FAQ1. Why have an FAQ page?
These days my life is full of family and I've participated in a number of interviews over
the years but these days review sites are backlogged into forever with interviews.
So here's my solution - an FAQ page with those questions everyone always asks no
matter who you talk with.
Thanks for taking the time to check out this page.
FAQ2. Why did you decide to become a writer?
I think I became a writer by accident. Thanks to my wonderful mom, I’ve been a lifelong reader. I read books and I simply knew I could write one. That might sound strange but I never doubted my ability. I believe all things happen when they’re supposed to and 2003 was time for me to begin.
FAQ3. What was that first story?
It is a futuristic romance that has not been published, or even submitted anywhere.
I wrote it just for me as a way to preserve the story I’d had in my head for so long.
FAQ4. What do you love about being an author?
The actual writing of the story is an intense creative exercise, more so if I’m working on a futuristic story. With a futuristic the world or worlds must be created before you can actually finish a plot line. Doing a contemporary story is easier in that your world is already complete and you just have to stay within its sphere.
FAQ5. How do you balance your personal and writing time?
I’m supposed to balance it? Really? It’s a challenge to live a normal life and write. Writing is such a solitary pursuit. I work full time Monday through Friday and write in the evenings and on weekends. It’s tough especially when I’m deep into a story and I have to cook dinner.
FAQ6. How do you write? Do your characters come to you first or the plot or the
world of the story?
It varies. Pinning the creative process down to ‘this’ or ‘that’ or an ‘always’ isn’t possible. Sometimes I see a picture of a guy and think I’d like to write a story about him that starts the process. Other times I’ll see something in a movie and think it would be cool to write that into an adventure for a couple. I saw a story on television where the couple went white water rafting and thought that would be a nice getaway for a couple and included it in a story – my way, of course.
FAQ7. Do you have any special rituals to help you get in the mood to write?
I’m fortunate to have a home office. Just coming in and sitting down at the computer
puts me in work mode. Sometimes I’ll play music, and in the colder months I’ll burn one
of my handmade votives because a candle is so cozy, but that’s about all there is.
FAQ8. What genre(s) do you write?
I’ve written futuristic romance, contemporary romance, and paranormal romance.
Futuristic is my favorite, though. Think Star Trek with real romance.
FAQ9. Do you tend to base your characters on real people or are they totally
from your imagination?
I don’t base my characters on people I know. I want to live and my family and friends
would probably change my living status if I wrote about them. Seriously, people are people and many experiences are shared. Most characters are an amalgamation of what we know to be true of all people.
FAQ10. Out of all the characters that you've written, who is your favorite and why?
The ones in my current work-in-progress are always my favorites. They have to be so
I can write their story.
FAQ11. What would you want readers to take away from your books?
I’d like to tell every person there who is lonely that love is possible and to never, ever give up hope that they'll find it one day. In the interim, be your own best friend and be good to yourself and be good for yourself.
FAQ12. What makes a great book to you, and is there one you can tell us about?
There is something intangible about a book that stays with you, one that you remember years after you read it. That’s what makes it great – remembering it. For me, Moon of Three Rings by the late Andre Norton is a great book. I read it when I was about ten years old and to this day I remember it. It was the first science fiction book I ever read and it opened the universe for me.
FAQ13. What is the biggest misconception about being an author?
That it’s a glamorous job and the money is good. Most of the writers I correspond with agree that to write you need to be dressed comfortably and pajamas and sweatpants figure in as the heavy favorites. As for money, it takes a while for that to come. You have to be patient and just keep working.
FAQ14. How do you know what to name your books or the characters?
I visit the websites that specialize in names and their meanings and just start going down
the list until one strikes my fancy. When it comes to surnames, I generally close my eyes, flip open the phone book, and plop my finger down. Closest one wins.
FAQ 15. Do you have any bad writing habits?
Yes. All of them are bad. I have no good ones so you don’t want to be influenced by my
behavior. Just kidding. Probably the worst thing I do is that once I log on to the Internet
I'm finished for the night. So many people to talk to and if friends are on I start chatting
and lose track of time.
FAQ 16. Do you think being published has changed your life?
Of course. We stretch and we grow or we stagnate. My horizons have been expanded in many ways. I’ve met wonderful people. I’m more at peace spiritually because I’m finally doing something I love.
FAQ17. What do you do to relax?
I have a good circle of non-writing friends who keep me grounded. I’m also blessed to live in a very rural area. We’ve made our backyard into a mini woodland retreat. It’s so quiet and peaceful, so green in the summer. Even in the coldest weather I can take a quick walk around our yard and find something interesting in nature.
FAQ18. Do you have any indulgent behaviors one might find surprising?
Probably not. I’m so middle class normal it’s pathetic. About the most indulgent thing I do is sneak off the to Dairy Queen for a Blizzard every so often during the summer instead of eating lunch.
FAQ 19. What do you dislike about writing?
If I dislike anything about being a published author it’s the amount of politics that come into play. Everything in the publishing business rests on the writer producing prose and instead of being at the top of the food chain, we’re on the bottom with people telling us what we will and won’t do. Something is wrong with that picture, but that’s generally the case when money is involved. It’s something you learn to live with and you try not to let it harden you to the point of total distrust.
FAQ20. Any words of wisdom for new writers?
Set personal goals. For example, set your goal to have a manuscript completed by a certain date and do your best to meet your own deadline.
Make your goals attainable. For example, set your goal to submit to PublisherXYZ, not to be published by PublisherXYZ. You have no control over what another party is doing or will do so don’t measure your success based on their actions.
Within your personal situation, prioritize every day and make as much time as you realistically can time to be a writer. If you know you’re going out to dinner with a friend, don’t make it your priority for the day to write five-thousand words, make it to write five hundred.
Be reasonable. If you’re deep into an edit and you really can’t advance the current
work-in-progress because you’re falling asleep over your keyboard – go to bed.
Learn to set boundaries. This is really hard. People will not like the new dedicated, inspired, accomplished, focused you. Be firm, be gentle, be determined.
Your day planner is your new best friend. Use it, but don’t overbook yourself. Schedule
free time for yourself. Schedule time to be with family and friends in advance and they’ll
be easier on you. Being a free spirit is easier if you’re an organized free spirit. Who has
to know you planned that little romp with your honey? Not him, certainly.
And finally, to thine own self be true. Always.