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Interview with author of Indiana Belle, John Heldt!

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Denise Alicea

This blog was created by Denise in September 2008 to blog about writing, book reviews, and technology. Slowly, but surely this blog expanded to what it has become now, a central for book reviews of all kinds interviews, contests, and of course promotional venue for authors, etc

COVER-Indiana-BelleIndiana Belle by  John Heldt
Purchase link for Indiana Belle
Blurb: Providence, Rhode Island, 2017. When doctoral student Cameron Coelho, 28, opens a package from Indiana, he finds more than private papers that will help him with his dissertation. He finds a photograph of a beautiful society editor murdered in 1925 and clues to a century-old mystery. Within days, he meets Geoffrey Bell, the “time-travel professor,” and begins an unlikely journey through the Roaring Twenties. Filled with history, romance, and intrigue, INDIANA BELLE follows a lonely soul on the adventure of a lifetime as he searches for love and answers in the age of Prohibition, flappers, and jazz.
Where are you from? Tell us a little about yourself!

I grew up in Oregon and Washington, the third oldest of six children, and did the

usual things as a kid: baseball, fishing, paper routes, and school activities. After

graduating from college, I worked as a reporter and an editor and then as a

reference librarian. I've been a novelist since 2012. When not writing, I like to

make beer, walk the dog, and travel around the country. I currently live in the

South with my wife and three grown children.

Tell us about your book? How did it get started?

Indiana Belle, the third book in the American Journey series, is about Cameron

Coelho, a modern-day doctoral student from Rhode Island who is drawn to a

woman in a century-old photograph he receives in the mail. Not content to leave

well enough alone, he digs into the history of the woman, a society editor

murdered in 1925, and attempts to uncover a few family secrets. He contacts a

celebrated "time-travel professor" in Los Angeles and soon finds himself on a train

to 1925 Indiana. Cameron promises to do no more than gather information and let

history repeat itself, but he has trouble keeping that promise after he falls for

Candice Bell and locks horns with a few unsavory characters. Though I started

outlining the book shortly after finishing Mercer Street, the second novel in the

series, I formulated the story in my head long before that.

How do you create your characters?

All my characters are fictional but are based at least loosely on people I've

encountered in literature, television, movies, and real life. I tend to write characters

to fit certain scenes and situations – not the other way around.

Where do you write? Is there something you need in order to write (music,


When I write, I usually do so in a very quiet place, like an unoccupied room in my

house. I find it difficult to write even a few paragraphs when I am around noise and

distractions. When I plan and outline novels, I like to listen to music from the era

I'm writing about. In fact, I create an iTunes "soundtrack" for each book and listen

to it often for inspiration.

How do you get your ideas for writing?

I get my ideas from a variety of sources, including books, movies, television, and

real life.

What do you like to read?

I read mostly thrillers and historical fiction, though for the past two years I have

been more of a listener than a reader. I'm a big fan of audiobooks.

What would your advice to be for authors or aspiring in regards to writing?

Give your book the consideration it deserves. Read it, reread it, and revise it until

you want to run away from your laptop. Enlist the help of competent editors, beta

readers, and illustrators. Be patient. Set reasonable goals. Take marketing

seriously. It’s one thing to write a book. It’s another thing to sell it in a market

where several hundred thousand new titles are released each year. Do what you can

to stand out in the crowd.

Anything else you’d like to share?

I maintain a blog at: It contains updated

information on my books links to my social media sites.

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