Happy Sunday! Today I’m interviewing author Kimberly Brock, whose newest novel THE LOST BOOK OF ELEANOR DARE comes out in just a couple short weeks on April 12! The tagline of the book is “The fate of the world is often driven by the curiosity of a girl.” That line alone makes me excited to dig into this story, but knowing the book involves the Lost Colony of Roanoke, an abandoned family home, an inheritance, a young teen girl, and Savannah, Georgia–yep, I’m in. Sign me up. You can find out more about Kimberly and her books on her website here. I hope you enjoy the interview!
»»Give us a quick overview of the books you’ve written.
KB: My first book, The River Witch, is a bittersweet southern literary fiction that won the Georgia Author of the Year Award in 2013 for debut novel. My next novel, The Lost Book of Eleanor Dare, a historical southern women’s fiction, will release from Harper Muse Books in April 2022.
»»What’s the hardest or best criticism you’ve received on your work, either as you were editing, revising, or getting feedback?
KB: When I signed with my current agent, she read my manuscript and gushed over it, but then told me I still had half of the story in my head and not on the page. She helped me find courage to write the parts I was afraid to write and somehow knew what I was holding back. She helped me give myself permission.
»»Funniest thing that’s happened during a book signing or book tour?
KB: Being mistaken for the TV character Kimberly Brock (Holly Combs) from Picket Fences by a student who attended an author talk at Old Dominion University. He was clearly disappointed.
»»Did you always know you wanted to be an author? Or was there a specific idea or event that spurred your desire?
KB: My first memory of visiting the public library in Dalton, Ga. was a revelation for a girl who regularly received “talks too much” on her report cards. I looked at all the shelves of books and saw a way to tell stories forever.
»»Describe your writing process. Is it orderly, scheduled, daily? Erratic, middle-of-the-night, gimme-a-piece-of-paper now? Or something in between?
KB: Somewhere in between. I do all of these. Writing isn’t ever just one of these things because we’re telling our stories to ourselves before they ever reach paper or screen. They live with us, go about our days with us, haunt our dreams. They haunt my shower, especially.
»»Is there a topic/theme/setting you’re particularly interested in that you’d like to write about in a future book?
KB: The in-between places, the thing behind the thing, all sorts of contrast – these themes always interest me, both literally and figuratively. If there’s a door, I want to know what’s on the other side. If there’s a wall, I want to climb it. If there’s a lake, I want to see beneath the water. If there’s a mirror, I want to go through it.
»»Assuming all writers are also avid readers, what’s the strangest/most inappropriate place you’ve ever brought a book to read? (Example, a family dinner, a baseball game, etc.)
KB: Is there an inappropriate place? Maybe I’m doing this wrong.
»»What books are on your bedside table right now? (Or in your bag, your car, or wherever you keep your current reads.)
KB: Circe, Addie LaRue, The Book of Magic. I’m rereading these for Spring because the language inspires me, along with some early copies of books that I hope to endorse. That’s on my bedside table. Don’t ask me about the floor!
»»What are your pet peeves as a reader?
KB: Dialect, almost always. I just can’t stand it.
»»Books: print or e-reader? Similarly, calendar: paper or electronic?
KB: I’ll read any way I can get it for research, but I prefer print for pleasure. I need to hold a book to really sink into the story the way I like. I think it’s about how you fall in love with reading, if you carry that tactile muscle memory of a physical book in your hands. And maybe it’s like needing to pull a pencil or pen across paper to activate a certain part of your mind. That’s true for me, too.
»»Favorite ice cream flavor?
KB: Chocolate when it’s cold out and peach when it’s warm.
»»Coffee or tea? Or something else?
KB: Coffee. All. The. Coffee.
»»If you can, tell us what you’re working on now.
KB: A story about ghost stories.
Thank you so much Kimberly! And thank you all for reading. Check out Kimberly’s books and keep your eye on her Instagram on April 12!
See you back here in two weeks for the Sunday Dish!