Q: When did you start writing?
A: I started writing in 2012. I had recently become unemployed and was going stir crazy. There is only so much cleaning you can do! I was watching a ton of specials on the Titanic since it was the anniversary of the sinking. Needless to say I had some pretty vivid dreams and decided to write them out. It grew and grew until an author friend of mine asked to read it. She fell in love with it and suggested I submit it to the small publishing firm she was with. They like it and the rest is history!
Q: How long does it take you to write a book?
A: I don’t plot out what’s going to happen in my books. I will make notes on ideas. I wait and see what the characters tell me their story is. I don’t write everyday, but on a really good day I can sit and write several thousand words in one sitting. Some books take forever like my current series while others just flow.
Q: What is your writing work schedule?
A: I have a full time demanding job plus I’m a mom and wife so time isn’t always on my side. My goal is to write everyday but really that doesn’t happen often enough. I read a ton and sometimes I get too wrapped up in other books that mine sit.
Q: How do you publish your books?
A: I am what they call an Indie Author. I publish my own books using Amazon. The publishing firm I was with for my first book closed shop just before the launch of my second book. That was a hard hit when you are preparing to release a new book. But I stayed friends with some of them and they walk me through anything that I may need help with.
Q: What do you find to be the hardest part of writing?
A: I hate writing blurbs. I don’t know one author who enjoys doing them. How do you explain to someone about your work without giving everything away? Writing the whole book is easier them summarizing it in 500 words.
Q: What is the hardest thing about releasing a book?
A: Marketing. You don’t make a lot of money being an Indie Author. Because the market is so saturated it’s hard to find new readers. Yes, you have those who stick with you and read everything you write. And I love them, but getting the word out to new readers is not easy. I write for my fans, but mostly I write for myself. I would like to think that my kids, when they get into reading will enjoy my books.
Q: Do you make tons of money writing books?
A: God I wish! Maybe a traditionally published author makes money but, I can tell you I have yet to pay for a book that I’ve written. Being self published means you pay for everything yourself. Want a kickass cover? Cha Ching! Editing/Proofreading? $$! Any type of marketing? $$ Going to a book signing and need paperbacks to sell? Lot’s of $$. Need business cards, bookmarks, gifts for readers? $$! It all cost money. Oh and let’s not forget table fees + hotel rooms + food and gas. Everything cost money. Sure we can use it as a write off on our taxes, nut we all know Uncle Sam isn’t nice to anyone. So when an author gives away a free book to you, remember it cost them money and all they really want in return is at least a review on Amazon and Goodreads. That’s like giving us a hug!
Q: Where do you get your ideas for your books?
A: With Changing Lives, it was all about the Titanic, and I have always been fascinated by the ship. For the Family Tree series, it was a family trip to Gettysburg where I swear a ghost followed me home and wanted his story told. As for the others, I made them up as I went.
Q: How old were you when you wrote your first book?
A: I released my first book when I was 40. I had no plans to start writing it just sort of happened.
Q: What are our hobbies?
A: My family is pretty crafty. My husband is a photographer. My son is studying to be a chef, my youngest is learning to make jewelry and my oldest.while raising her sons has a homemade store where she tries different things. I change my hobbies up. I’ve painted ceramics, scrapbook and now my husband hooked me up with a Cricket machine, so now I’m making book bags and t-shirts for when I go to book signings. (more $$! LOL)
Q: Does your family read your books? What do they think?
A: My parents have read them all. My son has copies but I don’t think he’s read them. My youngest thinks they are gross, but she did just turn 13. My oldest wants to read them but she is chasing little ones around the house so she doesn’t have the time yet. My parents love them. My dad puts his 2 cents in when he can. He actually came up with a few ghost ideas for the Family Tree series.
Q: What’s it like for you on release day?
A: With my first book, since I was with a publisher, It was crazy. Everyone was watching Amazon as I slowly crept up the best seller list. I hit #16 on the first day. I was so exciting! After that experience things are kind of anticlimactic. You take months to a year preparing a book for release, then it’s out in the world and the rest is up to the readers.
Q: How many books do you have and do you have a favorite?
A: To date I have 12 books published. Out of all 12 Saving Maggie is my favorite. It’s dramatic and triggers some people. It made me have feelings throughout the writing process and still gives me chills to talk about it. Don’t get me wrong I love them all but that one is my fave.
Q: Do you have any advice for those starting to write?
A: Don’t give up! Write what makes you happy. If you don’t like the story then others may not like it either.
Q: Do you hear from your readers at all?
A: Some. I wish more would leave reviews, it helps when you’re in the middle of a series to get some sort of feed back. It may help drive the story. I’m pretty open and if someone wants to connect and talk about my books I’m always game.
Q: Did you always want to be a writer?
A: Being a writer is a new thing for me. When I was a kid I wanted to be a performer. I was in a traveling singing group in high school. We would compete against other schools. Think Pitch Perfect except our group had guys mixed in. I love to sing and act. In college I was in a singing group that had the chance to go on a cruise to Bermuda. While on the cruise we performed for the passengers. That was loads of fun! I met my husband in college and married soon.
Q: Are any of the characters in your books based off of you?
A: All of my characters are a part of me. I was always told to write what you know. People who know me will know what was an experience that I went through. Actually in Dugout Fantasy, I wrote myself into that book.
Q: Do you ever get writers block?
A: I sometimes feel that’s the state I’m always in lately. She stores come so easy and I know how I want it to end. Others, like my current series, I have no idea where I want it to go.