Interview with Linzé Brandon

When did you first start writing?
I wrote my first story, a romance between a professional nature photographer and his research assistant, in 2001. It was never published, but it still has a soft spot in my heart.
What are you working on next?
I am working on my first literary novel entitled We, the One. How the story came about is a bit fuzzy, but it was one of those stories that 'just happened'. One day I had the idea, then about month later the first draft was done. There are a few things that I still need to research (to get my facts straight) but otherwise I am basically busy with my editing. After I am satisfied that I have sorted out all the plot gaps, and inconsistencies (I am very good with these aspects of writing) then the manuscript goes to a professional editor to fix all my language and grammar boo-boos (yeah, these are not my strong points).
The cover is still a concept in my head, but as soon as the manuscript goes to the editor, I will focus my energy on getting the cover sorted out. I am fortunate that my husband is an absolute master at Photoshop, and an excellent photographer too. With his help I usually get a cover that is exactly what I envisage for a book. After he does the graphics, I add the title and my name using the fonts and styles that are in line with the rest of my brand. Since this is a standalone book, I can stretch my mind with something different than my previous books. Exciting stuff, that's for sure.
Describe your desk
Oh dear. I wish I could tell you how organised and neat my desk is. Sadly, I cannot. Aside from my laptop (and the second bigger screen) my desk is cluttered with drawing pens, pencil sharpeners, erasers, coloured and graphite pencils, and coffee mugs. At least the mugs go to the kitchen once a day to be washed.
My desk is the kind with shelves on the side, so I am literally surrounded by note books (for writing) and sketchbooks and all kinds of things for whichever creative project I am working on that day. And it doesn't matter how often I de-clutter my space, it sometimes feels like hours before it is back to the organised chaos that I seem to love to surround myself with.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I was rejected by traditional publishers before I even knew what I was doing as a writer. Either through arrogance or ignorance perhaps, I didn't let that stop me from writing another bunch of stories. It was only after I did a creative writing course, that I realised that I was a good enough writer, but that the South African market was simply too small for English fiction writers. Then the idea of self-publishing became an option that I explored and decided to take. After four books, I am an indie author through and through!
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
I cannot claim to be a worldwide sensation as an author, but what I do like about Smashwords are the promotions that they run that benefit all authors. Although it would be nice to sell more books, I write first and foremost because I have many stories to tell and I think people would like to read and enjoy.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
My stories are driven by my characters and while they sometimes do things that I didn't plan for, the romance genre lends itself perfectly to my personal view that everyone deserves some happiness in their lives.
And seeing the book in print with a beautiful cover, makes the hours worrying about my characters' happily ever after, all the more worthwhile.
What do your fans mean to you?
I am humbled when people tell me that they like my books. Although the romance genre is often seen as the exclusive domain of female readers, men and women alike have told me that they enjoy my stories. Such compliments often feel surreal, since I still have a hard time seeing myself as an author. Having a full-time job probably contributes to that perception, but it still feels amazing when people want to talk about their experiences in reading my stories.
Who are your favorite authors?
I love to read what I write and my favourite authors are Maya Banks, Nalini Singh, Lynsay Sands, Portia da Costa, Christine Warren, Jacquelyn Frank, Gena Showalter, Meljean Brooke, Charity Parkerson and the list goes on and on.
But I cannot live without my amateur sleuths and while I don't write in the crime/mystery genre, there is a list of authors that are forever on my reading list: MC Beaton, Lilian Jackson Braun, Monica Ferris, Elizabeth Lynn Casey, Kaitlyn Dunnett, Maggie Sefton and Sheila Connolly.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I work full-time as a project manager in the military industry. When I am not working or writing I enjoy fly fishing, archery, watching Manchester United play soccer and painting mixed media abstracts.
My latest project was inspired by a book I bought at a sale - it is about the work of Frank Lloyd Wright. The canvas is almost as tall as I am and when standing on the easel, I have to stretch to reach the top.
I also do large cross-stitch projects, and have inspired my mother to take up the hobby as well. We can spend hours on the phone discussing patterns and floss and how to work a difficult stitch.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
The indie authors I find because they are advertised or recommended on Facebook or Goodreads. My poor Kindle needs to be backed-up and organised, but I cannot seem to get myself to remove any of the books to make space for more. Even if only to my computer that has miles more space available.
The mystery authors I all found online, since their books are not available on book shelves in South Africa. I order them as paperbacks from my favourite online store.
What is your writing process?
I don't sit down and plot a story. I get an idea and write down a few words to get a very basic outline. Then I let it stew in my head for a few days or weeks, before I sit down and start to write. I don't know what is going to happen on every single page, but that is okay since my characters drive the story.
I have tried to plot a story or three, but I don't feel comfortable doing that. I also seem to loose interest once the story deviates from the plot as planned. If I like the story enough, I will finish it, but I have abandoned a story when the characters needed to be forced into a certain direction to keep to the plot.
Published 2018-05-04.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Breathe
Series: The 3rd Gender. Price: $0.99 USD. (Free!) Words: 11,580. Language: English. Published: February 17, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories, Fiction » Romance » Adult
Surina was convinced that her own life was no longer worth living, and it was an unwelcome interruption when Jar's presence distracted her from her purpose. To Jar, however, Surina was not just another suicide victim-to-be. But could Jar take the risk that she could be a life partner, when transformation was no longer an option for this fe/male?
Waiting for Adrian
Series: The Nations of Peace. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 82,000. Language: English. Published: January 14, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal, Fiction » Romance » Adult
Life was perfect for young Erin. Her days were busy with teenager things. Her nights were filled with the romantic dreams of a young woman in love. Until those dreams became so much more. Who was she really? And where did Adrian fit into all of this? Premonitions of war. Prophecies of the future. In the middle of it all a young woman destined to warn human kind, yet too fragile to do it alone.
Journey
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 64,780. Language: English. Published: October 29, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - multi-author, Fiction » Anthologies » Drama/Theatrical
Life's journeys are fraught with pain, difficulties, and despair. And yet it is our search for hope and happiness that inspires us to overcome these obstacles. JOURNEY is a collection of stories that cuts close to the bone of life, love, and courage . . . to remind us that the choices we make can change the future.
Michael's Mystery
Series: The Nations of Peace. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 74,500. Language: Commonwealth English. Published: October 28, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal, Fiction » Romance » Adult
Michael went to investigate the serial murders allegedly committed by the Grandmaster of Kryane. His contact was a woman with even more secrets to hide. Andesine knew she was different and had a lot more to hide than her abilities. They soon learned that there was a plan in place that did not only endanger their lives, but the lives of every living being in the four dimensions.
Obsession
Series: The 3rd Gender. Price: $0.99 USD. (Free!) Words: 11,640. Language: English. Published: June 27, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Sci-fi, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
Dr Ara Noble was on a mission: to reverse the devastation created by scientists that caused the birth of the third gender. This was not just a selfless act to help humanity; Ara had an ulterior motive: love.
Desire Me
Series: Bachelors of Fern Haven. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 9,950. Language: English. Published: December 10, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Suspense/Mystery
Jackson has the perfect life and no woman to mess it up. Until Lillian moves her gorgeous behind into his line of sight. He can’t resist watching her, even as he promises himself to keep his distance. Lillian claims she has an itch to scratch, but after a heated encounter a summer fling may no longer be enough, no matter how hot it burned.
STORM Volume I
Series: Storm. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 68,660. Language: Commonwealth English. Published: April 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Short stories, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
STORM is an anthology of short stories around a common theme - a storm. Volume I is a mix of fantasy, science fiction and dystopian stories where people's lives are influenced by the occurrence of a storm, physical, moral or magical. Set in worlds apart from our own, authors of the Pretoria Writers' Group give life to characters who may not seem so far away from us after all.
STORM Volume II
Series: Storm. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 43,060. Language: English (South African dialect). Published: April 25, 2014 by Linzé Brandon. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - multi-author, Fiction » Plays & Screenplays » Anthologies
STORM is an anthology of short stories around a common theme - a storm. Volume II is a mix of four contemporary stories where people's lives are influenced by the occurrence of a storm: physical, moral or imaginary. Set in a modern day setting, four authors of the Pretoria Writers' Group brings stories from real life, in sometimes difficult circumstances, to this anthology.
The Cutting Horizon
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 10,270. Language: English (South African dialect). Published: April 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Plays & Screenplays » African, Fiction » Romance » Short stories
Bryce Sinclair was about to cheat on his wife, while she was contemplating packing her bags. It would take a serious car accident, a thunderstorm and being house bound together for them to have a serious look at themselves and their marriage. There were no guarantees in marriage, but there was a question that they both needed to answer: do we want this marriage to work?
reGENESIS
Series: The 3rd Gender, Prequel. Price: $0.99 USD. (Free!) Words: 10,030. Language: Commonwealth English. Published: April 30, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories, Fiction » Science fiction » General
The human species is dying out, and the scientists are sitting with their hands in their hair. Nothing is working, not the old medicines, nor the latest surgical techniques. Until one day a young scientist came up with the idea to manipulate the fundamental code of life: the DNA helix. Would people keep fighting the plan for their future survival, even while they continued to die out?
Pixie Dust, Boots and Reindeer
Price: Free! Words: 2,370. Language: English. Published: December 25, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Paranormal
(4.00)
Santa Claus needs a magical helping hand to distribute his gifts on Christmas Eve and his pixie was refusing to cooperate. Now he had to step in to change the mind of a naughty pixie, and he had to play a few dirty tricks of his own. Then again, coercion had never been this nice.
Don't Call Me Sweetheart
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 6,080. Language: English. Published: November 30, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
(4.00)
Jessica was a cop with two problems: the first was to evade the drug gang who wanted her dead and the second was to stay alive long enough to get to court to testify against them. Jack was a bodyguard with a difference. When he received a request to find a cop and protect her, he didn't realise what a formidable partner she would be, AI enhancements notwithstanding.
Bubble Trouble
Price: Free! Words: 1,800. Language: English (South African dialect). Published: October 5, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Couples Erotica
(3.00)
Flash fiction erotic fantasy of a young woman enjoying a bubble bath.
Their+1
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 15,340. Language: English (South African dialect). Published: September 23, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Romance
Tilane was a submissive in a relationship that was about to change. Mark searched for a new business partner and when Paul arrived, his past with Tilane brought back all the pain that she worked hard to forget. But the men were confusing her with their behaviour and in the end it might be up to her to get them both to man up to ensure her happiness in this multi-partner relationship.
Keeper of the Dragon Sword
Series: The Nations of Peace, Book 2. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 116,690. Language: English. Published: April 1, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Fantasy
(5.00)
Her life turned upside down in a matter of hours, Elizabeth L'Emery then found herself in protective custody. Detective Randall Storm had missed his best friend from school, but now her life was in danger because she could be a dragon master. A sword, magic battles and a dragon master ritual were only the beginning for a love that would demand the ultimate sacrifice to ensure their survival.
Perfect
Series: The 3rd Gender. Price: $0.99 USD. (Free!) Words: 11,120. Language: English (South African dialect). Published: December 28, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Sci-fi, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
Dal had fallen in love with Andrew almost the moment they met, but he only seemed interested in being friends. Until the day he wanted to add benefits to that friendship and inadvertently caused Dal's transformation to start. Was the mistake of his past repeating itself, or was there a chance that they could overcome the hurdle that Dal could become the wrong gender?
Géra's Gift
Series: The Nations of Peace, Book 1. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 93,130. Language: English. Published: September 22, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Fantasy
T’ara knew that loving Géra would never be simple, but when his life’s ambition is within his grasp, she could not stand in the way of his dream.
Hunger
Series: The 3rd Gender. Price: $0.99 USD. (Free!) Words: 6,930. Language: English. Published: August 10, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories, Fiction » Romance » Sci-fi
(3.00)
I didn't care for the fact that the genetic manipulation to save the human race, limited my options of a loving relationship. You see, I am in love with someone fe/male like me, but there was no chance that such a relationship was possible. Or was there?