Ever since I published my first book, many other writers have helped me out and supported me on their blogs and social media. I like to pay forward the favor by posting a guest interview from time to time with talented artisans and authors.
Catie is a primary school teacher who tells me that she feels fortunate to have a job that has allowed her to do a lot of traveling (even if it is at the height of most tourist seasons!). She is the author of the 5-star novel, Love on the Rocks: A Positano Tale
When did you first realize that you wanted to write?
I’ve always enjoyed writing. In grammar school I’d write stories and plays. At family gatherings and on weekends, I’d cajole/force my sister, cousins, (and sometimes the neighborhood kids) to perform in my plays under my direction, of course. However, that didn’t always work out so well, so I’ve stuck to writing!
How long did it take for this book to come to fruition? (From concept, writing, editing to published)
I began the book nine years ago! It took me about three years to write. But I attribute part of that to having had another full time job. You really have to make time for the writing to happen on a regular basis. After writing the book, I set it aside to work on other projects. I then came back to it about a year ago to edit and tighten it up before publishing.
When did you go to Italy for the first time and how many times have you been there?
My first trip to Italy was when I was fifteen. My grandparents were big travelers and decided to take my mom, sister, and me on a European vacation. We started with a week in Rome, with some side trips to Siena and Assisi. From there, it was on to Paris and then London. I loved it all, but Rome was definitely my favorite part of the trip. Since that first trip, I’ve been back to Italy eight more times.
How do you think travel has changed you?
Because of travel, I have a deep appreciation and respect for the uniqueness of other cultures. Traveling to foreign places gives you a new perspective on life in general and what you really value. You learn about others and yourself. I’ve found it also makes you more appreciative of things that are unique to your own culture.
What is a favorite Positano moment?
Wow, that’s tough! I don’t know that I can limit it to a moment, but rather, to a summer. I’d have to say that the summer my friend and I rented an apartment in Positano was magical.
We had friends coming and staying with us and almost everyone that visited was going through personal issues and doing some real soul searching. A lot of drama, but a lot of fun as well, especially really getting to know the locals on a more personal level. There will never be another summer like it.
Do you have any advice for those planning a trip to Positano soon?
If it’s your first time visiting Positano, give yourself at least three days there. Give yourself four days if you are planning a day trip to Capri. I guarantee that the next time you come back, you will stay even longer. And be prepared for the stairs!
As a writer of your first book, do have any advice for aspiring writers?
Don’t give up! Believe in your story and your ability to tell your own story. You are the only one who can tell it the way you want it to be told. Develop your own voice. Make time to write and stick to it. Also, join some writing groups that can give you good feedback and useful critiques.
How do you juggle time between work, family, social life and writing?
I have to plan things (and that includes time for writing) ahead of time. Since I teach, I have limited time during the week, so a lot of things have to happen during weekends. That’s the life of a teacher.
Tell us about your next writing project. Can you share a little about it with us?
My next writing project is creative non-fiction (a memoir of sorts). It has to do with dating in my thirties, and unfortunately does not involve any Italians! It’s fun and funny, with a little tinge of heartache. But that’s life, right?
All photos by Catie Costa
Having just returned from Positano, I found Catie’s romantic novel delightful and fun, bringing back so many memories of that lovely place on the Amalfi Coast. Read my full review here and treat yourself to an enjoyable read set in Positano.
Catie’s book is available on Amazon.
I’d love to hear your feedback. Please leave a comment for Catie.