Interview with Author: Laurie A Green
It is my honor to interview Laurie A Green, author of Inherit The Stars and three-time RWA® Golden Heart® finalist!
Welcome to The Adventures of the Everyday Fangirl Laurie and thank you for letting us get to know you better by agreeing to answer the following questions!
What does the title of this novel, series or set of stories signify?
I’m so glad you asked this question because although the first novel—Inherit the Stars—and the series title—The Inherited Stars—sound very similar, they actually have completely different meanings.
The title Inherit the Stars was taken directly from a line of dialogue between the hero and heroine in the first novel. Avoiding spoilers here, Drea’s (the heroine’s) “situation” at times makes her feel very removed and isolated. Because of her perceived “handicap” she believes no man could ever love her. The hero, Sair, offers her another perspective—that she has inherited a wonderful gift of experiences no other human being has known, and that she is more, not less, desirable because of it. The title ties to the overall theme of taking back their lives, and in doing so, changing the future of the galaxy forever.
The Inherited Stars series refers to the corner of space that these characters inhabit. This sector of the Milky Way is rich in Earth-similar Goldilocks planets. There’s a big mystery attached to that, one involving a history that’s been intentionally altered–but that readers can uncover as they explore the various stories in the series.
Do the names of the characters in your novel have some sort of significance or importance to you? If so, give a few examples…
The names are not at all random.
Drea was named for her mother, Daedrea, a woman who was contracted by her father—a driven, and much in-demand starship designer—to bear him a child. He never married her mother, and Drea never knew her, something that she deeply regrets.
Sair is just plain “Sair.” He has no last name. The tradition of his subspecies is that the first-born male (and sole heir) is given the name of his mother’s family, so many of his first-born male relatives have names like Mik, Augus, and Kell. Sair’s ancestry, and the reason (more secrets!) behind this unusual naming tradition, will come to light later in the series. Sair is the direct descendent of an individual known as the Holy T’mar who established the laws of his planetary culture centuries before. The Rathskian subspecies has an extremely colorful but tragic history.
What prompted you to write in this genre and who or what inspired you to?
I have a profound fascination with space and the stars, and that love is stamped deep into my work. To me, there’s nothing more exciting than a soaring romance set in space, on a colonized planet or in some other time or alternate universe. Although I ran into a lot of resistance from Big 5 publishers who didn’t believe Science Fiction and Romance belong together, I believe the exact opposite. Science Fiction and Romance share the same DNA. Both genres are all about exploration and discovery. And Science Fiction is, after all, the final Romance frontier.
What are the most important attributes to remaining sane as a writer and do your characters reflect some of these attributes?
One word. Perseverance.
There is nothing easy about this business. It can test even the most dedicated writer. But you know what? It’s not supposed to be easy. That’s the key. Once I understood that meltdowns and “I want to give it all up” black clouds of despair are only a part of the creative process, I knew I’d figured out something that was important. Those writerly black moments are only my creative mind’s way of resetting before it comes back swinging.
My characters tend to share my it’s-always-darkest-before-dawn mindset. Tenacity can be a strong survival tactic. They never give up, never surrender. And since I delight in taking these poor tortured souls right off the proverbial cliff before letting them battle back to win their HEA, it’s an essential part of their makeup.
What kind of research did you have to do for the novel, series or set of stories that was different from others?
Oh gosh, sometimes I lived on the internet! For my series, I did a lot of research on subjects like dark energy, wormholes, the planets and moons of our solar system, protodog, multiverse theory and read books by astronauts to learn the mechanics of living in space such as Do Your Ears Pop in Space? by R. Mike Mullane and Off the Planet by Jerry M. Linenger.
I also researched ancient civilizations and things like meteor impacts and the Younger Dryas event. The theories about solar outbursts, galactic superwaves and interstellar dust clouds in the work of Robert M. Schoch, Ph. D. (Forgotten Civilization) I found particularly fascinating.
I like to get a good understanding of the science in my stories…and then apply liberal doses of imagination. After all, the genre is Science Fiction Romance. 😀
What makes you laugh?
Puppy antics, some comedians, America’s Funniest Home videos and those spontaneous crazy moments that happen in every day life. Once in a great while a scene in a movie will hit me just so, and I’ll be trying to muffle my laughter long after everyone else in the audience has stopped. You know that opening scene in The Sleeper? For some reason, I find that hysterical. Fifteen minutes after it ends, I’m still snorting and snickering.
What makes you cry?
I’m not very good at handling any sort of “goodbyes.” Funerals, leaving a person I enjoyed sharing time with but will probably never see again, or doing something for the last time usually summons the tears.
Oh, and abused animals. It just rips my heart out to see an animal who is suffering or unloved.
What are you a fan of and is this reflected in your writing?
I’ve worked for the military for 20 years and most of my family has served, so it’s probably no big surprise that my novels carry military elements or themes involving duty and honor.
But there’s another element that manages to slip into many of my stories in subtle ways…
My spouse and I breed and raise Thoroughbreds on a very small scale and I’m a big fan of the horseracing industry. Though there are seldom horses in my novels, there are horsey-aspects that seem to wheedle their way in.
I’ll give a few examples and try to keep them as spoiler-free as possible.
One heroine has knowledge of equine pedigrees and genetics that gives her the tools to go head-to-head with an empire’s sacred traditions, because their archaic laws are keeping two young lovers apart who belong together.
In another story, the hero is a slave used in a human breeding program, and his “book” (schedule) is managed like that on a Thoroughbred breeding farm.
In a third novel, my heroine has a holographic music box that was a gift from her late father. It’s a precious keepsake that projects a recording of a musical cur she performed as a teen on the back of her beloved horse, Maestro. This music box might seem a sentimental incidental, but it plays a huge role in one scene.
I think writers do write what they know. And though horses are a rare occurrence in SF/R (Firefly being a rare exception), my knowledge of the Thoroughbred industry and equine genetics often finds an outlet in my stories and plotlines.
Thank you again Laurie for stopping by and letting us get to know you better!
Laurie A. Green is a three-time RWA® Golden Heart® finalist and science fiction romance enthusiast who founded the SFR Brigade community of writers, which now totals over 600 members.
Her extended family includes her husband, David, four dogs, three cats and several horses, all who reside on a ranch in beautiful New Mexico. When she’s not writing, networking, or searching out the perfect cup of Starbucks, she’s usually busy exercising her left brain as a military budget director.
You can connect with her on her website, Author Laurie A. Green, which also includes more information on her books Farewell Andromeda and Inherit the Stars (Also available in a three-part serialized novel)!
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