Sep 30, 2015
About The Author:
Leah Bobet is a bookseller, publisher, and editor as well as a Pushcart-Prize nominated author. She lives in Toronto. www.leahbobet.com
About The Book:
Title: AN INHERITANCE OF ASHES
Author: Leah Bobet
Release Date: October 6, 2015
Publisher: Clarion Books
Formats: Hardcover, eBook
The strange war down south—with its rumors of gods and monsters—is over. And while sixteen-year-old Hallie and her sister wait to see who will return from the distant battlefield, they struggle to maintain their family farm.
When Hallie hires a veteran to help them, the war comes home in ways no one could have imagined, and soon Hallie is taking dangerous risks—and keeping desperate secrets. But even as she slowly learns more about the war and the men who fought it, ugly truths about Hallie’s own family are emerging. And while monsters and armies are converging on the small farm, the greatest threat to her home may be Hallie herself.Find the book Online:
Why I Became Stayed a Writer
As part of the blog tour for An Inheritance of Ashes, The Moonlight Gleams team asked me to share a bit about why I became a writer—what inspired me to take this on as a career.
It’s a story that…well, I wish it was interesting. Sorry.
I wrote a lot as a kid: There is still likely a box at my parents’ house full of very involved stories in crayon, and I still have the files of the seven-novel fantasy epic I started when I was nine (terminated abruptly in book three when a side character decided that both Good and Evil were a little too happy ignoring what regular people wanted, and used her one, magic, universe-defining wish to wipe them both off the planet. Apparently I already had my priorities down.)
I dropped writing for most of high school, and then when I was eighteen and in a gap year between high school and university, I had a story in my head. I got a little obsessed with it. I put it down on paper, and asked some friends who wrote fanfic: What do I even do with this now?
One (he’s a musician and film blogger these days) pointed me toward the online workshop he used sometimes to get critiques for his then-in-progress seven-novel fantasy epic (you will sense a theme here). I posted that story for a few critiques. A few months and drafts later, I sold it. And then, flush with the success of remembering what it was like to be good at something in a year that had been very bad to me, I just…neglected to stop writing. I kept going. Sometimes I quit for months or years at a time, and put myself into school or work or other pursuits. But I keep coming back to fiction. Ultimately, I’m still here.
That’s the story.
See? I told you it wasn’t that good.
A lot of the authors I know say that they couldn’t imagine doing anything else; that no matter what happened, they’d still be writing. I’m not that author, and I never have been, really: I’ve always been a person who’s interested in about fifteen more things than she has time to do. I would love to work in urban agriculture or get a planning degree; I would love to throw my life into city politics and make my town a kinder, more equitable place to live; I would love to learn a programming language or two and make weird, arty, goofy video games, or open a tea house and host community art nights. I don’t think I’m really a very interesting person, but I’m always very interested. I am 100% sure that if someone wiped a very, very specific part of my brain and I could never write fiction again, I would last maybe a week before I found something else to be absolutely, passionately interested in.
So, maybe a more interesting answer for you is why I’ve stayed a writer. Why every time I take time away, I wind up coming back to fiction instead of flying out into the big, wide world.
It’s a question I’ve given quite a lot of thought to, and the only answer I’ve found is that same sense of curiosity. Of being very, very interested.
Writing fiction for a living does a lot to let you explore, for a job that mostly consists of boarding yourself up with a laptop in a little room. For my first novel, Above, I looked through historical sites and old graveyards and learned the history of mental health treatment in Toronto. For An Inheritance of Ashes, I got to study the ins and outs of running a small farm, learned to can preserves, made soap, and chewed on some very serious questions about what a good relationship really looks like. The project I’m working on now? Geology. Machine design. Ballet and tai chi. They’re all new systems for me. I’m excited.
That exploration is what gets me back to the desk when this job—like all jobs—is hard and frustrating and I fantasize about running away to become Satan’s press secretary because it’s clearly a much lower-stress career path. I always want to do fifteen more things than I have time for, and I don’t expect that if I got that tea house, or that planning degree, I’d be satisfied for more than two years. I’d start to itch. I’d get restless. Because there are fifteen things out there, and I could be doing them. I could be exploring that fascinating thing just over the hill, right there.
So I stay a writer because it’s the life I don’t have to quit to start something new. It’s my little thread of continuity. When I write about one of my two-year passions, one of my curiosities, I’ve already applied that knowledge in a useful way. I’m free to learn yet another thing without anyone—me included—saying the time spent on the last one was a waste; free to bend my curiosity on one more piece of human knowledge and just enjoy the act of figuring out how something works. I get to stay interested.
I am rarely, if ever, bored.
So that’s not the story of why I got here. But getting there is a thing you only do once. Every day, I choose to stay here, and that’s the story of why I stay.
3 winners will receive a finished copy of AN INHERITANCE OF ASHES. US Only.