Questions that Matter with Autumn Murray

Circlet of Orchids: Inspired by a second chance love by [Murray, Autumn]

I asked the questions that matter of Autumn Murray! But first, the book:

And here’s a trailer:

Now let’s ask…

Hi, Autumn! Let’s start here: What’s your favorite word?

Gumption. I have had many moments in life where my gumption has been the only thing I had going for me. It’s staggering to see how far a person can go in their life if they posses this. This word holds a lot of meaning in Circlet of Orchids as well.

It took some gumption to answer these questions, no doubt! What’s your favorite sound?

The sound of the forest by far. I even put on forest sounds while I write, unless it’s a dry, warm day, then I’m writing in the forest on my laptop!

Writing with the trees! Love it! What is your favorite flower?

You guessed it! Orchids! Because the man who Max’s character was based on, my current husband gave them to me for my eighteenth birthday. They were our wedding flowers and I still get them every birthday and Valentine’s day.

I should have known! What would you tell your younger self?

To have faith in myself.

Short, but important advice! Have you ever had a dream at night that later came true?

Actually yes! This is also mentioned in the novel. I’ve always had a recurring dream since I was very young. In it, I’m a fairy and I meet a druid, horse and dog who all look exactly like the ones I have now. Even more eerie is the fact that when I was six, I wrote a novel which included a character with the same name as my husband. I illustrated him and he looks EXACTLY like him. Plus he has the same personality, does the same job for a living, etc… I was going to include this in Circlet of Orchids but I thought everyone would assume it was one of the fictional exaggerations.

How very eerie! What’s the meaning of life?

This is a highly subjective question. To me it is to make the very most of everything you have within yourself and that which is within your grasp. To strive for courage and love no matter how disheartened you may feel.

I always love the answers to this question! Finally, tell us something you have never told anyone else.

I just realized that my protagonist Ivy would answer all these questions the exact same way! I guess I put more of myself into that character than I realized!

Great minds think alike! Thank you, Autumn, for answering my important questions! Support Autumn by checking out the links below! Then join us in the forest next week for another author whose answers matter!

Happy reading! 🙂

Questions that Matter with H. El-Tahwagi

The Sign of Change by [El-Tahwagi, H]

I asked the questions that matter of H. El-Tahwagi! But first, the book:

Now the questions!

Nice to meet you, H.! Cook in or eat out?

On a normal scale, I’d say cook in. I’d rather eat at home than outside.
But, my time in NYC taught me that a good eat out can be everything. NYC offers so many amazing places for great food. Also, Paris has amazing restaurants, though quite expensive.
Anyway, keep in mind that home cooking is healthier.

And good for the soul! What’s the closest thing to real magic?

In my opinion, having your loved ones around you is real happiness. Thus, happiness is my definition of real magic.

That is going on my list of favorite answers! Tell us something you have never told anyone else.

My new novel, a thriller, will be out next year. I’m more than excited to share this news with you.
Besides, I want to tell you that I’m trying to raise attention to the importance of arts for education and knowledge. By using the hashtag #artsforknowledge, you can help make people, primarily schools, aware of the fact that subjects like music, art and drama/ literature, need more appreciation and acknowledgement in our system. Science is great and important, but it’s art that furthers our understanding of social structures and emotions.

Take note, readers, and use the hashtag! What is one of your favorite quotes?

“All grown-ups were once children… but only few of them remember it.” – Antoine de Saint- Exupery.

Be one of those few! If you could witness any event past, present or future, what would it be?

I’d probably like any time in the future where we can travel within minutes by merely pressing a button on a machine. I love traveling, but I hate long flights. I can hardly sleep on a plane. So, it’s always been a dream of mine to be able to go anywhere I want in no time and without losing sleep.

Someone needs to get on that invention quickly! Never trust a person who doesn’t like…

You! I truly mean it! You need honest, loving people around you to feel safe. Nothing is worse than trusting devious people. I guess it happened to everyone before – be it in a relationship or in your closest social environment.

Trust that answer! What would you tell your younger self?

I’d tell her to love herself more and to learn to appreciate and to enjoy the small things. Time went by so fast. Back in the days, I used to see so many of my friends and family more often – we took that for granted. Now, it’s all about making time to see each other. That’s the downside of being an adult, I guess.

One of the downsides…Have you ever had a dream at night that later came true?

Yes, it definitely happened before, and it still happens often, when I’m anxious, excited or anything of the sort. I do believe that we have a natural kind of intuition that gives us some kind of premonition of things. I guess, we do not see the future, but we see what is most probable or improbable to happen.

Keep dreaming, then! Thank you, H., for joining our squad! Support H. by following the links below! Then jump in your traveling machine and reemerge next Friday for another interview that matters!

Twitter: @HEITahwagi

Happy reading! 🙂

Questions that Matter with Kena Sosa

The Unhuggables

Kindertransport: a child's journey

I asked the questions that matter of Kena Sosa! But first, the books:

Kindertransport is a winner of Book Cover Contest for Authors Talk About It website for October/November 2017 and won silver in the chapter book/middle grade category for the Children’s Literary Classics Awards 2018! So very exciting!!

Now, some questions!

Hello, Kena! What’s your favorite sound?

I’m torn on this question. Hearing the words “I love you” is magical. However, if you want it to be only a sound, I would say the sound of a drum moves me. I have played percussion in a variety of formats since middle school-drumline, then taiko drumming, cajon and now hand drums. It is a primal yet enchanting sound and I can’t go long without it.

Drumroll, please! Do you know what your name means? Or who were you named after?

I was named after my paternal grandfather, Ken. They just feminized the name and here I am. However, I have researched it a little, and from what I found it seems to mean born of fire. I think it’s a pretty accurate description.

That name is hot! Favorite drink?

Well, coffee is my drug of choice, but if there is a drink that I would say is an indulgence it would be bubble tea! Chewing your drink is not for everyone but I can’t get enough of it.

I have heard of it but…not sure about that…Do you have an irrational fear?

Yes, I have a fear of flying. I have done it many times, but it petrifies me. One of my coworkers is a flight instructor and has literally taken me under his wing to teach me ground school in the effort to ease my anxiety about it. It holds me back as a wanderlust-driven traveler, so hopefully this works.

Don’t let my name fool you–I have a similar fear! What’s the most marvelous thing you have ever seen with your own eyes?

My sons light me up constantly. When they reach in for a hug and wear a smile ear to ear, there’s nothing like it. They are incredible and enchanting every day. I’m sure most parents feel that way. Outside of motherhood, I will say that this summer, I experienced some of the most amazing moments. One of which was on the bridge of a cargo ship that was bringing me back to the US from Europe. As we approached Charleston, South Carolina it had been raining. By the time we could see land, it was clearing. Plain as day there was a rainbow over Fort Sumter as if welcoming me back home from my journey. That is one I will never forget.

What an enchanting sight! Your life is being narrated! Who is doing the narration?

Well, my hero, Mr. T would narrate my life. He would pity all the fools I’ve ever encountered. I would love to meet him one day!

Love it! If you could add an appendage to your body, what would it be?

If I could have any extra appendage, it would be a prehensile tail to grab things. I’m a busy person so I can use all the help I can get. I can imagine climbing and holding onto tree branches with it too. I’d play pranks on people like tapping their shoulder behind their back with it then looking the other way. Monkey life sounds brilliant to me.

Sounds like fun! Thank you, Kena, for taking this important challenge! Support Kena by checking out the award-winning books and the links below! Feel that tap on your shoulder? That’s just me, telling you to come back next Friday for another author!

Happy reading! 🙂

Questions that Matter with J. D. Park

I asked the questions that matter of J.D. Park! But first, the book:

Now let’s ask…

Hello, J.D.! What’s your biggest screw up in the kitchen?

This question is tough as I have had so very many. I am absolutely not someone who enjoys cooking. My husband cooks 90% of our meals. He’s amazing. I have burned, overcooked, undercooked, over seasoned, mixed up table and teaspoons; you name it, I’ve done it. I’d say that the one thing I screw up in the kitchen consistently is EGGS! I am the worst. They are always way overdone. They end up rubbery and all around disgusting, even writing about them now makes me dread the next time I cook them! 

That answer is eggs-cellent! Ha-ha! *clears throat* Sorry. What’s your favorite sound?

This is an easy question for me to answer, the sound of my kid’s laughter. They are still young and laugh with their whole bodies. It’s hard to hear that sound and not smile. Sometimes, when I listen to them laughing, I know they are doing something they shouldn’t because nothing you are supposed to do generates that much laughter but I will let it slide for an extra second just to soak up that sound.

I will agree with that one! Do you believe in love at first sight?

No. I believe in lust and attraction at first sight but not love. At least not the lasting kind. Love takes time to develop. It takes getting to know, really know, a person. It takes seeing flaws and deciding to look past them because the other character traits a person has far out way the flaws. Being physically attracted to someone is easy. Loving someone you truly know, that’s special, and that takes time.

I respect that answer! Are you usually early, late, or on time?

I, personally, am early. I live in the country, so I always estimate the drive time taking longer than it usually does because I never know what I might get stuck behind (tractor, sheep…). My kids, however, make me less early and more on time than I would like. We are still rarely late but as the saying goes, “If you can’t be on time, be early.”

I will take that advice to heart! What would you tell your younger self?

So much. SO. MUCH. I’d start with all the basics; Everything you are worried about right now, you won’t care about in the future. Don’t worry so much what others think of you, worry what you think of you. Work harder in school now because it’ll make it easier later on. All of the standard life tips. Then I’d tell me the stuff I really need to hear. Hold out for the good things in life because you do deserve them. Make sure you help as many people as you can whenever you can. It’ll make you a much happier person and might even change someone’s life along the way. Surround yourself with people who want good things for you. The people who lift you up and root you on; those are the people you need to find and keep. And perhaps the most important thing I can tell my younger self is: You don’t need to have all the answers now or even later. Life is messy and ever-changing. Adapt as things come, learn from the things you didn’t like the outcome of and make better, more informed decisions going forward. None of us have it all figured out, and that’s not only okay, it’s how it’s supposed to be.

Listen to that all you young ones out there! What’s the most marvelous thing you have ever seen with your own eyes?

I’ve seen it twice, and I can’t imagine anything ever being more marvelous than this; When the Dr. held up my newborn and said “It’s a boy” and the second time “It’s a girl.” We didn’t find out the gender of our babies. We went old school and had yellow, green and beige everything. Not knowing who these little humans were until they came into the world was just amazing. When my son was born, I couldn’t believe we had a boy. I was shocked. My husband is a big brother, so he wanted a boy for that reason. I only have an older sister, so a boy seemed so abstract to me but when they said “it’s a boy,” I was shocked. I knew I would never love anything as much as I loved that baby and that was miraculous. Three years and 11 hours later they said “girl” and it floored me. We knew we weren’t going to have any more after the second regardless of the gender but secretly hoped for a girl. I wanted my husband to be able to experience the daddy/daughter love that I was getting with mother/son relationship. I knew that day that if I had ten kids, I’d love each of them as much as I did that first time I saw my son. The love multiplies. And when my son first held his baby sister, talk about heart exploding.

My heart just eggs-ploded with joy at that answer! (I’ll stop soon, I promise!) If you had to live without one of the five senses, which sense do you give up?

I think I’d give up the ability to smell. I couldn’t give up sight. Not being able to see my kid’s faces would be heartbreaking. Sound falls under the same category; their laughter is too important. Touch would be tragic. Never feeling a hug from my husband, never receiving the comfort a touch can bring, nope. I guess I could stand to lose taste but without taste, smell would be torture…So smell it is!

That question is eggs-treme! Oh, yes! Thank you, J.D., for answering my all-important questions! Support J.D. by checking out the links below! Next week, we’ll be here, bad puns and all, to listen to another interview!

Twitter: @JDParkauthor

Happy reading! 🙂