Tuesday 28 May 2013

The Melody in Our Hearts

The Melody in our HeartsThe Melody in our Hearts by Roberta Capizzi

Book Synopsis

Doctor Valerie Fogarty studied hard to become a competent surgeon, but losing a patient during an operation made her throw everything out the window and now she can't set foot into an operating room anymore. Until her best friend Ryan is brought into the ER on a stretcher, fighting for his life after a terrible car accident and she’s the only one who can save him. Meeting him as a teenager in their hometown in Ireland was the turning point in her life and she knows she will never be able to live without him. Will her determination and skills be enough to save Ryan's life?
Jazz Star Ryan Wyler grew up in Dublin, with a dream of becoming a professional pianist and continuing the legacy of his musical hero, Frank Sinatra. When opportunity knocks and he's offered the chance to pursue a real music career, he's happy to accept it, unaware that what he's actually accepting is a package deal he will have no control over. But when success keeps him away from Valerie, his best friend since adolescence, Ryan will have to question his choices.
A story about the value of true friendship, the power of dreams, and the unpredictability of love.

Shona's review 3 of 5 stars

I was expecting more 'in the now' story, but instead was thrown into their past and the story focuses on this too much. I got the impression I was going to be introduced to an epic friendship, instead I was irritated by Valerie's insecurities, why is she so insecure in her relationship with Ryan? She spends so much time worrying that Ryan wont want to spend time with her, wont want her to be in Boston, she worries that her room-mate may like him and is annoyed by this. If this is supposed to be a platonic relationship, where she see's him as like her older brother (oh how many times does she say this?) why is she getting annoyed when another girl shows an interest in him.

Valerie and Ryan's story is a sweet love story and is one for those who long for a best friend/lover scenario. Overall its well written and enjoyable and is great for escaping from the world for a bit.

Welcome to Booky Ramblings, thank you for joining us today. What was the first book you remember reading as a child/teen/adult?

The first book I remember reading as a child, and which was also the first book I read twice, was The Eyes of the Amaryllis by Natalie Babbit. I loved it so much I recently looked for it on Amazon and bought it, because I wanted to read it again and have it on my bookshelf.

What do you listen to whilst writing?
Well, it depends on what I’m writing, and what emotions I want to convey to the reader. For my début novel, The Melody In Our Hearts, I listened mainly to Michael Bublé and Frank Sinatra. But I also enjoy listening to piano music, I find it very relaxing and inspirational. And I like Irish music, too.

Do you think your writing style is affected by the type of music/background noise you listen to?
Sometimes it is. I write in my free time and my room doesn’t have a door, so if the TV is blaring downstairs or there are people talking or making noise, I find it hard to concentrate on a scene, and I might end up writing it over and over. But if the right kind of music is playing, then it’s easier for me to write. I love music, I always need to have some music playing whenever I’m at home, in the car or even in bed relaxing.

If you could master any other art form what would it be?
Well, I’m a very creative person. I love experiencing new art forms and techniques, so over the years I’ve started knitting, decorating ceramic, creating jewellery with beads, anything involving art and creativity is my thing, although since I took up writing seriously, I had to use all of my free time for my novels and I had to put all other creative activities aside. But if I could master any of those things, I’d love to be very good at knitting, so I could make my own sweaters and clothes. So far I’ve only knitted scarves and hats, but I’d love to be able to do more.

Do you have any superstitions when writing?
Not really. The only superstition I had, was when I decided to wait until January 1st 2013 to publish my book, even though it was ready before Christmas, because someone on TV had said that 2013 would be a year full of success for Gemini, so I thought I might give it a try to see if the man was right. But I’m not superstitious and I don’t really believe in horoscope, it was just a game.

Do you read all your reviews? How do you react to a negative review?
I love reading reviews and know what people think of my writing and my stories. I’ve always been very shy and introverted, and I never wanted anyone to read my stories, which were always kept well hidden in my drawers or, later on, in my computer. But since I decided to share my novel with the world, I’ve had to toughen up a bit and brace myself for bad reviews because, at the end of the day, not everyone can like what I write or what I think. So far I haven’t had any nasty reviews, and even the not so positive one (which was a 2.5 stars on Goodreads) came with very honest and quite constructive criticism, so I appreciated it. What I don’t really like is when people rate it and don’t write a reason for their rating, or they’re just nasty to the author-I’ve read some of those for other books and they made me cringe. Constructive criticism is always welcome, but nasty comments are not so easy to handle. However,  I love hearing from readers, whether it’s a good or a bad review, because it gives me the chance to improve my writing. My mission as a writer is to give readers the chance to daydream for a while, and forget their everyday worries and trouble; I don’t need a hundred 5 star reviews. If I can make even just one reader happy, then I know my efforts were all worth it.

What snacks/drinks do you keep on hand when writing?
I love chocolate. I can easily say that I’m a chocoholic. But I try not to eat anything while I write, because otherwise I’d end up having to buy new clothes every other month J But I try to drink a lot (water, obviously) and when it’s cold outside, also tea and hot chocolate. Hot chocolate is definitely a good cure for writer’s block.

What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
I’m not such an experienced writer yet, so I don’t have that much advice to give. All I can say is to always stay true to yourselves and to your writing style and beliefs. Never try to emulate someone else’s style just because “it’s what sells”. Write what you want to read, write what you have inside your heart and soul, and never let anyone discourage you or make you feel it’s just a dream that will never come true. Believe in yourselves and in your stories. Not everyone will like them, but as long as you’re happy with them, nothing else really matters.

Have you always wanted to be an author?
I’ve always liked writing, ever since I was a child, but I never thought that I could become an author. I always thought only people who were already famous got their stories published. That was until I started realizing that all famous writers were normal people before they became famous, and thanks to the self-publishing opportunities for everyone, I’ve finally convinced myself that I could get my stories out there and see if maybe one day I’d be able to pay the bills and be a full-time writer. That would be a dream come true, because writing is my life.

If you have enough time I would love for you to answer some of our random questions.

What song do you sing at the top of your voice every time you hear it?
I guess it would be something from Queen or something from Michael Bublé. But I also love singing out loud songs by Train.

What’s your go-to movie?
Any romantic comedy. I love movies, and I love buying DVDs and watching them over and over. I know all the lines of the Dirty Dancing movie, I can say them before the actors do.

What book are you currently reading?
I’m a real bookworm and I love reading. At the time of answering these questions I haven’t been able to read anything because I’ve been busy finishing the first draft of my second novel, so I dedicated all of my free time to that. But I’ve read quite a few good books recently, mainly by self-published authors. I’m surprised they didn’t get an agent or a traditional contract, because the stories were really good and very well crafted.

Where did you last go on holiday?
Ireland. The land of my dreams. I’m an Irelandholic

If someone wrote a biography about you, what do you think it would be called?
The wonderful world of a daydreamer. 

What’s in your fridge right now?
Lots of yogurt and lots of cheese. And ice cream, too.

Whats your favourite take away food?
I don’t really like takeaway, I’m not a big fan of McDonald’s or junk food. I guess I could say pizza.
Roberta will be donating all proceeds from the sale of this book until May 31st to the MS Society, for World MS Day, and she has written a post about it in her blog. Why not pop over and check it out   http://robertasdreamworld.wordpress.com/2013/05/17/world-ms-day/ 

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