Guest Post (and a Giveaway!): Get to know Amy Matayo & The Whys Have It!

June 28, 2017 Amy Matayo, Author Interview, contemporary, giveaway, romance 65

 

Have you read Amy Matayo’s books yet? If not, you are really missing out!

Amy Matayo is an award winning author of The Wedding Game, Love Gone Wild, Sway, In Tune with Love, A Painted Summer, The End of the World and The Thirteenth Chance. She graduated with barely passing grades from John Brown University with a degree in Journalism. But don’t feel sorry for her–she’s super proud of that degree and all the ways she hasn’t put it to good use.

She laughs often, cries easily, feels deeply, and loves hard. She lives in Arkansas with her husband and four kids and is working on her next novel.

You can connect with Amy on her website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and on Snapchat as amymatayowrites.

Her new release, The Whys Have It, has 34 5-star reviews on Amazon so far!

“His music holds the heart of America…but his soul holds a terrible secret.”

Chart topping pop musician Cory Minor has it all—fame, money, more women at his disposal than time to spend on them. He’s living the life most American men only dream of. Until an ordinary concert in Springfield threatens to destroy everything he’s worked for.

As he and his band leave the arena for his next show, Cory’s tour bus crashes into two teenage girls, killing one girl instantly and leaving the other barely clinging to life. Lawsuits are threatened, tabloids are talking, and Cory’s idyllic world falls apart. But what no one knows is that this scene is all too familiar. Because this isn’t the first accident Cory has caused. This isn’t the first time he’s destroyed someone else’s life to save his own.

It’s just the first time he’s had to face it head on.

Small town girl Samantha Dalton has no one—no mother, no father, and now no sister. She’s lost everything in a world that celebrates excess. So when Cory Minor shows up at her doorstep offering money and apologies, she turns him away too. You can’t lose what you don’t have, and she can’t take another letdown, especially not from someone who has managed to rip away all she had left. Samantha has been fine on her own for years, she’ll be fine now too.
At least that’s what she tells herself.

But Cory won’t leave. He’s persistent in the worst possible way.

Will Cory’s determination to make things right pay off in the end, or will Sam keep pushing him away until there’s nothing left to fight for? How can two people learn to rely on each other when life keeps hurting them both?

1. I was in a car wreck at age 14 and it crushed my entire right hand. It also gave me a severe concussion–my head hit the windshield and I couldn’t remember anything for a few days. It’s a wonder that I can write or focus on much at all–maybe that’s when my brain went into weird writer mode? Hmmm…

2. My middle name is Margaret, but for years I begged my parents to let me change it to Brooke. Brooke Shields and Amy Grant were my idols back then. My parents  got it half right at least.

3. Black is my favorite color. Though that might not be much of a surprise anymore because I mentioned it in The Thirteenth Chance.

4. Speaking of, I learned almost all my baseball knowledge while I was writing that book. When I mentioned my plan to delve into that world to a few friends, they laughed.

5. Despite how it appears online, I’m a total introvert. I love one-on-one conversations, but groups make me fidgety and nervous. At large gatherings, you can usually find me standing near the corner or sitting by myself next to an outdoor fireplace.

1. I wrote the first draft seven years ago, tried hard to get an agent from it, was rejected by everyone, and shoved it in a drawer. It was the third full-length novel I’d written. The Wedding Game was the book I wrote next.

2. This book is my daughter’s favorite, though it required an entire rewrite which took eighteen months. By the time it was finished, I wanted to burn it.

3. The inciting incident was loosely based on an event that happened in my town. A local high school girl went to a concert in Tulsa and was killed in a car wreck on her way home. The accident had nothing to do with the artist, but I began to wonder what might have happened if he had been involved. That’s where the idea grew from.

4. This is the only cover I envisioned beforehand. I could never design one, but I told my designer what I wanted up front.

5. The last name “Minor” was an intentional play on words. I’ve been asked that question so many times that I thought I would answer it here.

1. The accident (I’m weird).

2. “I’m finding all my missing pieces in the corners of her mouth.”

3. The line that reveals the title, though I’m not going to type it here. 😉

4. “Last words cut. Last words haunt. Especially if they’re careless. Especially if you have no hope of ever having another chance to make them better.”

5. The last scene of the book. Again, can’t type it here.

When I write my books, normally the characters are vague. A blogger will ask me for my character inspiration and then I will scramble to come up with someone who looks a bit like what I had in mind. For this book, I knew the inspiration for my hero was John Mayer. This is the only book that my inspiration didn’t waver.

As for the girl, I scrambled. While Cory was concrete, Sam was vague. Here’s the photo that depicts her best.

As for their personalities, Sam is loyal and strong–a believer in picking oneself up and moving forward despite the challenges life throws at you. And life has thrown her many challenges, she’s faced a lot of loss. As for Cory, he runs. When things get rough, he panics and flees. It’s been his decade-long reaction, and he’s weary. He wants to be forgiven, understood. But he doesn’t know how to achieve those things when he can’t forgive or understand himself. I think we all struggle with that at times, don’t we?

Thanks, Amy, for all these peeks inside The Whys Have It! Amy is also offering one of my readers a signed paperback of her new book (US only). Enter via the Rafflecopter form below. Giveaway is subject to Reading Is My SuperPower’s giveaway policies.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

What about you? What’s something you learned and/or loved from Amy’s post?

Carrie

65 Responses to “Guest Post (and a Giveaway!): Get to know Amy Matayo & The Whys Have It!”

  1. Brittaney B

    I’m a huge fan of Amy’s and have read all of her books to date. I’m really looking forward to this one. I giggled a bit reading that her favorite color is black because that is my friend’s favorite color also. We get into debates all the time about how black isn’t truly a color and whether or not it’s a reflection of his personality. All jokingly of course.

  2. Rachael Merritt

    Didn’t know about the color. Interesting choice! My favorite color combo is red, white, and black which I had me room in those colors for the first five or so years I was married. We had all black furniture in the bedroom. I loved it!

    Loved that she didn’t give up on the story!

    • Carrie

      Red, white, and black is very striking together!

  3. MH

    I love the color black. And it makes me laugh that Amy learned all her baseball facts while researching for the book….I’m still struggling to figure out how the game works after 16 years of marriage to a total Yankees devotee!

  4. BJMarley

    I learned that sometimes you have to work on something you’ve put into a drawer.

  5. Stephanie

    I was surprised she is an introvert. She comes across as an extrovert. Thank you for the interview and giveaway.

    Stephanie

    • Carrie

      I know I’m an extroverted introvert – i can be outgoing when i need to be but I get my energy from being alone 🙂

  6. Rosalyn

    I learned that Amy is an introvert, like me.
    I also find it encouraging that she put this in the drawer and then pulled it out again later and finished it.

    • Carrie

      that’s encouraging, isn’t it? We don’t have to shelve our dreams forever 🙂

  7. carylkane

    I learned much about Amy since she is a new-to-me author. Thank you for the interview and giveaway.

  8. Stacy

    This quote really hit home: “Last words cut. Last words haunt. Especially if they’re careless. Especially if you have no hope of ever having another chance to make them better.”

  9. Winnie Thomas

    What a great post! I’ve read almost all of Amy’s books. I love her versatility in the things she writes. I also love that she can take the reader through the whole gamut of emotions, which makes her books memorable.

    I learned that she’s a member of the introvert club. 😀 I think there are a lot of us!

    • Carrie

      we’re everywhere mwhahahaha! 😉

      And i totally agree about Amy’s writing!

  10. Carolyn Astfalk

    Great book! I didn’t know John Mayer was the inspiration for Cory. Makes it all the better! And, ooh, a playlist!!!

  11. danielle hammelef

    The car crash surprised me–I play the flute and can’t imagine injuring my hand like that.

  12. Marilyn

    I learned that Amy’s favorite color is black!
    Marilyn

  13. Cindy Davis

    I had no idea Amy was an introvert. When she was describing herself she could have been describing me.

  14. Vivian Furbay

    It would be a horrible burden to know that in some way you were responsible for someone’s death. The Whys Have It sounds like an interesting book that I would like to read.

  15. Arletta

    I think it’s cool that although the book sat for seven years, Amy didn’t give up on it, and now the time is right to reveal it to the world. Way to go, Amy!

  16. Kay Garrett

    I admire the fact that she wrote the book years ago but never gave up on it. Most would have ditched it and gone on losing something very special. Just goes to prove that you have to believe in yourself before others will. And if they don’t, then it’s their loss.

  17. Martha T.

    I found it interesting that your manuscript was edited/ rewritten so much. I am sure it is a great book!

  18. Chanel M.

    When I saw the hero’s last name, my first thought was “Is that intentional?” Haha. Thanks for clearing that up. I love that Amy already had the design concept for the book in her head because this cover is fabulous. Lastly, the quote about “last words” is powerful and thought-provoking; it definitely speaks to me.

    • Carrie

      it’s a haunting type of quote, isn’t it?

  19. Katie Donovan

    Great post! Although I have to say, favourite line/scene number 2 is kind of gross when you take it out of context… 😜 Really loved this book, so it was great to get a behind the scenes look. And I love that last scene too!

    • Carrie

      LOL LOL LOL LOL!!!!! I’m clearly behind on commenting but I’m so glad I didn’t miss your comment 😛

  20. Heide Kemink

    I learned that She loves Amy Grant. Me Too! Looking forward to reading this book.

  21. Karen

    I’ve never read any of Amy’s books, but this one has me so intrigued. So many of us have to pick up the messy pieces after a tragedy, and I feel like these types of plots are very relatable.

  22. Katie Andersen

    I did not know Amy’s middle name before now! Or about the car accident. I am a huge fan though and can not wait to read this book!! The End of the World was one of those books that I still think about and it is in the top few books that made me feel so deeply.

    • Carrie

      that’s one of hers that I still need to read!

  23. Jocelyn

    I have never read any of Amy’s books, but I am going to look for them. So sorry about her hand being crushed. I’ve had wrist surgery and I can understand the therapy that goes into getting it back. Thanks for the interview.

  24. Iola

    Great book with a powerful finish. Yes, the line that reveals the title was great.

    • Carrie

      i can’t wait to read this one! It’s next on my list!

  25. Nicole

    I love the fact that Amy is an introvert. I never would’ve guessed! I’ve read most of her books and enjoyed them.

  26. emilee

    I was surprised she has for children, she looks so young. And also how cute John Mayer is!

  27. Meredith Miller

    I like the color black too, but blue’s my favorite. I’ve been a baseball fan all of my life–I love that Amy made the effort to learn the game for this book!

    • Carrie

      the baseball thing was for her previous book, but it’s still very admirable 😀

  28. Janell Hustead

    I love getting the “behind the scenes” info about where Amy’s ideas come from and how she draws and expands on personal experiences to write her stories.

  29. Stephanie Shelley

    I have enjoyed many of Amy’s books. They have made me laugh and think. I am looking forward to this book.