Author Interview with Taylor Bennett

Two interviews already!!! Wow! This time, I'm here with Taylor Bennett, a newly published teen author of Porch Swing Girl. Porch Swing Girl is a story about faith, love, and friendship, set in the most amazing place: Hawaii. I SOOO enjoyed this book, as I read it on my beach trip ( could the timing be any more perfect? ). I totally recommend this book to anyone! 

THE INTERVIEW 



Red: Hey, Taylor!! Thank you so much for letting me interview you! I LOVED reading Porch Swing Girl!! 

Taylor: I'm soooo honored that you enjoyed reading Porch Swing Girl. Thank you, also, for inviting me to be on your blog. I'm looking forward to it!!

Red:  Ok, so, first things first, when did you realize you wanted to make writing a career? Was it a desire you had from the beginning or a desire that came later on? 

Taylor: I've always loved writing--the simple act of spinning a story, giving life to a character--but I never thought of it as something I could actually do as a career until I was thirteen. At that time, I completed my first attempt at a novel and discovered the website, Go Teen Writers. There, I found inspiration from other teens--kids just like me, with a passion for writing and a love of story--that had gotten published.
A dream was born.
I made it my unofficial goal to be published before I turned twenty so that I could join the elite ranks of the Teen Writers. Now, I look back and laugh at myself--I was so un-ready to get published back then! But...that little goal stayed with me forever and now, here I am, with a book published before I can even graduate.

Red: That's exactly how I feel about Instagram! I've met so many people who have the same passion for writing as me, and it's so encouraging and inspiring! That's so awesome you reached your goal! What inspired Porch Swing Girl?



Taylor: Porch Swing Girl was inspired by just that--the title!! I woke up one morning with it dancing around in my brain, and I simply couldn't get the words to settle down. I decided to spend a little time daydreaming and brainstorming about who this girl on the porch swing was. As soon as I knew the title, though, it's like the entire story was just there, ready and waiting to be unlocked!
I was inspired to set the story in Hawaii because it's one of my all-time favorite vacation destinations. I've been extremely blessed to visit several times, and it holds a special place in my heart. When it came time for me to pick a setting, I instantly knew I wanted to write about my tropical home-away-from-home.

Red: That's so cool! And Hawaii is such a lovely setting! I hope I will get the opportunity to visit one day!  Do you have a favorite Hawaiian dish? 

Taylor: Mmm...I happen to love Hawaiian food, so this is really hard! Though I love the quintessential plate lunch (grilled meat--usually teriyaki chicken or BBQ pork--white rice, and macaroni salad) I also have a soft spot for fresh-caught shrimp, especially from one of my favorite Hawaiian restaurants, Leilani's. YUM!!
Oh! And who can resist the famed Hula Pie? It's a giant slice of macadamia-nut-ice-cream-pie, complete with an Oreo crust, chocolate ganache, whipped cream, and chopped macadamia nuts. YUM!!
I told you I love Hawaiian food... ;)



Red: My mouth is watering just reading all that! LOL! Those all sound soooo good, and they make me want to visit Hawaii even sooner! Haha! How does it make you feel to be a published teen author? Were people cheering you on during this process?

Taylor: It feels slightly surreal, honestly! It's incredibly strange to know that my characters are out in the world, and that everyone is actually "meeting" them. It's an amazing feeling, but a little surprising now and then.
I've had so many cheerleaders throughout the entire publishing process, especially my mom. She has been such a support--always my first pre-reader, proofreader, everything! She has been such a huge help and support in my writing, and I couldn't have done it without her!

Red: Aren't moms so great? That's awesome you had such a great support team! If you could only share one tip to a young teen writer, who is an aspiring author, what would it be?


Taylor: Slow. Down.
Seriously!!!
It's so easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of pursuing publication. Racing the clock to try and get your story published--sooner, rather than later, of course. While it's good to set goals and work hard to reach your dream, there's also something to be said for sitting back and letting God work in your life on His time.

Red: That is soooo true! I'm definitely one of those fast paced, never slow down, get it out their ASAP kinda girl, so reading that really makes sense! What are some of your goals for Porch Swing Girl and future books? 

Taylor: My ultimate goal is to write books that make readers happy. I don't necessarily write to teach a lesson or shed light on a certain subject, though it's great if that happens naturally throughout the writing process. But my main goal is to write books that people want to devour. I want them to fall in love with my characters and get homesick for the book's setting--even if it's a place they've never been. I want to write books that are full of tension and plot twists but don't have the bad language and questionable content of some of today's YA books. Pretty much, my goal is to write books that touch the world--whether that means they're NYT bestsellers or they brighten the day of one person. Either way, it'll be enough.

Red: Those are some really awesome goals to have, Taylor! They remind me a lot of the goals I have for my future novel! Totally agree with you! <3



__

That's it for the interview guys!! Isn't Taylor so awesome? She is such a fun, inspiring author! If you haven't read Porch Swing Girl, I highly encourage you do! It's amazing! If you want to connect with Taylor you can follow her on:

Twitter

Instagram

YouTube

Pinterest


Gotta fly,
Red



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