now find entertaining. Go figure!

How old were you when you started writing?
I won my first literary contest when I was 14, I’m guessing I started as a kid?

Describe your perfect evening. 
Dinner Al Fresco with friends, loud mouth friends…drinking Prosecco, ending up in someone’s home for coffee and chatting until the wee hours.

Where do you get your inspiration? 
People I’ve known. People I know. People I love. And the ones I despise. Memories, possibilities, dreams and never ending hopes. We could say I’m inspired by my feelings.

What do you do when you get a writer's block?
I fill out interview forms…☺

Who is your favorite author? 
Too many to list.

I hear Carol Ann Kauffman is pretty good.  Best book you ever read.
I honestly hope I haven’t read it yet. 

Who is the one person who has influenced your personal life the most and why?
My grandfather. My blog is called Stories my grandfather told me and other tall tales. The photo on the blog page is of my grandfather and his beloved dog Roma. The photo was taken in 1936, I wrote a story about the dog, I write many stories about my grandfather. Some of the stories were told to me by my grandmother. Okay, moving on, getting misty.

If you could sit down and have a conversation with ONE person, living or dead, real or fictional, who would it be and why?
By now it should be obvious, my grandfather. Want to make sure he is reading my stories up in heaven.

What advice would you give someone who aspired to be a writer?
Know that whatever you want to write about is probably already out there. However, no one can write like you do, your voice is unique, so go ahead, write from the heart and persevere. 

These last thirty days have been very interesting to say the least. In November I released Italian Summer, book 3 of the Mina’s adventures series. This is very special to me because I went back home to Italy, province of Vicenza (around Venice) to look at my small town with clean eyes and while doing that, lots of forgotten memories came hurling back. By the way, in the book I never mention the name of the small town where I was born and grew up because I want to make sure I’ll be allowed back.

Then on December 1 my publisher released Gemini Moon, (love the cover) the first of the new series. My main protagonist is a little older than the one in my first series. She is of course Italian born, don’t know how else to write…but she has a son in his twenty, a movie star no less. Okay, I better stop here.

It was a pleasure to have you with us, Maria Grazia.  Please come back and see us again.  Best of luck to you in all your writing endeavors!  

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