Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a small town in southern Colorado. I had a sixth grade teacher who always believed the best in me, and encouraged my writing. Throughout the years I remembered how proud I was when she was honestly pleased with something I wrote.
When did you first start writing?
I began writing in the sixth grade. I had years without writing anything until I entered college. I took a child psychology course and one assignment was to write a book for a young child. It was here that one of my main characters came to life. He is in all of my books for children and has an amazing personality. I have been writing inspirational books, and blogging since 2001 and now its a lifestyle.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Currently my latest book published is Caylin and Tickle The Porcupine; its about dreams and how they affect our lives. Its great for children because I want them to understand that 'dreaming' is part of living.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Personally I'm impatient and although I considered publishing with a traditional publisher; the thought of waiting 18 months to see my book in print didn't appeal to me. I write and I want children around the world to meet my characters now. The sooner they meet the sooner a friendship is developed. I love the idea of being in control of revisions and pricing. I consider writing my lifestyle and although making money is a great perk its not the reason why I do what I do.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords has contributed to my success in making various formats available. The books on writing an ebook by Mark has been a fabulous investment of time; for him writing it as well as me reading and implementing it. I am grateful beyond words for this opportunity because for me; sky is the limit! With Smashwords I will publish hundreds of books, beginning this year. Smashwords is the most reputable company available for Self Published Authors and I will recommend it to my fellow writers who are willing to take the leap of faith share what they write and just do it!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
In reference to my books for children my greatest joy is watching them come to life as they meet my characters. Hearing them ask to have the story read again, or taking the book and reading it again means everything. My granddaughter is Caylin and the book of Caylin and Tickle the Porcupine is for her first and foremost. I enjoy reading my books at school or the library without anyone knowing its something I've written.
On my Inspirational books or writing prompts; the greatest joy for me is having someone leave a comment sharing how one aspect of the book touched their lives. Hearing someone connect with our conversation although we may never meet in person, we've met through the pages of my book.
What do your fans mean to you?
My readers mean alot to me. Without anyone reading what I write, it becomes empty words on a page. Writing is talking and reading is listening. Its equally important when a reader leaves me a comment and I listen to what they have to say.
What are you working on next?
I'm working on several books, a few for children and a few more for adults they will be done in the next month. My longest project is a Christian Fiction Novel which will be published during the summer of 2014
Who are your favorite authors?
Ted Dekker, Frank Peretti, Randy Alcorn, Bruce Wilkins, Max Lucado, Jerry B Jenkins, Tim Lahaye
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Having coffee and thinking of what new adventures lie ahead.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I take photographs of our beautiful Rocky Mountains and the wildlife surrounding me. I knit, crochet, or embroider. I play with my puppies and spend quality time with my family. I enjoy life and appreciate all the Lord has blessed me with.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Usually I look for the latest reads from my favorite authors. Then I look into new emerging authors and go from there.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes I do. It was intense and allowed me to realize I was born to write, it was more than a hobby.
What is your writing process?
I create writing prompts first, then go from there. Once I finish a book I leave it alone for a few days and then go back to it with fresh eyes. I bounce around from a book for kids to inspirational writing. I don't have a specific amount of pages produced daily or hours defined; I write.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
My favorite book was "Frog And Toad Are Friends" I thought the characters were real! *laughing* After I realized they weren't real I still loved the story! I still have an original copy.
How do you approach cover design?
I use my own illustrations for children's books. I use my own photography for all other books.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Riven by Jerry B Jenkins: This book was an amazing read, every word on each page held my attention. I was in the story, and resonated with the characters. The end was the BEST I've ever read in the thousands of books I've read!
The Lady Her Lover And Her Lord by T.D. Jakes: This book hit home when I first read it. I enjoy reading books by T.D. Jakes but this one had me crying from the first page. I learned more about myself and the people around me than I had prior to this book. I recommend it to Every single woman whether they are young or old because we all have the same inner make-up on being female.
The Visitiation by Frank Peretti: This story is creepy in a spiritual way. If a person doesn't know how things can work and living life in blessings they fall for anything that appears to be right. This book had me from the first moment I started reading and kept me to the end. I purchased the movie shortly thereafter and will read the book multiple times as well as watch the movie.
Monster by Frank Peretti: This story is also creepy in its spiritual side. It feels real and the author has his way of pulling the reader in and holding you to the very last word. Monster is not like any other book out there that deals with inhuman beings. I own this hardcover book as well.
Breathing Life into Your Characters by Rachel Ballon, Ph. D.: This is a writing book and I have used it more times than I can remember. Its wonderful in creating characters and making them as real as possible in a fiction novel.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.