What inspired you to write your first book? First book written or first book published? The first book I ever wrote was so long ago I don’t quite remember what the inspiration was, except a will to write. The first story I ever published was the Portals’ cover done up by Roane.
How much real life do you put into or influences your books? Not a lot. I use some names that are familiar—like the Potomac or Anacostia, but in general, I try to build a separate world parallel to this one. It’s sort of the same, but not quite. That’s what I love about writing fiction—the freedom.
What is the hardest part of writing for you? Oh, there are so many hard parts. Between first thought to published work, it’s a roller coaster of emotions. If I had to choose one, I’d say writer’s block. A lot of people think that means staring at a blank page and not writing. What it really means is writing page after page of not-right words and then deleting them every day or so. It gets really annoying really fast and tests your commitment to how you see things in your story.
What are your current projects? I’m currently working on the full length novel for my guardian troll, Gladys, and the sequel to my short story series “A Tinfoil Hat of My Own.”
How do you go about choosing the title for your book(s)? I don’t know. Sometimes I just slowly let it percolate and it comes to fruition and I just think—yes! That’s it! Other times I know halfway through writing it. I just want the title to fit the book in some way.
What is your favorite genre to write? Right now it’s urban fantasy. I love the grittiness, the fast pace, the general fun of it.
Generally, how long does it take you to complete a book from idea to handing it over to your publisher? This generally depends on length of the book, as well as just how ready the story is to be written. Short stories can take a couple weeks to months, and a novel can take at least over a year, so far. This is my first to get this far, so let’s see how it goes. J
Do you ever use someone in your life as a sounding board for ideas or do you prefer to work alone? I work alone, but I do have a couple people I capture on occasion and pour out a mess of a plot line to. I then release them back into the wild. J
Do your travel to research for your book(s)? I would sort of like to do this, but in general, I keep my characters a little closer to home and travel through books.
Did you learn anything while writing your book(s)? Always. It can be anything from a new definition to actually growing and facing your fears—mostly that you’ll never complete anything as a writer. J
Have you ever had an idea for a book but never written it and what is it? Lots and lots. To pick one—I wouldn’t know how. It’s usually a scene that sticks in my mind more than a plot.
When writing, do you have a process? Yes. But in chair, hands on keyboard, and a whole lot of mental kicking and screaming in between.