Hey, everyone! It’s my pleasure to have a brand new guest on my blog today all the way from Italy. Irene Aprile and I “met” a few years ago through an online course. We soon learned we both love writing fiction. Irene has just released her first novel, Secrets of a Handbag, and she’s hear to tell us a little about herself and the new release. Please welcome her!
Tell us about your new/upcoming release.
First of all, thank you very much for hosting me on your blog today. I’m glad I have the opportunity to share about my book. It’s called Secrets of a Handbag, and it’s somewhere between a chick-lit and a new adult novel. The story tries to answer the question “What if your handbag could talk?” and especially “What if a stranger should find it?”
Which character did you enjoy writing the most and why?
Even if most of the people who read the book in advance told me there’s something of me in the Handbag, the character I enjoyed the most writing was Diego, the main male character. He is a chemist like I am, and we share some of our traits. Writing from his point of view came easy and natural.
How did you choose your setting?
Even if I never state it in the book, the setting of Secrets of a Handbag is Turin. Turin is the capital of Piedmont, the region I live in and the place where I attended the last two years of university. It holds a special place in my heart because I met some of my best friends there. Moreover, it’s a beautiful and fascinating town, often overlooked by guided tours of Italy.
Do you have any guilty pleasures you’d like to share?
My guilty pleasures are Regency romances. I love them and don’t seem to have enough. It doesn’t matter how many times I already read about the high-and-mighty gentleman falling in love with the witty heroine; I keep reading about them again and again.
Name a book that had a profound effect on you and explain.
However banal, the book that changed my life was Harry Potter. I was eleven when I started reading the series, and I grew up with the little wizard. Moreover, Harry Potter was crucial to me because it made me want to write, so much I started writing fan fictions. I still do, and that’s another guilty pleasure of mine.
Favorite quote: “I do not want people to be very agreeable, as it saves me the trouble of liking them a great deal.” Jane Austen.
Favorite time of day: Morning.
Favorite color: Red.
Favorite TV show: Friends and every medical drama I can set my eyes upon.
Food you never grow tired of: Lasagne!!!
Do you write under a or have you ever used a pseudonym?
At present, I’m writing under my name, but I’m not ruling out the possibility. I have several different projects in mind, most in different genres. Maybe using a pseudonym will be the right choice for some of them.
What type of research do you do for your novels?
For Secrets of a Handbag, I didn’t have much research to do. I already knew the city and the settings, I knew many things about Diego’s job, and about handbags.
What is your favorite thing about the writing process? The least favorite?
The part I enjoy the most is the outlining process. I love to dive into possibilities, explore different paths, create backstories and characters’ lives. The part I enjoy the least is the publishing process. The technicalities drive me crazy.
What does your typical workday look like?
Since I’m not a full-time writer, my typical workday includes an 8 to 5 day job in a laboratory. I work on my writing in the morning before going to work and in the evening (when I don’t collapse on the couch right after dinner).
What if your handbag could talk?
What kind of secrets would she reveal?
What shameful truths would surface from its recesses?
What if a stranger found it; how would they look at it?
And if the handbag is very opinionated, things may become even more complicated.
When Elisa—student and bookseller—leaves her handbag on the bus, her life takes a dramatic turn. The handbag holds every aspect of her life, and without it, she can barely manage even the simplest of tasks.
Diego, a pragmatic, no-nonsense chemist who dislikes complications, finds Elisa’s handbag. He couldn’t be more different from Elisa and can’t wait to return the handbag to its owner so he can go back to his life.
When Elisa and Diego meet, however, things don’t go as planned. And while Diego tries to keep his distance, everyone (the handbag included) seems determined to put Elisa on his path again and again.
The only ones who don’t seem to agree are Lorena—Diego’s ex-girlfriend—and Marco—aspiring journalist and Elisa’s boyfriend…
Irene Aprile is a chemist at day and a writer at night (or early in the morning). She is 31, but her brain refuses to accept she is more than 25.
She has been writing since she was a child, but she started to get real with it recently. When she doesn’t work and doesn’t write, she reads novels, translates novels, thinks about novels. She loves spending time with her family and binge-watching TV series with her husband; she likes to travel (but nothing too adventurous), she adores Christmas and chocolate in every form.
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