Janet Evanovich is a fun write and will always give me a great story that will make me laugh. I like Sylvia Day who wrote the Crossfire series. She made Fifty Shades of Grey look like a wanna be. It had such a great love story with characters who were broken, like most of us. Then there is Kristie Cook, author of the Soul Saver series that captivated me from the very beginning and I can't get enough of. The common thread of these three writers is their ability to unfold a story that captivates from the beginning. There are dozens of authors that are able to do this for me and I adore them. These are just three to give you an example.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
I have three darling granddaughters who are full of energy and life. Every day with them is an adventure. Additionally, I have so many stories to be told. My favorite place is at my laptop unfolding a story line, allowing my character's their voice.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes and it is still to be finished. It is on my to-do list. It's a great story that I used to tell my daughter when she was little. I have held on to it being almost complete for twenty years. I need to complete it to honor my daughter but I think I've held on to it because it was something special between us. It's called Lessons because it's filled with them. It needs to be completed and shared. I envision it being read to children by their parents. More parents need to pass the reading bug on to the next generation.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I love to read and watch movies. I really enjoy learning about my family history, so I've been doing genealogy for the past twenty years. I've learned a lot of interesting things over all these years. My other hobby is scrap booking. I love anything creative. Being able to combine my beautiful girls with an opportunity to be creative, is the perfect outlet for me.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
Kindle but I've got several on my iPhone, so it really doesn't matter to me as long as I can read when I want.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Usually by favorite authors or recommendations from trusted friends. I have no patience for poor writing even if the story line has possibility. There's a lot to be said for a good editor. There are so many really good authors that I no longer waste my time trying to slog through a poorly written book. .
What are you working on next?
I'm currently writing a novel called Royalty. It's a clash between angels and demons. It takes place on and around a remote college campus. Rayne grew up in the Bible belt where everything was centered around church. In an attempt to escape her small town life, she chooses a college far from home. From the time Rayne steps foot on campus, she knows something's terribly wrong. By the end of this story you should want to choose a side and fight for it.
What is your writing process?
I jot notes about a story idea. I then break the story out into three Acts.I give each act ten chapters. I make a subject for each chapter, which helps me fully develop a story and forces me to think in general over the story from beginning to end. I then go find my muses and begin to develop characters and some traits. Then I begin at the beginning and allow my characters to tell the story. I don't jump around to different chapters because I have found too many times the chapters get mixed around, eliminated or added. Once I begin a story I remain flexible. I write in either total silence, which is difficult in my house or with earbuds listening to classical music.The place isn't much of an issue. Wherever I can be with my laptop and power, I can make it work.
How do you approach cover design?
I get a vision in my head then communicate with the graphic designer and let her work her magic. We go back and forth until it becomes what I imagined. I had a fabulous cover designer in Stephanie Fliynt at Melange Books, LLC. She's amazing and made my vision of Rogue even better than I imagined.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
No. But I remember beginning to read with a large storybook on my lap and feeling happy and free. I loved being able to read. At that very young age I recognized properly strung together words could transport me away from my life. I love escaping into a good book.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Other than what I previously mentioned, my all time favorite book is To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee. That book tilted my whole world. I grew up color blind. When reading that book, it made me question everything and everyone around me. It took off my blinders, which is really a bit sad. It also showed me a truer reality of the world I lived in and greatly saddened me. The other author that had a huge impact on me was V.C. Andrews. I had a really rough childhood and she told stories of so many other children in bad situations. She gave me eternal hope. I own all the books she wrote before she died and several of those written after her death from the notes she'd left her team.
What do you read for pleasure?
Fiction of all genres. I just want to be transported to another place and be pulled into their world.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in the same little town in upstate New York as L. Frank Baum, the author of The Wizard of Oz. I wanted to be like him. I wanted to write books that parents could read to their children.
When did you first start writing?
Writing, a little over 20 years ago. Storytelling, all my life.
What's the story behind your latest book?
It's about a woman that has had to deal all her life with liars and trusts no one. Unfortunately, this story came out of a personal feeling similar to my protagonist. Of course, the story itself is fabricated but there are several points throughout that parallel many similar things I went through.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I'm not an indie author. I've been with Melange Books for my last two books.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Yes, I believe it has gotten my work out to more venues than my publisher using just Amazon.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Being lost in a world of my own making.
What do your fans mean to you?
EVERYTHING! As my fan base is growing I try to continue to let them know how much I appreciate every one of them. If it weren't for them, my work would be lost on a shelf somewhere.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
I really believe Facebook and Twitter have been my biggest vehicles for spreading the word.
Describe your desk
Neat and orderly. I can't stand clutter. In order to be most productive, I have to be free of mess. I can then create. I keep an outline document, sheet of character muses and my open document I'm writing my work in progress on. All those I keep open in my laptop.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.