Kindergarten?? Just kidding! I published my first short story in 4th grade in our school newspaper. I have written short stories periodically throughout my life but seriously started writing about five years ago. I love to write but have trouble finding time between working full-time and being a wife and mom.
What's the story behind your latest book?
The main character of my book is Terra, and she describes herself as the daughter of sci-fi geeks. That would be true of me. My parents raised me watching all kinds of sci-fi shows and movies, but I differ from Terra in that I embrace that part of me and love science fiction and the possibility that there is more out there, and we are not alone. So, Thorne in My Side is Terra's realization that of just this, her world extends beyond the Milky Way. Terra gets to do something that many of us dream of and will never get to do. Terra gets to travel the universe and have the adventure of her life. To get an insight into the life of a teen, I used my experiences as a mom of a teen and pre-teen to try to understand how they would react if something like this were to really happen.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I like the "indie" part of being an independent author. I know an author who is very successful going through traditional routes, but I wanted to try it this way without having to submit my book to publisher after publisher in hopes someone would pick it up someday. I also like that my book will always be out there. I don't have to worry about it being pulled from shelves after a period of time if it is not successful. I also think the e-market is ballooning and am glad to be a part of this market!
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords has so many resources for indie writers. I love how easy they make it to self-publish and what a wide market they have. The marketing guide and tips have been invaluable.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy I have in writing is being a part of my characters' lives. I may not have the opportunity to travel through space or to save a planet but through my characters I can. When I write I lose myself in the story and don't worry about the everyday real life problems in my non-fiction life. Writing for me is both relaxing and therapeutic.
What do your fans mean to you?
Since I have only written two books and am just starting I don't have a big fan base yet. I can say that those who have read my books and told me they really like them have thrilled me. I enjoyed writing my books so it is really important to me that others also enjoy them.
What are you working on next?
I have just finished working on Chosen: Thorne in My Side 2, the sequel to Thorne in My Side. In the sequel we see if Terra can save Thorne and end up with Leo... As far as my next novel, I find myself looking from the depths of space into the ocean depths...
Who are your favorite authors?
I read a lot so I have quite a few. I read a lot of what my teen daughter does. I enjoy Rick Riordan, Stephenie Meyer, and J.K. Rowling. I also enjoy Stephen King and Dean R. Kootnz.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Everyday is a new day with endless possibilities. I am an eternal optimist so I am always looking for the upside in everything. I get out of bed to go to work and help others, and I get out of bed to be the best mother and wife that I can be.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I read a lot and spend time with my family. I also play chauffeur to my busy 11 year old. My husband and I enjoy four-wheeling and rock climbing in our jeep on weekends when we can.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I sometimes use the search buttons, but most of the time I go by recommendations of others or I look for a known author.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes, I wrote about cat food that escaped being eaten and traveled to a food sanctuary to live happily ever after. As you can see, I have always loved science fiction!
What is your writing process?
I don't have a real organized process. I think of my story as a whole and then I brainstorm a few characters and some plot events. I write down phrases and ideas and then I start writing. As I write I find my story going in directions I didn't think of when I started, and I find myself creating characters and events I didn't plan for. It is fun because it is an adventure.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
Sadly, I cannot remember! I have read so many books throughout my life. I have a lot of fond memories of childhood books. Even when I was young I gravitated toward fiction fantasy stories.
How do you approach cover design?
Thorne in My Side was my first book so I went with having it professionally done. Book covers are so important in grabbing the reader before they read the first word, and I wanted to make a great first impression. Someday I may try to design one myself, but we'll have to wait and see.
What do you read for pleasure?
I mostly read young adult fantasy adventure books. I like reading about young heroes battling enemies and overcoming evil to save themselves and the ones they love.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I love my original Kindle.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
I have used Facebook and Twitter, but this is an area I need to work on!
Describe your desk
My kitchen table!! When I am writing I have my original copy of Thorne in My Side out so I can reference it as I write the sequel. I always have to pack up all my stuff each night, but I don't like being separated from everything going on in my house.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a small town in central KY. I based some of Terra's background and life on my hometown area and experiences.
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