I’m over here squealing about today’s interview for multiple reasons!
One, me and the author share the same name.
Two, her books are SO very good! Some of the best dystopian I’ve read! (Much hope!)
Third, she lives in Japan!
And fourth, she has been such an encouragement and inspiration to me! <3
With that said, come join us for a great interview about Japan, her books, and her characters!
About the Book
Workers silently shuffle to their assigned posts.
Outcasts watch from the alley walls.
On every corner, a Watcher stands stone-faced, rifle in hand.
Nineteen-year-old Hannah exists in a gray, smog-covered world of labor and fear, where sunlight and stars are stories whispered in secret. She survives on the memories left by her parents, reliving the moment they were dragged from their family unit and shot.
Everything changes the night the valley erupts in explosions and gunfire. Edan, a young soldier in disguise, pulls Hannah from her unit and rushes her down to the streets. Surrounded by dozens of terrified slaves, she’s told to run.
Run as hard and as fast as you can and don’t stop!
Hannah’s world turns upside down. Now the enemy fights for her freedom, and she must struggle to shake loose from fear-conditioning and to forgive men who inflicted terror on her people.
For the sake of freedom, she has no choice.
– Hi Laura! I’m SO excited to be chatting with you! For those who don’t know you, can you share three words to describe yourself?
Hi Laura! 😀 Thank you for this opportunity! And can I just say, you’re such a blessing. Every writer should have a someone like you in their life.
Okay, three words to describe me…nerdy, introverted, and antsy.
I always find this question hard, but these are the words that come to mind today. Tomorrow the answer may be different. LOL
I love all things LOTR, Star Wars, bookish, and weird. I am deeply, DEEPLY introverted, to the degree that I get awkward pretty fast in social situations. (But I’m also a deep thinker and an independent creator, so I don’t say that as a bad thing.) And I am very fidgety, rarely completely still, always looking for the next challenge, and I frequently rearrange. So..antsy.
– Aww! HUGS! I wasn’t expecting to almost cry at the beginning of our interview! LOL! I am incredibly grateful for writers like you! Keep being you and writing these awesome stories! <3 I saw in in your bio you mention that you live in Japan with your husband and two kiddos. That is SOOOOO cool! What has it been like living in Japan? Do you have a favorite Japanese dish or place you love to visit?
I have LOVED living in Japan over the last four years. We only have two more months to be here, and I’m soaking it in! There have been challenges to be sure: learning the language, figuring out food options amidst allergies (two of us are allergic to fish!), and understanding and respecting the culture. But the experience as a whole has been amazing. Like living in a Japanese anime!
My favorite dish is hands down ramen from our local ramen shop. It’s nothing like what we grew up eating from packets. Pairing it with gyoza is my top recommendation for anyone planning a visit. SOOO delicious.
And my favorite place isn’t a tourist spot. It’s the river walk a quarter mile from our house, where we’ve gone as a family to play football, take walks, ride our bikes, and dream. It’s our special place, full of memories.
– Oh my goodness, that sounds so amazing! And memorable indeed! You also mention in your bio that you grew up a “shy thing, always daydreaming.” Did you imagine being an author when you got older? Or have you always wanted to be an author?
I was shy to an extreme. I didn’t talk to adults beyond my parents during my younger years. (My parents sought help because of it…it was a big issue for a while.) And up through high school I struggled with anxiety socially. My thought life has always been overactive, which I suppose lends to storytelling. But though I excelled in creative writing in school, I didn’t realize I wanted to write as a career until after graduation. I remember the first time the words left my mouth. I cried then, because I didn’t think I could do it…I was really uncomfortable with the idea of college and that whole school setting all over again.
But slowly, over time, God eased my fears and strengthened me, teaching me that with Him I can do those hard things.
– We serve a great God! I am so glad that He is with us during those hard things! <3 I’m a little late to the party, but so many congrats on the release of Remnant, book three in your Slave Series! I can’t believe it’s done! What an epic, heart-wrenching, powerful, and hopeful ending! How does it feel to have the full story published?
Ahh thank you!! It feels so good. The Slave Series was born out of all those fears I previously mentioned, and the feedback and personal messages from readers have been life-changing for me. I’m so grateful!
– I am so so so happy for you, Laura! This series is incredibly powerful! I totally realize that I’ve already asked about Japan, but I am super curious if the culture influenced your series. If so, how? (I am so fascinated by the Japanese culture and couldn’t refrain from asking! Hehe!)
You know, you would think that on some level it did. But apart from naming a lead supporting character Takeshi, and giving him Asian features, I don’t know that much of Japan made it into this series. But I’ll tell you what it did do. Japan has offered the perfect setting to be introspective and work. Japanese culture is one of consideration and quiet, peaceful atmospheres. I’ve been able to write or think in calm environments where my creative mindset could really flourish.
– I LOVE that! I’ve heard on numerous occasions that most authors can’t choose a favorite, BUT I wonder who you would want to hang out with for a day. Who’s the lucky character to hang out with? What would you guys do?
I loved all the characters. Truly, I don’t know if I could choose a favorite, though I am partial to Hannah. HOWEVER, I can easily choose one to hang out with. And it might be surprising to some: Norma. In the prequel short story, Where Rebels Hide, I explored more of Norma’s background and her connection with Hannah. And throughout that process, I grew really attached to her. Tea and a crackling fire place and a long, meaningful talk with Norma sounds just about perfect to me.
– I wouldn’t have guessed, but that sounds so relaxing! I would love to hear what Norma would share! <3 For my last question, if you could take Hannah to visit anywhere in the South, where would you want to take her? Also, would Cash be tagging along?
This one’s tough! For the longest time, I wanted to take her to the ocean. It was always in my mind when writing. To see the wide open expanse and be able to breathe. But now, well, I’ll bet there are fairs and festivals in the South. Big gatherings with vendors selling roasted pecans and caramel popcorn. Music festivals and rollercoasters. Funnel cakes and hot cocoa. I’d like to take Hannah and Cash, show them around a bit and watch their reactions, then back off and let them enjoy it together. I just want to see them making new memories.
– AHHHH!! *cries* That would be so beautiful! I feel like I need a short story with this! 😉 Thank you so much for chatting with me, Laura! It’s always such a blessing to chat with you and absolutely loved hearing more about you and your series!
Thanks for having me and for all your support and encouragement!
About the Author
Laura Frances grew up a shy thing, always daydreaming. She is now the author of the Slave series, a clean, dystopian story. Residing in Japan with her husband and two children, she teaches the english language and spends her free time (when she isn’t writing) walking the narrow streets and learning Japanese culture. Frances strives to convince others through the art of storytelling that they can do the things they think they can’t. Slave is her debut novel.