When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I work part-time, two days a week and I keep busy running after my two children. My husband is a farmer so often he asks me to help him out where and when I can. I also love to hang out with my friends whenever I can.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes of course, and I remember exactly where I was when the idea for Intoxicated came to me. I was in Melbourne's Crown Casino watching a gorgeous group of men strut their stuff on stage at The Princes of the Night stage show. As I watched the audience gaze upon several perfectly sculptured men as they danced half naked on stage for our enjoyment, I wondered what would I want in a man if I were single? Would I accept the advances if offered to me by a male entertainer? By the end of the weekend I had the beginning, middle and end of my first novel planted firmly in my mind. All I had to do then, was write it.
What is your writing process?
Oh man, this is a hard one. Usually when an idea for a novel comes to me I begin to jot down all the ideas and scenes I can as soon as possible. Then I begin to write, but as I write I develop my characters and the story then begin writing my chapter breakdown. Or something like that. My process changes a little with each and every book I write or idea I have.
How do you approach cover design?
The cover for Intoxicated was clear to me from the start so it was fairly easy for my girlfriend who is a graphic design artist (lucky me) to whip it up for me. My next novel is the first in a trilogy and is proving to be a little harder to orchestrate than my first novel, but it is coming together. The covers for the other two books in my trilogy are coming together in my mind, but are yet to be constructed.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
To be honest I was never a big reader, but when Fifty Shades of Grey came out I jumped on the band wagon with millions of other women to see what all the fuss was all about. I fell in love with Anna and Mr Grey (but who didn't). I loved being able to be apart of their fictional lives and witness their relationship develop. Yes I did find parts of the book confronting, but what they did behind closed doors or within the confines of his 'play room' was a big part of their relationship, so I read on. After Fifty Shades I read Sylvia Day's, Crossfire series and once again fell in love with the characters. It was around that time that I attended my girlfriends hens night and had the idea to write Intoxicated. I've never wanted to or ever had the need to write anything before in my life, but now that I've started, I just can't stop.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
I love anything Sylvia Day writes, the women can do no wrong. I enjoyed The Hunger Games and the Twilight saga is a favorite of mine as is Maze Runner and Hunger Games were also great reads. Gone Girl was the best book turned movie I have ever seen. Meredith Wild's, Hacker series is excellent and I also enjoyed Nicholas Sparks, The Longest Ride. As you can see, my taste are varied.
What do you read for pleasure?
I love a good romance, surprise, surprise. But I also enjoy a thriller or suspense novels. Who doesn't enjoy a book that you just can't put down.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
Facebook advertising has been wonderfully effective, but nothing beats good old word of mouth.
Describe your desk
Messy, but user friendly.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Central Victoria, Australia. It may seem harsh to say but considering the need and want to write only came to me in 2014 my childhood has had very little influence regarding my now choice of career.
When did you first start writing?
September 2014 after attending my girlfriends hens party at The Princes of the Night at the Crown Casino, Melbourne.
What's the story behind your latest book?
As I've said the idea for Intoxicated came to me while watching several gorgeous men strut their stuff on stage. The moment I got home from my girls weekend away I began to write. The story was so clear to me. Yes of course my writing needed work because I had absolutely no training behind me what-so-ever, so I signed up to an online Certificate in Romance Writing course and used and wrote my novel along the way. By the time I finished my course, with all twelve assignments receiving a grading of High Distinction, I had also finished my novel. Within six months my first novel was completed. But then began the editing stage. This story is about asking my self the simple question, 'what if?' What if I suddenly were a single mother of two? Would I want the affections of a male entertainer if given the chance? How would my children react to a new man not only in their life, but mine? And so began my novel, Intoxicated.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Time. So much time can be spent and not so much wasted, as you need to keep writing, but a lot of time can pass when you're waiting to hear back from editor's, publisher's or agents alike so I decided to take my career into my own hands. Why not? All the tools are right here for us to use and if you believe your book is good enough for people to read it, then go for it. You seriously have nothing to loose.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
This is the first time I have ever published a novel so I am yet to make comment on my progress, but I have to say the detail Smashwords supplies their authors with regarding formatting, preparation and management of their work has blown my mind. The experience of becoming an Indie author with Smashwords has been wonderful so far.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
To be able to create characters, the scenes and situations in which they find themselves in and write their story from start to finish thrills me. As I write I cry when my characters cry, I get angry when they've been wronged. I fear for them when they're scared and I pray they're lives will change for the better when all hope seems lost. I get so much joy from being able to do that and no one is more surprised than me to know that I am able to do that. I love to write. It has become a part of me. A part in which I hope I will always have.
What do your fans mean to you?
Everything. Where would any of us be if we didn't have readers and fans to read our work. I'd be lost without my fans and all I can say to each and every one of you is, thank you. Those two words just don't seem to convey my gratitude enough at times.
What are you working on next?
Ahh my next project is one I am super excited about. Reanimation is the first book in my Reanimation Trilogy. Think Twilight in reverse. Reanimation is about the scientific medical breakthrough in which, by using stem cells, Vamps disease is able to be reversed. Of course when a vampire is reanimated they experience an extreme amount of pain, more so then when they are originally infected with the disease. You would be forgiven for assuming that each and every vampire would want to reanimate back to their original, natural human form...right? Well what happens when Kady, who's father is the founder of the reanimation process, meets Rylan, vampire, and tells him about her fathers discoveries only to be told that he does not want to reanimate. Rylan appreciates his unnatural abilities vamps disease gives him, but will he give it all up for the love of Kady? Well you'll have to read it and find out. I hope to have Reanimation released in 2017. Watch this space.
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