For comedian and author Lorna Landvik, it’s the characters that tell her where the story goes.
Landvik will visit North Folk Winery from 6:30-8:30 p.m. May 18 for a sold-out event where she will share her most recent novel, “Once In a Blue Moon Lodge.” The event is one of several “Into the Evening” author visits hosted by Scout & Morgan books and the winery.
“Once in a Blue Moon Lodge” is a sequel to her first novel “Patty Jane’s House of Curl” and the first time she has gone back to write a second book about a particular set of characters. Although it brings back characters from “House of Curl,” Landvik said “Once in a Blue Moon Lodge” is still a standalone work.
For Landvik it was her old characters who made her write a second book about them.
“Those characters just kept throughout the years kind of yammering at me,” Landvik said. “It’s kind of like being a parent. Sometimes I feel as if I have less say than the fictional characters.”
Landvik’s love of writing started soon after she learned to read in first grade.
“I was very lucky,” she said. “It was my first career goal.”
She was attracted by the creative process of writing.
“Once in a Blue Moon Lodge” follows Nora Rolvaag, daughter of Patty Jane, after her mother closes the hair salon from the first novel. She goes on a camping trip to get away from things, and the book follows her and her family over the course of 20 years from there, including all the way to Norway, the plot driven by chance encounters and a mysterious letter. A press release from the book’s publisher, the University of Minnesota Press, characterizes it as a novel about “making new beginnings out of old endings.”
Landvik prefers for readers to tell her what her books are about, rather than speculate herself, but she sees community as its major theme.
“It’s about being in a community,” she said. “Not just being in a community by blood, but a community forged by friendship.”
Landvik never wavered in her commitment to writing, although it was quite a while before she published “Patty Jane’s House of Curl,” in 1995. She spent her 20s in Hollywood, acting and writing short stories. She set to work on her first novel after her first daughter was born.
She said she uses her writing to understand what makes people tick, often writing about characters that mirror her own Norwegian heritage and sometimes fictionalizing locations in Minnesota. Charleyville, the town in which “Once in a Blue Moon Lodge” takes place, would have to be somewhere in Brainerd or Bemidji area, she said.
North Folk Winery is located at 43150 Blackhawk Road, Harris. For more information on the event, visit scoutandmorganbooks.com.