Good day Everyone,
Usually I dedicate this page to interviewing others but today I decided to post a recent interview I did with Seriousreading.com. I hope you all find a few more interesting tidbits about me that you may have been curious about. 🙂
So without further adieu, here we go:
A common misconception entwined with authors is that they are socially inept, how true is that?
Well I can only speak for myself on this question as I believe we are all individuals, with individual and diverse levels of social anxieties. I am very well adept at spending time alone and isolated but I do crave, once in a while, the company of other people just to seep in what others think about and breathe in their energy. I do struggle at times to know what to do with myself or what to say when in a social environment but at that point I try to fade into the background or preoccupy myself so that it doesn’t get overwhelming. So I guess to some degree, depending on the person, it is a bit true.
Do all authors have to be grammar Nazis?
I don’t believe so. I am sure that it helps when you have to go back through your first drafts, which is always an interesting journey, to begin restructuring the project so that it is legible to the rest of the world. But I know that everyone makes mistakes and overlooks errors when it is their own work and that is why we hire an editor or a second pair of professional eyes to oversee the final product.
What makes this particular genre you are involved in so special?
I absolutely love fantasy, especially urban. I allows the writer so much freedom to create and expand their worlds without having to know every little detail and specifics in order to do it properly and still stay realistic. The imagination is an amazing tool, and the more we use it, the more we can push it to its surreal extremes. Why have an imagination if you cannot use it?
What inspires you to write?
I began down this road on a journey to find the creative spark that I had suppressed for so many years of being a mom with young children and the bombardment of demands that this job entails. Somewhere in between the diapers, sleepless nights and never ending spit ups I lost myself and what made me feel alive inside. I push through the creative process as a journey to find out who I am now. Even if it means the terrifying reality of letting strangers and friends see who I am from the inside out. It allows me to breathe when I feel suffocated by real life. It takes away all the stress and demands of the world around you, even just for the few moments you are allotted to get lost in the imaginary world you created. It saves me from getting lost in a world that is eager to swallow you up without a trace. It is frightening to let someone see my creation but it is even more frightening to allow yourself to disappear without creating it.
Do you aim to complete a set number of pages or words each day?
No not really, when I sit down to write it is when I am inspired to do so. When the characters in my head begin bugging me to the point that I need to expel enough of what they are telling me to get them to quiet down for a bit, I will hammer it out until it is done. Sometimes it is an hour a day, and sometimes it lasts for days. I usually carry a scribbler and a pencil with me at all times just in case of such an emergency. haha
Writers are often associated with loner tendencies;is there any truth to that?
I can relate with that trait. I like people and social events…to a point. I find if I choose when I want to be social, I am better at conversation and interaction but most of the time I love my alone time. To think, to exhale and to allow the silence that surrounds me to whisper its hidden secrets that one can only hear when you have those moments of tranquility.
Do you think writers have a normal life like others?
I am truly not sure what normal is, because everyone has their own definition of what normality is for them but I can tell you that now that I am a writer, I am understanding why some writers find it normal to lock themselves up in a room or hotels for days at a time just so that they can manifest their worlds on paper. I would love to have that luxury but with a brood of kids constantly needing mom, it just isn’t in the cards. But as for a normal life, ie, socializing, and having a 9 to 5 kind of work life, it is highly probable. So far, so good for me anyways.
Do you set a plot or prefer going wherever an idea takes you?
I set a plot. I like to know where I am going. As for how I get there, well that is entirely a different story. I let the characters lead the way.
What, according to you, is the hardest thing about writing?
As I have said before that I have a brood of kids, so for me, finding the time to actually sit down and type it onto the computer, after taking care of everyone else’s needs is the hardest part for me.
What would you say is the easiest aspect of writing?
The easiest part of writing for me is setting my mind free, letting it drift where it wants to go. Sometimes allowing it to gather flowers and dance with the shadows it unwinds any stress I might have been having in a plot conflict or smoothing out the edges to the flow of the story. Daydreaming is the easiest part of writing.
Have you ever experienced “Writer’s Block”? How long do they usually last?
I have to admit that I have been lucky enough to not suffer from those dreaded words. Anytime I feel like I am struggling or getting stuck, I get up and move around—change the scenery or go for a walk and let myself drift until it works itself out. I seriously hope I never know what true writer’s block feels like.
Do you read much and if so who are your favorite authors?
Oh I love to read. And with my limited ‘me’ time, I have to choose my entertainment wisely because ‘There can be only one’. So instead of watching Tv or gaming or what have you I read. Some of my favorite authors are Cassandra Clare, Stephenie Meyer, Marissa Meyer, Stephen King, Dan Brown, Anne Rice and Veronica Roth. Oh and I cannot forget about J.K. Rowling, she is wicked.There are so many wonderful writers that I take a little of them with me when I open their worlds and dive in.
What is the most important thing about a book in your opinion?
The most important thing about my book is that I love it. It was created because it was a story that I wanted to read, to be a part of and something I feel proud of sharing with anyone willing to pick it up. If you don’t love the story then why on earth would you expect anyone else to?
What is your take on the importance of a good cover and title?
In my opinion, the cover image must reflect the innards of the book and the title should be a name that settles gently within your soul. That saying it out loud sends you an image of intrigue and inquiry as to what this story is all about. It should capture your attention.
Have you ever designed your own book cover?
Actually yes, I designed the image of what I wanted to see on the cover in my shower. I kept drawing the image over and over until I could actually see it the way it needed to be. I asked a couple of Graphic artist friends if they could put it together and then voila, GREY was born.
Do you believe a book cover plays an important role in the selling process?
Absolutely, if you cover doesn’t catch the eye of the reader right away or cause some kind of connection with them, they will pass it by without a second thought.
How would you feel if no one showed up at your book signing?
I would be devastated of course. Probably feel discouraged and broken hearted for a while but eventually I would just move on, keep writing and understand that not everyone in the world shares my excitement about my dream.
Does a bad review affect your writing?
A review to me is an opinion, everyone has one. Not everyone is going to adore what you wrote and they will have an opinion as to how you can do your job better. But the way I see it, if you force yourself to write in order to please everyone, you would never ever get to the point of actually publishing it because you can’t please everyone. And the story would not be organic, it would be forced and deluded with things that you think the read would want to read, not what should be written.
Any advice you would like to give to your younger self?
Oh yes! Pick up that pencil and do it. Don’t be afraid of not knowing how to do it, it will come as soon as you spill the lead upon the paper. Don’t waste precious years living in fear and doubt of your instincts. Trust your creative soul and let it do what it was meant to do. Create.
Any advice you would like to give to aspiring writers?
If you start it, then finish it. Don’t let anyone else tell you that you cannot do it or that your dreams are a waste of time. Don’t let others put their dreams ahead of yours. Defend your dreams because no one else will.
What did you want to become when you were a kid?
I dreamed for years of being a helicopter pilot. I loved to fly and so to me that would be the best job ever.
Which book inspired you to begin writing?
Actually it was a book my friend Yves Robichaud wrote for his son a few years back, ‘Kaylen’s Rising’. I read it to see what kind of world a person I knew created. After finishing it, I stepped back and thought to myself that if he could do it, then why couldn’t I?
Did you ever think you would be unable to finish your first novel?
Yes, there were a few moments where negative thoughts and comments from other people hindered my belief in myself. But I am stubborn and this was ‘mine’ and mine only—I would defend its life and finish the story that burned inside of me, screaming to get out. So I did. Never regretting any moment of discomfort my journey had caused me. It is alive and I am the one that gave it breath.
How much of yourself do you put into your books?
I am sure that any writer will tell you that one surely cannot write a book without expelling fragments of their personalities within the characters. In my books, each character carries with them pieces of my fun side, my devious adventurous side as well as my dark side. It is inevitable.
How realistic are your books?
My books are based on mostly real places, not all of them of course but I have been to most of them. Its modern day life dusted with a hint of magic.
Are there any books that you are currently reading and why?
I am actually reading a Beta Copy of a novel called ‘The Council’ written by a wonderful author friend of mine and the editor of my book. She is trying her had at fantasy and from what I have read so far, she is doing a great job. And why you ask? Because I am a big fan of witches or Mages and realistic worlds that include the possibility of magic.
Have any new writers grasped your interest recently?
Yes, actually, I just finished up the Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. I absolutely love what she did with twisting the stories based on the classic ‘fairy tales’.
Is there anything you are currently working on that may intrigue the interest of your readers?
Well, anyone who was brave enough to pick up a copy of GREY and read it, might be interested to know that I am half way through its sister book. The next book in the series and have the thirds outlined, with quite a few of its chapters already written out on paper.
Who are your books mostly dedicated to?
My books are written and dedicated to my children and grandchild. I wanted to leave behind something they could pick up and be with me whenever they choose within the words of my writing. I will be forevermore there, all they have to do is open the cover.
Who is the most supportive of your writing in your family?
My children. They have been so supportive and interested in what I am writing from day one. Now I have a small following of want to be authors in the household, now how cool is that? To know that maybe you have had a hand in inspiring their creative futures?
Is it true that anyone can be a writer?
I am certain that everyone has a story dwelling within them, they just have to be brave enough to pick up the pencil and write. It doesn’t have to be perfect, or Shakespearean, it just has to be brought forth and written in the voice that you were given.
Is it true that authors write word-perfect first drafts?
Oh my word no! One’s first draft is just mind babble placed on paper. It is firstly most important to get the thoughts out, to let them flow naturally as they arrive in order to allow the story to continue without too much force. Now, to make coherent and more precise thoughts out of the flood of words is what the second, third or twentieth drafts are for. Also, you waste precious time ensuring perfection the first draft. I say drop the pencil to the paper and let the babbling begin.
Are you friends with other writers?
Over the past couple of years since beginning on this journey I have met some incredible and wonderful writers that I wish nothing but success for. Hopefully I will someday get to meet some of them and enjoy their successes with them.