Interview with Heather M. Miles

How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords is a new platform for me and I have yet to measure its success. I have two published works on Amazon and Createspace and never considered any other platforms until I was asked by my readers to submit to Nook, Apple and Kobo. Only time will tell if Smashwords is the best platform to market my novels.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The creativity of seeing my characters come to life on the pages. The way I have an idea of how my story will unfold and how my plot and characters alter and change that story in unexpected ways. Finally, it's really about the readers. There's no greater joy than to have someone who's read your work, contact you and tell you how much they enjoyed the book and can't wait to read more.
What do your fans mean to you?
We wouldn't have the energy to put this much effort into the work if it weren't for the fans. Authors spend hours, and days putting everything they have into the manuscripts. Striving for quality over quantity and trying to enrichen each story so that when it hits the hands of the readers, they're thrilled with the effort and enjoy the work. There's nothing more gratifying than to see someone holding your book in their hands, or knowing that they enjoyed the work so much that they've told their friends to read it. As always, in life, nothing sells more books than word of mouth. Without the fans, we'd just have unread meaningless pages.
What are you working on next?
I published the first working novel in the MERGER series, July 2014. I recently finished the second novel in the series, MERGER UNDONE and published it March 2015. The last novel, MERGER COMPLETE is my current work in progress and it's due out in Mayt 2015. I have a novel called SAYING YES, that is currently being marketed for traditional publishing.
Who are your favorite authors?
Christina Lauren, Sylvia Day, Kitty Thomas, Jodi Malpas. God, the list could go on for days. I practically eat books and have set a 50 book reading goal for 2015. I have also set a writing goal of 5 novels in 2015. Nothing like pushing the envelope.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
My body is my temple. I get out of bed every morning to do Crossfit. It keeps my body tight and my mind sharp. I retired in November 2014 to pursue a career as a full-time author of contemporary romance. I treat writing like a job and work at my craft every single day.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I love cooking and entertaining. I'm an avid reader and movie buff. Crossfit is my passion!
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Frankly, I stick to a particular genre. I go by suggested authors, as well as the fact as an author myself, I'm always looking to see the newest and brightest talent on the map. Goodreads is a Godsend for discovering new authors.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I have manuscripts locked away in a file cabinet that I wrote years ago. They are in a completely different genre, but at some point I need to revisit them and see if there's a pearl in the stack.
What is your writing process?
I am a panster, not a plotter. I have a concept, an idea, or character that I believe in and hit the ball rolling. I let the story take me where it wants to. I have an overall idea of plot, but I never utilize storyboarding or any other of the plotting methods. It's not for trying. I just haven't been able to plot my books. It never feels right.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
There is a particular book called Comfort Food by Kitty Thomas. I swear I should get a percentage of the royalties for this one book. It is not your typical read, even if you like romance or erotic romance. But, it changed the genre of the type of books I read and the kind of books I ultimately write. I was captivated from the very first chapter.
How do you approach cover design?
I have, so far, exclusively used Melody Simmons at eindiebookcovers for all my covers. She does wonderful work and I love the way my product looks at completion.
What do you read for pleasure?
I read erotic and contemporary romance, which is also what I write.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I have a Kindle Paperwhite that I love.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
I am a metadata queen and I am always self-promoting. I frequent Twitter, have a facebook author page, my own personal web page and blog, Linkedin and utilitze Hootsuite to manage most of them.
Describe your desk
I have a writer's den above my three car garage. It's my sanctuary and I love how creative I feel when I'm in it. It's nice as an author to have a space that's my own. No distractions! No excuses!
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Kansas City, Kansas. I wouldn't say it had much in particular to do with my love of writing, but I have always enjoyed the writing process.
When did you first start writing?
I've been writing since college, but it was only after the death of my mother in the winter of 2013, that I decided that I was going to give it a fighting chance. I plunged head first into the idea of being a full-time author and I've never looked back.
Published 2015-03-23.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.