Interview with Elizabeth Davies

What are you working on next?
I have just finished Sanctifying Grace, the last novel in the Resurrection trilogy, and am now working on another paranormal romance. No vampires this time, though. It's called The Medium Path and I hope to get it out around before the summer. I am also playing around with two novels I wrote a long time ago but I think I might publish these under a pen name because the genre is so different.
Who are your favorite authors?
My list is long and varied and my favourites change depending on what I am reading at the time. The old stand-bys include Steven King, Felix Frances, Lee Childs, Charlaine Harris, Kim Harrison and so many others.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The knowledge that there aren't enough hours in the day to do what I want to do!
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I work full time and have a family so spare time is precious. I read at every opportunity, including in the bath (lost count of the number of books I've dropped in the water), and I really enjoy hiking.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
At the moment I'm doing a lot of beta reading, so my ebooks come from forums where people ask for beta readers. And of course there is always Smashwords.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes. Vividly, because I'm still playing around with it and hope to have it published later this year. I first wrote Hindsight (working title) over ten years ago and it was something of a monster. I thought I'd lost it but it turned up on a friend's computer several months ago and now I have finished Resurrection I revisited it to see if it's worth salvaging. With a great many changes I think it just might work.
What is your writing process?
Ideas come to me at the oddest of times, and sometimes it could be as little as one word that will get my imagination working. I am quite fluid in my approach - I generally work the initial plot out in my head, then begin writing and see where the characters take me. Quite often they surprise me by not going in the direction I expect them to.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I've had stories read to me since I was born, so the process of reading has been a very gradual one and I can't remember the very first story I read by myself. However, I do remember being rather bored one day during the summer holidays when I was about eleven years old, and my mother, in a desperate attempt to keep me occupied, bought me a Famous Five book by Enid Blyton, and from then on I was hooked. I devoured every book she ever wrote and my reading career took off from there. I am still rarely without a book in my hand - or rather, e-reader.
How do you approach cover design?
Blindly. I knew what I wanted for the Resurrection series, but I'm not sure whether the covers have worked or not. I really need to get some good advice for future novels. I obviously want the cover to reflect the content of the book, but most of the time I'm not sure where that focus should lie. I also have very limited funds, so can't really afford to pay for a designer.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
The Stand by Steven King is my number one all-time favourite, and I have read it at least eight times. I love his style of writing - he is a master craftsman, but I also enjoy the post apocalypse scenario possibly because it could so frighteningly become a reality. I don't think I can narrow any other books down because I have so many.
What do you read for pleasure?
I read a variety of genres and it depends on my mood. Recently I have read a couple of urban fantasies, a thriller, and a historical novel.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I use a Nook, simply because it is cheap, allows me to buy emergency books if I find I have read everything on it, and it has an inbuilt light.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
None, I don't think. I'm not very good at that kind of thing. I have a blog, and use facebook and twitter but I am sure there are many avenues I could explore to make potential readers aware of my books.
Describe your desk
I don't have one (except at work). I used to write my books longhand and then type them up, but recently I have got into the habit of putting the words directly on to the computer. I sit curled up in my favourite chair and write there. I don't have paper copies of anything, except those early books where everything was hand written, so I don't really need much space.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in the Welsh Valleys and this has played a major part in the locations I use in my work. I tend to write about where I know.
When did you first start writing?
About ten years ago, although I have toyed with stories in my head for much longer than this.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I'm actually in the process of working on three at the same time. Two of them are manuscripts from early on in my writing career, that I have come back to and need some reworking. They are a totally different genre to the Resurrection series. The third is one that I began recently and is about a ghost who's role is to help other ghosts to pass over to the other side. Again this is a paranormal romance.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Because I couldn't get published any other way. When I completed State of Grace I sent it to quite a few agents but was rejected by all of them. It was sheer luck that a came upon the Smashwords website because I was considering giving up writing altogether. Being able to self publish rekindled my enthusiasm for writing.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Without Smashwords I wouldn't be writing now!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Starting with a vague idea and then seeing that idea develop into a full blown novel that other people enjoy reading (I hope).
What do your fans mean to you?
They give me support and encouragement, especially when I am feeling down because the manuscript isn't going well, or I've received a bad review. I love it that I can bring enjoyment to people by my scribbling.
Published 2014-01-17.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.