Monday, February 11, 2013

Ida Clare, That’s Creative:

Hello Friends,

Writing is tough.  It is lonely difficult work on a good day.  Finishing a major creative writing project is a huge accomplishment.  Leah Lax has done what is difficult on many levels and may be The Next Big Thing.

The Next Big Thing is the name of the blog share that I am participating in where authors answer questions about a book they are writing.  This week Leah Lax is tagged to tell us about her story and how it came to be.  

Ten Interview Questions for the Next Big Thing:

What is your working title of your book?

Not From Here: new Houstonians and their journeys

Where did the idea come from for the book?

In 2006 I got a commission from the Houston Grand Opera to write a libretto for a new production based on the personal stories of Houstonian immigrants. I spent a year interviewing immigrants and refugees in Houston from all over the world. This book is based on that background work. Dr. Stephen Klineberg is contributing a forward for the book.

(“The Refuge,” with music by Christopher Theofanidis, premiered in 2007.)

What genre does your book fall under?

Non-fiction. Social interest.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

This book is teeming with astounding characters, so I’d have to choose about a hundred!

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Not From Here presents, one story at a time, the human face of Houston’s incredible growth and transformation over the last quarter century.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

That remains to be seen.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

With terrific support from InPrint, the Houston Endowment and the Brown Foundation—one year, full time.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I don’t think anything like this has been written specifically about Houston’s populace. I have on my shelf a

collection of "narratives of undocumented lives” called Underground America (McSweeney’s, 2008).

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

I knew as soon as I got the commission to write the opera that I would do this book. It just seemed so necessary.

What about your book might pique the reader's interest?

The immigration “issue” is so abstract in the political forum. This book makes it real. I don’t think anyone can read these stories and not be changed by the experience.

* * *

Thank you so much Leah for your participation and congratulations on making the book happen.  I will look forward to seeing, Not From Here in print.  When that momentous day happens, I will let my readers know. 
Come back tomorrow for a big announcement!


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