A few weeks ago I was introduced to a Claudia Carozza's debut novel The Twenty. I wrote a review of it here, and I love it so much. I can't wait 'till the next installment comes out! In the mean time I asked Claudia Carozza a few questions:
Tell us about yourself and what you like to do besides writing.
I’m 28, married and mother to a very lovable three year old. I have a B.A. in writing and am currently a graduate student. I love to travel and Italy is my favorite travel destination. Growing up, I spent many summers there and attended college in Rome for a while. I also love to bake, spend time with family and friends, and curl up with my kindle to read a great book.
When did you start writing The Twenty?
I started writing the book about eight months ago. At first it was something I picked up every once in a while to work on. I became really attached to the story and the characters and I found myself wanting to write more and more. Towards the end, I was writing in twelve hour stretches.
What was the most difficult part about writing The Twenty?
The most difficult part was finding the time to write. Between family and school, it can get a bit hectic.
Was there something specific ei. idea, scene, character that started the novel?
Random ideas pop into my head all the time so I carry a notepad and pen in my purse with me. I try to write them down and then go back to them later. The idea for The Twenty stuck with me and it was the idea I kept going back to.
Many authors write what they know and their experiences. What were your own experiences you added to the novel?
I think Hazel feels like she has so much responsibility on her shoulders that she finds it hard to find time for herself to figure out what she wants. I can relate to that feeling of being overwhelmed at times.
Do you ever get paranoid about someday our world will be like Hazel's?
Not paranoid but there’s always that thought in the back of my head of what if? It’s always helpful to imagine what kind of world we would live in if these things actually happened. I think it adds to the realism of the story.
If you were in Hazel's shoes, would you work at the Antioch Center or find other ways to make a living?
The job at the Antioch promised so much hope for Hazel so I know I would have done the same and taken the job. When you’re that desperate to take care of your loved ones being picking isn’t an option and Hazel understood that.
What can you tell us about the second installment?
I’m very excited about it! There are going to be new characters introduced and we’ll see Hazel go through a big transformation. It’s going to be interesting to see how she handles the tug-of-war she’s found herself in and how far she'll push herself and the people around her. A few crazy secrets are uncovered that will reveal more about the characters and their lives before the Antioch.
Do you have any advice for writers that are currently working on their novel?
Don’t give up! Some days, the words come pouring out while other days I stare at the computer screen and…nothing. Writing is a rollercoaster ride and I think the relationship between an author and a novel is love-hate. Read as much as you can, write as much as you can, and believe you can tell a good story.
Where can we find you online?