Interview with Shana James

Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
As a matter of fact, I do. I was in the 3rd grade and my classmates and I had to create a story that included totally made up creatures and animals. To this day, I remember the Piyamslawzoo! The story was about a king and queen telling their citizens to capture the beast.
What is your writing process?
I read these articles and stories about people using outlines to write and that seems so amazing to me! I have to know how my story will end before I begin, then I work to get there during each session. It feels fresh and organic and I love it! It's as if I'm reading the story for the first time as I'm writing it instead of relying on an outline. That would seem to stiff to me and not very fun. But, I do understand why some authors prefer to go at it with a more organized approach.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I've been reading for so long, I can't even remember the first story I ever read. I've always had a love for reading. I grew up in a very small town and reading was my outlet to the rest of the world. There wasn't even as much cable television when I was growing up, so books were my world!
How do you approach cover design?
I work as a communications/marketing professional, so I really, really require a professional cover. I'd go bananas if my only option was a cover that didn't look polished and crisp. I do understand that it can be costly to find a great designer at a great, reasonable price, but I would encourage all writers to really spend some time searching for a good cover. It really makes a difference.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Gosh, this is a tough one. There are so many that I love. Off the top of my head, I'd have to say:

Most anything by Jackie Collins
The Canterbury Tales -- Geoffrey Chaucer
Maya Angelou's I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
How to Win Friend and Influence People -- Dale Carnegie
Most anything by James Patterson
What do you read for pleasure?
Romance, magazines and true crime! I love all three, almost equally, though I don't get around to magazines as often as I'd like.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I still have a first generation Nook and it's held up so well, I haven't even bothered to upgrade. But, I read quite a bit on my Samsung Galaxy S4.
Describe your desk
I don't really have much of a desk right now. It's strange, I know, but I tend to keep all of my important files in one storage area, and my lap is what I'd call my "desk". I like to be relaxed and comfortable when I write, so I usually turn on some music, grab my laptop and go for it.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a very small town in South Carolina and it made my imagination so vivid. You know, when you don't have much in the way of "noise", it helps to make creativity flourish, if you're so determined. I was and I really appreciate all of those "boring" days with nothing else to but read.
When did you first start writing?
I'd have to say I started writing in the second grade and i never looked back. It's been a lifelong love affair.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Living in New York City, you can't escape the banking and financial world. i wanted to write something that was steamy and smart, about that world, and Deferred Consumption came about.
Published 2015-04-18.
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