Hi everyone and welcome to my interview series Saturday Night Author Fever, where I interview authors with a bit of a 70s music and diversity theme. I personally love 70s music, especially disco music, and sometimes on Friday nights when no one is looking you can find me dancing to classic 70s songs such as September, Bennie and the Jets and We Are Family. However, books are my true passion and because of this, I thought it would be a great idea to mix my two loves and start this interview series. The questions will be similar every week, but with a new author every time, and I hope you’ll enjoy the answers as much as I have. Now let’s get this party started!
This Saturday Night we welcome Maria Hollis. Thank you so much for sitting down with me today in my galaxy of books.
Maria, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your books? What do you think about 70s music?
I’m Maria Hollis and I write F/F stories, usually romance and paranormal. My contemporary New Adult series is called Lillac Town and has two novellas published so far. The Melody of You and Me is about a girl who dropped out of school, is feeling a little bit lost in life and suddenly finds herself falling for her new coworker. And The Paths We Choose is about two girls who have a one night stand and need to figure out if they want something beyond that. It also touches in the subject of homophobic families and how the main girl had to leave her home because she wasn’t accepted there. All of them have happy endings and hopeful stories for women who love other women.
I love 70’s music! I grew up listening to this kind of sound because it’s the music from when my parents were young. So, I was used to it since I was a kid and until today they are still listening to it and influencing my taste.
When did you feel like this is it, I’m an author whose words are going to be read by, and have an impact on, others?
I don’t know if I had a moment, but many little moments through my life. I wrote my first book when I was around 12 and that was when I realized I wanted stories where I could see myself. And then with the years passing it changed what kind of stories I wanted to tell.
I’ve been posting my fanfics since I was a teenager and the answer from readers and this sharing experience has always been a very important part of my writing process. Now that I’m aware of being a woman who’s into other women, this makes my work even more important to me. I want to write stories where people like me can find happiness.
Recently, I received a few messages from readers telling me how much my stories meant to them. I always have to pause for a moment and absorb how big of a deal this is and that I have to keep doing this, and keep getting better at it, for my readers.
What do you want your readers to take with them after having read your books?
I want them to know they belong in this world and in many other worlds. That they can see themselves, that they can be happy and have wonderful lives.
What does the future look like for you, Maria? Future projects, releases etc.?
I can’t talk much about them at the moment because it’s all still in process. I can say that I’m trying my best to get the next Lillac Town novella ready by the end of the year. And that I’m hoping to publish stories in Portuguese too for my Brazilian readers pretty soon!
Many exciting things are happening this year and I can’t wait to be able to share them.
If one (or several) of your characters got invited to a 70s-themed party, what would they wear and what song and/or person would bring them to the dance floor?
I think Chris and Josie would wear hippie clothes so they could match. Josie would run to the dancefloor right away and Chris would be more shy at first, until Josie convinces her to dance and they both get too excited about disco music. Definitely a fun time for them.
You can easily look back at the 70s and see how the times have changed. If you look at the book community and publishing world today, what changes would you like to see for the future?
I’d like to see more F/F books reaching mainstream, getting movie deals and having huge fandoms full of fanart, fanfic and dedicated fans. I want to see girls seeing themselves in all kind of stories, in Fantasy, SciFi, RomComs. And that stories can reflect better the intersectionalities that exist in the LGBQTIAP+ communities. Even more important, that more authors can have the chance to tell their stories.
Maria, can you recommend two already published diverse books you’ve read and loved and one you can’t wait to read?
I read Treasure by Rebekah Weatherspoon quite recently and totally fell in love with it. Such a great book with wonderful and complex female characters that definitely needs more readership. And I’m now completely enamored with everything Shira Glassman writes too. I’m reading The Second Mango, the first book in her Mangoverse series, and it’s such a nice story with protagonists that you can relate to so quickly. These are both authors that I admire a lot.
I’m excited to read Don’t Tell my Mother by Brigitte Bautista. It’s an F/F story set in the Philippines that just released in ebook format on Amazon. I’ve been reading great things about it and I can’t wait to get my hands on it.
Lastly, to end this interview, do you have a favorite 70s song to recommend your readers?
There are so many! ABBA is one of my favorite groups so I would say any song by them is my favorite. If I have to choose just one it has to be Dancing Queen.
Brazilian songs from these years are also so good. I have to bring some of my favorites too. Dancin Days by As Frenéticas is a classic that everyone here knows. Anything by Chico Buarque, Elis Regina, Tim Maia, Os Mutantes, and so many others.
We were living in a dictatorship until the end of the 80’s and many of our songs were influenced by the fight against the national situation going on. We learn about the meaning of these songs in school and it’s all still very fresh in the memory of Brazilian people.
I could keep talking about music all day if you let me. It’s always such a fun time and I love listening to all kinds of music depending on my mood.
Thank you so much, Maria, for answering my questions. I hope you readers enjoyed this interview, I know I did! Eager to find out more about Maria Hollis? All information about her and her books can be found on her website. You can also find her on Twitter, Tumblr, and Goodreads and buy her books on Amazon.
About The Author
M. Hollis could never decide what to do with her life. From the time she was a child, she has changed her ideas for a career hundreds of times. After writing in hidden notebooks during classes and daydreaming during every spare moment of her day, she decided to fully dedicate herself to her stories. When she isn’t scrolling around her social media accounts or reading lots of femslash fanfiction, you’ll find her crying about female characters and baking cookies.
The Melody of You and Me is her first LGBT+ New Adult Novella.
Since I promised a very 70s music-themed interview series, I have one last surprise, a favorite 70s song of mine (and there will be a new one every week yay). Now let’s get those dance moves on, here’s Come And Get Your Love by Redbone.
Do you want to listen to all of the songs from my Saturday Night Author Fever interview series?
To make things easier I have created a Spotify playlist that features all of the songs mentioned in my Saturday Night Author Fever posts. You can check out the playlist below or go here. Every time a new interview is published new songs will be added to it.