Today’s featured debut author is Sabrynne McLain who offers a truly insightful and in-depth look at the road to publication for her novel, When Red Is Blue.
Name of book: When Red Is Blue
Book genre: Contemporary drama/literary fiction
Date published: February 2012
Publisher: Elevin Books
What is your day job? Proofreader and editor
What is your book about? The theme of the book deals with how children are affected by parents who suffer from some form of dysfunction – in my book’s case, mental illness and alcoholism. The story is based on my own childhood experiences. The “in a nutshell” description is:
Kate Faraday, a young woman from a small town in Michigan, dreams of leaving her past behind her and moving to California. But when her schizophrenic mother is found dead in a ravine, Kate is forced to examine her conflicting emotions over her mother’s death, while coping with the demands of her alcoholic father and local residents who witnessed the shame of her childhood. In the end, Kate discovers that the most difficult relationship to reconcile is the one she has with herself.
Why did you want to write this book? When I turned 30, I realized I wanted to be a writer. I bought and studied numerous books on writing and, about six months later, began writing my first novel. I opted for the romance genre, which I thought would be a lighthearted way to start my new passion. My first attempt at a book was loads of fun to write, but then I decided I wanted to apply to the University of Iowa’s MFA program in Creative Writing. The application asked for 75 pages of a manuscript. I was too embarrassed to give them the opening chapters of my little smut novel, thinking it wasn’t serious enough. Then I recalled all the people over the years who had suggested I write a book about my family, so I started When Red Is Blue. I got to page 75 and kept going.