Interview with Steve Moretti, Author of The Heart Beats in Time

08 Sep 2020

What can you tell us about your new release, The Heart Beats in Time?

The new book, ‘The Heart Beats in Time’, is the culmination of the Song for a Lost Kingdom trilogy. Two women, Adeena and Katharine, find themselves transposed across time, living each other’s lives in an unfamiliar world.

Both are classical music composers – and both are pregnant. Adeena is caught up in the conflicts of 1746 Scotland, ten days after the Battle of Culloden, while Katharine awakens in 2019 to a world full of magic that can only mean one thing; she has died and gone to Heaven.

Somehow, either through either unknown mystical forces, or the science of epigenetics, the two are able to work together across the three centuries that separate them to complete their musical tour-de-force, ‘The Heart Beats in Time’.

The words and music of the song reflect the events unfolding around them. They are connected through a priceless musical instrument, The Duncan Cello, the oldest surviving cello in the United Kingdom.

As the men in their lives learn the true identities of Adeena and Katharine, they too must decide where their own loyalties and hearts belong.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

I’ve always been in awe of how the arts that can touch our deepest emotions. The connection we feel with the characters from our favourite books and movies sometimes exceed the relationships we have with the real people in our lives.

I think that is what has driven me to try and develop stories and characters that resonate with my readers. When a story is burning within you, it is almost like you have no choice but to transcribe it and share it.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

Here they are, in no particular order.

Roots, Alex Haley
Wuthering Heights, Charlotte Brontë
Great Expectations, Charles Dickens
2001: A Space Odessy, Arthur C. Clarke
Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask

Probably Diana Gabaldon, author of the Outlander series or Stephen King. I greatly admire their work and their seemingly effortless natural abilities, which are likely the result of raw talent plus hard work.

I think my first question for Diana would be about her characters, particularly Claire. “How deep inside of you are your characters?” I’m interested in knowing more about the relationship Diana has with Clarie and Jamie.

Do they feel as real as her closest friends or family members, or is she able to segregate them emotionally into some kind of a ‘fictional characters’ bucket in her head?

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

The ability to have complete control over a world of your own creation, and yet to be totally powerless to the desires of the characters who inhabitant this world.

The inner lives of my characters is a kind of push-pull relationship. I think I know them, until I set them in a scene and they start to do their own thing, even though I am the one typing away on the keyboard. I point them in a direction I think they should follow, and then for some reason, they completely ignore me.

At that point I know that I am fully immersed in the story and writing it becomes a non-optional activity.

What is a typical day like for you?

I get up early, that is about the only thing ‘typical’ in my day.

Ideally I like to hit a daily word count, but as an independent author, the realities of advertising and marketing, as well as editing, cover design, managing online bookstores, producing audiobooks, etc. have a way of making each day a little different.

I also like to spend some time outdoors every day, either in the garden, on the lake at our cottage, biking or running, or any other excuse to get outside. Having two dogs to walk helps greatly in this regard!

What scene from The Heart Beats in Time was your favorite to write?

In Book III, the last scene of the trilogy was one of the most satisfying to write. I’d put most of the characters through hell and I think this is where they finally said “enough is enough!”

Having wrapped up all the threads of the series, it felt good to have them enjoy themselves and not face another impending, life-threatening crisis.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

Never stop learning, never stop growing and never take yourself too seriously.

Steve Moretti is the author of the new book The Heart Beats in Time.

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