Interview with Marie McKean

How do you approach cover design?
Cover design is a tricky, and extremely important thing. I've learned that it is so very important to pick a graphic designer whose portfolio you absolutely love, but also is someone that you can get along with. They need to be able to understand what you want without even being able to articulate it yourself.

When I stumbled upon Manthos, I just knew he was who I needed and wanted for my graphic designer. He is brilliant, and I am honored he agreed to work with me.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Picking a favorite book is impossible. It seems like every book I read is suddenly my favorite. What really makes a book stand out to me, is the book's characters. If they move me, make me love/hate them, and have me crawling back for more, I'm yours.
What do you read for pleasure?
I read anything I can get my hands on. Cereal boxes, Wii games, magazines, and if I'm really lucky, an amazing book will be waiting for me on my kindle.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
For the longest time I was opposed to e-readers. And then, I downloaded the kindle app on my phone, and I've been hooked ever since. They are just so convenient.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
So far, I think it's been making real relationships with people on goodreads.
Describe your desk
My desk happens to be where ever I'm comfortable. That is the beauty of laptops. Most generally I find myself laying on the floor in my bedroom....I think I need to upgrade to at least a comfy chair.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in two places. One was a teeny-tiny town in Southern Utah with about 1,200 people. The other was near Salt Lake City. I like to think that my experience with diverse people from the city influences my writing as much as my love of small rural towns settings. Hopefully, my writing reflects as much.
When did you first start writing?
I started writing when I was young, but it was something I didn't put much stock into. I didn't actually sit down and decide to write a novel until last year. I suppose my heart knew what I'd be happiest doing because I've been unable to stop writing since. I cannot go a day without writing or I start having withdrawals.
What's the story behind your latest book?
The story behind BORN OF OAK AND SILVER is that my dad took me on a trip to Mississippi to visit where my family is from. While in the cemetery putting flowers on family gravestones, I happened to see this obscure stump beneath a magnolia tree. Lo and behold, that stump was a stone headstone that belonged to none-other than my several greats grandpa. I kind of used his life as my template. . . but I have no way of explaining how anything aside from that came to be. Daine Dalton had a story to tell, and that was that.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I admit, in the beginning I was reluctant to be an indie author. But, as I began to research, I knew that it was the right fit for me. I couldn't stand the idea of giving away my rights to something that I had worked so hard to create. It was mine, and I wanted to keep it that way. Indie publishing, although daunting, allowed me to call the shots and do things the way I wanted them done.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords allowed me to get my book out to a broader market. I'm excited to see what the end results will be.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy of writing is when you are able to so perfectly depict a scene that you are seeing in your head. This goes hand in hand with creating characters that are as real to you as any of your closest friends. Writing is a wonderful thing, and I would be bereft without it.
What do your fans mean to you?
Encouragement to keep writing!
Published 2013-10-01.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.