1. What is your name and where do you call home?
Samantha Durante, New York City.
2. Do you have a pen name?
Not at the moment, but I suppose I will soon – I just got married in September and I’m changing my name to Samantha Durante-Banerjee. It’s quite a mouthful! So I think I’m going to stick with Samantha Durante for my books. :-)
3. What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 20 or less words, what would you say?
Stitch. It’s a dystopian novel wrapped in a paranormal-romance’s clothing, so nothing is as it first seems.
4. Do you have plans for a new book? Is this book part of a series?
Yes, Stitch is part one of a trilogy. The sequel, Shudder, will be available next year.
5. What or who inspired you to start writing? And how long have you been writing?
I’ve always written for fun my whole life – I’m not sure what first inspired me, but it’s what I’ve always loved to do. However, Stitch is my very first book, so I’ve only been an author for a few months now! I started writing professionally about two years ago, doing business writing for my own company, and before that I was in software engineering.
6. How did you come up with the cover? Who designed the cover of your book?
I wanted the cover to reflect that this story is more than just the paranormal romance it initially presents itself as, but I wasn’t sure exactly how to do that. I turned to Damon at Damonza.com for help, and he came up with this great sci-fi feel for the cover that I thought was modern and fresh and just loved.
7. Is there anything you would change about your book covers?
Nope! I love this cover just the way it is.
8. Would you have different book covers for different countries?
I always found that REALLY confusing with the Harry Potter books, so no, if it’s up to me (and at this point it is, because I’m self-published!) it will have the same cover everywhere.
9. How did you come up with the title for your book?
I wanted something that was short and sweet and easy to remember, and the ‘stitch’ is such an essential part of the story (once you hit the twist you’ll know what I’m talking about) that it was a no-brainer. I also liked that the word ‘stitch’ references other things that are symbolic of elements of the story, like the pain you get with a stitch in your side or how a stitch pulls the pieces so that everything finally comes together.
10. Is there anything you would change about your book? And why?
Yes, absolutely. I wish I’d included more action earlier in the book. The first half builds a lot of tension and there are a lot of details which I think help the reader to understand the characters and their world better, but the book really gets exciting and fun after the twist is revealed, so I wish I’d been able to bring more of that in sooner.
11. Do you prefer e-books, paperbacks, hardcovers or audiobooks?
Nothing beats the feel of a paperback for me. Hardcovers are too unwieldy and I’m not a big fan of audiobooks since I can picture things better by reading them rather than listening. And I certainly read a ton of e-books and appreciate the convenience (I would not have been able to bring 10 books on my honeymoon otherwise!), but I just love that new book smell and unfortunately my Kindle has not yet been able to replicate that. Maybe someday!
12. Are you a self-published / Indie author?
Yes I am!
13. Have you ever read a book more than once? And if so what was it?
Oh, all the time. I’ve read Pride and Prejudice probably 16 times. I read the entire Harry Potter series at least 4 times. I reread all of Twilight at least twice. I have no qualms about rereading something I loved – it’s like visiting an old friend or a place from your childhood, very comforting.
14. Have you ever read a book just based on it’s cover?
Maybe not just on the cover, but as much as I hate to admit it, the cover ALWAYS plays a big part for me.
15. Has the quality of the cover of a book ever put you off of reading it?
Yeah, definitely. If the cover doesn’t look professional, I have to assume that the writing and editing isn’t very professional either. Which I know isn’t fair, but it’s the truth of how my decisions are made.
16. What is your favourite book genre at the moment?
I’m loving anything YA, particularly romantic sci-fi/fantasy.
17. Do you have any advice for other writers? And what’s the best advice that you have been given when it comes to writing?
My advice is that you don’t need a groundbreaking, never-before-seen idea. You just need an idea you’re excited about it. If you’d like to read this story and it doesn’t exist, write it! Chances are other people will want to read it to.
18. Where can your readers follow you?
Facebook author page: www.facebook.com/authorsamanthadurante
Facebook book page: www.facebook.com/stitchtrilogy
Goodreads author page: www.goodreads.com/author/show/6453465.Samantha_Durante
Amazon author page: www.amazon.com/Samantha-Durante/e/B008RDPCSC
Barnes & Noble: www.barnesandnoble.com/c/samantha-durante
Thankyou so much for taking the time to do this interview and allowing us a glimpse into your writing world!