Interview with Valerie Maholmes

When did you first start writing?
I have always had a passion and a love for words. From my earliest point of remembrance, I've wanted to be a writer of some sort. I love storytelling--whether fact or fiction. To me, that's what writing is all about--Conveying a message, communicating emotions, sharing thoughts, ideas and information. I've spent most of my career doing academic writing. This is one of my first forays into writing for broader audiences. Let me know what you think!
What's the story behind your latest book?
Ah... the story behind my latest book. Well, I encountered someone I know who experienced an unexpected end to her relationship. She was distraught and looked as though she hadn't slept in days. When I asked her what the matter was, she told me a story of deception and outright trickery. I was broken-hearted for her. Later, another friend told me a similar story about how her relationship ended. Unfortunately, she didn't know it had ended --someone else told her that the person she thought was the love of her life already had a wife! Needless to say, I was infuriated by this story. I was even more concerned about these women--how they were feeling and what they were doing as a consequence of their breakups. Recognizing that these were not isolated incidents--indeed many women have had similar experiences--I felt I needed to say something on behalf of women who feel that they couldn't or shouldn't express their feelings or distress. I hope my book gives women (and men too) a healthy way to express their distress, manage disappointment and move on with their lives.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
As an academic, I have spent my career on the publish or perish treadmill. My writings have been published in a variety of journals and books. I wrote this book about 8 years ago and at the time, my agent shopped it around to several publishers. They liked the title, thought it was interesting, but they weren't sure they wanted to publish it. The book seemed like such a departure from what I'm known for writing, the publishers were a bit shy about taking a risk on a relative unknown--at least in the self help/romance genre. Fast forward 8 years, social media has proliferated and I've had many more opportunities to reach out to broader audiences allowing many more people to get to know my voice. I've attended several indie events and thought that this was the best way for me to publish my work. I hope you like it!
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords is amazing! The resources and materials Mark Coker provides have been immensely helpful and knowing that I can have confidence in Smashwords' track record of success with Indie authors has helped me breathe many sighs of relief. I'm looking forward to seeing my book distributed around the world and meeting new readers and fellow authors. Cheers!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy of writing for me is seeing how individual words come together to make meaning and tell a story. Sometimes, I start by doing "stream of consciousness" writing --I let the words flow and write whatever is on my mind. At this stage, I don't edit myself, I don't try to focus, or steer the words in any particular direction. I just write. Amazingly, the words cluster together in themes, and the themes into stories. I don't always use everything from my stream of consciousness exercises, but I put them away and come back later to some of the themes for other projects I'm working on. The fact that my random thoughts turn into something that others can relate to or be inspired by gives me great joy.
Published 2015-09-01.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Post-Dramatic Relationship Syndrome: How to Find Your Drama Free Zone!
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 14,100. Language: English. Published: September 2, 2015. Categories: Nonfiction » Self-improvement » Motivation and inspiration
Post-Dramatic Relationship Syndrome is a term I've coined to describe what we do and how we feel in the aftermath of a dramatic relationship. This fun and easy-to-read self-help book gives humorous anecdotes, guides for reflection and action planning to help readers achieve personal and spiritual renewal--and most importantly, to chart a course toward living and loving in the drama free zone!