Interview with Carmen Stevens

What do your fans mean to you?
My fans are very important to me, and I like to help them in any way that I can. I also sincerely hope that when they read my novel, they really learn something from it and reflect those themes in the world they live in.
Who are your favorite authors?
My favorite authors, and the ones who have influenced my own writing, are Lynn Austin, my favorite historical fiction writer, and Charles Dickens.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Probably the knowledge of the fact that God preserved me through another night and gave me another day so that I could live for Him and do whatever He wants me to do in this life.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
My hobbies include reading, listening to music, watching movies, shopping, and spending time with my family, friends, and pets. I also attend college, so I have homework.
What do you read for pleasure?
I love historical fiction the best, but I also enjoy stories with the genres of mystery, suspense, psychology, tragedy, non-fiction, and graphic novels. In fact, as of now, I'm reading Japanese manga, which are graphic novels, kind of like comic books.
When did you first start writing?
I was in elementary school when I began writing. I started out with short autobiographical stories about certain events in my life, such as the family dog having puppies and me having to reluctantly give up one of those pups. I entered these stories into the county fair and received good awards for them. After that, I tried my hand at high school romance novellas. These were fun to write, but not really mature by any standards, haha.
What's the story behind your latest book?
My historical fiction novel, "Anne," involves an arrogant, orphaned girl in 18th-century England who is fiercely independent, but longs for a better life, a life of great happiness in contrast to her miserable, homeless existence. She fervently hopes that "fate" will give her such a wonderful life soon, but it's not until a series of events is put into motion and Anne endures various hardships that she realizes what it means to have true happiness. Anne also learns that a life of true happiness cannot be attained by such a rough, egotistical personality as she possesses.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
This was decided by one rejection from a traditional publisher. After this happened, I realized how uppity most traditional publishers are, with all their requirements and complicated contracts with authors. I figured that because of this, traditional publishers weren't worth my time and I turned to the option of self-publishing. I have never regretted taking this route, even if all the work of promoting my novel gets wearying at times.
What are you working on next?
Right now, I'm simply concentrating on promoting my one novel. However, if people really begin to like my novel and its success takes off, I may write another novel in the future.
What is your writing process?
Firstly, I like planning out the plot of my novel. Next, I sketch out the characters of the story on paper. Then, I plan the setting. I believe that you need to have a very firm idea of your story before you actually begin writing it.
How do you approach cover design?
Well, art is not my strong point, so for my current novel, I hired a professional cover artist to create my novel's cover. I am very pleased with the results.
Published 2014-05-08.
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