Sunday, July 31, 2011

Before Ever After...

What does it take for a human being to transform their imaginings into something tangible-- a poem, a painting, a musical score, a sculpture, a novel, ART. Why do some of us create it, while others do not? Time, passion, talent, desire....magic? I contacted Samantha Sotto, author of the novel Before Ever After (due to be released August 2 and already making quite the buzz) to hear what she has to say about such things...

When did you first decide to become a writer, Samantha? Was there a moment when your imaginings stopped being content to sit quietly alone inside your head?

Max, my main character, introduced himself to me while I was stuck in traffic one afternoon. I learned three things about him:  he had a penchant for not dying, adored chickens, and was not a vampire. He was chatty and filled my head with incredible stories that the history books had left out. I knew then that I had to write his story down. I began researching for the book the next day. That was three years and a lifetime ago.

What were you doing before Max's visit? And how did you fit his visit, this new idea of writing a book, into who you thought you were?

I was thirty-four when Max hopped into my car. I had made the transition from the corporate world to full-time mom and my focus had shifted from my own dreams to helping my children pursue theirs. Max helped me discover that I didn’t have to give up on my dreams to be a good mom. It was the opposite. Following my dreams turned out to be the best way to show my kids that they could make their dreams come true too.

(click on me to make me larger)

Do you think creating art is a choice or a calling, or both?

Art calls and you choose whether or not to answer it. You also need to constantly choose to open yourself to inspiration. It’s so easy to miss the wonder in the everyday – especially when it’s standing right in front of you.

Why do you think you answered the call of art when so many others have creative ideas but don't actually do anything with them? How did you open yourself up to 'inspiration' as you say?

I think answering the call is only half of the equation – the other half is about showing up for work – even if inspiration gets caught in traffic or plays hooky for the day. It was important for me to be at the “office” whether it showed up or not.

What inspires you, excites you, puts the sparkle and magic into your life?

I read once that a parent’s role is to be the ambassador of the world to their children. Sometimes I feel that it’s the other way around. I get inspired when I see the world through my kids’ bright, wide eyes. They can look at the simplest thing and say “WOW.” (They remind me a lot of you, Brynne! :D) (thank you, sweet Sam!:)
To support the lovely Samantha Sotto and her dream, find Before Ever After at any fine book store or click HERE to buy it from Amazon. I haven't read it yet myself but you can bet that's all I will be doing on August 2nd! Here's a taste of what we have in store for us:

Thank you, Samantha, for following your dream of writing a book and for sharing a little bit of your beautiful Self with us here today. All the magic in the world to you, my the world.


  1. Thank you for having me, Brynne! Keep sharing your magic with the world! :)

  2. was SUCH a pleasure. I can't wait for you to feel all the magic you have brought to all of us as your book hits the shelves! You have shared such a gift with the world!

  3. Hi Brynne! Thanks for interviewing Samantha! As a mom who works full time, and harbors a passion for art, I really appreciated her insights! See ya over at She Writes! Jan

  4. Hi Jan!! Thanks for visiting! So glad you enjoyed it. Sam is a true gem, an inspiration to all of us moms who have passion for art, isn't she?! :)

  5. Brynne, what a great interview! Sometimes parents feel that they must sacrifice their dreams in order to make their children's goals come alive, but in reality what Samantha said is is when you show your children a productive, happy parent who hasn't sacrificed herself for the sake of a family that the right balance is achieved. Thanks for a wonderful interview. I love the video too.

  6. Hey Sam, Great interview!
    That is a great picture of you, you are so beautiful!
    And I loved your little trailer/video clip! I don't think I have seen that one.

  7. can't wait to read the book! Sam deserves the biggest bestseller ever!

  8. I agree with you, Annie...whole heartedly...and Samantha said it so well. Thanks for the visit!:)

  9. Brynne,
    Loved to read your interview with Samantha. Right now I am at our quarters at Mesa Verde National Park, 8,200', waiting for the rain and lightning to visit us. As the rain moves across the mesas and canyons below I can't see the familiar landscape. Then the lightning lights up the sky--wow what a view! I hear thunder, so the magic show is about to begin.

  10. Brynne, I so enjoyed reading your interview with Sam! I've been following her blog as well as the release of her book and have to say it sounds like an interesting plot. I love how Max visited her while she was stuck in traffic. This just goes to prove that when things are meant to be, they're meant to be. Thank you for showing us that like Samantha, we can all aspire to making our dreams become a reality!

  11. Thanks for this post Brynne. I enjoyed reading Sam's interview and can't wait to read the book!

  12. So glad you all enjoyed it...Wall-to-wall books, Pam, Bella, Muriel...its beautiful to watch someone as open hearted and kind as Sam, use her wings!

  13. Hello, everyone! Thank you for your kind words! You made me feel right at home here :)

  14. Hooray! Maybe because you are, dear Sam! We all love you!:)

  15. "Before Ever After" is a terrific book! I finished reading it last week but the story still lingers in my head. And I think of it each time I eat eggs. :)

    I definitely want to read whatever Ms. Sotto writes in the future.

  16. It gives me such joy to see so much appreciation and love for someone who so truly deserves it! Great to read your impression, Tina! And welcome to the blog!:)

  17. I loved each and every character. Although I found some parts of the book drag a bit... by the end I was in tears. This book really hit hard in my heart and has changed how I view love in my life.

    1. Isn't that what the most beautiful books do? Change us? And to think that 'Before Ever After' changed how you view love in your life? Could there be a greater compliment for Sam?:) Thank you, UK....your words are what make us as writers know we need to continue writing.