I’m here today talking with Madeline Ash and her deeply emotional book, ‘Uncovered By Love’.
Madeline, thanks for coming on my blog. I view the emotion of love as making the world revolve. After reading UbL, I was reminded that people sometimes have to overcome huge emotional and sometimes physical obstacles to find that special someone.
I found your story so inspiring; you wrote about the issues your characters were dealing with such tenderness and respect. Vera and Leeson were two people that very much deserved to find happiness and despite knowing that romance carries the promise of a happy ending, I still found myself cheering for Leeson at the end. ❤
DM: Your heroine, Vera, has a heart condition and required a transplant, a major disruption to anyone’s life. I love how her brother Jayden is so protective of her, having gone through that awful journey by her side. Is this something that has affected you or someone you know?
MA: Thank you Dana, Jayden was a really sweet character to write. And yes, a member of my immediate family has a heart condition (ARVC). I developed the idea for Vera’s illness when we discovered the condition is actually genetic, so any of us could be carriers. After doing research, I learned that the most severe form of the condition would ultimately require a heart transplant. As an issue so close to home, I was able to consider the possibility on a personal level and really feel through Vera what it would be like to cope post-transplant. Not to mention being able to imagine, as a family member, what it would be like to have to sit by and watch someone I love go through such suffering.
Oh dear – that all sounds quite tragic! To anyone who hasn’t read it, the book isn’t a downer, really! I like to think it’s full of hope and tenderness. It IS escapism, after all J [DM: It is so not a downer! More like inspiring!]
DM – Leeson, your hero, has his own issues to deal with, namely being dyslexic and unable to read. Yet he was still able to successfully run a large business enterprise. *Sigh. J How hard was it to reconcile the successful business man to the real Leeson?
MA: Not hard for me – I knew he was just confused! But Leeson finds it very difficult to accept that the two aren’t mutually exclusive. He uses the successful investor as his façade; the man he wishes he could be. Secretly, he defines himself by his inability to read fluently, believing he is a fraud of a businessman. Only when he gains Vera’s acceptance does he realise that he IS successful – not pretending to be. And that his success is made more impressive, not less, by his dyslexia.
DM: When writing such weighty issues, how do you find that place to concentrate on ensuring the emotion is leaping off the page? Are you a plotter, or like me, do you have it all in your head?
MA: I’m more of a plotter, but I certainly have a lot stored in my head too. Before I start writing, I need to know how the characters’ conflicts will clash, what their goals and motivations will be (both internal and external), and the basic plot of the story. I don’t plan on a scene-by-scene level though – I let the characters’ emotional journeys shape what needs to happen next.
Specifically, to ensure emotion leaps of the page, I often play music to manipulate my mood (I’ve got some very achy contemporary piano albums). I couldn’t pull off a sad/moving scene if I wasn’t feeling that way myself. I have a very simple motto for sad scenes – if I don’t cry with my characters, readers won’t either!
DM: I found the details of Vera’s art very interesting. Do you also sculpt or have an interest in art?
MA: Unfortunately, I have no talent for fine arts. I practically needed help with coil pots in high school. But I do love art, so Vera’s sculptures are what I would create if I were that gifted.
DM: And finally, I’m really looking forward to your next book, Madeline! Are you currently working on another? (please say yes!)
Okay, yes, I am! J I’m currently writing another contemporary romance set on a vineyard in the Yarra Valley. It’s really sweet and sexy, and I’m hoping to have it finished by October (I write slowly). [DM: Me too, don’t worry]
Thanks so much for having me here, Dana. I’ve loved chatting with you!
Thanks again, Madeline!