Interview with Beth Gualda

What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
I give a lot of books away. I also participate in sales and contests when I can. I like to think if someone reads one of my books, they will want to follow it up with another. I've been told both my series are very addictive and giveaways help me get more books out there, as well as get reviews from new readers.

I have a webpage I update regularly with blog posts, recent reviews, book buying links, a fan page, character descriptions, and settings. I utilize all web author pages where they are available such as Goodreads, Amazon, and here on Smashwords.

Social media helps me spread book news, more to family and friends than anyone, but it is convenient and free.
What do you read for pleasure?
I read paranormal romance more than anything, but I also enjoy modern romances. Now and then I get in the mood to read some straight-up fantasy, science fiction, or horror. I'm a big fan of Gena Showalter and Edward Lee.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I was born in Rhode Island, but spent the majority of my formative years in Iowa. Iowa is a very literate state and book stores (new and used) are everywhere. From east to west Iowa's landscaping changes. Its cities offer culture while its small towns offer history. The state has four distinct seasons. You can have diverse experiences with the differences in the land and its people that can enrich any budding author's imagination.
When did you first start writing?
I remember writing a story about a wild horse in grade school that was so long it was close to being a novella. Shortly afterward, I got into all things Star Wars and would write my own stories featuring the characters from the movies. I used to submit those stories to "fanzines" which were magazines published and distributed through the mail by fans of the genre. It was my first taste of having my writing published and distributed to a worldwide reading audience. The positive feedback I got from those first efforts encouraged me to keep writing and improve my writing.
How do you classify and categorize the type of books you write?
I have a hard time putting my books into one category because they are more of a conglomerate. Initially, I was classifying them as simply adult paranormal romances. Unfortunately, that usually drums up images of vampires and werewolves. My books feature angels and not fallen angels--which seems to be the norm in paranormal romances--but angels of love. They are good angels who worship all aspects of love. God is supposed to be love, after all. My angels aren't biblical angels, however. They are supernaturally perfect in form who live side by side, for the most part, with the humans they guide. They tend to fall in love because love is who they are. They are good people who show the women they fall in love with what true love is. The love stories in all my books make them romances, but I've gone on to classify them as fantasy because the angels are my own creations. The world they exist in is my creation. It is not real, so it is fiction. The first series takes place in the South. There are heirs to fortunes, a hundred-year-old cemetery, and a renovated Gothic rectory. Death and the afterlife are an underlying theme. This led me to classify the books as Gothic. Currently, the first series, Moonlit Wings, is classified as Gothic, fantasy romance. The second series, The Heaven Sent, has more fantasy elements as well as supernatural. It follows a group of earthbound angels who live and work out of a Victorian mansion in the Midwest protecting and managing heavenly portals located on the land. Death is an underlying theme in these books, but not as much as in Moonlit Wings. I have classified this series more as supernatural romances with a slight Gothic flavor. Too bad there isn't the category, out-of-the-box.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I published The Angel of Weathered Storms earlier this year which is book number three in my The Heaven Sent series. This book features the archangel, Raphael, who was introduced in book one, The Angel of All That Matters. Raphael prevents a woman, Lauren Sutton, from committing suicide and in a sense, interferes with the natural course of events. He is demoted to a guardian angel and assigned to the woman he saved. There is something about her that stirs Raphael's heart and soon he falls in love with her, but she's so damaged, she doesn't believe in love anymore. Raphael longs for her love, but needs to show Lauren that life is worth living and that true love is worth living for.

I'm currently writing book four of the series, The Angel of Charmed Circumstance, which I'm hoping to publish around Valentine's Day next year. This book features the angel, Hodangenese, who goes by Hodges, more often than not. Hodges is infatuated with his brother's fiancée, Haley, and wishes he could find a girl like her. She seems perfect for him. Instead, Hodges meets Amber Pagett, a stripper from Chicago, who shoplifts, and cons people. Hodges doesn't want anything to do with her because he believes an angel shouldn't get involved with a woman like that, but their romantic chemistry is undeniable.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
For an indie author, the competition is enormous and marketing is a constant battle to keep your name out there, but publishing independently allowed me complete control over my finished product. However, the main reason I chose this route over others is that fact my work is, and always will be, accessible to readers who choose to buy my books. My paperbacks are all print-on-demand, too, which means they will never go out-of-print.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Creating. I love being able to construct a story from my mind, make my own rules, build my own world, and write it all the way I want it to be. I enjoy creating the people in it, their situations, their personalities, and their looks. With fantasy, I can take all of that a little farther because I don't have to follow the rules of reality. I can make up my own reality.
What do your fans mean to you?
I have very dedicated fans. Their enthusiasm for my books encourages me to keep writing. I've been told they've not only read my books, they've read them more than once and they read them in a matter of days. I'm often asked when the next one is coming out. They just can't seem to get enough. They buy merchandise. They leave great reviews. They help me get more readers by spreading the word about my books. I couldn't ask for a better fan-base. Their feedback and support makes everything worthwhile.
What is your writing process?
It starts with an idea in my head. I usually incubate it for a few months before I begin to write it down and when I get an idea for the opening scene, I write it down in a notebook, by hand. I finish the first draft in these handwritten notebooks and then begin to type them up into a computer file. It forces me to do editing and rewriting. The next step is to print out the file with the completed book. I read through it and do more editing and rewriting. Editing and rewriting typically lasts three to six months. When the finished, polished book is ready for publishing, I send my eBooks to a formatter and order proofs for my paperbacks.
How do you approach cover design?
I want my book title to be the prominent feature on my covers. I want my art to entice potential readers, or at the very least, pique their interest. I also want the art to hint at what the book is about. I like the colors to tie-in with something about the book itself, too. I used blue a lot in the Moonlit Wings series because of the sky and the color of the main character's eyes. Since my art is black and white, I like to use vibrant colors around it. I try to keep the fonts simple and easily readable. It's important to make your cover attractive, especially since a lot of my potential readers first impressions of my books is online.
Published 2015-09-29.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

The Angel of Everything Bright
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 80,390. Language: English. Published: July 8, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Fantasy
The archangel, Lesteliel, has shed the trappings of his angelic authority so the angel, Daphne, would find him more appealing, but a situation arises soon after which requires his full angelic power. It would be the perfect opportunity to impress her if he wasn't struggling with his new mortality and the enticing distraction she has always been for him.
The Angel of Charmed Circumstance
Series: The Heaven Sent. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 101,640. Language: English. Published: December 18, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Fantasy
(5.00 from 1 review)
Amber and Hodges are in love, but Amber is a stripper and Hodges is an angel. A real angel. But that's not even their only issues with each other. The idea of their romance is laughable. Hardly a match made in heaven...or is it? Book four of The Heaven Sent series.
The Angel of Weathered Storms
Series: The Heaven Sent. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 91,590. Language: English. Published: September 20, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Fantasy
(5.00 from 1 review)
The archangel, Raphael, lost everything, including his heart, when he saved Lauren Sutton, but Lauren doesn't believe in love anymore. Now it's up to Raphael to show Lauren that true love is worth living for.
The Angel of Reasons and Rhyme
Series: The Heaven Sent. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 95,330. Language: English. Published: January 24, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Fantasy
(5.00 from 1 review)
Kinney Richards just met Haley Granderson a few hours ago, but he's already convinced marrying her would be the beginning of an eternity of romantic bliss. Haley can't possibly say no--especially to the part where her fiancé has wings.
The Angel of All That Matters
Series: The Heaven Sent. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 104,620. Language: English. Published: August 18, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Fantasy
The Angel of Death, Aksariel, worships love, but that doesn't mean he wants to be in love. That all changes when he meets Caroline, a woman who seems to have walked out of his fantasies and into his heart.
Whispers in the Wind
Series: Moonlit Wings, Book 5. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 91,870. Language: American English. Published: August 27, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal, Fiction » Romance » Fantasy
Mya's insecurities get the better of her when she meets Pershabael's "ex", a seraphim angel named Garamond. It doesn't help that Garamond is stubborn, conceited, and perfectly beautiful. Worse, she's also the answer to Mya's prayers.
The Scent of Rain
Series: Moonlit Wings, Book 4. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 101,150. Language: English. Published: May 15, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Fantasy
(5.00 from 1 review)
When it comes to offering a certain apology, Mya stubbornly refuses to follow Pershabael's counsel. As her guardian angel and husband, Percy can be very persuasive, but when he enlists the help of her ex-lover, the dark angel, Mazriel, Mya knows she doesn't stand a chance.
Sanctuary
Series: Moonlit Wings, Book 3. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 86,450. Language: English. Published: September 21, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Paranormal
(5.00 from 2 reviews)
Book three in the Moonlit Wings series. Jennifer Davidson not only loses her job after helping Mya, she loses her home and her lover, the dark angel, Mazriel. With the aid of two heavenly guardians, the angels, Pershabael and Daniel, Mya attempts to help Jennifer in return, but not in the way Miss Jennifer is expecting.
Guardians and Graves
Series: Moonlit Wings, Book 2. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 89,470. Language: English. Published: July 22, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Paranormal
(5.00 from 1 review)
Mya needs to convince her guardian angel, Pershabael, that she no longer loves him. It's for his own good--or so she believes. Percy might think Mya doesn't love him anymore, but that doesn't stop him from loving her.
Cemetery Moon
Series: Moonlit Wings, Book 1. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 94,950. Language: English. Published: September 17, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal
(4.33 from 3 reviews)
Mya has always believed in angels, but following the death of her father, she now thinks they're all pretty useless. Her devoted and determined guardian angel is hoping to change all that--especially after Mya unwittingly succumbs to the seduction of his dark, fallen rival.