Interview with Debra Sylver

How do you discover the ebooks you read?
That one's tough to answer. Sometimes by word of mouth, sometimes by checking out new releases, sometimes on Twitter, sometimes by doing specific searches in categories, and sometimes just by luck. I love to wander around in bookstores, too. Stephen King says "If you don't have time to read, you don't have the tools to write." I'm a strong believer in that.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Umm, the voice of my son saying 'Mommy?" as he pulls up my eyelid. Not sure I would call it inspiration, at least not that early in the morning.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I work full-time as a professional in a rather demanding job, so I have to find time to write when I can. Sometimes it is early in the morning, sometimes late at night when my family is in bed. I also love playing with my son, reading, being active outside and I have a weakness for shoe-shopping.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I used to write stories when I was a little girl on small squares of paper and staple them together to create my own 'books'. I don't remember the stories themselves now, but I sure remember those little books.
What is your writing process?
It depends where I am in the book. Initially, I have a very rough outline of the book. Then I just sit down and start writing - kind of like spitting it all out onto the page. Sometimes the characters don't pay attention to the outline, though. Then I have to make a decision whether to listen to the characters, or reel them back in.

I usually tend to go with the flow the characters take me in until I have a beginning, a middle and an end. Then comes the hard part - editing. That's where I spend a huge amount of time revising, fine-tuning, filling in gaps and polishing. I will do that several times, sometimes on the computer and sometimes on printed hard copies that I mark up with a pen and then transcribe. I know, it sounds old school, doesn't it? But I find that I sometimes see things in print that I don't notice on the computer - not things like spelling or grammar, but more like plot holes and threads that need to be tied up.

I also try to make time to write every day, even if it's only for 30 minutes. There are exceptions, but I find that if I make writing a habit, it's easier to sit down and do it.
How do you approach cover design?
I work with a great cover designer, Melissa Alvarez at As I am writing, I generally get a good idea of what I want the cover to reveal - colors, themes and images. Covers are very important. I know you really can't judge a book by its cover, but so many of us (including me) do!
What do you read for pleasure?
Why urban fantasy and paranormal books, of course! Seriously, I read a wide variety of books, everything from mysteries to chick lit to science fiction.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I've been writing on and off since I was a child. The idea of finding an agent and a publishing house always seemed daunting, and honestly, a long shot. When I was younger, I thought about working in the publishing industry, but then followed the road to my profession instead. But I still wanted to write, even as I had less and less time to devote to it. Then I had the idea form in my head for the Caitlin Alexander Guardian series and it wouldn't go away. Eventually, I had to sit down and start writing about it.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
It gives me a creative outlet that I don't get from my day-to-day job.
What are you working on next?
A new book in the Caitlin Alexander Guardian series, of course! As of the date of answering this question, I am in the middle of writing book 3.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I love my Kindle Paperwhite, but I'll read on anything, even paper (gasp!)
Published 2014-06-17.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Dreams of Discovery (Caitlin Alexander Guardian Series, Book 3)
Series: Caitlin Alexander Guardian, Book 3. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 84,730. Language: English. Published: January 8, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal, Fiction » Fantasy » Urban
Caitlin is a Guardian, part of a group that protects the Treaty in an alternate reality. There is still much she doesn't understand about this reality and her role in it, and her attraction to the Guardian leader, Jaeden, confuses things. While battling warlocks and traitors, helping the faeries and searching for her birth mother, she makes shocking discoveries about her past and her family.
A Dream of a Deal (Caitlin Alexander Guardian Series Book 2)
Series: Caitlin Alexander Guardian, Book 2. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 59,570. Language: English. Published: June 24, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Urban, Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal
Caitlin's back in Otherwhere. Her relationship with Jaeden is as stormy as ever, but when Caitlin makes a deal with the Faery Queen to free a young Guardian, she wonders if she'll ever see the Guardian leader again. A prisoner of the faeries, and pursued by the Prince himself, Caitlin must use her wits and rely on her lioness if she hopes to escape Faerie and return unscathed.