Sunday, November 4, 2012

Interview with Laurel Osterkamp

Happy Sunday, and welcome to Storm Goddess book Reviews!  Please help me welcome Laurel Osterkamp, author of November Surprise.

Laurel, welcome to my blog! And thanks for taking the time out to answer my questions.

Tell me about yourself, and your writing.
Well, I live in Minneapolis with my husband, my seven-year-old son, and my two-year-old daughter. We also have a cat. I teach English at a local high school, which is sometimes great, but I’d love to write fulltime. I like to write about realistic situations with intelligent and strong female leads.
How long have you been writing? How many published books do you have, and what genres?
I’ve been writing novels for around eight years. I’ve written three full length novels: Following My Toes, Starring in the Movie of My Life, and November Surprise.
Also, two novellas: Looking for Ward and Campaign Promises
They’re all women’s fiction.

Do you write in multiple genres or just one? If just one, do you ever consider straying outside your genre?

I think I’ll stick with women’s fiction; it’s what comes naturally. I like dystopian stories and metaphysical stuff, but I feel I’m much better at creating characters than I am at plots. You need to be really good at plots to write books like The Hunger Games.

Are you a plotter or do you write from the seat of your pants?

Definitely the seat of my pants! If I think too hard about the plot I become blocked. I’m much better off just sitting down at my computer and seeing what happens.

What is a typical writing day like for you?

It’s anytime I’m not working, my daughter is napping, and my son is somehow occupied.

Who do you love to read? Favorite authors, favorite books?

I like Emily Giffin and Jennifer Weiner. They’re very prolific, and I love how they’ve helped to redefine the romantic heroine. Good in Bed was one of the first “chick lit” novels with a flawed main character, who was beautiful and strong in her own way.Something Borrowed was similar.

What is something you'd like to accomplish in your writing career next year?

Selling a lot of books would be nice. J
Besides that, I’d like to continue on with Lucy’ blog (she’s the main character from November Surprise) and start a new book, inspired by my jury duty from last spring.

If you could have one paranormal ability, what would it be?

Stopping time! Imagine the things you could get done.

If you could keep a mythical/ paranormal creature as a pet, what would you have?

I wasn’t sure, so I asked my son. He said a plata-turtle, which is a combo between a platypus and a turtle. A male platypus is special because he can lay eggs, and turtles are just really cool.

Tell us a little about your latest release.

November Surprise is a love story, but it uses presidential politics as a backdrop. I’ve always been a political junkie, and if you look back at past elections they say a lot about the mood of the entire country at the time they took place. So I made a main character, Lucy, who likes to analyze politics and relate it to her own personal situation. She falls in love with a man she doesn’t think she can have, and through the years she comes to terms with both her personal life and with her public one.

What is something that you absolutely can't live without? (Other than family members)

I’m pretty attached to my computer. Internet, writing, entertainment… it just gives and gives.

Could you ever co author a book with someone? If so, who would you choose, and what would you write?

Maybe my best friend or my mother. They’re both writers too, and we think in similar ways. They like different genres though, so I’m not sure what we would write.

If you could spend a day with anyone from history, dead or alive, who would it be, and what would you do? What would you ask them?

Probably Robert Kennedy. I always found him fascinating, and I want to know which rumors about him and his family are actually true.

What are some of your other hobbies outside of writing?

Exercise, cooking, reading, watching TV, shopping for boots
If you were on the staff to have a book adapted to movie, what would you pick?

Is it egotistical to pick one of my own books? I’d love to see Starring in the Movie of My Life made into a movie, since it’s already sort of a tribute to film.

What is a talent you wish you had, but don't?

I wish I could sing and play the piano.

Favorite color?


Weather: Hot or cold?

Cold, I guess. I love autumn weather.

Favorite place to read?

The bathtub. J That can be hard with a kindle.

Favorite meal

Chile rellenos followed by chocolate cake.

Favorite non-alcoholic drink.

Definitely Diet Coke!

If you could travel anywhere and do anything, no limits or money holding you back, where would you go?

I know it’s sort of boring to say somewhere that’s in the U.S., but I’m going to pick the Florida Keyes. A friend of mine went there a couple of years ago, and it sounds amazing. The Atlantic is so warm, and I’ve never really seen that part of the country. Plus, the Cuban influence sounds cool.

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