Peachy Author: Interview with Teresa Orts (from The Year of the Great Seventh)
For someone who has not (yet) read your book, I would almost say that the title does not quite hint out the essence of the story. Could you explain how you came up with the title?
I wanted a title that didn’t mean much at first, but that came into place once you’d read the novel. The title is a quote from one of the paramount chapters in helping solve the plot. I don’t really want to say too much, as I don’t want to spoil the plot.
What would you say is the genre of The Year of the Great Seventh? Please sum up the story in 5 words.
This novel fits within the following genres: young-adult, romance, fantasy, adventure and action. The novel in 5 words: Hollywood glamour meets Ancient Egypt.
Who is your intended audience and why do you believe they should read your book?
The characters are in their teens, but I think the novel can appeal to audiences in any age range. If you like teen drama, Hollywood celebrities, and Ancient Egypt, this is the book for you. I think it is certainly a page-turner.
Are there any books out there which you may consider ‘similar’ to your own book?
I don’t think so. At least from the books I read, there’s nothing similar to the story. The people who have already read it seem to think it is quite unique.
Sophie and Nate Werner will fall in love which in turn will unlock an ancient Egyptian prophecy. What struck your interest about the Egyptians to include their culture in your novel?
It also happened by chance. I was walking around Central Park one afternoon, and I came across Cleopatra’s Needle. I thought it was interesting that a piece of Ancient Egypt had ended up in the middle of Central Park. I went home and researched the story behind it. That’s where I got the idea of having the prophecy related to Ancient Egypt.
Was there a lot of research involved? If so, how did you go about doing this?
Before I wrote anything about Ancient Egypt, I decided to read all I could find about it on the internet. I truly enjoyed the research part. Part of the prophecy is based on real Ancient Egypt facts, but some of them are pure fiction. I tried stick to real facts as much as I possible, but at the end I had to make up some facts to make the plot fit.
Do any of the events which unfold throughout the story somehow relate to some of your own experiences in your life?
I lived in New York for almost a decade, so most of the places that are featured in the novel I know really well. Unfortunately, I can’t say that I have much in common with any of the characters, especially Sophie. At such a young age, she knows exactly what she wants to do with her life. I didn’t have a clue about what I wanted my future to be like in my teen years. Some of the characters are a combination of people who have come through my life at different times, but none of them is anyone in specific. It was interesting to combine personality traits from different people I know. Is there any deep brainstorming done behind the character’s names? Was this hard for you to do, or did the names simply flow from your creative mind? When I chose the characters’ names I followed the same rule for all of them: They had to be names I didn’t know anyone went by. I was worried that if I chose a name from a person I knew, it would remind me of them. I wanted to have full control of the way the characters behaved, and for that, their names had to be unique. Can you relate to any characters in the book? If so, how? Well, not really, but if I had to choose one, I’d probably choose Megan. I relate to her in the fact that she just “gets by.” She’s not the best actress, but manages to survive. Same with school work, friends, and life in general. She just manages, like I did in high school.
So we know there will be an inevitable bounded love between the two main characters. Please sum up Sophie and Nate’s romance in 3 words.
Unconditional Teen Love Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
I find it impossible to choose one favorite author—there are so many great ones.
The best book I read this year is Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. I rate authors and novels, not by how much I enjoy them, but by how many times I think about a book after I finished reading it. For some reason, Me Before You has been haunting me for a while.
Will there be a sequel to The Year of the Great Seventh? If so, when will this be published?
Yes, there will be a sequel of the Year of the Great Seventh. I’m aiming to publish about mid-2014.
Sophie has always felt out of step—an outsider, even amongst friends in her high school with all the hype about celebrity culture. Her life in L.A. seems to have been already written for her, but when her junior year starts, it all takes a drastic turn. When she crosses paths with the school's heartthrob, Nate Werner, they fall for each other in a way neither can understand. What they don’t know is that by giving in to their desires, they are unlocking an ancient Egyptian prophecy that threatens to return Earth to the dark ages.
To undo the curse, Nate and Sophie embark on an adventure that takes them across the country. But their quest is not only to save the world as they know it. It is also a fight for their very survival. Behind the scenes, there are those that are counting on them to fail.
Keep your eyes peeled for my Review on The Year of the Great Seventh around the publishing date (July 6th, 2013)! Share me your thoughts below!