Sunday, June 22, 2008

September Dawn by Carol Whang Schutter

Carole Whang Schutter was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. She graduated with a degree in Psychology from the University of Hawaii and is an evangelical Christian. Carole has been a motivational speaker to live audiences, and on TV and radio shows. She now occupies her time writing, skiing and hiking in Aspen. Her enduring interest in religion and passion for history led her to write “September Dawn,” her first screenplay written in collaboration with Director/Producer Christopher Cain which inspired the novel “September Dawn.” Currently, she is working on several screenplays, and a historical novel about her home state Hawaii.

You have been invited to share you experience with our readers.

1. Tell us about yourself - where you are from, how you got started writing, what you do when you are not writing (or anything you want our readers to know)

I was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii and have always wanted to write. I “wrote” my first story at five and my first novel at thirteen. While in college, I wrote my second novel. It all went up in smoke while I was on my honeymoon. As this was back in the Atone Age before computers, I lost everything. Although I wrote another novel in my late twenties, life, marriage, children, divorce, and remarriage all got in the way. I went through a dry spell and didn't write for at least fifteen years. In the meantime, I led an amazing life. It was a life people dream of having and one people have nightmares about. It also gave me plenty of insight and plenty to write about.

I now live in Aspen where I ski and hike when I'm not writing.

2. What inspired you to write your first book?

The love of writing and a passion for stories.

3. How many books have you written?

If you count the ones that burned up and the ones I shelved, six or seven.

4. How do you decide on their topic?

Inspiration from God.

5. What works best to keep you focused and on track?

Writing late at night, when the phone isn't ringing, people aren't coming to the door. I need to have no distractions.

6. Do you write to make money or for the love of writing?

For the love of writing.

7. What are some traditional methods of marketing you have used to gain visibility for you and your book(s)?

Hiring a publicist and a internet marketing expert.

8. What are some unique methods?

I had bookmarks made and while on a cruise to South America, passed them around. I found people wanted to talk about what I did and about my book. With my internet expert, we are working on giving freebies like the bookmarkers to anyone who buys my book. I am including a pdf file ebook of the screenplay which my novel is based on, a pdf file of something called a double blue line one line schedule which is the shooting schedule handed out everyday during the filming of a movie, in this case, September Dawn.

9. Do you sell through a website?

I have a website,

10. Do you plan on writing additional books?

Absolutely. “The Ohana,” is a book I'm working on which I wrote thirty years ago and shelved it. Ohana means family in Hawaiian and it is a historical family saga about three immigrant families to Hawaii, Korean, Japanese, and Irish. The Great Depression, World War II, the Vietnam War, and the flower child generation frame the story of how these three families lives intertwine until they find the meaning of family. It is honest look at Hawaii. I hope it exposes the heart and soul of Hawaii without hiding the flaws. One of the side stories is how the “syndicate” which was the Hawaiian mafia, came into being.

I have also optioned another screenplay. It looks like it will go into production next year.

September Dawn -

“I didn’t choose love, it chose me.” Emily Hudson, on September 11, 1857.

Based on one of America’s most horrific, historical events, this is the story of an improbable romance between two nineteen-year-olds from starkly different worlds, Jonathan, the son of a Mormon bishop and Emily, the daughter of a Christian pastor. In a beautiful, pristine valley called Mountain Meadows, surrounded by an atmosphere of fear and hatred, Jonathan, tormented by the execution of his beautiful mother by a lecherous apostle, falls in love with beautiful, spirited Emily. Ordered to spy on the wagon train by his father, Jonathan tames a wild, magnificent black stallion and wins the heart of the girl who has captured his.

The Mountain Meadow massacre was an act so atrocious it was kept shrouded in secrecy for over a hundred years. Mormons, driven by a despotic Brigham Young who thunders chilling messages of Blood Atonement from the pulpit, commit polygamy, murder, and castration in the name of God. But unforgiveness and revenge cannot stop a love so great, it refused to die, or muzzle a story so amazing, it struggled to live. In the end, this is Jonathan’s story. In the midst of the massacre, Jonathan must choose between his brother and his faith, or Emily.

As Jonathan races to save Emily, the reader is left breathless with heart-pounding anticipation as the scope and magnitude of their love amidst the searing fire and ashes of the Mountain Meadow Massacre dramatically, and unforgettably, unfolds.

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