Your Next Favorite Author—Sandy Young
Sandy Young is the author of Divine Vintage, her debut novel published by Wild Rose Press, available now wherever you purchase your eBook and paperback publications.
Welcome, Sandy! Readers are ready to get to know you!
Here’s our first question:
- Have you always wanted to be an author?
Sandy: I loved to write and read as a child and into adulthood and did imagine publishing someday. In my teens, I even submitted a short story to a big women’s magazine when they used to publish them. No, they didn’t accept it! But then I got into community theater, and it consumed my free time. Writing sadly took a backseat for way too many years. I’ve loved acting and singing in more than 75 shows, where my appreciation of vintage fashion evolved. The first draft of Divine Vintage was written in 2010 as part of three linked novellas, and I envisioned meshing them into one book. At a workshop with international bestselling romance author Catherine Lanigan, who had moved back to our area, she advised to turn this story into a novel. I wrote drafts of other books along the way, but always kept coming back to Divine Vintage. I eventually pitched it to land a contract with The Wild Rose Press.
Avis: That is so interesting. I always want to know more about my favorite authors, so thanks for sharing your love of vintage clothing with us! It makes sense that your first novel would blend one of your passions in your story, and what a blending! It’s a supernatural delight!
2. What real life experience influenced your novel?
Sandy: The initial hazy concept for the book was driven by my huge vintage collection, which fills a small bedroom. As a “pantser” who doesn’t outline ahead, the opening found me in Tess Burton’s new vintage shop as she nervously prepped to open the doors to the public. I read a lot of diverse genres, and some favorite books wrap around romance, historical elements, mystery, and a lighter, ghostly vibe. Ultimately, I’m pleased with the blend. And, of course, getting to describe some lovely clothing. I don’t dwell in the details but liken them to the lacy frill on a gown. Some of these garments come from my collection, and readers can see them on my web site at SandraYoungAuthor.com.
Avis: I’m surprised to hear you are a pantser because your story is so meticulously plotted and falls together seamlessly! Including all your ideas centered around the ghostly vibe of the owners of the clothing. It is pure genius! I encourage all readers to check out Sandy’s website and links. You’ll learn more about her and her collection of vintage clothes!
3. Does your family support your career as a writer?
Sandy: My fiancé’, Rick, is my proudest supporter. He leaped to buy the book when it was up for pre-order and marvels at how much time I put into preparation, building connections with readers and other authors, and establishing a “brand” image around my love of vintage clothing, acting, and singing. It’s definitely a full-time job.
Avis: Well, I’m happy to say that your hard work is how I met you, and your hard work is really paying off! It’s definitely a pleasure to know you as a dedicated author, and new fans will appreciate your connections with them as they read your book and get to know you! I can’t wait to read your next book!
4. What real life experience influenced your novel?
Sandy: I started out as a newspaper journalist and retired early from nonprofit management to finally focus on writing. In my last position as Vice President of a community foundation, I chaired a large coalition focused on helping the homeless and those most at risk in our county – where the book is set. That inspired me to add a homeless character and secondary plotline that are impactful to the main story arc. If I hadn’t been drawn back to writing, I’d still be working in such a capacity. I now volunteer for organizations that help our community in many ways, including some that focus on the arts.
Avis: What an interesting career you’ve had! The subplot of homelessness adds so much to the story. I wondered what prompted you to add it to your story, and how you knew so much about the homeless. It’s a powerful addition and creates such a rich dynamic with all of your other plotlines. It also explains how you could develop such a realistic character and situation surrounding this issue. It adds so much to your story, and informs us as well, on the issue of homelessness. Thank you for that!
I encourage all readers to check out Sandy’s links and read her fabulous, engaging story. The clothes and their owners become characters in their own right, and the romance of the characters from the past will capture your heart as much as the romance that develops between the present day characters!
Sandy Young’s debut novel, Divine Vintage will capture your imagination and your heart. This mystery/romance/historical novel crosses genres in the best possible ways and will keep readers satisfied from the first page to the last.
Young introduces Tess, a young entrepreneur, who is short on self-confidence, but long on moxie, and despite her ex-boyfriends destructive and negative treatment, she breaks from him and begins a new life and a new business in a new town.
Young opens the novel in Tess’s shop, Divine Vintage, and we learn that Tess gets more from the old clothing than joy, she gets a glimpse into the past, but her abilities become a problem for her when she meets a town matriarch Esther DeLeon.
As soon as the OPEN sign is turned and the door unlocked, in walk Esther and her grandson, the handsome Trey. After introductions, Esther pegs Tess as the perfect model for her Anniversary Tea and Style Show to benefit the local homeless shelter. Tess agrees and visits the beautiful Carver house to try on the clothes she will model. Tess finds Esther’s longtime family home meticulously restored and maintained and the clothing out of this world.
When Tess tries on the beautiful honeymoon gown, she is instantly thrown into a memory from the previous owner, Phoebe, a young bride killed the night before she is to travel to Paris with her groom, Edward Carver, Esther ancestor and the builder of Carver house. The crime is ruled a suicide/murder, but Tess gets a different take on what happened through the visions.
Tess’s connection to Trey goes from mere attraction to psychic connection as he is slated to wear the groom’s suit in the fashion show. She takes his arm to enter the ballroom, and faints. When she is revived, she proclaims that Edward did not murder Phoebe!
And thus begins the murder/mystery. Before it is solved, Tess and Trey enlist a caste of characters to clear the name of Edward Carver and lift the dark stain of murder from the family history.
This is a captivating read, and I highly recommend it! Young delivers a smart and savvy novel and develops Tess as a capable hero who is in charge of her own destiny, a strong woman who can solve her own problems, and solve a one-hundred-year-old murders in her spare time! Five-stars all the way!