Happy Monday – this week week on the site we are happy to bring you a great author interview with Laurel Ostiguy.
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I have written three books, Last Goodbye, Longing to Be, and Lying in Wait as part of the Onondaga State Series. The series explores the lives of college students in the mid-1990s and how their worlds twist and turn. Some get hurt, some fall in love, some find themselves faced with their worst fears!
Originally from Queensbury, New York—I currently live outside of Boston, Massachusetts. I graduated from Plymouth State University in New Hampshire with a Bachelor of Science degree. Within a year of graduation, I moved to Boston to continue my education. I received my Master’s Degree from Northeastern University a few years later. Although I work full time at a financial firm, my passion is writing. I spend as much time as possible promoting and attending book signings and surrounding myself with fellow Indie authors who share my dream. I’m also an avid skier, I love yoga, a nice glass of wine, and spending time with friends and my family. I have Celiac Disease and have been gluten free for 9 years. My favorite music is Pearl Jam, anything Chris Cornell sang, female singers from the 1990s and the Beastie Boys. I am currently working on the fourth novel in the series.
Brief description of your most recent book?
Each novel focuses on one of the main characters while intertwining all of the other friends or foes at the university. The third novel in the series, Lying in Wait takes a deeper look into the character Laura Chase.
Only wanting to help her friends and her community, Laura lands a job at the college radio station as the first female DJ in over a decade. But even the best of intentions can come with a price. As Laura attempts to bring her friends peace, she uncovers further lies and deceptions. Could a costly cover-up hurt her friends even more than the Campus Creeper did?
What Laura doesn’t know is that, while she has been faithfully watching out for others, someone has finally noticed her. Will Laura’s new romance be the root cause of a divided campus, or will her alliances bring together a university that has lived in fear for over a year?
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I guess I’ve always been writing in some shape or form. I created an illustrated book when I was in eighth grade. I still have it. I used to write in a journal all the time and I had attempted to write a book numerous times but that voice inside my head told me I couldn’t do it. So I’d wander bookstores and dream about being a writer, then one day I just said, “Why not me?” and I got serious about it. I wasn’t willing to put aside my dream any longer. I think we all have to get to that point in our lives in order to really make it happen. Then the day came when I held the first copy of Last Goodbye in my hand, it’s a feeling I’ll never take for granted.
Do you have any writing rituals?
I prefer to reread what I’ve written before starting again to inspire me and to keep me on track within the story. I also keep an outline and notes for me to review as the story turns. I find solace in writing in the evening, it relaxes me and it gets all the ideas I’ve had during the day on paper and more importantly, out of my head.
Do you have a favorite character that you have written? If so, who? And what makes them so special.
I have a soft spot for Tank (Thomas McPherson). The first novel, Last Goodbye begins with him telling the reader about the loss of his best friend, Jonathan. Having lost my father when I was just 25, I can sympathize with him. I wanted to write about what I know and how the struggle to understand something when it hurts so badly, is very difficult. Life is still moving along but you feel frozen in sadness. Tank’s story is unique in the sense that he still has an obligation to play football at the university, only he finds himself doing that without his best friend and teammate. I think I was able to articulate his pain because I was writing from the heart. You’ll want to dislike him in the beginning of the story, but by the end, you’ll understand him and hopefully love him like I do.
What advice would you give a new writer, someone just starting out?
You definitely want to spend your money on a great editor and book designer. Your editor will become someone that you work the most with and a good one can make or break your work. In addition, finding a good designer is important. A well-designed book cover and internal design is imperative to your work looking as professional as possible. Lastly, reach out to an author….when I meet future writers at events, etc…. I always offer for them to reach out to me to ask questions, get referrals on editors, book designers, beta readers, etc…. Word of mouth is a great way to get going and to make solid connections to start your career as a published author.
What authors do you like to read?
Personally, I wish I had more time to read! When I do, I try and read one of my fellow author-friend’s work. But I do enjoy the work of Brett Easton Ellis, Diana Gabaldon, Nicholas Sparks, Michael Connelly, and John Grisham.