Saturday, December 26, 2015

0 Estelle Laure, author of THIS RAGING LIGHT, on giving the writing gods opportunities to inspire

We're thrilled to have Estelle Laure with us to share more about her debut novel THIS RAGING LIGHT.

Estelle, what scene was really hard for you to write and why, and is that the one of which you are most proud? Or is there another scene you particularly love?

I love the scenes between Lucille and Eden at the river. The setting has a magic to it with the trees and the moon, and the conversations remind me of an intimacy that is particular to female relationships at that age. Delicious.

What book or books would most resonate with readers who love your book--or visa versa?

I’m told I’m in the Jandy Nelson/ Rainbow Rowell universe, although I bow down to them, as well I should.

How long did you work on THIS RAGING LIGHT? 

About a year-and-a-half alone, and then another six months of edits.

What did this book teach you about writing or about yourself?

Ummm…that plot is my biggest weakness (in my opinion anyway). The characters come to me, I know what I’m going for thematically, the things that are important to me like community and loyalty, difficult truth-seeking, the aforementioned love, but then what? What happens? I don’t think I’ll ever be a writer who plots things out in advance, but I’m working on more of a focus on action.

What do you hope readers will take away from THIS RAGING LIGHT?

Two main things: that truth is sometimes inconvenient and ignoring it costs, and that community and caring for those around us is not only important, but necessary.

What's your writing ritual like? Do you listen to music? Work at home or at a coffee shop or the library, etc?

I work wherever and whenever I can. Sometimes I get up at five to write for an hour, other days I write all day. I do my best to show up no matter what. When I’m having a really hard time, I dress up like I’m going to an office job or sometimes even on a date. Otherwise I’m in danger of the messy bun/long gross sweater/sweats look. I avoid music with words while I’m writing because I am so lyric-driven and as soon as I hear something interesting I forget what I’m doing and listen. I do, however, like to sink into music before I write. I also sometimes dance. Not when I’m working in coffee shops. That would be inappropriate.

What advice would you most like to pass along to other writers?

Read widely and often. Read outside of your comfort zone and seek out articles in odd magazines. Watch movies. Investigate art. Take walks. Travel as much as you can, even if it’s only to the next town over. Best to give the writing gods as many opportunities to communicate and inspire as possible.

What are you working on now?

A YA called These Mighty Forces, a companion to This Raging Light. That’s all I’m saying for now except that it’s about love love love!


This Raging Light by Estelle Laure
HMH Books for Young Readers
Released 12/22/2015

Can the best thing happen at the worst time? Her dad went crazy. Her mom left town. She has bills to pay and a little sister to look after. Now is not the time for level-headed seventeen-year-old Lucille to fall in love. But love—messy, inconvenient love—is what she’s about to experience when she falls for Digby Jones, her best friend’s brother. With blazing longing that builds to a fever pitch, Estelle Laure’s soulful debut will keep readers hooked and hoping until the very last page.

Purchase This Raging Light at Amazon
Purchase This Raging Light at IndieBound
View This Raging Light on Goodreads


Estelle Laure is a Vonnegut worshipper who believes in love and magic and the power of facing hard truths. She has a BA in Theater Arts from New Mexico State University and an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts, and thinks everyone should have to wait tables or work in a kitchen at least once in their lives. She lives in Taos, New Mexico with her children.

Have you had a chance to read THIS RAGING LIGHT yet? Do you dance while writing? Do you read outside your comfort zone?

Happy reading,

Jocelyn, Shelly, Martina, Erin, Lisa, Susan, Sam, Lindsey, Sandra, Kristin, and Anisaa

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