Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I don't remember the very first story I read. I DO recall the first stories that had an impact on me and are the root of my inspiration to write. My father gave me two books when I was about seven years old. One was the Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe and the other was Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Complete Sherlock Holmes. As a voracious reader, I was immediately sucked into these amazing stories. Now I'm a huge Stephen King fan. I primarily write thrillers and horror short stories.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
My absolute favorite book is "To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee. Following that, I would say "The Stand" (unabridged) by Stephen King, "Dracula" by Bram Stoker, "The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe", "The Complete Sherlock Holmes" by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
What do you read for pleasure?
Horror and mysteries are my favorite genre for pleasure reading. I enjoy some science fiction and fantasy but it has to have a truly innovative story to hold me. When I'm feeling romantic I will delve into a romance but they always have some degree of suspense.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I love reading on my Kindle. When I'm unexpectedly stuck somewhere, like at an appointment or waiting for someone, I will read on my phone.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in New York City in the fifties and sixties. Being exposed to such a diverse population, people from all over the world, I learned a lot about various cultures. My neighborhood school had students whose parents had come from a variety of countries; Germany, England, Japan, Mexico, Greece, Italy, Puerto Rico, and more. I had the good fortune to be exposed to the stories, foods, and customs of these countries.
What's the story behind your latest book?
My latest book is a collaboration with Starla Hartless. It's about a young woman from East Tennessee who meets and falls in love with a Native American carver. It's partly based on the fact that Starla and I do live in East Tennessee and my knowledge of New York City. The artist/carver Jesse Wolf Carver is based on Canadian indigenous artist Eric Schweig. I love his masks and one is actually featured on the book cover. It's a steamy love story that follows Dani Stone as she grows from a young woman to a confident business woman.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
When I took early retirement from my career as a social worker/counselor I decided it was time to fulfill a lifelong dream to write. I'd been writing short stories since I was a small child and I figured it was time to dive in and get published. Being an indie author gives me a lot of flexibility with my subjects and how often I publish.
What do your fans mean to you?
My fans encourage me to work harder and develop my skills even more. By letting me know what they enjoy reading, which of my books they liked best, I am able to not only write what I like but also please them. Fans are my northern star.
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