Written by PresidentELLA
"Home" is where love is. All it takes is one person to show another love, to make them feel at home. Everly, named after the train station she was abandoned in as an infant, spent a great part of her life surviving on her own. "You can only run so long, and I'd been doing it since the beginning. A slew of abusive foster homes always had me running back to the streets. A place where I, strangely, always felt safest. The people on the streets ignored me, sure, but they didn't beat me, try to touch me or starve me," she explains about life before Mama Lou... before Cole.
Imagine being without food, shelter and love? The love of strangers is what ends up bringing her back home. The tale of strength, trust and compassion both melted my heart and revived it. Not only is this tear-tugging love story inspirational, but I got to send a few interview questions to the Amie Knight herself!
QUESTION #1: Is there an inspiration for Everly/Eve? How did her character develop?
A Knight: Everly first came to me on my last visit to Washington D.C. My husband travels there for work once a month and last year we decided to take our kids on a vacation for two weeks and do all the touristy stuff around D.C. The homeless are plentiful there. It was sad. We rode the subway everywhere. My kids loved "the train." I couldn't help but start thinking of a book based around a train station and one homeless girl. As for Everly, I just wanted to write about a girl that inspired others. One who was brave, smart, and most of all fearless. In the end, I was so happy with her character. She took me places I never imagined. No matter how many books I write, I have a feeling Everly will always be one of my very favorite heroines.
Loneliness is a killer and love can be a cure. The first guy Everly falls in love with ends up falling in love with her. I'm a sucker for a love story because it fairytales simply give hope and reassurance. Most of the time, I was just as scared for Everly to fall in love as she was. After meeting Cole's ex-girlfriend, she thinks to herself, "What woman could have all of that -- all of the sheer perfection that was him --and throw it away?". But instead of wanting his ex-girlfriend, a chapter and a half later, Cole is dreaming of "tiny fairly -like girls who wore cow-boy boots and cussed like sailors." Being able to peek into each lover's mind gave me confidence for them as I read on.
QUESTION #2:At various points (especially at the onset) of Eve and Cole's relationship, it seems the two do not know that the other is already madly in love. As you transition from character to character, how do you keep the emotions straight? Do you plan the arguments/make ups? Or do they come along as the story develops?
A Knight: I usually start a book with a wild idea. I very loosely plot it. I am not a plotter at all. I'm what people like to call a pantser and I often find that if I try to plot, the story I plot never actually comes to fruition. Not the way that I plotted it anyhow. My characters do what they like, and it's never what I want. How do I keep the emotions and point of views straight? I get up every morning. I read over the chapter(s) I wrote the day before and then I just keep on chugging along. It's a wild ride. I was as surprised by Cole and Everly as my readers are.
Each and every one of the characters in the book was lovable. The points of views felt very balanced, encouraging more of my "confidence". I enjoyed that the male point of view was just a prominent as the male. The friendships in the book seemed balanced as the intimate relationships. It was comforting to know that Everly's feeling's were reciprocated in these new, fun, accepting and loving relationships. Cody, Every's new best friend, even gave me a whole bunch of new "safe sex" slogans I plan to use and am happy share here:
"Don't be a fool. Cover your tool."
"Wrap that pickle. Then slip her a tickle."
"Wrap it in foil before you check her oil."
QUESTION #3: Eve seemed to be the main character of this book, but we were almost equally in Cole's head. How do you balance/manage having multiple strong characters in your story?
A Knight: I love writing both the heroine's and the hero's point of views. Believe it or not, I find that usually I enjoy writing the male a bit more. But this time, I really loved writing both of these characters. They were equally incredibly strong, resilient even and they both loved so fiercely. It was pretty easy to write them. It's always easier when you love thecharacters. I am always careful to read over one characters previous chapter before starting the next characters. I make sure to think of what that character may be thinking or feeling or doing in response to theother characters chapter. I won't say it's easy but it is very rewarding seeing two amazing characters come alive with your words.
QUESTION #4: Cody is an amazing addition to this book (and Eve's life). It seems all supporting characters play greatly important roles (even if only to give Eve quarters and gossip). Do you plan the characters before you write, or do they develop as the story goes on?
A Knight: Some of my side characters are plotted out. Like Cody, for instance. I needed a character to lighten the book a little. The Line deals with a lot. Abandonment, homelessness, infidelity. I needed a side character who could make Everly laugh. One who would win the readers over with their charm and wit and I think i did that. I just love his character and he was always planned for the book. Other side characters, like Jane and Missy,they just somehow ended up there. And I love them too.
It was truly a pleasure reading this book! The countryside setting may have had much to do with the relaxed and comfortable feel, but I was always on the edge of my seat trying to gauge Everly's reactions. I also enjoyed the positive ending; giving a girl a bit of hope in love is never, ever a bad thing, and I think this Amie knows that well. I wanted to get to know a bit more about Amie, the writer, with the questions below:
QUESTION #5 : Who are some of your favorite authors and/or sources of inspiration?
A Knight: Wow. There are so, so, so many. I read as much as I write, if not more. Most of the books that I read are from independently published authors instead of traditionally published. I'm an indie author myself and I love to read books from some of the greats that paved the way for us newbies inthe indie world. People like Kristen Ashley, Colleen Hoover, Madeline Sheehan and Abbi Glines. Anything that these women write, I will most definitely gobble up as soon as it hits amazon. And then there are some authors that you absolutely love, that take you under their wing. They teach you. They answer all of your ridiculous questions. But mostlythey push you to achieve your dream. Aly Martinez does that for me. She's an awesome mentor turned friend. I'm a lucky girl.
QUESTION #6: What is your favorite writing place/location/set up? How do you get most comfortable to write?
A Knight: There a few things that I require to write. Coffee. Usually a protein shake. And music. I usually end up at a small table in a local coffee shop near where I live. I like to sit facing the window, away from the rest ofthe cafe and distractions. I put my ear buds in, put on a little country music and get to work. Sometimes, I try to write at home but it hardly ever works out. The kids distract me. The house work distracts me. Or my awesome friends call me and I end up on the phone.
For more from Amie Knight, please be sure to check her out on her sites: