Interview with Y. M. Nelson

Who are your favorite authors?
Anne Tyler, Jennifer Weiner, Toni Morrison. I have a special place in my heart for Bethanie F. DeVors and Sienna Snow. I just got introduced to Mary Kay Andrews--she's my "guilty pleasure" read. Um, yes, I realize there are no guys on here. I don't have anything to say about that.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
My current 5 favorite books (in no particular order): "Catch-22" by Joseph Heller; "The Accidental Tourist" by Anne Tyler; "The Road" by Cormac McCarthy; all of the Harry Potter novels by J.K. Rowling (can I count those as 1?); "The Song of Solomon" by Toni Morrison. This changes somewhat depending on my mood and what I've read, but these have been favorites of mine for several years now.

"Catch-22" is the epitome of funny antics and political/societal commentary. It's entertaining, but at the same time makes a meaningful point that even rings true beyond the times in which it was written.

"The Accidental Tourist" taught me something about myself as a writer and a reader: I love flawed characters. I love people who are having real love relationships with real problems, but at the same time have real passion for life. I have a hard time liking a novel when characters are too perfect. The characters in "TAT" are some messed up people, but they are really living! Or trying to, anyway.

"The Road" was an exhausting read for me. And yes, that was a good thing. To know that a book can impact you not just mentally and emotionally, but also physically exhaust you--that's a real experience. That's a powerful piece of writing. It also scares the daylights out of me what a post-apocalyptic world could look like.

The Harry Potter series as a whole was magnificently written. I experienced reading these as an adult, and I found so many layers there that I wouldn't have if these had been around when I was a kid. Also, J.K. is a master of language: phonics and diction/figurative language. (Severus Snape? I mean, come on! Genius!) I haven't seen this level of artistry with language without it being poetry since Shakespeare.

"The Song of Solomon" does with description what I WISH I could do. I'm not good with description; I'm better with dialogue. Toni Morrison is a master of descriptive language, in my opinion. She's also a master of poetic prose, and I think this novel is her best version of that.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
"I gotta make the donuts!" :)
Really, though, I don't want to waste a day and all the experiences I could have for that day. So, that requires me to get out of bed.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Right now, I'm surrounded by readers: at work, in my group of friends, etc. There's no way I can lug around all the books people recommend I read, so I find ebook versions. Best idea ever for a voracious reader.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I don't remember the first STORY I ever wrote, but the first piece of writing I did for fun was a poem called "On An Open Plain." Most of the stories I wrote afterwards are like the ones I have continuously written: short, love stories with little bits of funny throughout them, kind of like "Twenty Four Hours of Freedom." (on sale now)
When did you first start writing?
I first started writing when I was in 7th grade. I wrote a poem called "On An Open Plain." I rarely write poetry now. I don't know what I did with my one lonely copy of that. I wrote my first "novel" over summer break between 10th and 11th grade. It was 100 written pages (our typewriter was only for business stuff or homework, not for fun). I still have that, and I plan to rework the draft into a publishable novel after I finish the serial I'm working on now.
What do you read for pleasure?
Most of my pleasure reading is in the same vein in which I write: women's fiction with a romantic bent, or straight-out romance. Mary Kay Andrews' novels and Janet Evanovich's "Stephanie Plum" series have recently become a guilty pleasure for me. I love Jennifer Weiner's novels for pleasure reading.

When I'm in a different (read: darker) mood, I like to read mystery or thriller novels: Charlaine Harris is my favorite author here (Yes, I have read all the Sookie Stackhouse novels, and no, I didn't like Trueblood (TV series from the novels)). Although, I also like JP (James Patterson), and SK (Stephen King).
What is your writing process?
My creative stuff [writing] usually starts off with a dream or a scene that keeps flashing through my mind, annoying me until I write it down. Then characters emerge and start talking to me or to each other in my mind. It's a wonder I haven't yet had a nervous breakdown. But then, I've heard that most creative writers hear imaginary voices, so I feel pretty sure they won't drag me away to Arkham any time soon.
Describe your desk
I like this question. My desk is a mess. I understand it, but no one else does.
What are you working on next?
Currently, I am working on creating Book 2 in my "Living Between Dreams" series and getting my first novel in the series ready for publication. You can see the first chapter of "Living Between Dreams" at the end of "Twenty-Four Hours of Freedom." (on sale now)
Published 2018-04-09.
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Books by This Author

Twenty-Four Hours of Freedom
Series: Owen & Makayla Trilogy. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 5,740. Language: English. Published: February 7, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary, Fiction » Romance » Short stories
What would you do if you found out today was your last day of freedom? Newly reunited best friends Owen and Makayla had planned to spend a normal day in the city. . .until Owen gets a call that he’s to remain where he is at Makayla’s house. In 24 hours, he will be picked up on a warrant and taken to jail over a business dispute that’s turned very ugly. How will the two spend Owen's last 24 hours?