How apt that this Monday, my guest should be publishing her debut novel: Under the Light of the Italian Moon
I’m delighted to introduce you to an Italian/American lady who has spent many years recording the true story of her relatives in northern Italy, and turning her research into a passionate novel. Please welcome Jennifer Anton.
Angela, grazie mille for having me on your wonderful blog! You are a star!
The pleasure is all mine, Jennifer. Honestly, I can’t tell you how excited I am for you on publication day, Also, fittingly, World Women’s Day 2021.
Tell me, how did you begin your book?
I began my book with no idea what I was doing. It was a research project out of curiosity about my Italian grandmother’s life. She told me a story once that I wanted to learn more about. I had many questions for her, but she died before having time to answer them all. That began a journey of searching for the answers through family members in the U.S., Canada and Italy and reading everything about WWII and Mussolini I could get my hands on.
Where did you get your ideas from?
In doing my research, I discovered so many interesting facts and stories that aligned to paint a picture of what the women in my family’s lives were like during the rise of fascism and WWII. These facts and stories fed more questions, which fed my imagination. Trying to get into the head of a woman who is the daughter of a strong-willed midwife under a fascist dictatorial regime interested me. The long-distance love story of a woman in Italy with her lover abroad spoke to my imagination. In the fourteen years that I wrote the book, my development as a wife, daughter and mother informed the work. Things happened to my friends, both happy and devastating, and I saw how they coped. I observed all of this and fed it into the pages.
How did the ideas arrive in your head?
The ideas came from the mixture of stories and facts. I spoke with over eight people who had lived through the 1930s and 1940s in Italy. Some left, emigrating to Canada and the U.S., others continued living in Fonzaso. They shared details about the Nazi atrocities that took place there. I walked around the cemetery and visited the monuments to the fallen. The stories, the history, the facts all came together.
How long did it take you to complete the book?
It took me fourteen years to write my novel. I’ve had to learn everything: not just about the book, but how to write, plot, line edit, and how to figure out what the story is truly about. It was all new. I’ve learned so much and loved it all. My first novel has been a journey—a chaotic joy that has been like a friend—always there in the background waiting for me. In the end, the novel needed to take fourteen years. It wouldn’t be what it is if it had taken less. I hope my next one doesn’t take that long!
I adore this cover. I know it was created from one of your own photos. Awesome! I hate to use a pun, but it seems to me that your book has been one long labour of love. I wish you every success with its birth today. Congratulations!
May you find joy and inspiration in the pages you read this month! Cento baci! Jennifer
Jennifer’s bio: Jennifer Anton is an American/Italian dual citizen born in Joliet, Illinois, and now lives between London and Lake Como, Italy. A proud advocate for women’s rights and equality, she hopes to rescue women’s stories from history, starting with her Italian family.
Under the Light of the Italian Moon is her first novel, based on the lives of her Italian grandmother and great grandmothers during the rise of fascism and World War II.
Preorder the novel on Amazon: www.getbook.at/Janton
Preorder the novel on BarnesandNoble: https://bit.ly/3n1nDqC
Connect with Jennifer on Instagram www.instagram.com/boldwomanwriting
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