Friday, May 4, 2012

The Breakaway - Released!

If you know Michelle Davidson Argyle, you should know that her newest novel,
The Breakaway
has been released.  She has already published Cinders (self-published) and Monarch (Rhemalda Publishing).  Today I host her here for an interview about the newest book release.

This isn’t your first book release, but it is special, because it has been a long time coming.  If I remember correctly, you originally wrote it somewhere in your teenage years.  How does it feel to finally get it out in the world?  Are you happy to see it go?  Or, if I can paraphrase Truman Capote, does it feel like you took it into the backyard and shot it?

Publishing a book always feels like I shot it, which might sound horrible to say, but it’s true! At least for me. It’s such a deeply personal thing, and selling it as a product is a bit unnerving. Attaching a price to anything as personal as a novel is a bit like killing it. But, I will say this … it’s also an amazing experience to get my work out there. The Breakaway is finally out there after 17 years, and I’m very, very relieved and happy!

Obviously, a lot of edits have been made, first by yourself and then by the editing staff at Rhemalda Publishing.  Did you write the whole thing from scratch again?  Did you reference from your original draft or did you write it from memory? (Do you still have your original draft?)

The Breakaway has been rewritten many times, yes. When I first submitted it to Rhemalda Publishing, they rejected it and asked for revisions and to submit it again. So I did, and it final arrived at a really finished state I was proud of. Then, of course, it went through even more edits during the publication process. I have one of my original drafts, but not THE original one, sadly. I wish I had it, but that was a long time ago. I did not reference my first drafts much, actually. I was so familiar with the story already!

How much of the original story is in the book that was released a few days ago?

Some of it is the same, but not much! The basic plot is the same. The ending has changed a few times, and ages of the characters have changed. But the main idea has always remained the same, and a few scenes.

The Breakaway is a very interesting case for me, because it is one of your earliest works that has somehow made a comeback.  A lot of people advise that the first few novel-length things you write are going to be bad, yet yours just got published.  What do you think is the key to redo older works and take out the kinks enough to make them publishable?

Distance. A lot of distance. Years. And several more novels. When I finally came back to the book and could delete thousands and thousands of words without caring, I knew I was ready to rework the novel to a publishable state. It was like hiking out of a fog and finally seeing the book in the sunlight. 

The Breakaway is very special to you.  So now I want to know, did you find it harder to be brutal in the editing with The Breakaway, as opposed to your other books?  Did you give in to less of your editor’s suggestions?

No, editing was never a problem for me after I reached the point I talked about above – finally being able to see it clearly. I had finally reached a point in my writing that I saw my books as fluid projects that made all the difference. Being brutal is not an issue when I’m doing it for the betterment of the story. My editor at Rhemalda was amazing, as well, and really helped polish it up. I accepted almost every single one of her edits.

Last question.  You mentioned on The Innocent Flower that The Breakaway had gotten a lot of mixed reactions, including some people mentioning that they liked Monarch better.  What do you think?  How does The Breakaway measure up to your other books?

Okay, honest, honest truth is that while I feel The Breakaway is well-written, and it is a huge accomplishment for me, it is not my best-written work. That said, I could probably feel that way about any of my published books, but the point of getting published is that it’s finished and it is what it is and to be proud of that. And I am. And when all is said and done, I’d like every new book I write to be better than the last!

I think The Breakaway is a fantastic accomplishment for me and my career, and I am so happy to have it out there and to a place that I am happy and content with it. Even more, I’m very excited that others can read it now!

Okay, I lied, here is the final question.  I know Bonded is coming out somewhere in 2013 and that you’re working on something new, currently named, A Curse So Deep.  What can you tell us about your new book?

Bonded will be published November 1, 2012. Yay! So a little sooner than 2013. I’d like my next novel, A Curse So Deep, to be published in 2013, so I’m trying to finish it as fast as I possibly can in a timely manner. Hah! It’s the story of a girl cursed with beauty—for as soon as someone falls in love with her, the beauty fades and she transforms into a monster. I’m afraid to explain more since I’m not very far into the book yet, but I am very excited about it! It’s historical, set in the late 17th century in America and Scotland. Lots of research and lots of fun!

I’ve been looking forward to Bonded, so it’s great news about the earlier release(though I’ll be waiting for the paperback)!

And there you have it.  Thanks to Michelle for visiting.  It’s been a pleasure.

Book Description: 
When Naomi Jensen is kidnapped, it takes her parents two days to realize she’s missing. Escape isn’t high on her list of priorities when all she has to return to is an abusive boyfriend and parents who never paid much attention to her. For the first time in her life she’s part of a family—even if it is a family of criminals. But she’s still a captive. In a desperate attempt to regain some control in her life, Naomi embarks on a dangerous plan to make one of her kidnappers think she’s falling in love with him. The plan works too well, and when faced with the chance to escape, Naomi isn’t sure she wants to take it.


Michelle lives and writes in Utah, surrounded by the Rocky Mountains. She loves the seasons, but late summer and early fall are her favourites. She adores chocolate, sushi, and lots of ethnic food, and loves to read and write books in whatever time she can grab between her sword-wielding husband and energetic daughter. She believes a simple life is the best life.

You can find Michelle on her blog,

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