Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Ten Questions with Andrea Nepa



Andrea Nepa is the mother of an adopted Vietnamese daughter named Leah.  In 2001, Adoptions from the Heart assisted with the international adoption.  Andrea dedicated her book, Red in the Flower Bed, to her daughter: "For my dear Leah, whose journey in her young life has already taken her to far away and unexpected places."  In 2006, Leah was diagnosed with cancer.  She is currently in remission.  Andrea lives with Leah and her husband, David, in Haddonfield, New Jersey.  She is a registered dietitian for the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.


1. Hi Andrea.  Could you you tell us a little about yourself?

I grew up in NH and now live in NJ.  I still miss the beautiful fall foliage and snow at Christmas from living in New England.  I am married with a 9 year old daughter.  We have a dog and two cats.  I am very close with the cats, but the dog is new, so I am still learning to communicate with him.  My hobbies include playing the flute and ice skating.  I play music in an ensemble, and recently started taking ice dancing lessons.  I work as a clinical nutritionist at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.


2. Describe your desk/workspace.

My desk probably looks chaotic, but I know where everything is (most of the time).  At work I have several piles on my desk.  One pile is for daily/immediate tasks, one for next week's work, another for long term projects and another for other things (such as reading research articles) when I get time for it.  So I am quite organized, although you wouldn't know it by looking .


3. Do you have a favorite quote?

My favorite quote is: "The wise learn more from the foolish than the foolish do from the wise."  I think this was from a fortune cookie.


4. If you could have coffee with anyone (living or dead, real or fictional), who would it be and why?

If I had the opportunity to have a coffee chat with anyone, it would probably be Laura Ingalls Wilder.  I am fascinated by life as she describes it from her time period.  I would love to ask her questions about how she survived living as secluded as her family did at times, and how they managed by making/growing/hunting almost everything they owned and ate, with no modern medicine, indoor plumbing, etc.  She had the ability to describe the beauty of life with beautiful words, and took joy in the nature around her.


5. What are your top three favorite books and why?

There are so many great books that I don't know that I could narrow it down to three.  Some of my favorite books are: Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden (the storyline is captivating and so well put together and life in Japan during that time is fascinating too); Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier (great story you can't stop reading); Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (the storyline is so intricate and well designed and the characters are well defined with great dialogue; interesting insight into how life was among the upper class in England during that time period); The Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency series by Alexander McCall Smith (great fun to read; quirky characters in an African setting; interesting mysteries); all James Herriott books (his true stories about life as a country vet can be hilarious, and his insight into human and animal behavior is awesome) and of course the Little House on the Prairie series.


6. Do you write full-time or part-time?

I occasionally write professionally for work, but I have only written the one children's story.


7. What are your current marketing strategies for Red in the Flower Bed: an Illustrated Children's Story about Interracial Adoption?

I have participated in several online blogs targeted to adoptive parents.


8. Could you share about any current writing projects?

No writing projects at the moment!


9. What would be the best way for readers to contact you?

Through my publisher, Tribute Books.   http://www.tribute-books.com/


10. Is there anything else you'd like to share?

I was inspired to write Red in the Flower Bed because I feel so fortunate to have my daughter through adoption, and because she would ask questions about her adoption that we were unable to answer because her birth history is unknown.  I did it out of love for her, and was especially motivated to write it after she survived a life-threatening illness at the age of five.

18 comments:

Tribute Books said...

Suzanne - what a great interview with Andrea! I agree - Laura Ingalls Wilder is one of my all-time favorite authors as well. She lived during such an interesting time in history when so much change was taking place. I've read a couple of biographies about her, and it's interesting how her daughter, Rose, was considered the professional writer in the family and how Laura would personally respond to the fan mail she received from schoolchildren. Great pick, Andrea!

Best wishes,
Nicole
Tribute Books

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Susanne and Andrea .. this is very uplifting to learn that Leah has survived so much .. I can understand why you'd want to write a little book which helps explain her scenario - she is extremely lucky to be so loved - but more importantly I'm sure - you're blessed you have her.

Have a peaceful year ahead .. with blessings and thoughts - Hilary

storyqueen said...

I love the fortune cookie quote.

And I'm going to look up Andrea's book.

Thanks for sharing.

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

What a great follow up interview to your post about Andrea's book! It sounds wonderful. I think the best books are ones that come from the heart and this one came from Andrea's heart for sure....

Thanks for sharing!

Have a wonderful New Year's Eve!

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

A very nice interview, Susanne. It's nice to learn more about you, Andrea. Wishing the best for you and your lovely daughter.

Lenny Lee* said...

hi miss susanne! i read that review you did and that book sounds just right for people thats gonna adopt a kid from another country. i hope it could get read by lots of people. i like how you did a neat interview with miss andrea. that picture is of her and leah is cool. leah is real cute. im just real sorry she had to be sick with that yucky cancer stuff but im real happy shes got in remission. im doing good with mine to cause my bone marrow test was good and now im back being partly remissed.
...hugs from lenny

L. Diane Wolfe said...

We started down the adoption road, but it never came to fruitition. I admire anyone who takes that path!

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

I enjoyed reading this interview very much! Thanks so much for introducing me to this author. I'll look for her beautiful book.

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi Nicole, I'm glad you liked the interview. I enjoy doing them. It's always fun to learn new things about writers and learn where they got the inspiration for their book.
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Hi Hilary. Thanks for stopping by to check out the interview with Andrea.
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Hi storyqueen, thanks for stopping by to check out the interview and to leave a comment. I also liked the fortune cookie quote.
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Hi Sharon, thanks for stopping by to check out the interview with Andrea. I'm glad you liked it. Author interviews are one of my favorite things to do.

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi Beverly, thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.
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Hello Mr. Lenny! I'm glad you came by to check out the interview I did with Andrea. Thank you for leaving such a wonderful comment. You are quite an inspiration, Lenny. Thanks for always sharing your smiles and hugs in the blogging world. I'm so glad to hear that your bone marrow test was good. Happy 2011!
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Hi Diane. My husband and I had briefly talked about being foster parents or adopting. It didn't happen for us. We know several families who have adopted and it has been a wonderful experience for them.
Thanks for stopping by to check out the interview and for leaving a comment.
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Hi Nicole D. Thanks for stopping by to check out the interview with Andrea and for leaving a comment.

Rayna M. Iyer said...

What a great interview. And I must look out for this book- sounds like it would be a really good one.

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi Rayna. Thanks for stopping by to check out the interview with Andrea.

Mayra Calvani said...

Thanks for sharing this great interview!

Susan Hornbach said...

This was a wonderful interview. Andrea sounds like an extraordinary person. I wish her great success with her book, Red In The Flower Bed. Another great interview Susanne!

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi, Mayra. Thanks for stopping by to check out the interview with Andrea. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi, Susan, So nice to have you stop by for a visit. I'm glad you had a chance to check out the interview with Andrea.

Andrea Nepa said...

Thank you Susanne for the wonderful review and interview.

I appreciate everyone's comments.

If anyone would want to contact me directly, you can reach me at: andreanepa@tribute-books.com

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi, Andrea. I had fun interviewing you. I'm glad you had a chance to stop by to read the comments that everyone left.

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