Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I went to school in a small Texas town, but didn't live there. My mother was a teacher and we commutated from our larger city of New Braunfels to where she taught in rural Marion. It was an interesting experience because I came to understand the small town lifestyle without ever living there. Whenever I write about small towns in my fiction (which is often), I think a lot about my time in Marion and the unique friends I made going to school there.
As an adult, I live in an area that was much like the way I grew up. It's close to a big city, but yet still retains all the characters of a small town.
When did you first start writing?
I've been writing my whole life, but didn't get serious about it until about nine years ago. I started feeling that it was time to start getting all those crazy scenes and conversations that were going on in my head out and on to the paper. It was also a lot cheaper than therapy.
What's the story behind your latest book?
My latest book, Bayou Scar, will be coming out this Fall. It's a sequel to Bayou Myth and tells the continuing story of a teenage voodoo queen and her battle to overcome Greek gods and Voodoo tricksters. The whole series is based on a short story I wrote several years ago about an adult Joan Renault who works on the police force and uses voodoo to help her solve crime. Her back story was so interesting to me that I knew it needed its own special place. The Bayou Myth trilogy was born!
What motivated you to become an indie author?
This is a fabulous time to be an indie author! Traditional publishing has become a bit archaic and I knew that getting my book out was going to be up to me. I still believe that having an agent and going through the traditional routes has value--but times are changing. Authors can do a lot for themselves! I worked with a wonderful small press for my first novel, Nephilim. However, I realized that they weren't doing anything that I couldn't do myself. Sure, it might take more time and cost me money, but in the end, having control over all aspects of publishing has been enormously pleasing.
What do your fans mean to you?
Everything! It's one thing to be an indie author. It's another thing to have actual fans who follow you on Facebook and Twitter, who buy your books, who email you about when the next book is coming! I love the fans!
What are you working on next?
Currently I'm working on a book called Residual. It's ghost story that spans modern times and the 1950's. I love writing about a different time period and collecting pictures to help me see it even better. If you want a sneak peek at the characters and themes in Residual, find me on Pinterest and check out the Residual board.
Who are your favorite authors?
I have many favorites in various genres. When it comes to horror, I always bow to the master: Stephen King. He sparked my excitement for storytelling when I was a kid. In romance, I love writers like Janet Evanovitch or Nora Roberts. Both are tight storytellers and know how to hook you. My all time favorite Southern writer is Eudora Welty. Nobody gets small town or the south quite the way she did!
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I'm an elementary theatre arts teacher so I spend a great deal of time playing "pretend." I have a great husband and daughter who keep me on my toes and don't clean up after themselves.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Oh yeah! It was a new Greek myth called Aggravain: The Goddess of Aggravation. It was based on a fourth grade friend who drove me nuts because she had a cool pair of Guess jeans and I didn't. All I really wanted was to have that cool Guess jeans triangle on my butt. Now I don't even want to look in that direction. Crazy how things change...
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