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Could you start by telling us about your latest book?

Thank you for having me. My latest book, Beneath the Scarlet Sky, is a historical novel set during World War II. It tells the story of an Italian teenager who becomes a spy for the Allies, risking his life to help defeat the Nazis.

What inspired you to write Beneath the Scarlet Sky?

I was inspired by the true story of Pino Lella, the young hero at the center of the novel. I came across his story while researching the Italian resistance during World War II. His bravery and resilience were incredibly compelling, and I felt that his story needed to be told.

How did you go about researching for this book?

Researching for Beneath the Scarlet Sky was a comprehensive process. I traveled to Italy several times to visit key locations and interview people who knew Pino. I also dug into historical archives, read numerous books on the period, and consulted with historians to ensure the accuracy of the events and settings.

Can you describe your writing process?

My writing process is fairly regimented. I start with an extensive outline, mapping out the main plot points and character arcs. Once I have a solid outline, I write a first draft as quickly as possible to get the story down on paper. After that, I go through multiple rounds of revisions, refining the narrative and deepening the characters. I usually write in the mornings and spend afternoons revising or conducting additional research.

What was the biggest challenge you faced while writing this book?

The biggest challenge was balancing historical accuracy with narrative drive. I wanted to stay true to the real events and Pino's experiences, but I also needed to craft a compelling story that would engage readers. Finding that balance between fact and fiction was a delicate process.

How do you develop your characters?

Character development starts with understanding their motivations and backgrounds. For Beneath the Scarlet Sky, I spent a lot of time getting to know Pino and the people around him through interviews and historical records. I also created detailed character profiles and wrote scenes from their perspectives that didn’t make it into the book but helped me understand their personalities and relationships.

What do you hope readers take away from your book?

I hope readers gain a deeper understanding of the Italian resistance during World War II and are inspired by Pino’s courage and resilience. On a broader level, I want them to reflect on the themes of sacrifice, bravery, and the impact of war on individuals and families.

Which authors have influenced your writing?

I’ve been influenced by a wide range of authors, but some of the most significant are Ken Follett for his ability to weave intricate historical narratives, Markus Zusak for his unique storytelling style, and Erik Larson for his meticulous research and compelling nonfiction.