Friday, June 26, 2009

Latino Virtual Book Tour Welcomes Estevan Vega

Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to Estevan Vega. After you get to know a little bit more about Estevan through this post, please feel free to leave a comment or question for him. Estevan will be visiting this blog and answering your questions. Thank you, Estevan, for sharing your works with us. Thank you, Jo Ann, for inviting me to participate in such an interesting Tour, but most of all, thanks to all of you, my readers, without you, this tour couldn't be a reality. Also Estevan has offered one of his books as a giveaway to a randomly chosen winner from those who leave a comment or question for him on this blog up until midnight tonight PST.

As a young boy, Estevan Vega never really felt interested in the written word. Far more fascinating things like comic book superheroes and sketching fantastical beings caught his eye. But in the fifth grade, writing short essays for a standoffish teacher ignited a fire that is still burning. Using his imaginative father as a springboard for ideas, Vega set out to write a full manuscript. His dream to become a published author came forth when he was just 15 years old, releasing his first literary creation, Servant of the Realm,to the world, a story about a teenager who sees the future deaths of those he loves and tries to change it. "There is something therapeutic and natural about breathing life into the mundane, or finding escape through odd characters and strange concepts," says Vega.

The Sacred Sin, his second book, was published when he was 18, and shows a darker edge and deeper intensity than his first effort. The Sacred Sin bleeds with honesty and emotion, and tells the story of Jude Foster, a cynical self-loathing detective,assigned to bring down a serial killer capable of stealing victim's souls without ever touching them. Stopping this ghost killer, fighting against his demons, his inner darkness, may be the only path toward sanity and a new beginning. With a curiosity for the supernatural, as well as a feeling of discontentment with humanity's complacency, Vega’s story-lines dwell somewhere in between fiction and reality, a place where the world is as blurred and irregular as human choice and consequence.

Know a little more about this talented author:

Where are you from and where are you now? I have the privilege of being from New England, where the people seem ornery, with or without their morning coffee, and the winters last way too long. Connecticut, actually. Born, raised and stuck. But, I guess home is home. And supposedly, we’re a rich state. Not exactly sure that applies to young, Hispanic authors…yet. The last two semesters, I have bounced back and forth between home and Massachusetts, where I go to school.

When did you decide you wanted to become an author? How did you get started writing? I was in fifth grade, and I had made up my mind. It was time for me to become rich and famous. Never knew I could write, but I started getting A’s on English essays and short stories, so I decided to begin a book. That’s when Servant of the Realm, book number one, came along.

Tell us a bit about your latest book, and what inspired you to write such a story. On the one hand, The Sacred Sin is a creepy story about a cynical, self-loathing detective trying to stop a serial ghost killer capable of stealing victims’ souls without human contact. On the other hand, it’s about overcoming your inner darkness, that which corrupts, stains and eventually leads us to ruin. We all have it in us. The only question is: are we strong enough?

What was your goal when writing this book? To write something meaningful and spooky. Oh, and I wanted it to blow my first book out of the water. I think I achieved them all, but it’s the readers who truly decide.

Who is your target audience? Whoever wants to be. I’ve found a place with young readers, as well as adults. But the book has some dark material. Not for the faint of heart. ARSON is going to be a much more readable book, meaning that there will truly be something for everyone…from high school student to grandmother.

Technically speaking, what do you have to struggle the most when writing? How do you tackle it? Making my characters and their situations unique, real and palpable. I take pointers from my own life, mistakes, victories, longings.

When writing, what themes do you feel passionate about? Humanity. Their darkness. Their fragile nature. Their beauty. We are such a unique yet flawed creation, intricate and precious in our imperfection. Our passions and our weaknesses stimulate me, perplex me, and often leave me discontented. It’s a perfect place to start a story.

Do you have another book on the works? Would you like to tell readers about your current or future projects? Yes. What I hope is shaping up to be the best yet. I’ve been working on this one since the end of 2006. ARSON is a coming-of-age character story with a really cool supernatural angle, which I totally love. Arson is a boy who has the unusual ability of creating and manipulating fires with his mind. He hates the cruel world that hates him, but at least he understands it…until this strange girl with a mask comes along and changes everything.

Anything else you’d like to say about yourself or your work? I’m just one kid in a sea of chaos and loud voices. If you have something to say, say it. The world is too small to be unexplored, life too short to be unlived and to live unspoken. And if you get a chance, check out The Sacred Sin, and keep your eyes peeled, Arson should be coming your way soon.

You can find a link to Amazon to get Estevan's latest book "The Sacred Sin" on my side bar, check it out! And remember to check the last day of our tour for this month tomorrow at Latino Book Examiner .


  1. Welcome to my blog Estevan! and I will be the first to ask you something.

    You are almost at the end of this Virtual Tour, Can you tell us what do you like the most about it?

  2. Hi, Silvia. Thank you so much for being available for my first-ever blog tour. It means so much to have you bloggers as support.

    I guess the thing I like the most is the people, the ones who stop by and pay some interest, or the ones who leave a comment. I love it when they say that something I have written means something to them or was cool to them. I guess it all boils down to feedback. I also love how cool the blog hosts have been. Without them, this wouldn't be possible.

  3. It has been a great experience for me too! It's been fun following your tour around, I really like your short story The Borrower. I love the way you describe things, they look very real in my head!
    Do you find easier to write now after years of doing it? or is always the same writing process for you?

  4. It's hard to know if writing has changed, but I would hope that I've gotten better. I mean, I look back at my first writings and my first novel, even, and it surprises me how much the writing itself has changed, or improved. I like where I'm at now...but there's still room to grow, you know? But, as far as getting easier...I don't know. I get ideas and then just try to write them. I've been able to write faster, I've noticed. Like, I wrote The Borrower in a few hours one day. I could've never done that at 15. But each story has its own challenges.

  5. I'm Matt

    Estevan, Do you have any suggestions on what we can do to help our children to become young writers?

  6. Hi Estevan! Your bio sounds great, sooo much talent! I am looking forward to reading your books!

    What are your thoughts on getting more Latino writers exposed? Has it been easier or harder to get published being Latino and in your case so young?


  7. Hi Estevan,

    How do you come up with the ideas/story lines for your books? Do they just come from your imagination or also from reading certain magazines and newspapers or watching particular shows on TV?

  8. Hi Estevan,

    How old were you when you learned to read? Were there any authors that were your favorites as a young child?

  9. Hi, Matt,

    Yeah, I do. Step 1: you should start by replacing their Cinnamon Toast Crunch with Writer Flakes. It enhances the brain cells to create an amazing writer.

    Step 2: just encourage them. Whenever they have a writing assignment, find an interesting or fun way to engage them in the topic.

    Step 3: Take them to the library or to events where there will be writers.

    Step 4: And find a genre that they like in movies or TV, and then find them a book along the same lines.

    Step 5: buy them a cool hat like mine. It enhances creativity.

    You'll have a best-seller living in your house in no time.

  10. Marcela,

    Thanks for stopping by and chilling with us!

    I am a Latino author, but I'm also very immersed in white, suburban culture, because my mother was white, whereas my father was 100 percent Puerto Rican, so I naturally gravitated to the Hispanic side of myself, but also the white side of me is very prominent, and I'm no good at Spanish. My family always jokes that I'm the "white boy".

    As far as publishing, I don't think my being Hispanic has been a hindrance. I think it has worked in my favor, along with my young age. I think it's very important for Hispanics to embrace the good things about our culture, the positive, and that way, we can encourage young people to be more into the arts and into pursuing whatever dreams they may have. Whether they want to be a writer, a painter, a dancer or a businessman, I hope that my story, and others like me who are disowning the negative aspects or derogatory aspects of our culture (the gangs, the "destitute" or "only-good-for-migrant-work" parts, aids in bringing the Hispanic blood to a new level. Little things like this open doors. It's great.

  11. How do I get my ideas?

    I get them from anywhere. Sometimes, an idea just hits me. Other times, I'll get it while I'm in a class at college, or if I hear a really cool song. An idea can spark from anything; it really is amazing how it works. It's like it chooses when it wants to hit me, and then it chooses when it wants to be written. It has happened in the past where I'll get an idea and try to write it, but it doesn't come out well, meaning it's not the right time.

    I also talk a lot with my father, and he gets really cool ideas, which we then discuss and see what potential it has. In all honesty, you can get an idea from anywhere: music, movies, reading great writers. People watching can be fun, too. Ideas, I think, can be a mixture of a bunch of different things molded into one. So, you never know what can happen when you just sit down and write. Draw from everything and see what happens next.

  12. Favorite authors as a kid? I wasn't really into reading as a kid. Writing, too. I never thought in a million years I would be a writer. It still surprises me sometimes that I write, because I used to view it as a drudgery.

    I honestly don't remember when I first learned to read. I wish I could say I was some youthful anomaly or something, but my history of forming syllables and sounds isn't all that interesting.

    But for childhood authors, I liked Frank Peretti, Edgar Allen Poe, and occasionally what we read in class. Yeah, maybe I should rewrite my childhood and make it more interesting or something.

  13. Estevan, Is your father a writer too?

    Also, there is another comment in the Spanish area, I already translate for you :)

  14. Hey, Silvia,

    I think my dad would love to be a writer, but he never seems to find the focus he needs to actualy sit down and write. I told him he should try writing little anecdotes or slices of life kinda things, but he's so busy, so he just talks to me any time he gets an idea, hoping that I'll turn his concepts into stories. But we kinda work together when it comes to creating concepts, and I share ideas with him. Maybe one day, though.

  15. It seems to me that you and your father have a great relationship. Let us know if he decide to write something someday. ok?

    Have you thought about writing something in a different genre? if yes, which one?

  16. Thanks for all your comments and thank you Estevan for stopping by and chatting with us today. I wish you the best of luck!

  17. Write a different genre? The Sacred Sin kind of got grouped into the horror genre. I guess it was really scary. But it was meant to be dark.

    My next book, Arson, is a bit of a departure, but not fully. It's about a teenager who lives with his bipolar grandmother and can create and manipulate fire. Slightly different and not as fast-paced, but it's really good, and I think I like it the most. It's the most personal. And I'll definitely let you fine folks know if my dad decides to pick up the mantle, instead of hanging out behind the scenes. Haha. Thank you so much for having me as a guest on your blog today.