Interview with Alicia Renee Kline

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Obviously, this has influenced my writing since The Intoxicated Series takes place largely in Fort Wayne. One of the major plot points is Lauren's move from Indianapolis to Fort Wayne. The setting of the book becomes almost like a secondary character.
When did you first start writing?
The first time I really picked up a pencil and wrote something that others would end up reading was in the second grade. I was selected to represent my elementary school in a Young Authors competition. The book I wrote was titled "My Cat Fizzgig". I also illustrated it. I found that I really enjoyed doing this and started to write stories in spiral notebooks that I would pass around to my friends. This continued throughout middle school, but unlike others even though I took a semi-hiatus during high school, I never really stopped creating things in my head.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Changed is the fourth installment in the series, and it can be read as a standalone. This one is a little more romantic comedy / chick lit in nature, especially when taking into account how dark and serious the third book was at times. It focuses on Gracie and Will, who've both definitely been fixtures in the series so far, but in supporting roles. Gracie has established a bit of a cult following with her witty remarks. I purposefully have given her the best one liners in each of the previous three books, and that's endeared her to readers. She has the nerve to say what you as the reader is thinking, and people tend to love her for it. Will is much more of an enigma. We don't know a whole lot about him, other than he's divorced and that he is a fairly good friend of Chris's. But watch out when these two collide. The result is humorous and passionate all at the same time.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I bought a Kindle Fire right after the first model came out. I really wasn't sure how much I would use it, but I'm kind of a technology geek and I like to play with the newest stuff. The Kindle got me motivated to start reading again due to its convenience factor. Once I realized that individuals such as myself were able to publish directly to e-book retailers, I had this nagging urge to give it a try. Fear of rejection had kept me from truly trying my hand at getting published, and this method takes that completely away. I also really enjoy having control over every single aspect of my novels and my marketing and personal branding.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords was the very first place that I published. I downloaded the Style Guide when I was researching becoming a self-pubbed author. It taught me so much about the technical aspects of getting my rough draft into a version that would look professionally formatted on e-reading devices. I've also been able to take advantage of the sitewide promotions to reach out to new readers. I enjoy working with Smashwords because of their innovative approaches to self-publishing such as preorders.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I love getting feedback from my readers. Sales aren't everything; it's all about the accomplishment of actually being able to include myself among the ranks of published authors. Even though most of us self-pubbed types struggle with obscurity, our books are now available to the public instead of collecting dust in our closets or on our computers. Still, it's a wonderful feeling to know that my work is resonating with people that I've never met and that these characters that I've created are loved by people other than myself.
What do your fans mean to you?
I definitely enjoy hearing from the people that read my books or stop by my blog. This whole journey is even sweeter because I have made connections with people that I would never have met otherwise. I don't necessarily put myself in the category of someone who would have "fans" - I don't think that I'm anywhere close to being a celebrity. However, it is a great feeling to have people share my excitement for my work. It makes me feel as though I'm not crazy for wanting to be a writer!
What are you working on next?
I just started the final book in the series, Silenced. This installment will wrap up everyone's storyline. We'll see plenty of Matthew and Lauren, Blake and Chris, and Will and Gracie. I'm doing something a bit different this time, though. All three of the ladies are going to be sharing in the narration. Though their stories are connected, they've each got unique perspectives on the action. There will be a big arc that encompasses the Snyder / Taylor families, and Will and Gracie will temper that drama with their own brand of humor. Even so, they aren't exactly outsiders. Gracie and Blake's relationship will enter into yet another phase, and Gracie and Lauren will work on recapturing the magic of their best friendship. Gracie's always been everyone's go-to gal for a listening ear, and they will need her more than ever.
Who are your favorite authors?
I am a huge fan of Tiffany Snow and her Kathleen Turner series. I also like Bella Andre and Marie Force. I'm in awe of Rosalind Burgess and Patricia Obermeier Neuman and how they can seamlessly write as one voice. I'm willing to give just about anything a try, though I tend to gravitate towards romance, chick lit and mystery genres.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
I tend to have a positive outlook on just about everything. One of my mottos is that everything will work out how it's supposed to, when it's supposed to. I want to make things better for everyone that I come into contact with. I want to make my husband and my children proud of me no matter what it is that I do that day. And sometimes it's as simple as me wanting to get downstairs to my laptop so that I can finish the scene that was playing out in my head.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I work full time in the insurance industry. When I'm just relaxing, I like to just hang out with my family and a few close friends. I enjoy reading and listening to music. I have a pretty normal, low-key life and I wouldn't have it any other way.
Published 2015-01-13.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Series: The Intoxicated Books, Book 5. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 101,880. Language: English. Published: February 16, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Women's fiction » Chick lit
Silenced is the fifth and final installment of The Intoxicated Books. The rest of the series must be read first in order to fully enjoy this book. Our couples are all well on their way to finding their own happy ever afters, but can Blake and Matthew's sibling rivalry destroy everything that's already been built?
Series: The Intoxicated Books, Book 4. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 96,510. Language: English. Published: April 7, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Women's fiction » Chick lit
Changed is the fourth installment in The Intoxicated Books series. This can be read as a standalone. Will Delaney and Gracie Alexander are little more than acquaintances when fate puts them in the same place at the same time. One drunken hookup later, they're trying to forget what happened. The only problem? They can't seem to stay away from one another.
Series: The Intoxicated Books, Book 3. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 101,860. Language: English. Published: July 18, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Women's fiction » Chick lit
Designed is the third novel in The Intoxicated Books. This installment focuses on Blake Snyder and her relationship with Chris Taylor. Theirs was a messy breakup, and only Blake knows the full story behind their estrangement. She's hidden it for ten years, even from Chris. When current events persuade her to come clean, can the two of them find love again?
Series: The Intoxicated Books, Book 2. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 113,300. Language: English. Published: October 29, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Women's fiction » Chick lit
(4.00 from 1 review)
Shattered is the second book in the Intoxicated series. This book picks right up where the first left off. Lauren's stuck in the middle of a love triangle that's come to a surprising head. Will she accept Eric's proposal and settle for all that he offers, or will she follow her heart and try to convince Matthew that whatever they have can actually work?
Series: The Intoxicated Books, Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 105,600. Language: English. Published: February 25, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Women's fiction » Chick lit
(5.00 from 2 reviews)
Intoxicated is a full length novel that follows Lauren Jefferies as she deals with the ramifications of accepting a promotion that requires her to move two hours away from her longterm boyfriend, Eric. As their relationship falters, her new roommate's brother, Matthew, is there to pick up the pieces, leaving Lauren to wonder what, and who, she really wants.