Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Elizabeth Chiles Shelburne's Debut Author Spotlight #NewBook at Operation Awesome

Debut Author Spotlight from @JLenniDorner on @OpAwesome6

Holding On To Nothing by Elizabeth Chiles Shelburne

1- What are some great beers to try this autumn?

@SingleCutBeer Jennie Said, @lamplighterbrew Birds of a Feather, @exhibitAbrewing Cat's Meow and @CollectiveBrew Ransack the Universe.

2- Would you please, in 160 characters or less, give a #WriteTip ?

Don’t write, type. Don’t get hung up on perfection, just move your fingers.

3- What ignited your passion for writing?

My mom was a writer and I always admired that. I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t writing or telling stories. I wrote my first book at age 7 with a friend - it was an illustrated book about homophones, words that sound alike but have different meanings. One of our truly inspired illustrations was a steak on a stake.

4- What are your views on American gun reform laws?

I grew up hunting so have no problems with rifles and shotguns for that, but I find handguns terrifying and can see no justification for assault rifles and semi-automatic weapons.

5- What's your Twitter handle, and do you have two or three writer friends on there to shout-out to for #WriterWednesday ?

@ecshelburne . I would shout out: @kellyjford , @jenniewoodanddid, and @emilyross

6- Would you share a picture with us of your book on a nightstand book pile?

7- In your opinion, what's one way to improve the health, and healthcare needs, of the world?

Preventative care. I grew up in a place that has a distinct lack of good primary care, and is currently subject to what looks like a truly terrible consolidation of care at the hospital level. We need more primary care doctors and more hospitals that cater to the needs of their communities.

8- What most motivates you to read a new book?

The characters and the setting. I’ll read anything that it is set in Appalachia and anything that features regular people trying to live their lives.

9- What is your favorite book by someone else, what's the author's Twitter handle, and what do you love most about that book? #FridayReads book recommendation time!

Author name:Robert Gipe @robertgipe
Title: Trampoline
Love because: It’s an incredibly complex novel/graphic novel about growing up in Appalachia. Dawn Jewell is one of the toughest characters I’ve ever met, and I just couldn’t stop reading her story.

10- What emotions do you hope your book will evoke for the reader, and is there a particular scene you hope will resonate with readers?

I hope my book hits all the emotions! There is a lot of sweetness and laughter, but also a hefty dose of sorrow in my book. I think the scene that will resonate most with people is the one in which Jeptha has to make a tough decision about his dog, Crystal Gayle.

11- Do you have a favorite #bookstagram image or account/ profile?

I have two! I always read Amy at @thesoutherngirlreads. I love her reviews, and her stories always make me feel like I’m sitting on a porch drinking wine and talking about books with a friend. And, of course, Stacey at @Prose_and_Palate. She reads great books, has a wonderful way with words, and she and Amy have both been huge supporters of my book, for which I will forever be grateful!

12- How do you hope your book will help readers in their life?

Jeptha and Lucy don’t have a lot going for them and yet, they keep going. They keep pushing through and trying to achieve their desire. I think we all have those times in our lives and I hope their story, while sad, will leave people with some hope.

13- What is the most memorable trait or visual oddity of one of your characters?

Cody’s mullet.

14- #WeNeedDiverseBooks What's your favorite book with a diverse main character?

Right now, On the Come Up, Angie Thomas. I recently read this and loved it. Her protagonist Bri is whipsmart, so focused, and determined to triumph over her circumstances. I loved it.

15- Why do you think readers should write book reviews?

My favorite books have come from friends telling me about a book they think I would love, whether that’s over a cup of coffee or in a conversation on social media. It’s such a joy to be able to connect someone with a book they love and reviews help do that!

16- Do you have one question or discussion topic which you would like the readers of this interview to answer or remark on in the comments?

My goal with this book was to try to portray the Appalachia I grew up in more accurately than I saw it being portrayed in the news media. I’d love for people to read this interview and want to read other novels set there, such as Trampoline by @robert_gipe , Southernmost by @silasdhouse and anything by @CrystalWilki

17- Anything else you would care to share about your book and yourself?

Elizabeth Chiles Shelburne grew up reading, writing, and shooting in East Tennessee. After graduating from Amherst College, she worked at The Atlantic Monthly. Her nonfiction work has been published in The Atlantic Monthly, Boston Globe, and Globalpost, among others and her short fiction has appeared in The Broad River Review and Barren Magazine. Her essay on how killing a deer made her a feminist was published in Click! When We Knew We Were Feminists, edited by Courtney E. Martin and J. Courtney Sullivan. She is a graduate of Grub Street’s Novel Incubator. She lives outside Boston with her husband and four children. You can find her at @ecshelburne(twitter), @ecshelburneauthor (instagram) and Elizabeth Chiles Shelburne (Facebook).

You can find an excerpt from the book at:

Or see me reading another excerpt at:

Holding On To Nothing by Elizabeth Chiles Shelburne

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