Author Interview: Olivia Godat

Today, Feathered Quill reviewer Amy Lignor is talking with Olivia Godat, author of The Blue Mesa.

FQ: Your descriptions of the settings are absolutely vivid; are you originally from New Mexico?

GODAT: No, but I have heard it said that once you visit “The Land of Enchantment,” you will return again and again. That holds true for me as I have visited New Mexico many times.

FQ: How much research did you do regarding the war in the 1600s, and the Indians involved?

GODAT: Quite a bit and enjoyed every minute. Over the years I have visited museums, pueblos, missions, read several different history books, and talked with locals whose ancestors helped settle the southwest. For instance, I talked with a woman who lived at a pueblo. She had only a small amount of Tewa (Pueblo Indian) DNA. She was mostly Spanish, due to the Conquistadors and Americans (who came later) of different nationalities. However, she considered herself a Pueblo Indian.

FQ: Are the characters “loosely based” on anyone, or were the teens a part of the history you uncovered?

GODAT: The main characters are products of my imagination. However, characters he meets on his time travel are based on my grandchildren.

FQ: Your novel “travels” from the 1680s to the present. Did you find writing about two very different times a challenge? The characters’ “lingo,” reactions, etc. are all, to a certain degree, different, depending on what time period they are in. How difficult was it to keep the flow with the changes?

GODAT: I had to pay attention, that’s for sure. Then read and reread again and again to be sure I stayed true to the time-period they represent.

FQ: Is historical fiction your favorite genre to write? Are there others you wish to try out one day?

GODAT: I enjoy history and love reading historical novels. I found the history of the Southwest so fascinating that I had to write several books on the subject, but I have also written a few contemporary novels.

FQ: Mixing historical fiction with time travel is a unique and intriguing twist to the story. What made you go in that direction with the story rather than keep it a “straight” historical fiction novel?

GODAT: Since The Blue Mesa is a YA novel, I thought I should do something so the reader doesn’t read the book as a history lesson. Also, I enjoy certain types of science fiction novels, such as those of Jules Vern and Edgar Rice Burroughs and the more recent, The Time Travelers Wife. Most of the novels I have written have a bit of sci-fi, whether it’s a legend or a ghost or a psychic. But I have never written a straight science fiction novel and I do not ever plan to do so.

FQ: If you had to choose, is there one author/historical figure (alive or dead) who you wish to meet-and-greet? If so, is there a specific question you would like to ask them?

GODAT: Cormac McCarthy, but he is so talented I would probably only stare at him in awe.

FQ: Can you give us a sneak peek at the next project you’re working on?

GODAT: We are in the editing process of an America Historical Romance for publication, Skylark Dancing, which should be ready in a few months. This novel is suited for adult readers. It is the story of Alondra (Spanish for Skylark) who dances in cantinas to earn money. She meets Felipe, son of a wealthy Spanish Don. They fall in love as they race across Texas and New Mexico. But will his aristocratic family accept Alondra as a suitable wife for their only son and heir? You’ll have to stay tuned to find out.

Read the Review

Feathered Quill

Disclosure in Accordance with FTC Guidelines 16 CFR Part 255

Copyrights © 2022 Feathered Quill Reviews All Rights Reserved. | Designed & Developed by Unglitch.io