For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Carolyn Mazanec and I wrote the novel, A Pink House, which is a story set in the 1960s about a chronically nervous boy whose goal is to befriend the “cool” kids on the block by the end of the summer. A Pink House will be available on Amazon, iTunes, and Android in just a few months now! I can’t wait to share this story with all of you, and so I thought that I would blog about my journey, from writing to editing to publishing, in the meantime.
First, to know a little bit more about me, I grew up in the suburbs of Cleveland, Ohio, with my mom, dad, brother, and sister. I now attend Northwestern University, where I have met many interesting people from all over the country, and even the world. The other day, one of my friends from downtown Chicago told me that when she was little, she used to get nightmares about moving to the suburbs. This made me laugh because I loved growing up in the suburbs of Cleveland.
Throughout this brutally long Chicago winter, I’ve missed the many happy summers I spent in Cleveland. I’ve missed the summer concerts at Blossom Music Center, where people come out with their towels and lawn chairs to sit on the lawn and listen to the Dave Matthews Band or Rascal Flatts. I’ve missed driving to school each morning for soccer practice, coasting up and down the long hilly roads past big green landscapes. And I’ve missed the best-kept secret of Cleveland, aka my favorite place on earth: Nelson’s Ledges, which is a quarry in Garretsville, Ohio, that has big rocky cliffs you can jump off of and a crystal blue lake that catches you below.
As I was writing A Pink House, my love for the greater Cleveland area seeped into its pages. Part of the reason that I am so excited to share my novel with all of you is because I want to showcase the unique, culturally-rich city that is Cleveland, Ohio.
In A Pink House, the setting of Parma, Ohio, has a personality of its own, and acts as “one of the gang” throughout the novel. I chose Parma as the backdrop for my story because that’s where my dad grew up, and it was fun for me to imagine the characters I’d created on my dad’s old stomping grounds.
Above is a picture of my grandma’s house. No, her house isn’t pink. And it didn’t house the horrors that Jax, my story’s protagonist, faces in A Pink House. However, Grandma’s house and the memories it holds showed me how a house can mirror the family that lives inside it. When my grandmother reluctantly moved out of her house of fifty years, I realized that she was reluctant because the house had become a part of her. While I was writing A Pink House, I think that this idea was at the front of my mind. As I developed this idea through Jax and the other characters in the book, I simultaneously wrote my love for Cleveland and my grandmother’s house into every page.
Alright, so that’s all I’ve got for now. Signing off.