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Friday 30 October 2015

ℚ♫ Forget Me Not - Allison Whitmore

Today we have the pleasure of meeting up with author to talk about her Historical fiction début novel, Forget Me Not (, Booktrope Editions, 452 pages).

Forget Me Not ushers readers through a story of hatred, deceit and love in 1930s and 1940s Brookhurst, NY; a coming-of-age love story on the heels of murder and secrets.

Author Allison Whitmore is offering our readers one signed copy, and one digital copy of Forget Me Not, so don't miss out and enter our GiveAway.

Author Q&A | Synopsis | Trailer | Teaser | About the Author | GiveAway & Tour Stops

Hello Allison, welcome back and thank you for joining us today.

Here at BooksChatter we love music, so Allison has shared with us her music playlist for Forget Me Not - enjoy!

"I would say that the playlist embodies both Teddi and Calvin's favorites as well as selections featured in the novel.  It gets me in the mood of the era for sure!"

What was the inspiration for Forget Me Not?
"So many wonderful things were an inspiration to this story.

A friend wrote a World War II story in college that I loved, which got the wheels spinning at first.

My love of coming-of-age stories that move from childhood to young adulthood like Little Women and Anne of Green Gables are influences as well.  I love stories that have family rivalry and also true love stories.  Those have always been favourites and have influenced this story as well.

Lastly, I really feel like people should be able to be themselves and watching people through life and reading about them in history having to struggle for the right to be who they are and love whomever they want were some of the biggest inspirations for Forget Me Not."
How much of yourself is reflected in this book, and how?
"Well, Teddi goes to girls’ school.  I did as well for a time.  I have a grandmother (and great-grandmother) who had a great deal of influence on my life, but she was not quite an iron-fist like Elizabeth Donovan.  The secret about Teddi’s family is something that has to do with my family as well . Also, Calvin’s last name is a family last name, the one we can trace back the furthest, in fact."
The first thing that draws me to a book is its cover. Can you tell us about your cover for Forget Me Not - why you chose that concept and who the artist is.
"I adore my book cover.  The artist is Amalia Chitulescu.  She’s an amazing designer who I found through my publisher, Booktrope.  I also knew of a few indie authors who used her before.  I chose her from the artists available at Booktrope because her style was very striking to me.

The actual concept makes sense to me because it’s depicts a girl looking onto a town in the midst of a storm, the storm that will be her life and the literal storm she has to weather in the story.

The tag line “Carve Your Own Destiny” was suggested by my editor so that we could have the male lead, Calvin’s, point of view on the cover as well.  The quote is carved onto a family heirloom that means a lot to him and his “destiny” in the book."
Why should we read Forget Me Not and what sets it apart from the rest?   What makes your book unique?
"This coming of age story is unique in the way that it is told and the way that the characters relate to each other in the most realistic way.  They are not stock characters in the slightest and immersing yourself in their world will take you to a place that you will love, if you enjoy period pieces and romance."
Can you tell us something quirky about Forget Me Not, its story and characters?
"As mentioned, Calvin’s last name is a family last name.  Jeanne Norwick is named after and somewhat based on the actress, Gene Tierney.  She attended Miss Porter’s School for girls and came from a family like Jeanne’s and also became an actress.  Miss Carrington’s School is really supposed to be Miss Porter’s School.

Brookhurst is not a real town, but I wrote it while living in Southampton, NY for college.  I chose the French town at the end because Josephine Baker lived there.

Moonlight Serenade” is my favourite song, and it’s in the story because of that.  I always listen to Sidney Bechet’s “Si Tu Vois Ma Mère” when reading the last scene because the title “If You’ve Seen My Mother” relates so perfectly to the story and because he was an American ex-pat living in Paris at the same time as that part of story takes place."
Who would you recommend Forget Me Not to and what should readers be aware of (any warnings or disclaimers)?
"This story is best suited for anyone who likes romance and coming-of-age period pieces. The primary audience is female between 15 and 25, but I think people of any age will enjoy Teddi and Calvin’s journey."
If you could / wished to turn Forget Me Not  into a movie, who would be your dream team?
"What a fun question.

My actors are: Hailee Steinfeld for Teddi because of her acting and the fact that she looks so much like my nana and her sisters, whom have always reminded me of Teddi.

For Calvin, I have imagine a slightly younger than now Zac Efron.  He’s a good actor, and he does period pieces well.  He also has the right look.

I would love Lasse Hallström as the director because he creates such beauty and heart on the screen.

Jacqueline Bisset would be the perfect grandmother in my mind, and I would love Nicole Lyn to play Liza.

That’s as far as I really have dreamed.  It’s great to imagine as cast while writing."
Watch out for track 15 in the playlist above, as this is an alternative trailer created by Allison for Forget Me Not, using the cast mentioned above :-)

What do you like to write about? Do you stick to a particular genre or do you like to explore different ones?

"I tend to write about romance and family saga and/or relationships. My genres are usually coming-of-age based and fall under history, fantasy or contemporary. "
What is your writing process?
"Write free flow, then rewrite and rewrite and rewrite many times over.  I spend the best times with my characters in rewrite. They already exist; I’m just trying to hearing them a little more clearly."
What is in store next?
"I would like to write a sequel to Forget Me Not one day, but it will not be soon.

My next work to be released will be the first in a young adult fantasy series called, The Lost Heir.  It should be out this holiday season.

After that, I will be publishing several other titles under a different pen name.  I do have a historical fantasy cooking in my head set at 1939 MGM. We’ll see how that goes or where that fits.  I’m also planning a fantasy series of short novels based on Cinderella’s stepsister, which will be adapted from a TV pilot I wrote with my writing partner called Cursed.

Eventually, I would love to come back to Forget Me Not. When I do, the story will take place in the 1960s in the US and follow the next generation."
The Lost Heir is available to preview on Wattpad.

And as a final quirky thing, to get to know you a little bit better... do you have a pet or something that is special to you that you could share with us?

"I always wear black and white dresses.  I don’t know why, but 9 out of 10 of my dresses are black and white patterned.  In this pic, I am at a friend’s birthday and while others are touring The Biltmore Hotel, I chose to stay behind and take notes."

Thank you for sharing!
It was a pleasure spending time with you, Allison.  Best wishes for the tour and the forthcoming releases, and we hope to see you back soon :-)

Forget Me Not - available NOW!

UK: purchase from US: purchase from purchase from Barnes & Noble find on Goodreads

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