iVillage interviews Heather A. Clark
Heather A. Clark, author of Chai Tea Sunday was interviewed earlier this month on iVillage.ca. Heather chatted with interviewer Charlotte Percival-Gonzalez about Kenya, her inspiration for Chai Tea Sunday, and how she achieves work-life balance.
iVillage: How do you regularly find the inspiration and time to write? Do you write daily?
Heather Clark: Admittedly, finding the inspiration and time to write on a regular basis is hard at times. There are many nights when I would prefer to watch a movie with my husband or go for some (much loved!) red wine with a few of my girlfriends than write yet another page in my manuscript.
My best trick is to make the deal with myself that I need to write just two more pages of the manuscript before I can give in to whatever is calling my name. If, at the end of those two pages, I still want to do something else, I am able to close my laptop and not feel guilty about it. However, I don’t know that I’ve actually ever abandoned my book for something else given that the two pages always seems to draw me into the story and, before I know it, the next chapter is written.
iV: A portion of the proceeds of your novel are going to a charity called Artbound. What can you tell us about this initiative, and why is it so close to your heart?
HC: Artbound is an amazing charity that harnesses the power of the arts in support of Free The Children. In addition to providing clean water, medical care and food to children who need it, they raise funds to build schools in developing nations so they can provide children with a full education, including art. Their programs are designed to teach children skills that will improve their living conditions and generate sustainable income to help break the cycle of poverty. So, for example, the children might learn how to bead in school, and then sell that bead work in a market.
When I found out Chai Tea Sunday would be published, it became very important for me to give back as I had fallen in love with the kids from the Kenyan orphanage that I had written about, and knew I needed to help. I wanted to find the right charity, and was thrilled to partner with Artbound as I believe wholeheartedly in everything they stand for and all of the work they do around the world. I believe it is important to teach children, particularly in developing nations, the skills they need to generate income so they can ultimately provide for themselves and their families – and Artbound does exactly that.