Monday, July 6, 2009

The Divining Wand - A New Spell is Cast

Back in February of this year it was my pleasure to introduce Larramie, who was in the process of launching her second blog. Through a series of serendipitous events, two blogs have sparkled into something even more remarkable...a site that feeds the passions of the literary set. For readers it's the place to find out about books before they hit the market, and for authors it's a great way to promote their work and gain a wider audience.

Now, let's see what Larramie's been up to....

You are creator of Seize a Daisy and the original Divining Wand. Please tell us how those sites became the impetus for the NEW Divining Wand?

Seize a Daisy's purpose encouraged visitors to try something fresh and new found on the Internet, including books written by debut authors. Even before the site launched I found Allison Winn Scotch's blog where she shared how her writing life and real life were affected by the upcoming publication of her first novel, The Department of Lost and Found. Fascinated in "getting to know" an about-to-become author, when Allison announced that friend/fellow debut author Kristy Kiernan had designed a grog -- The Debutante Ball --, I clicked the link and met six more genuinely talented and wonderful women. Presenting these writers and their books on Seize a Daisy felt as thought it was meant to be, yet I hadn't anticipated the snowball effect of discovering even more new authors. After I presented Therese Fowler and Souvenir, she honored me with the title of "a debut author's Fairy Godmother."

Since the title partially fulfilled my childhood dream to grow up to be a Fairy Godmother -- i.e. granting others ideas and options to find their dreams --, I developed the original Divining Wand where anyone could request help in realizing what they were seeking. However, for whatever reason, there were not enough requests/wishes to maintain interest in the blog on a regular basis. And then Seize a Daisy was implanted by a virus, deemed an "Attack Site" and confiscated by Google/Blogger.

One blog was gone forever and the other was certainly gasping for breath, so I came up with the idea of combining the best of both by hopefully giving writers and readers what they both want.


What is your goal for the Divining Wand?

It's based on the quote: "Choose an author as you would a friend."__Wentworth Dillon
From personal experience I know how it feels to read an author/friend's book and as an authors' Fairy Godmother I'm trying to allow every reader that same opportunity.


How does this create a new platform for authors and readers to connect?

Kristy Kiernan (author of Catching Genius and Matters of Faith) and a friend who believed in this venture described it perfectly in the following paragraph:

"The Divining Wand is, and always will be, a work in progress. New authors and books will be added as Larramie discovers them and shares them with readers. This is one of the few sites in which the information is not driven by authors themselves. It brings together everything you want to know about authors: all of their various social networking contact information, book reviews, interviews, excerpts, Q & A's..a one-stop-shop for dedicated readers rather than putting it all together, piecemeal, from a search engine."
Then, for good measure, she added:

"Please check it out at The Divining Wand
subscribe to the RSS feed, and prepare to discover everything you ever wanted to know about your present, and future, favorite authors. "


Tell us about the authors you have gathered at DW? Are you focusing on a specific genre?

Initially I sent out an invitation to all the authors who had been presented on Seize a Daisy, explained the site and asked for their all their contact information -- from websites to Facebook page -- and the urls where their books could be purchased online at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders or IndieBound. I also requested that they Forward the letter to any of their writer friends who might be interested. All of those writers are alphabetically listed on the Authors page at the site.
The Divining Wand is wide open to genres and gender, after all every reader usually enjoys a variety of reading material.


Are there any favorite/dream authors you'd like to feature or review at The Divining Wand?

My second all-time favorite novel is The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger, in fact I read the book at its release and reread it again four months later. The movie adaptation debuts in a few weeks, on August 14th, and her new novel, Her Fearful Symmetry, will be available September 29, 2009. But Ms. Niffenger -- in addition to being a writer -- is also an artist and professor in the Interdisciplinary Book Arts MFA Program at the Columbia College Chicago Center for Book and Paper Arts. And, from the one TV interview I watched on her, she appeared rather shy.

However back on March 10, 2006 at the blog, Writer Unboxed, there was the terrific interview with Audrey Niffenegger by Therese Walsh (debut author of The Last Will of Moria Leahy to be published October 13, 2009).

Audrey Niffenger will be busy and certainly the object of enough attention in the coming months (with a new book Her Fearful Symmetry due on September 29th)...I don't think The Divining Wand would fit into her schedule. ;)


Larramie, I've had the privilege of knowing you for over a year, yet your identity remains as elusive as a famous restaurant critic...please share an interesting tidbit about this person of literary mystery!

I laugh at this mysterious persona label because in real life you could probably read me like a book. It's true that my blogs are not about me but, having been trained as a counselor and a sociologist, I'm a natural observer who remains puzzled as to why most people find it easier to look at life negatively rather than positively. It's such wasted effort and I'd like to try in some small way to change that, even if it's only to "introduce" readers to a writer and gather more friends for an author.

I'm incredibly curious, though not nosy. As much as I love to read, it's always been one-book-at-a-time for me and I read every word as the author wrote word-by-word. I miss unbiased newscasts, interviews, articles and quality TV/movies. My entertaining real life drama comes from watching sports where the ending is never known until the competition is over. And, as much as I LOVE the feel and smell of a new book, I did purchase a Kindle Deluxe about three weeks ago. However it's yet to be used, there are ARCS to be read one-at-a-time!


Now that you've read the interview, stop The Divining Wand and say hello!

The Divining Wand : http://thediviningwand.com/











3 comments:

Larramiefg said...

Thank you, Suzanne, for featuring The Divining Wand...again. I believe this one is a keeper! ;)

JCK said...

This site sounds intriguing!

Keetha said...

This is great! I'm looking forward to it - I'll be a regular visitor.