Author Interview: ‘Moon River’ by Amber D. Tran

About the Book:

In this debut novel from author Amber D. Tran, a tale of adolescence and heartbreak unfolds. Nine-year-old Abigail Kavanagh first meets Ryan Mills during the summer of 1999. A shy and awkward boy, Ryan hides behind his wide-framed glasses while Abigail is determined to learn everything there is to know about him. The next few summers are filled with birthday parties, adventures in and around the West Virginian mountainsides, and late night conversations where they share their most secretive and personal thoughts.

Their friendship starts to crumble when Abigail befriends the attractive and musical Lilly Anderson, a girl who is also interested in uncovering the mysterious nature surrounding Ryan. However, everything comes to an end the summer of 2004, and Abigail must decide if her new journey is worth traveling alone.


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Purchase Links:

Amazon: UK / US

Author Interview:

1: Tell us a little about yourself and what got you in to writing?

My name is Amber D. Tran, and I was born and raised in West Virginia. I currently live in northern Alabama with my husband and two dogs. I started writing when I was in the 5th grade. A few years later, I began writing poetry and nonfiction. I have written all types of genres, and I continue to expand my writing styles as I journey through my writing career.

2: Do you have a favourite time and place where you write?

I write for a few hours each evening. My favorite place to write is on the couch, next to an open window, with a candle to set the mood. I especially enjoy writing during rainy days and dusk!

3: Where do your ideas come from?

Most of my ideas are random, to be honest. There are times where I am shopping for groceries and my mind comes up with the perfect little story. My dreams also inspire some of my ideas, for which I am thankful.

4: Do you have a plan in your head of where the story is going before you start writing or do you let it carry you along as you go?

I let the story carry me as I go. I never use outlines. I have tried, and they just do not work for me. My biggest struggle is actually starting the story. Writing the first page takes as long as writing the next ten.

5: What genre are your books and what drew you to that genre?

My book is a coming-of-age tale with young adult/new adult conflicts and a very rural-driven setting. The book is inspired by real-life events that occurred in West Virginia many years ago. The coming-of-age genre is very interesting to me. I have enjoyed creating characters and growing up with them on pages.

6: What dream cast would you like to see playing the characters in your latest book?

Oh, this sounds like fun! I have never thought about this! I imagine the two main characters (Abigail and Ryan) being played by younger versions of Zooey Deschanel and Christopher Mintz-Plasse.

7: Do you read much and if so who are your favourite authors.

I definitely read. I could not call myself a writer without doing my homework. I read about one or two books a week, give or take a few. My favorite authors are Amanda Boyden, Kelly Braffet, R. A. Nelson, Kerry Cohen, and Gary Soto.

8: What book/s are you reading at present?

I’m currently reading Symbol of Hope, book two in the Natan Fleet Show. It is part of a series written by my friend, K. E. Ireland.

9: What is your favourite book and why?

My favorite book is Pretty Little Dirty. I really, really love this book because I can relate so much with the protagonist. I lived a similar childhood and lifestyle as the protagonist and could relate with her on almost every single level. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who has had a love-hate relationship with their best girlfriend.

10: What advice would you give for someone thinking about becoming a writer?

Always read. Often I believe reading to be more important to a writer than writing. We cannot call ourselves writers without doing our homework. Make time to read, even if that means you do not have time to write. It is important to stay up-to-date with new genres and techniques.

11: What are the best Social Media Sites for people to find out about you and your work?  

I’m on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter at @amberdtran. My personal website,, includes more information about my background, how to purchase my debut novel, and my publication history. I’m always available for email exchanges at Connect with me! I look forward to it.

About the Author:

Born and raised in the heart of the Appalachia, Amber spent her childhood growing up on gravel roads and playing Pokémon Red on her Game Boy Color. At the age of 10, she discovered her fascination with creative writing and turned a 1-page homework assignment into a 35-page document for her 5th grade teacher. Less than a year later, she wrote her very first book about a female basketball player with leukemia. She will spare you the pain from having to read it.After graduating Magna Cum Laude from West Virginia University in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in English literature and a concentration in creative writing, Amber moved to northern Alabama. She married her husband after meeting him in a Dragon Ball Z chat room. She is currently employed as a senior technical writer and Scrum Master for a software company. In her free time, she enjoys playing League of Legends and discovering dive bars with her girlfriends.

Amber is part of the West Virginia Writers Group, Inc., the Alabama Writers’ Forum, and the Alabama Writers Conclave. She is also the Editor-in-Chief for the Cold Creek Review literary journal. Her work has been featured in Sonic Boom Journal, Spry Literary Journal, Cheat River Review, Speculative 66, Visitant Literary Journal, HeartWood Literary Magazine, and more.

Amber lives in Alabama with her husband and two dogs, Ahri and Ziggs.


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