Sunday, May 27, 2018

Ann Streetman: The IAN Interview

After editing the high school newspaper, I worked my way through the last two years of my college journalism degree on an off-campus professional magazine. Then came a lifelong career in public relations, public affairs, association management, and manuscript editing. Telling the stories of organizations and issues and helping others to do so has been a satisfying occupation.

Since retirement, I concentrate on telling the stories of characters which are a figment of my imagination. Occasionally, I write children’s books populated by animals and real life objects to spark the imagination of toddlers and young readers.

IAN: Please tell us about your latest book Her Man in Sorrento.

Ann Streetman: Sarah Millerman meets handsome Navy Commander Nathan Ferrari on the steps of a cathedral in Amalfi, Italy. Nathan is staying at his Aunt Alessa’s beach house in Sorrento, while he is on annual leave from Naval Base San Diego. 
Sarah’s vacation takes unexpected turns as breathtaking as the drive along the Amalfi coast. As Nathan puts it, “You’re an American on vacation. I am an American on vacation. It makes sense for us to have some fun together.” Sarah intends to keep the relationship light and flirty and uncomplicated, as they enjoy dinners under the stars at the beach house and day trips around the Amalfi coast. But it did get complicated.
After the vacation, they continue an uneasy romance in San Diego. Both have been hurt by lost loves. Nathan is essentially married to the Navy. Sarah is focused on finishing her master’s degree in cybersecurity and snagging a great job wherever she wants to go. 
Is Nathan ready for a wife? Could Sarah ever be a Navy spouse? I hope IAN readers will come along for their romantic journey.

IAN: Is your book published in print, e-book or both?
Ann Streetman: Her Man in Sorrento is available only in e-book format at this time.

IAN: Where can we go to buy Her Man in Sorrento?

Ann Streetman: Published in February, 2018, it is available only on Amazon After August 2018, it will be available on other popular e-book retail sites.

IAN: What inspired you to write Her Man in Sorrento?

Ann Streetman: I have a passion for writing about favorite places I’ve visited, Italian characters, and people who serve in the military and the people who love them. Her Man in Sorrento allowed me to exercise all three of these interests in one novel. How could I not write this novel?

IAN: Did you use an outline or do you just wing the first draft?
Ann Streetman: My regular writing process is using an outline, but I create the characters and the major places of action long before I begin the outline. In fact, the outline keeps changing right up to my beginning the last chapter of the first draft. As the characters interact, the plot details and the outline change. I am happiest on a day when my characters simply take control of the plot and send it in a direction I did not anticipate. That’s a good writing day.

IAN: How long did it take to write Her Man in Sorrento?
Ann Streetman: I worked on the book about six months.

IAN: Do you have a specific writing style?
Ann Streetman: My writing style is concise. No flowery language here. Maybe it’s the journalist in me that won’t allow it. Besides that, I never want my “author words” to impede my reader’s interaction with the characters since it is the reader’s own imagination that makes the characters come alive.

Settings are very important in my writing. It’s my job to make the reader experience the environment where a piece of action takes place. More often than not, I let one of the characters describe the details of the setting via his or her internal thoughts or through dialogue with another character. When a character describes the setting, the reader is also getting insight into that character. The description must be detailed and convey emotion that will arouse the reader’s interest and enrich the story line. A good setting implies how the characters feel about their surroundings and how that environment contributes to their interactions at the time.

My writing style includes constant editing as I develop the first draft. When I write a scene that is not quite right, I usually realize it. I’ve learned to fix the problem as soon as possible. When I start a day’s writing session, I read the product of the day before. Then I fix the things that are bothering me before moving forward.

IAN: How did you come up with the title?

Ann Streetman: The book is titled Her Man in Sorrento because Sarah and Nathan meet there and the Amalfi Coast is so much a part of who Nathan Ferrari is. The title is in keeping with my niche of novels set in places I have loved to visit.

IAN: What do you hope your readers come away with after reading your book?

Ann Streetman: I hope the readers come away believing two imperfect people in their own world can love each other enough to find their way forward together.

IAN: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

Ann Streetman: The characters and events are solely the creation of my imagination.

IAN: How is Her Man in Sorrento different from others in your genre?

Ann Streetman: I have carved out a small niche of romance with an international flair. Many of my readers may not be able to visit the places I write about. Perhaps my books can take them there.

The joy of forgiveness and redemption are recurring themes in my books. I am by no means the only romance author who embraces those themes, and I salute others who do.

IAN: Tell us about your next book or a work in progress. Is it a sequel or a stand-alone
Ann Streetman: My next book is not a sequel to Her Man in Sorrento. I have written one series Love on Life’s Zip Line, and I did enjoy writing it. I hope IAN readers will check it out.
As for the next book, there’s only one thing I can tell you now. The characters will be imperfect people with the courage to find their way forward, whatever their circumstances are. When the IAN readers put down that next book, they will know that chivalry and love tested by real life are alive and well in my books and in my life.

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