Author of the Month

“Choosing Love Over Pride”: A spotlight on author Marielle de Vassoigne and her latest book!

We are excited to celebrate one of Tellwell’s talented authors, Marielle de Vassoigne for this Author of the Month feature. Join us as we explore the beautiful world of Choosing Love Over Pride and its unique themes of love, acceptance, and individuality.

Tell us about yourself.

I am an organic writer, a citizen of the world who believes that Love is Love. I share my lead character’s core belief that a rich life is filled is kindness, curiosity, and exploration. That is what led me to move from French Caribbean to Montreal and then Vancouver. This explorer’s mindset also made me become a self-published author with Tellwell.

What inspired you to write your book, Choosing Love Over Pride?

I wrote Choosing Love Over Pride when I realized how much I missed the characters of New Beginning in Vancouver, its prequel, and their world. A few days after I wrote “the end,” I went back to change it to “the end for now.” Observing life and the people around me, I couldn’t help but think of how Maxime, James, or Sophia would interact with those events and people around.

My characters are a mix of people I have met, or been curious about. Even Maxime, the lead character, is not really my alter ego, but a blend of people. Living an inclusive life, LGBTQ+ characters naturally found their way into my books.

My stories reflect how I wish society naturally valued all its members, regardless of origins, background, or preferences. My eutopia is to witness the BIPOC and LGBTQ+ communities becoming embedded in the human community.

Publishing a book is a significant accomplishment, but marketing a book requires its own set of strategies. What marketing approaches have you found to be the most effective for you?

I wrote without planning to publish and published without considering the most required marketing strategy. As I wear multiple hats, exploring life, finding an effective marketing approach is still a work in progress. So far, I have mainly leveraged my existing networks, striving to increase my visibility as an author. But I must confide I do not put enough effort into marketing my books. I wish to improve this, even more so when I receive good feedback about my novels and how they make people feel and reflect. I want to share more!

What challenges, if any, did you face while writing and promoting your book?

The main challenge when writing is diving back into the characters’ world when I get interrupted for more than a few days. Even though I start with a narrative in mind, they take ownership of their story and guide me through the creative exercise. If I lose the connection, I must almost start from the beginning to immerse myself in that reality.

And the whole process of promoting the book is a challenge, a more complex learning experience.

What was your favourite part about publishing a book? Were there any parts of the process that surprised you with how enjoyable they were?

I have published in both paperback and digital formats. But having a tangible outcome of my new experience, becoming a published author, was the best feeling. And having my close ones showing me their copy still moves me.

The most pleasing surprise is to catch myself laughing out loud or even crying because of the scene I am writing at that moment. It mostly happens when I surrender to the characters and they create their own narrative.

Sometimes they ally with the muse and whisper words of inspiration, sometimes through song lyrics, other times through insights I get from a real-life scene I witness. Those “a-ha” moments are delightful.

What’s next for you?

When I started Choosing Love Over Pride, I decided to make the series a trilogy. After almost a year of writer’s block amid writing the third book, I just started over. Meanwhile, I started translating my first novel into French, my native language. I wish to publish a French version of the series’ first book in early 2024.

What advice do you have for young authors considering self-publishing a book?

Do it! Do it for yourself first. For the challenge it represents and for everything you will learn through the journey of self-publishing. And be aware that self-publishing is just a process. Selling your book is another story. Even when collaborating with experts and with a strong marketing strategy, do not underestimate the need for marketing.

You will create a safe space for yourself when you surrender to your urge to write.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

The world I have created in my books appeals to all senses, even the sixth sense when it comes to Maxime’s strong intuition and rich inner thinking. You will see and smell the flower arrangements Maxime thoughtfully put together, taste and smell the teas and pastries, feel the touch and hear the music references I scattered in my novels. You may further experience the sensuality of Maxime’s world, and complement yours as a reader, with playlists I have made available through my author’s website: www.marielledevassoigneauthor.com. The “Vee Sunday Mourning” could be the soundtrack to our current theme.

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