Interview with Arrow Atlas

What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Coffee, and simple carbohydrates! Lately it's bulletproof coffee and home-made banana chocolate-chip muffins, slightly warm so that the chips are melting. This combination is so good that it's making me want to go to bed now so that I can get up again immediately and have it.

What makes it hard to get out of bed is if my cat is doing something ridiculously cute and demanding sleepy cuddles from somewhere near my head.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Partly to counteract the effects of crouching over my computer or phone, I've discovered recreational weight lifting. I did about a year of rather lazy (if you can call weightlifting lazy) power-lifting, and now I'm learning Olympic lifts.

No, lifting weights doesn't make you big! Just look up "girl Olympic lifting" on Youtube and see some of the tiny ladies popping big weights overhead like it's nothing. But it does make you feel strong and balanced rather than like one of the chair-people zooming around because they can't walk any more in the movie Wall-E. I can't say I love it, but I love how it makes my shoulders and back feel!
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I read descriptions and samples really carefully, and I find that as an experienced reader they give me a ton of information. I used to pick up a lot of info from covers as well. Now I find that a good one may catch my eye, but sometimes good books have mediocre covers because they are getting produced so much more quickly and casually now than back in print-only days. and

I do download samples too. If I get hooked by a first book, I go on a binge and often grab six books by the same author and just go nuts, reading them in order. Then that author gets their own folder when I organize my e-books. That's how I know someone's in my personal hall of fame!

One thing I love about grabbing a whole bunch of an author's work is that seeing the writing evolve. Sometimes an author is fairly average and then after a few books just catches fire and starts turning out amazing stuff. Sometimes it's something visible, like a new genre, or maybe there's something behind-the-scenes like a new editor or teacher. Whatever the reason, I love seeing dramatic improvements because they give me hope. And of course, some people are just awe-inspiring from the first piece, but good for them -- I'm prepared to keep working at it!
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I do -- it was a red-hot mess. I had never wanted to get into writing because I've always loved reading so much. I never wanted to lift the curtain and see the tiny little man behind the big echoing voice, like they do in The Wizard of Oz. But finally, I decided to go for it and participate in NaNoWriMo.

Going from pure reader to writer was so tough, but it's been so interesting and I think it can be rewarding in a completely different way making magic as well as enjoying the effects.
How do you approach cover design?
I had a rough-and-dirty education in working with images at my past job, which was helpful. I start with choosing a few central images that I think convey the drama at the center of the story. Then I search for online tutorials to figure out how to fit them together -- there are so many great resources out there that will help you get the look you're going for.

The most important tips I have are to save different versions of your work because there are times when you just go too far and something that was almost there turns into a wreck. Once you have images or components that you know you will use, name them clearly and save them in a folder so you can go back to them when you need to.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I read on my iPod touch. I've had it for years and had the glass replaced twice and it's still going strong. It does all the fun stuff an iPhone does other than call people. On it I have the iTunes library, Bluefire, Stanza, Kobo and Kindle. Mostly I use Bluefire, since I never know when Stanza is going to stop working since it's no longer supported. iTunes is for treats -- when I'm greedy and want a book NOW.
What's the story behind your latest book?
The story behind my latest book is that I am a regular reader of the feminist blog Jezebel and ran into their article about women writing erotic featuring dinosaurs. I found the exerpts hilarious! The concept is pretty funny, which doesn't stop it from being erotic.

Through that link I ran into the NYmag piece interview authors Alara Branwen and Christie Sims, and realized they were having fun and also managing a clever, commercial success. I was also intrigued that these two obviously bright, funny women were embroidering such outrageous plots.

Eventually, without reading their own work, I decided to give dinosaur erotica a try! I did some research and scratched my head and came up with my own spin. Hopefully it will find an audience.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I love the idea of being independent, except from the interest of readers. I'm at a point where that really appeals to me. That said, I have also submitted to e-publishers. If they are interested, I'd like to try that route as well. But I think both avenues can compliment each other and it's amazing that writers have the chance to take the reins and just jump in!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy of writing for me is putting words on the page and realizing that if I were reading them, they would make me laugh, or imagine something, or picture what I'm describing. I'm so greatful and admiring of the books that I love that the idea of putting lots of words that work together and creating something that comes together and stands up and walks on its own through people's imaginations -- that's amazing!
What do your fans mean to you?
So far, my only fan is Oliver, the cat. He's a big fan of the warm house and the never-ending supply of cat-food and fresh water. In terms of writing, he's delighted that it keeps me at home a lot and prevents me from vacuuming, using the blender or other such loud, nap-disrupting activities.

If I ever have fans that don't use a litterbox or lick their own feet, I'll have to answer this question anew.
What are you working on next?
Next, I'm going to take a few weeks off from erotic romance and work on a Young Adult piece I started last year. It will have a more complex plot and people will keep their clothes on, so it's going to be a challenge!

I still have two erotic romances of around 50k to revise and either self-publish or submit for publication. I will also need to market the two shorter works I have self-published and might write another short piece to put out for free, to see if that helps generate interest.

Everything! I must write all the things!
Published 2014-01-15.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Touched by the Tyrant: Dinosaur Lovers (1)
Price: $2.49 USD. Words: 18,810. Language: English. Published: January 15, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Sci-Fi Erotica, Fiction » Erotica » Romance
Sally Marks doesn’t credit helpful hunk Cord’s claim he won't call due to a special mission -- until she’s visited by military researchers and asked to help. Cord has participated in a genetic alteration experiment using dinosaur DNA. Cord survived, but he’s unrecognizable: more ancient predator than gentleman. But he knows what he wants, and he's asking for Sally.