Interview with M.J. Shepard

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
Well, Most of my childhood I lived in a small town in southern Arizona. When I was preteen I moved to California to live with my Aunt and Uncle until I enlisted in the Navy at the age of 19. Life experiences in general influence anyone's writing. My childhood was a bit rough and that has played a part in a few of my characters and their back stories.
When did you first start writing?
Oh, I must have been in kindergarten. I remember there being a parent-teacher conference with my mother about a story I had written about Barbie and Ken. I don't remember much about that story but that's the first memory I have when it comes to writing.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I've always wanted to be an author and share my stories with the world. I've been writing stories and creating characters since I was in kindergarten but I always heard and read about all of the dear john letters as I call them. To be picked up by a bona-fide publishing company basically means you need to be the next Stephen King, not to mention, unless you are the next Stephen King you're not going to be making any money, if at all. I just kept writing and waiting. Then my aunt, who is a published author, introduced me to the concept of Self- Publishing. After quite a bit of research...Here we are!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Well, I find the simple task of writing itself to be a great joy but really, I'd have to say I favor creating. Whether I'm creating a character or a place, or even just a plot, I have the most fun with it because at the point there are no rules.
What do your fans mean to you?
They are my rock! There would simply be no point to creating all of these characters, exotic places, and crazy storylines without them. Just simply giving my book a chance humbles me to no end. Writing is my passion, I put my heart and soul into everything I write, my fans are the reason I keep going.
What are you working on next?
I have two projects in mind. The second book to the Sacred Order series and a paranormal romance.
Who are your favorite authors?
I have too many to list them all here but off of the top of my head, Stephen King, Naturally. Stephanie Laurens, I love her Cynster novels. Let's see, who else. J.R. Ward, Timothy Zhan, Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman...I have quite a list.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Coffee. Seriously, Coffee is like my lifeblood. One does not simply wake up without coffee. On a serious note, Life. In order to get things done each day, like write books, you have to get up out of the bed.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I'm either reading, playing a story rich game, or watching a favorite television show.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Oh, I browse. I do a lot of browsing in the ebook stores. I'll search for authors I already like to read and do a "like" search, or just search via genre or sub genre.
Published 2016-03-04.
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