Interview with Carolyn Bond

When did you first start writing?
I have always enjoyed creative writing for fun; however, I didn't start writing my first book, Eternal Souls, until Summer of 2014. I had an idea or premise and started writing down my thoughts about it. I got the first 2 or 3 chapters done and showed it to some friends. They were kind but thought it was confusing. Actually, it was pretty bad. I had no idea how to move it forward, either. It had no plot and no antagonist.

I started asking myself questions about the story: What is this person like? Why do they care? Can the Protectors walk through walls? Fly? I finally made an outline of the book from start to finish and that was a moment of revelation. The story came together. I can't say I followed the outline perfectly, but it helped guide me when I was muddled. At that point, the book moved pretty quickly.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I have always had the belief that our ancestors can see us and drop in from time to time to check on us. Especially around the births of my children, I have felt a presence around me and the child. It isn't scary. There is a sense of celebration in the generations that have passed because a new soul has been added to the line. With each of my children, I have prayed for there to be many angels around them, all their life, to protect them. This story combines these ideas by having generations past assigned as guardian angels for the living.

Of course, it can't be all lemon drops and lollypops. Life isn't like that. So the book shows the battles that go on around the living all the time and how susceptible the living are to being pulled this way and that. We may be oblivious, but we have more power than we know, if we just used it.

Another fascinating fact, most of the Protectors in the book are based on real people in my ancestry. Capt. Thomas Helm really was a Revolutionary War soldier, as was his brother Leonard. Jenny Pope was Thomas' wife. And, Henry was actually their son, killed by Indians when they moved to Kentucky.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I have been reading e--books for a few years. I realized I could read whole books on my phone while riding elevators at work, in the waiting room at the doctor's office, or after all the lights are out at home. When I found out how easy it was to publish an e-book, I knew the obstacle of traditional publishing was removed and I just needed to finally write the book in my head. It has been a wonderful experience. I love the control I have over my own work.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords has been great for my book! The Style Guide walked me through the process. My book is always in the first few pages of the sub-genre so readers can discover it easily. They make it really easy for me to see activity my book generates. I love that they let me make coupons for marketing that I post on my Facebook page or personally hand out. You can't beat the royalty cut they give me as an author. Smashbooks is truly a self-publisher's friend.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I used to love to get lost in a book. Now I find that with writing, I get lost creating a whole new world. I have trouble with my nerves and there is no better escape than writing. Besides distracting me from worry, I feel like I'm doing something productive. I have truly never done anything else that feels so natural. When the story is good, it pours out of my mind as fast as I can type.
What do your fans mean to you?
The other day we were listening to some musicians and I told my son that when people smile, pay attention, and clap when they play, the musicians play even better. The musicians enjoy making you happy. That is my relationship with fans: I love making them happy by giving them a great story. When I hear that someone loved the book, it makes me excited to create something else for them to enjoy. Without readers, I suppose my work would be good anxiety therapy for me, but it wouldn't be nearly as meaningful.
What are you working on next?
I have two projects I am currently working on. The first and most pressing is Eternal Echos (working title) which is the sequel to Eternal Souls. It continues the story of Marie and Allen picking up about a year after ES leaves off. It has some time travel in it after they find a crystal hidden in a cave while Allen is doing some geology research.

The other project is one I work on when Echos doesn't flow well. To take my mind off it, I started another story about an elderly widow who knows she only has a few months to live. She receives a remarkable gift that lets her go back and 'fix' things in her life that she regrets. It sounds like a dream come true until she realizes changing things can lead to unexpected outcomes. Its been fun writing this story.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I have five children aged 6 to 22 at home, so they keep me pretty busy. I have also worked for the school system the last few years and, since I finished my masters in teaching degree recently, I am hoping to be a teacher soon.

For fun, I enjoy long drives, walks in the forest, camping, reading and being a home body.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
When I am looking for my next book to read, I have a process. I head to whatever genre I'm interested in and then scroll through the pages. If a book looks interesting, I read the summary and the reviews. Then I usually download the sample and read it. If the writing style is easy to read, I'll usually read the whole book. Then I write a review. I really love it when I see reviews that say something like, "If you liked this, you should read (insert author name)'s books, too. Then I will search that author and read their work, too!

I'm a book hound. I can read a book in a day or two. I love reading anything and everything. If I get on a kick with a certain type of book, I will read dozens in that genre. For a while I got into historical romances and couldn't stop. You can learn a great deal from them! Well, and the romance part is exciting, too! Haha!
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I am laughing because it was so strange. In 5th grade we were given a writing prompt about a 'giant leaping garbonzo bean' and I wrote a very odd story. My teacher told me I was 'very creative' and then looked at me strangely. I knew I had a gift from then on. I just needed to hone that talent.
What is your writing process?
I sneak up on writing. I have to have something to eat, some coffee, check Facebook, check my Smashwords Dashboard, read the news, catch up on emails, and then....I think about writing. Then I will open the Word file. I keep an Excel spreadsheet while I write that tracks how many words I write each day and other boring statistics. My outline is also in the Excel file.

So I write a little and then I log how many words I have and the spreadsheet tells me how many words I have written that day. My goal for each day is 5,000 words. Once I am in the groove, that is no problem. Its often surprising to me how many words I have banged out. If I am totally focused and deep in the story, I have written over 10,000 words in a day. The trick is writing every day.
Published 2015-07-06.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Between Time
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 72,750. Language: English. Published: June 15, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal, Fiction » Romance » Fantasy
(5.00 from 1 review)
"You could say they were ghosts, but really they were just people,... who happened to no longer have a physical body." Marie St. Clair is pulled into their world and used as the pawn of a bitter old spirit. Marie struggles to find the power to return to her first love, Allen. She discovers her ancestors are there to help her, but she must find the true source of all power we all have within us.