Filipino Author. Traveller. Dreamer.

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Monday, 8 February 2016

Interview with Dawn Lanuza, Author of The Hometown Hazard

18:41 Posted by Cindy Wong Dela Cruz , , No comments

Hi everyone! 

This will be the first time that I will be interviewing for The Bookish Blog Tours, and I'm more than thrilled to announce that in this blog post, I am going to share with you Dawn Lanuza's answers to our 5 questions which will be about the book and her experiences as a writer. 

Firstly, I have to comment that the cover photo looks really nice, and the story? Intriguing. See synopsis below:

"Jules Coronado has been away from her hometown for almost a decade but when an intruder breaks in to her childhood home, she finds herself coming back. Changes evidently took place in her small town, including her childhood best friend’s younger brother, Kip – now tall, slightly scruffed, all grown up and caught climbing into their garden wall. Kip Villamor has a mission and despite Jules’ doubts, they team up: going on fieldtrips, tackling unsuspecting men, and trespassing offices to dig up dirt. But Jules has secrets of her own, one that might be exposed – unless she keeps her walls up. But climbing walls are Kip’s forte, remember? Will her secrets keep her on his side, or will it force her to disappear again?"

Now, that's an interesting book! 
Read on for the interview:

1. Tell us about what inspired or motivates you in writing Jules & Kip's story? 
I can’t remember now what exactly inspired me to write Jules and Kip’s story but last year I was reading books that are not exactly on my usual TBR-pile. I’m a YA girl at heart and I like chick lit/ flicks in general, but last year, I just started reading new adult romance books and YA with a bit of mystery/ crime in it, so I guess that hugely influenced me when I started plotting for The Hometown Hazard. 

2. Tell us more about this hometown? How's the setting of this story like?
I think the hometown in this book is hugely influenced by my mother’s hometown. When I was a kid, we moved from the city to this small town in Quezon, and I remember seeing how different life was between these two places. So yeah, there was definitely a lot of my hometown in this book: how fiestas are a big deal for the town, the cockfighting, the parades…

3. How long did it take you in writing this story? Were the characters based from real life ones? 
It took around five months to finish this book. I was aiming for three, but I had to put it down for a while because I thought it wasn’t ready yet. But I couldn’t quite let it go so I picked it up again and finished it. Characters weren’t based on anyone although I do have pegs for them – for example, for Jules’ dad, I see him as the late Edward Herrmann, Rory Gilmore’s grandfather from Gilmore Girls. And Kip – I’d like to keep that one for myself. I want the readers to have their own version of Kip. 

4. What are usually your writing habits? Do you have any tips for those who wanted to write love stories like you do?
As far as writing habits go, when I already have this story in my head and I can’t forget it and feel this need to write it, I make sure to write every day. Even if sometimes it seems impossible to write something, I try to squeeze it in before passing out. I’d write it in a notebook or my phone notes. Doesn’t matter if I’m writing the scenes chronologically too, sometimes the ending comes first, so I write that down. Sometimes I can’t seem to write descriptions and narrations and I only have two people talking in my head (dialogues) so I just write that down instead. I don’t think everything will come to you perfectly when you’re writing, sometimes it’s just pieces and you’ll just have to tie them together when you have enough of the pieces around. As far as tips go –apart from writing every day (at least when you’re in the middle of writing something), go for the crazy ideas. I mean, it’s fiction. You can totally explore a what if scenario here. Same goes for love stories. For my first book The Boyfriend Backtrack, when people hear the synopsis, some of them are a bit reluctant because it sounds crazy! But that’s what I love about fiction. It’s okay to be out there. So if you have a crazy idea for a story in your head – one that you think you might not be able to do with your own life (because we have to be more logical than fictional characters haha), just go with it.

5. Do you ever have writer's block? What do you with it?
Yes, I do! I wish I’m super human so I don’t get to suffer from days when words are scarce and difficult. But I do, so for days like these, I just let myself be the receiver. Instead of forcing myself to create something, I take a break, I read books, I watch movies/ TV shows, I go out and talk to my friends. That always seems to work as far as getting inspiration. 

--

PS: I love this woman already! Haha! 

Book Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Available on Buqo!
Author Links: Blog | Twitter | Instagram

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About Me

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I love traveling and being immersed with different cultures. It has cultivated my love for learning and has exposed me to different perspectives. I'm a travel specialist during the day, while writing has always been my first love (considering my love of books, of course). I am an editor of Lapis sa Kalye (Hindi ito ang normal mong nababasa)**a Facebook page which promotes Philippine Literature, one of the writers of the published book - **PENDULUM. I was also the Editor in Chief of our online magazine which published free literary works. I also post my works in Wattpad reaching more than 70k reads.

And when I need a real breather, I take pictures and edit them. I'm still developing my style in this area, I don't usually follow Photography rules, I just try to have fun along the way.

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