Posted in Author Interviews, Blog posts

Author Interview 📚 Simone Snaith

Author Interview 📚 Simone Snaith

Happy Sunday, Friends. I’m pleased to be able to bring you another author interview. 

Today I got the chance to ask Simone Snaith, author of IN THE DRAWING, some questions. 

You can get your copy of her book here. I can’t wait to read mine. It’s getting great reviews so far and is right up my alley! 

In The Drawing front Cover

Let’s get to the interview, shall we? 

 

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Author Simone Snaith

What a cool Author Photo! It’s so magical and I loooove magic. (credit: Brett Klorer)

 

 

Q: What is your favorite thing about writing?

A: Sometimes when I’m on a roll with a particular project, it feels like the characters start to take over as if their dialogue and actions are just naturally occurring and all I’m doing is recording it. That’s always an exciting feeling. I also love creating a whole world of my own.

Q: What is the most difficult part of the novel writing process for you?

A: Constructing a tight plotline can be difficult for me because I have a tendency to let stories wander a little. I instinctively want to keep my denouements very short, but I’ve learned that that can be disappointing to some readers, so I’m working on that. I also have a hard time coming up with titles!

Q: What inspired you to write In The Drawing?

A: I originally had an image in my mind of a girl waking up and discovering that her apartment or dorm building had been covered in vines overnight. Then I had the idea that it might be caused by her sadness, and that her moods might affect plants and animals around her. From there, I drew from the Irish mythology in a Tomm Moore film that I love, called “The Secret of Kells.” The cover of “In The Drawing” is a reference to it.

Q: How long did it take you to write In The Drawing?

A: I have a terrible sense of time, so I don’t remember! But most of my novels take about 3-6 months, I believe.

Q: Do you plot out your stories, fly by the seat of your pants, or some combination of the two?

A: I definitely use a combination. I tend to start out knowing the beginning, the ending, and parts of the middle. Then the rest of the middle comes out as I’m writing.

Q: How do you select the names for your characters?

A: Sometimes they come to me instantly, which is always kind of exciting. Other times, I get the feeling that I want something short and gruff or long and flowing, etc – something that fits a character’s persona. Occasionally, I might look up the meanings of names in different languages.

Q: Are you working on anything new?

A: I started working on a possible adaptation of Rumpelstiltskin, but I won’t dive into anything seriously until I finish receiving publisher’s edits for my book coming out on Holiday House in the spring.

Q: Do you prefer to write in the morning, afternoon, night, or whenever you find a spare moment?

A: If I have the day off, I like to write in the mid-morning, then get up and stretch, and get out of the house in the afternoon. But during the work week, it’s whenever I find a spare moment.

Q: Do you have any writing rituals?

A: No, oddly enough. I do like to drink coffee while writing, but I don’t go out and write in coffee shops. I’m always on my laptop at home.

Q: What do you think makes a good story?

A: A good story needs characters that readers will care about, and a plot that is interesting and not predictable. I also think atmosphere is important; you want the reader to fall completely into the story and perhaps forget where they are for the moment.

Q: Dogs or Cats?

A: I dearly love both, but I only have a cat. She is 22 and still in good shape, so she amazes me every day.

Q: Savory or Sweet?

A: I’m a big fan of sweets, but since I couldn’t survive on them, I’ll go with savory.

Q: Beach or Forest?

A: Forest. The beach is great too, but woods are magical.

Q: When you’re not writing, what do you like to do with your free time?

A: I sing in a band called Turning Violet, and also I read, watch movies, and go out dancing or to meet friends for a drink. I also like getting outdoors, especially outside of the city, and going for walks.

Q: How can readers keep in touch with you? Do you have a website? Are you on social media?

A: My website is http://www.simonesnaith.com and I’m on Facebook and Twitter:
https://www.facebook.com/theindigostone/
https://twitter.com/schimonie

Q: Do you like to hear from your readers?

A: Sure! Some of them write me on Twitter.

Q: Is there anything else you’d like people to know about you?

A: I’ve been plugging away at writing for literally as long as I can remember, and I’m grateful for every small step forward that I’ve made in this often difficult career. I want every writer out there to know that you shouldn’t give up. If this is what you love, then it’s worth all the time and effort, and even the rejection.

 

Thank you so much, Simone, for allowing me to interview you. I’m so looking forward to reading your book! This interview was so much fun. (I may secretly have a girl crush and want to make you my new best friend!)

Readers, please check out Simone’s book and share this interview will friends who enjoy reading. 

Thanks Simone! And thanks everyone for reading!

See you for another author interview next Sunday! 💕

Posted in Author Interviews, Blog posts

Author Interview 📚 Robin Smith

Author Interview 📚 Robin Smith

Hello, friends! It’s Sunday and that means it’s time for another author interview. Woot Woot! I’m very excited to bring to you an interview with Robin Smith, author of THE WARDS OF BYTA. You can find my review of the book on my book review page here

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If you read my review of THE WARDS OF BYTA and you want to get your copy, you can do so by clicking here

So, let’s get started with the interview!

 

 

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Author Robin Smith

(Psst…just as with words, Robin is enormously gifted and creative with makeup. You should check out her Instagram. She’s always creating the most incredible looks.)

 

 

Q: What is your favorite thing about writing?

A: My favorite thing about writing is the release it gives me. I get to spend time in other worlds that only reside in the imagination and I get to explore things I never could in reality. I get to meet new people, have dangerous adventures, and witness magic. 

Q: What is the most difficult part of the novel writing process for you?

A: Editing. Hands down, it’s the most meticulous thing for me. It’s when writer’s block strikes and when I start to over think. I always find I have to keep a second project going during that time or I get sick of reading certain passages over and over and can’t give it my best.

Q: What inspired you to write The Wards of Byta?

A: I grew up with three sisters and really wanted a story where I could show the bond of siblings. I knew it was going to deal with fantasy and once I settled on elves, everything fell into place.

Q: How long did it take you to write The Wards of Byta?

A: It took me 5 months for the first draft but editing and those minor tweaks took an additional year. Although, I did end giving birth in that time period so it did slow things down a bit!

Q: Do you plot out your stories, fly by the seat of your pants, or some combination of the two?

A: I plot. Some people have no idea just how meticulous my outlining process really is and when I explain it to them, I wonder if I really need to go that far. But, it works for me and it’s one of the things I enjoy most about the creative process because that’s when I can really start seeing my ideas come to life!

Q: How do you select the names for your characters?

A: If I don’t have set names for characters that have been predetermined from months of planning, I hit up the good old internet and websites filled with baby name ideas.

Q: Are you working on anything new?

A: Always!!!!!

Q: Do you prefer to write in the morning, afternoon, night, or whenever you find a spare moment?

A: I prefer writing first drafts any time of the day but editing I reserve for night when the house is quiet and I have the time to think things through.

Q: Do you have any writing rituals?

A: I guess it might be considered like a ritual. I practically surround myself with notebooks filled with notes and research and character profiles and all of that jazz and then jump in.

Q: What do you think makes a good story?

A: I think anything can be a good story as long as the progression of the story seems smooth and there’s cohesion. The main characters also have to be at least somewhat relatable for me or I can’t get through a book.

Q: Dogs or Cats?

A: Oh nooo, how could I chose!!! Ok fine, cats.

Q: Savory or Sweet?

A: I have a sweet tooth for days!

Q: Beach or Forest?

A: Forest!!!

Q: When you’re not writing, what do you like to do with your free time?

A: First and foremost spending time with my family. I’m also really into art, sewing, anything crafty, and the art of makeup.

Q: How can readers keep in touch with you? Do you have a website? Are you on social media?

A: I’m most active on my Instagram account, trying to get back into Twitter, and I occasionally do some Facebook. No website at this time but I’ve been working on getting one up!

Q: Do you like to hear from your readers?

A: Absolutely! Tell me you like or dislike my work and engage with me. It helps me grow as an author and it is so fun to interact with new people!

Q: Is there anything else you’d like people to know about you?

A: I’m very outgoing online but in person, I can be incredibly shy and awkward around people I don’t know. But I do enjoy humor of all sorts (especially dry/sarcastic humor, sassy humor, and blatant humor) so my favorite way of connecting with new people is through laughter!

This was such a fun interview! Thanks, Robin. 

Friends, if you’re looking for a great new book from a great new author, please check out THE WARDS OF BYTA by Robin Smith. Don’t forget to leave a review when you’re done and tell a friend about Robin and her book! 

Thanks! See you next Sunday. 

Posted in Author Interviews, Blog posts

Author Interview 📚 Bryce David Salazar

Author Interview 📚 Bryce David Salazar

Hello, Friends. I’m so pleased to be able to bring you another author interview with another incredible author, Bryce David Salazar. I keep hitting the jackpot with incredible authors agreeing to let me interview them! Woot woot! 

Bryce David Salazar is the author of SHE SEES METAPHORS and TALES OF TIMELESS SPRINGS which is at the very top of my to-read list. I can’t wait to dive into it! 

 

Click here to get your copy of SHE SEES METAPHORS and here to get TALES OF TIMELESS SPRINGS. 

So let’s get started with the interview, shall we?

 

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Author Bryce David Salazar

 

Omg! I have to stop for a moment and say… what an awesome author photo! Love it! I can already tell this is going to be a fun interview.

 

Q: What is your favorite thing about writing?

A: It’s fun. I dig letting my imagination go wild as I tell stories that I myself find fun and entertaining.

Q: What is the most difficult part of the novel writing process for you?

A: Just about everything after page three.

Q: What inspired you to write Tales of Timeless Springs?

A: Over the course of several years I had slowly put together a bunch of random scribbles about this weird city and its cast of characters. Not long after my first novel, She Sees Metaphors, was finished, I had enough material to make another book. So I rolled with it.

Q: How long did it take you to write Tales of Timeless Springs?

A: When I seriously began working on it, about a year. But I had been jotting down notes and stories for about four years prior to that.

Q: Do you plot out your stories, fly by the seat of your pants, or some combination of the two?

A: I usually have a beginning and an end in mind. Everything in between sort of happens by the seat of my pants.

Q: How do you select the names for your characters?

A: I’m a big fan of checking baby name websites.

Q: Are you working on anything new?

A: Always.

Q: Do you prefer to write in the morning, afternoon, night, or whenever you find a spare moment?

A: In the morning, but the day job doesn’t give me permission to do that. Not unless I wake up around 4:00 in the morning, which is a level of crazy I’m not willing to stoop to.

Q: Do you have any writing rituals?

A: Set a glass of something to drink next to me and ignore it.

Q: What do you think makes a good story?

A: Heart, I guess. The idea of a “good story” is subjective. If it has heart though, it can reach someone.

Q: Dogs or Cats?

A: Both. Always both.

Q: Savory or Sweet?

A: Sweet.

Q: Beach or Forest?

A: Forest, so long as I’m looking at it from inside. Where it’s clean.

Q: When you’re not writing, what do you like to do with your free time?

A: Video games.

Q: How can readers keep in touch with you? Do you have a website? Are you on social media?

A: They can hit me up on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. My website, www.BryceDavidSalazar.com is also a good place to keep tabs on me.

Q: Do you like to hear from your readers?

A: Yes. It’s heartwarming, humbling, and pretty freaking cool.

Q: Is there anything else you’d like people to know about you?

A: I don’t like cheese and I make no apologies for it.

 

Thank you, Bryce!

What a fun interview! Getting to know Bryce David Salazar a little better makes me even more excited to read TALES OF TIMELESS SPRINGS! I hope you all enjoyed the interview as much as I did and the next time you or a friend are looking for something to read, you’ll keep Bryce David Salazar in mind. 

Thanks for joining me, friends! 

 

Posted in Author Interviews, Blog posts

Author Interview 📚 Christina Kaye

Author Interview 📚 Christina Kaye

Hello friends, I’m proud to bring you my interview with the award-winning author, Christina Kaye! I’ve read a number of Christina’s page-turning books, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed them all. 

The first book I read was LIKE FATHER LIKE DAUGHTER, and I loved it so much I went on to read the entire FLESH & BLOOD TRILOGY. 

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Click here to get your copy!

So, here we go…

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Author Christina Kaye

Q: What is your favorite thing about writing?

A: I write suspense/thrillers, so I love coming up with interesting, new, and exciting twists for my books.

Q: What is the most difficult part of the novel writing process for you?

A: I have a bad habit of “info dumping” in my first manuscript drafts. I tend to get a bit verbose sometimes and go a bit overboard in trying to expose my characters’ backstories.

Q: What inspired you to write Like Father Like Daughter?

A: I watched a documentary one night about a girl whose father was a serial killer. It made me wonder…what would life be like if your father was a murderer? And then, what if you were also accused of murder yourself? That’s how I came up with the idea for this book.

Q: How long did it take you to write Like Father Like Daughter?

A: About eight weeks for the first draft. Then I spent about 2 months editing with my editor. So in total about four months.

Q: Do you plot out your stories, fly by the seat of your pants, or some combination of the two?

A: Usually, I just let it flow and write as the ideas come to me. But I’m currently working on a manuscript for a psychological suspense novel with 3 different characters written in all three POV’s. With all of their stories to keep track of, I typed up an outline and it really is helping.

Q: How do you select the names for your characters?

A: Every time I hear a name I like, I type it in my “notepad” on my phone. Then when I go to write a book, I just refer to my list of favorite names and go from there. But, I will admit to using an online name generator from time to time.

Q: Are you working on anything new?

A: Yes, as I said, I’m working on a new psychological thriller about a psychic with a dark, secret past who is hired to help two men (a detective and a search and rescue coordinator) find a missing six-year-old girl. It’s my favorite novel so far. So fingers crossed!

Q: Do you prefer to write in the morning, afternoon, night, or whenever you find a spare moment?

A: I usually write at night, but with a full-time day job as a paralegal, I have to just write whenever I have the time.

Q: Do you have any writing rituals?

A: Not really. I know some authors write to music, etc., but I can’t do that. I need absolute silence in order to write.

Q: What do you think makes a good story?

A: I think if you can create characters that readers will care about and want to root for, and combine that with a story that is somewhat original and intriguing, you can capture and hold the readers’ attention to the very end.

Q: Dogs or Cats?

A: Dogs. Although I do have one of each.

Q: Savory or Sweet?

A: Savory/salty/cheesy.

Q: Beach or Forest?

A: Beach. Always the beach!

Q: When you’re not writing, what do you like to do with your free time?

A: What free time? With a full-time job as a trial paralegal, two teenage daughters, a dog, and a cat, not to mention my writing, I rarely have any “me” time. But when I do, I love to read.

Q: How can readers keep in touch with you? Do you have a website? Are you on social media?

A: I try to be very accessible.
www.xtinakayebooks.com
Facebook/xtinakayebooks
Instagram/xtinakayebooks
Twitter/xtinakayebooks

Q: Do you like to hear from your readers?

A: Yes! Good, bad, or indifferent, I love talking to readers whenever possible. It teaches me what I’m doing right and what I can improve upon.

Q: Is there anything else you’d like people to know about you?

A: I also help other authors perfect and refine their queries before sending them to agents/publishers. All the information about those services is available on my website.

Thank you, Christina!

Well, I hope that you all enjoyed the interview. The next time you’re looking for a great thriller to read, remember Christina Kaye! 

Posted in Author Interviews, Blog posts

Author Interview 📚 H.A. Callum

Author Interview 📚 H.A. Callum

Hello friends, 

I’m beyond thrilled to bring you my first author interview. The best part is that this first interview is with an author whose writing I greatly admire, H.A. Callum, author of WHISPERS IN THE ALDERS!

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Again, if you haven’t read my review of the book, you can find it here.  If you have, you know how much I loved this book, so to pick the brain of the person who wrote it is such a treat.

So, here we go…

 

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Author H.A. Callum 

 

Q: What is your favorite thing about writing?

A: Bar none, it is the freedom that writing brings – free to work at your own pace, utilize your creativity, and set your own schedule. Of course, there is a certain level of responsibility and dedication involved in seeing that the time allocated to write is actually spent, well, writing. That freedom can be both a gift and a curse!

 

Q: What is the most difficult part of the novel writing process for you?

A: I don’t think there is an easy part to the novel writing process – it is hard work. The greatest challenge? Overcoming fear and doubt and telling yourself that you can do this. Self-doubt kills creativity.

 

Q: What inspired you to write Whispers in the Alders?

A: I’ve always been a fan of coming of age novels, be it a contemporary tale or one of the classics. There’s something timeless about the challenges of arriving to adulthood. I knew my first novel would be in this genre. The alders themselves were part of a childhood memory along a riverbank where I spent many hours as a child. Once the thought of the catkins planted its seed, I ran with it. The entire story actually sprang forth from imagining the alder catkins, and how they could come to represent something far greater – which turned out to be the one-of-a-kind friendship between Tommy and Aubrey.

 

Q: How long did it take you to write Whispers in the Alders?

A: I wrote Whispers in the Alders in the evenings. From conception to a completed first draft was just shy of six months.

 

Q: Do you plot out your stories, fly by the seat of your pants, or some combination of the two?

A: I know many people don’t like to hear this, for fear of taking the “romance” out of writing, but I am a plotter/outliner/planner – whatever you want to call me! That’s not to say that what I plan at the outset is set in stone – far from it. Writing is a fluid endeavor and I am always open to change. The stories speak to me, as do the characters, and many times I adjust based on what the story or characters are telling me. But a novel is too long a work to throw it all to the wind. The details are important, and it takes effort to carry out those details and see that nothing is out of place. The symbolism utilized in Whispers in the Alders flows throughout the book, and I would have failed the story as a writer if I didn’t pay particular attention to all the minute details that made this story what it is.

 

Q: How do you select the names for your characters?

A: I am a big believer in meaning. I like to think that each word I select will carry its weight and strengthen the sentence where it is placed. And each sentence should do the same for its paragraph. The character names in Whispers in the Alders are no different. These are the people that shape the entire story, so why not place importance in naming these characters? A simple look at name meanings online offer some explanation of the characters in Whispers in the Alders. Each detail was deliberate, and part of the development of each character. The places, too, are symbolic in how they attained their names. The Lowanachen River and St. Germaine Parish both bear this out.

 

Q: Are you working on anything new?

A: Thanks for asking, and yes, I am! At the moment I am completing a few short stories for future submission and have been writing and submitting poetry as well. My next novel is started, completely outlined (there you have it!) and in the early phases of writing.

 

Q: Do you prefer to write in the morning, afternoon, night, or whenever you find a spare moment?

A: For me, night time is the right time! I’ll write whenever the opportunity presents itself, but I do prefer the stillness of night. Once I hear the chickadees outside, I know it’s time to call it a wrap.

 

Q: Do you have any writing rituals?

A: This may sound odd, but I never eat when writing. I find it too distracting. Other than my coffee cup, I like a clear desk.

 

Q: What do you think makes a good story?

A: A good story envelopes the reader and makes them not want to put it down. I think you know a good story when you read it. It just grabs you and is with you throughout the day. As a writer, I can feel when someone poured themselves into a story and took care to pay attention to every detail, and every edit. That appreciation for the reader can make a story magnificent.

 

Q: Dogs or Cats?

A: Both! Sorry, but you won’t pin me down on this one! We have two cats in our home, but no dogs at the moment. Although, there is a certain German Shepherd in our family who owns the canine half to my heart. Here’s a little-known fact about me: I once trained a retriever for field trials. So yes, both canine and feline are dear to me!

Q: Savory or Sweet?

A: I love both, and I am known to chase down sweets with something savory. If push came to shove, it would definitely be savory. I can’t imagine a world without baguettes and butter.

 

Q: Beach or Forest?

A: You’re pushing it here, Karen, with these tough choices! Give me a forest that creeps up to the beach anytime. Alright, I’ll make a choice, but it isn’t an easy one. Forest. Please publish this before I change my mind!

 

Q: When you’re not writing, what do you like to do with your free time?

A: I love to read, and I am a runner. I’m hoping to get my marathon legs back under me in the next couple of years. Most of all, though, is time with my family. It’s one thing I can never get enough of.

 

Q: How can readers keep in touch with you? Do you have a website? Are you on social media?

A: All of the above! Here are the links:

Twitter: @HA_Callum

Facebook: @theauthorcallum

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/HACallum

Web: www.hacallum.com

 

Q: Do you like to hear from your readers?

A: YES! I’ve done some book club appearances with readers, and they were a blast! I always look forward to hearing from my readers and listening to their thoughts. I’m always ready to talk books and writing, or simply getting to know my readers on social media. Don’t be afraid to ask me something on Twitter or Facebook!

 

Q: Is there anything else you’d like people to know about you?

A: Only that I want to put out my thanks to all the readers and reviewers who have read Whispers in the Alders. To quote a line from the book, “This is why we write.” I’m still blown away by the reception it’s received and will be forever grateful to everyone who has joined Tommy and Aubrey in the alder stand.

 

I hope you all had fun reading the interview!

And here is some more fun, and just another example of how much this incredible author cares about his readers, he’s offering a giveaway for WHISPERS IN THE ALDERS!!!!

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Click here to enter the giveaway and good luck! If you win, please consider leaving a review. If you don’t win, maybe pick up a copy anyway. You won’t be disappointed!