When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
In addition to writing, I have a full-time job, so there isn't nearly enough time to do the other things I love... like reading! In my never ending quest to find balance, I divide my time between working, writing, and most important - spending time with my family.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Most of my reading list comes from personal recommendations. I have a lot of avid-readers in my social circle and whenever we get together, whether for a quick cup of coffee or play-date with the kids, it invariably turns into an impromptu book-club. I've even dubbed my chiropractic appointments as 'laser-treatment book club'!
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes! A very very long time ago, I wrote a mystery story on a tiny spiral notepad (about 5 large printed words per page) about a handsome gumshoe named Barnaby.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I grew up reading so to pinpoint my first book predates my active memory. But I do remember the first 'transition book'. After reading the entire collections of Nancy Drew and Zane Grey, I jumped into Sidney Sheldon's Rage of Angels and never looked back! After Sidney, I went into Harlequins and anything by Danielle Steele.
How do you approach cover design?
My talent lies in the written word, not images, so I have a fantastic cover designer that translates my thoughts into pictures. He manages to nail the genre, the mood, the very essence of the book, in his multi-layered design.
What do you read for pleasure?
I read a little bit of everything! Literary (like Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides, This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper), Mystery/Thriller (Lee Child's Jack Reacher series, anything by Nelson Demille, Harlen Coben and Dennis Lehane), and Romance (too many authors to mention!). Thanks to my teenaged son, I've also enjoyed a slew of YA titles, from Hunger Games to everything by Dashner.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I read on both a Kobo and a Kindle, and sometime my computer. But I also LOVE the feel of a book in my hands and make a weekly trip to the library to fill a book bag.
Describe your desk
My desk is piled high with paperwork, so I rarely write in my office. I often set up on the dining room table so I can keep an eye on homework progress. In the evening, I switch to the comfy lounge chair in my bedroom.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Northwestern Ontario and it absolutely influenced my writing. My latest book, Jump Zone, starts in a northern forest similar to the one in my surrounding area. I tried to capture the raw, rough, beauty and challenges of the terrain.
When did you first start writing?
I've always enjoyed jotting down thoughts, whether it was a diary in my youth, a journal in my young adult life, or silly little poems and stories for my children. I didn't think about parlaying it into a second career until my mid-thirties.
What do your fans mean to you?
Connecting with people is my ultimate goal. I want to create stories that readers can get lost in. The characters are so very real to me, the worlds I build exist in my head in such detail that I can't believe it's fiction! If I can offer a few hours of enjoyment, escape, or take people to new exiting places,... If I can make people laugh, or cry or make them fall in love with a character, I'm a very happy author :)
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.