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Author Interview with Mia Powell

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  1. When did you start putting pen to paper?

I remember writing a short story about a ladybug when I was around six or seven. I typed it up on the family computer, printed it out, drew pictures, and stapled it together. My parents were friends with the owner of a restaurant by our house and I remember bringing my little book with me to dinner one night; I think I wanted to show him my accomplishment!

  1. What’s your literary poison – prose, poetry, etc.?

Prose, poetry, and plays mostly! I’ll write or read anything!

  1. Who is your favorite fictional hero?

Right now, Wonder Woman and Moana. I thought they were both beautiful stories, I loved all the characters, and these heroines are super important for audiences, especially children, to see.

  1. Which famous writer can you most identify with?

I’ve been compared to Hemingway and I absolutely love that. I also have a strong connection in my heart to Stephen King: my grandfather and I are very much alike and King was his favorite; towards the end of his life, he read and reread any King book he could get his hands on.

  1. What are your current projects? (*Include books, novellas, short stories, poems, blogs, awards or anything of interest.)

My major WIP is a high fantasy novel, but I’m also working on two poetry collections. I have a blog (http://legendsofmia.blogspot.com/) where I post some of my creative writing, op-eds, and reviews. And I’m planning out a YouTube channel centered around writing, books, and makeup that I hope to get up very soon!

  1. If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book or writing piece? 

Yes, I already have to! There’s a character in the first few chapters that I decided I didn’t need. I knew that if I went back to edit her out before moving on, I’d stop writing (it’s happened before). I just made her leave as soon as I could and kept writing, so I’ll have to remove her when I go back for the first big edit!

  1. Do you have any advice for other writers? 

Try everything. You don’t have to write one specific way or genre because you’ll get stuck and sad and think about giving up; you don’t have to follow every piece of advice that people give you because it will contradict. Try everything until you decide it doesn’t work for you – and then try it again later.

  1. What were your grades like in English class? (A, B, anything less than this is shameful 😉 )

Straight A’s! I still talk to some of my English teachers from high school, and I so admire the professors I have in college.

  1. How much research do you do for your writing?

Depends on the piece. If I’m doing something that’s soaked, marinated, and covered in history I’ll go through months of timelines and history books and trivia. There’s a WIP in the deep, deep depths of my folders set in WWI or II and I spent an entire year reading books and looking at maps and writing out a timeline of real-life events that might affect the characters and important fictional events in the characters’ lives before I even sat down to write the first word. In another historical romance, I didn’t do any research except for what I already knew until I had a question or two that needed to be answered immediately. For my current WIP, the only “research” I’ve done is figuring out how to draw a map and finding the pictures I put on my Pinterest board.

  1. Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?

I mostly write on my laptop, but there are a few that I’ll write longhand if the mood demands it. I almost always write poems longhand first, because I get a line stuck in my head in class and need to put it somewhere, so I write it out in my binder or maybe my phone if I’m in the hall. There’s one WIP that needs to feel like a journal and an essay, so I have a very in-character notebook that I’m writing that in.

  1. What is the best advice you’ve been given? 

One of my writing professors is an absolute Godsend, especially when it comes to speaking actual gold very offhandedly. I’ve tweeted two things in particular that I find to be excellent reminders: “I think a lot of people stop writing because they don’t think it’s good. But it’s not good because it’s not done,” and “There’s no ‘good enough.’ There’s just what you want to do.” Keep an eye out on my Twitter for #GreenFacilitates (he often says he doesn’t teach, he facilitates – because you can’t teach writing)!

  1. What book do you think everyone should read?

There are three books I recommend to absolutely everyone no matter what they usually like to read: Hurt Go Happy by Ginny Rorby, The Winter Seaby Susanna Kearsley, and Between Shades of Grey by Ruta Sepetys.

  1. Two-part question: Do you play a musical instrument? And what instrument would you like to learn to play?

I do not! I took piano and violin lessons when I was younger, but I never quite connected. I’d love to learn the harp – that would be so cool!

  1. What process did (or are you going) you go through to get your book published?

I think I’d like to go the traditional route, but I’ve only done minimal research into the different paths so far.

  1. Who would you like to change places with… i.e. live someone else’s life for a week?

I don’t know who Tom Hanks considers to be his best friend, but that person! I would love to hang out with him!

  1. If you weren’t a writer, what would be your ideal profession?

I almost wish I enjoyed science, so I could be a marine biologist!
 
17. Two-part question: Bill Murray or Chevy Chase? And John Cleese or Michael Palin?

Bill Murray. John Cleese. No question.

  1. What’s your most rewarding literary accomplishment to date (one that just blew your mind!)?

My senior year of high school, I got to direct a one act play that I wrote the year before. I don’t really like the play that much anymore and I wish certain circumstances could have been better, but I’m still really proud that I got it to production.

19.  What quote do you live by?

Robin Williams: “You’re only given one little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.” Mr. Williams is a huge inspiration to me, and the reason behind my tattooed R on my wrist.

  1. What would be your ideal writer profession ambition? (famous Pulitzer Prize winning author, successful self-published author as a day job, etc.)   

I think it would be really cool for my work to be taught in school.

  1. Would you like to ask me a question?

Was there a specific book or author that sparked your interest in writing?

Probably Catcher In The Rye.  It was the first book I read where I felt like an adult… absorbing his (J.D. Salinger) compelling words considering I was only 15 years old. I paid homage by naming one of my characters in my book, Feedback after him.

Many thanks to Mia for interviewing with me! Please keep tabs on this cool up and coming writer here:

Twitter @LegendsOfMia
https://www.instagram.com/legendsofmia/
http://legendsofmia.blogspot.com/
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCW7GrcwJRId2_ulUJdKDHIA

 
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Posted by on July 17, 2017 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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Author Interview with Sienna Snow

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1. When did you start putting pen to paper?

My first try at writing was in high school and college. I loved to write but my parents wanted me to get a “real job” so I put my writing dreams on hold and attained my MBA.

Twenty years later, I gave it another try. My husband wanted me to to pursue my childhood dream so during the November of 2013 I signed up for NanoWriMo and wrote my first book.

2. What’s your literary poison – prose, poetry, etc.? 

I love romance and fantasy. I am a sucker for a happily ever after and if it happens somewhere in Middle Earth, I am in heaven.

3. Who is your favorite fictional hero? 

I love, Roarke, the hero from the In Death Series by Nora Roberts. He is sexy, confident, and vulnerable without being weak. 

4. Which famous writer can you most identify with? 

I am a super fan of Nalini Singh. Besides her being a fellow Indian author, love how she can capture me with her words and make me see through the eyes of her heroines.

5. What are your current projects? (*Include books, novellas, short stories, poems, blogs, awards or anything of interest.)

I just finish the copy edits for the book in my Rules of Engagement series, RULE MASTER and I am currently writing book three, RULE CHANGER. Outside of this series, I am working on the outline for a fantasy series about four immortal siblings.

6. If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book or writing piece? 

The main thing I would change in my debut novel, RULE BREAKER is that I would have added more details about what caused the main characters to break up before they were reunited.

7. Do you have any advice for other writers? 

The best advice I can give, is to never give up. If you feel like writing, write. You can’t edit, revise, or polish something that was never written.

8. What were your grades like in English class? (A, B, anything less than this is shameful 😉 

I would say A’s and B’s.  I was a total nerd in school.

9. How much research do you do for your writing?

I research a lot. Especially, the places and situations my characters are in. I also try to find out as much as possible about the ethnicities and social backgrounds of my characters. I try to make sure I am as accurate as possible.

10. Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?

I mainly write on my laptop, but I keep a notebook with me at all times, just in case I scene pops into my head while I am out and about.

11. What is the best advice you’ve been given? 

Don’t give up. Those who succeed are the ones who were the hungriest and continued to pursue writing even when they faced adversity.

12.  What book do you think everyone should read?

LORD OF THE RINGS and THE LION, THE WITCH, AND THE WARDROBE are my two favorite books I read growing up and I still love rereading them.

 13. Two-part question: Do you play an musical instrument and / or what instrument would you like to learn to play?

I do not play an instrument, but I have always wanted to learn to play the piano. My daughter plays and listening to her play makes me wish I’d taken the time to learn when I was a child.

14. What process did (or are you going) you go through to get your book published? 

Before I singed my first contract, I pitched my book at ever conference I could go to. I also queried every agent and editor who was seeking books in my genre. I was fortunate to find my agent at a writers conference and then she found the book deal that I signed.

15. Who would you like to change places with… i.e. live someone else’s life for a week? 

This one is a hard one for me. If I had to pick, then I’d want to be Kate Middleton. Who wouldn’t want to be a princess for a week. I’m sure it is not way as glamorous as it seems, but It would be awesome to take a peek at that life.

16. If you weren’t a writer, what would be your ideal profession?

A chef, I love to cook and would love to pursue a career where I get to feed people for fun.

17. Two-part question: Bill Murray or Chevy Chase? And John Cleese or Michael Palin?

Bill Murray. He is so funny and weird. It is hard not to like him.

John Cleese. He is hilarious without trying and of course Monty Python

18. What’s your most rewarding literary accomplishment to date (one that just blew your mind!)

Of course, having my first book published by one of the big five, Hachette. Besides that is having one of my blog posts featured in USA Today HEA Blog

19.  What quote do you live by?

If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Maya Angelou

20. What would be your ideal writer profession ambition? (famous Pulitzer Prize winning author, successful self-published author as a day job, etc.)   

Ideally, I would love to have one of my books become a best selling movie, as well as,hit the NY Times best seller list consistently with my books.

21. Would you like to ask me a question? What do you enjoy most about your writing?
Two things… the freedom as a novelist and therapeutic de-stress benefits it provides me.

Special thanks to Sienna for sharing her thoughts with me! Please follow this gifted writer here:

 

 
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Posted by on January 30, 2017 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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Author Interview with Lisa Montanino

Happy Friday Readers!

Please see my latest interview by the lovely author, Jennifer Kelland.

Jennifer Kelland Perry

ccbd66bb-e1e0-4b5b-80fa-62f2e70f1c9a41IMhjpnPnL._SX326_BO1,204,203,200_Hello, Lisa! So happy to have this opportunity to interview you.
Tell us a little about yourself and your background.
Born and raised on Long Island, NY to two extraordinary parents. The rest is your typical… boring history.

Were you good at English?
I was a great English student, honors classes and even minored in English Literature at University.

Which writers inspire you?
I could shoot off some of the great novelists of our time but lately I’m super impressed with English and American opinion journalists that can make me laugh and I can agree with, like The Independent’s Grace Dent, Evening Standard’s Faye Maschler, Time Out NY’s Jillian Anthony, and Robert Levin of AM NY to name some.

Give us a blurb for your latest book.
Feedback, a novel by Lisa Montanino, takes you on a yearlong journey in the life of Claire Convenzionale—a prominent radio deejay in…

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Posted by on July 15, 2016 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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Author Interview with Jennifer Kelland Perry

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  1. When did you start putting pen to paper?

While I was the consummate bookworm in elementary school, I discovered I also liked to write, but my first serious project was a YA novella when I was fifteen. It was called Forget-Me-Not Summer.

  1. What’s your literary poison – prose, poetry, etc.?

I write contemporary fiction, Young Adult and New Adult at the moment. As for reading, I prefer literary fiction.

  1. Who is your favorite fictional hero?

I don’t think I have a favourite! I loved Jane Eyre’s character, but she is one of many.

  1. Which famous writer can you most identify with?

Jodi Picoult or John Green.

  1. What are your current projects? (*Include books, novellas, short stories, poems, blogs, awards or anything of interest.)

I’m putting the finishing touches on the sequel to my debut novel, Calmer Girls. By the way, I’m having a devil of a time settling on a title for it. I continue to update my blog Jennifer’s Journal with short written pieces, poetry, and photography. I’m also giving serious thought to my next writing project.

  1. If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book or writing piece?

No, I don’t think so. Have you heard the quote by Da Vinci, “Art is never finished, only abandoned”? You feel as if you can tweak it and fiddle with it forever until you realize enough is enough already.

  1. Do you have any advice for other writers?

Try to write every day, not only when you’re in the mood or inspired to write. Also, you have to love the process enough to do it without thought of sales or recognition. It’s like a need inside of you.

  1. What were your grades like in English class? (A, B, anything less than this is shameful 😉

Mostly A’s. I adored English class!

  1. How much research do you do for your writing?

Quite a bit. Because I write realistic fiction, I strive for accuracy in many areas of the plot.

  1. Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?

I write on my laptop chiefly, but if I’m composing a poem, I like pencil and paper.

  1. What is the best advice you’ve been given?

For writing as well as life in general? Be true to yourself and follow your dreams. Technical advice: avoid clichés.

  1. What book do you think everyone should read?

Our Marvelous Native Tongue by Robert Claiborne. It is fascinating to me to learn how our language and vocabulary evolved.

  1. Two-part question: Do you play an musical instrument? And what instrument would you like to learn to play?

Oh boy. I took guitar lessons from my dad three separate times in my earlier life. The last time was when I was in my thirties and I nearly got the hang of it but life got in the way. Now I wish I could play the piano.

  1. What process did (or are you going) you go through to get your book published?

After submitting Calmer Girls to different publishers for about nine or ten months, I was offered a contract by a small press in March of 2015, its release slated for one year later on March 24th.

  1. Who would you like to change places with… i.e. live someone else’s life for a week?

I’d like to trade places with someone living in London, England (J.K.Rowling, maybe?) because I’ve always wanted to go there, but I would miss my husband terribly. If he could trade places so he could go too, that would be wonderful.

  1. If you weren’t a writer, what would be your ideal profession?

Something in the arts. Visual artist perhaps, though I don’t know if I have enough talent for it. My second choice would be to work with animals in some capacity.

  1. Two-part question: Bill Murray or Chevy Chase? And John Cleese or Michael Palin?

Bill Murray and John Cleese, but I do like Palin too!

  1. What’s your most rewarding literary accomplishment to date (one that just blew your mind!)

It used to be having my essays or writings read out in class by my high school English teacher, as the example of “how it’s done”. Then it was getting positive reviews for my debut novel from beta readers. Now I think it’s getting my first novel contract.

  1. What quote do you live by?

“Writing is the only thing that when I do it, I don’t feel I should be doing something else.” ― Gloria Steinem. I can identify with that.

  1. What would be your ideal writer profession ambition? (Famous Pulitzer Prize winning author, successful self-published author as a day job, etc.)

Ideally, I’d like to make an honest-to-goodness living from writing. That’s it. Oh, and it would be cool to see my book made into a movie.

  1. Would you like to ask me a question?

How did you come up with so many neat questions? Thank you so much, Lisa, for the opportunity to answer them! It was fun.

I figured these were questions that would give readers a fun and closer look into the interviewers psyche.  Luckily everyone participating enjoys them and glad you did too. Thanks again for chatting with me! It was my pleasure interviewing with you.

Please check out this lovely and talented writer on the links below:

Website/blog:  http://www.jenniferkellandperry.com

Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/JenniferKellandPerry

Twitter:  http://twitter.com/JenKellandPerry

Linkedin:  http://ca.linkedin.com/in/jennifer-kelland-perry-189b2750

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14954788.Jennifer_Kelland_Perry

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/jkellandperry/       

Amazon Author Page:  http://www.amazon.com/author/jenniferkellandperry

Instagram:  http://www.instagram.com/jkellandperry/

 

 
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Posted by on April 14, 2016 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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Author Interview With Charlie Zero

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1. When did you start putting pen to paper?
It was the beginning of something special. I didn’t know where my poetry at that time would take me. All I knew was I wanted to write poetry, I guess I screwed myself. hahahaha!!!

2. What’s your literary poison – prose, poetry, etc.?
Poetry all the way. For me, poetry cures poison & kills off athlete’s foot. hahahahahaha!

3. Who is your favorite fictional hero?
Easy, Iron Man. He’s always been my favorite superhero since the early 90’s.
And I love the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies.

4. Which famous writer can you most identify with?
I’d say, William Gibson. Only because he’s a genius & underrated author. Yes, he may be famous to the Cyber-culture hacker geeks and what not. But his books have proven he’s ahead of everyone else in the future. I recommend ‘Neuromancer’, if you haven’t read it yet. Please buy it.

5. What are your current projects? (*Include books, novellas, short stories, poems, blogs, awards or anything of interest.)
I’m currently working on my 3rd Sci-Fi Chapbook of poems. I’m doing editing work, & doing a collage piece of random images to make it my front cover art. It’s going to be wild.
The poetry itself will blow your mind away. Aside from that – I love blogging on WordPress and sharing my poetry to the world. I always want my readers to step into my brain and let their imaginations run naked.

6. If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book or writing piece?
No. Most of the writings I’ve done are pleasing to my satisfaction.
I’m unconventional and a perfectionist when it comes down to poetry.

7. Do you have any advice for other writers?
Practice writing poetry everyday. Once you find your spark, then you’re guarantee to go mad.

8. What were your grades like in English class? (A, B, anything less than this is shameful 😉
A’S & B’S I feel proud enough. 🙂

9. How much research do you do for your writing?
Here and there. Not that much unless I want to really write something that’s for parody, controversial, or, politically incorrect.

10. Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?
I either use my desk-top computer, or, get a piece of paper and free write my poetry on paper. I used to have a typewriter back in my days. I’ve used it 10 times, and I stopped. My dad has an old school classic typewriter. He put it away in storage. It’s still here and in good mint condition.

11. What is the best advice you’ve been given?
Hmm??? I can’t really remember who gave me the best advice.
All I know for sure it left me feeling with joy and that I must keep on going with poetry.
I was meant to be here on earth for a purpose and finish what I have to say.

12.  What book do you think everyone should read?
William Gibson – Neuromancer. Frank Herbert’s – Dune. William Burroughs – The Nova Express. That’s as far as I’m willing to share. I have tons and tons of odd books and obscure literature.

13. Two-part question: Do you play an musical instrument? And what instrument would you like to learn to play?
I use to play guitar, & drums. I don’t play those instruments anymore.
I was in 3 project bands back in 2004 til’ 2008. Those 3 projects disbanded.

14. What process did (or are you going) you go through to get your book published?
Well, if I we’re to ever write a book or even get published…I’d have to go through an agent or independent, but that’s a whole other story. I’m going to be realistic here – my work of poetry probably won’t get published til’ I’m dead.  Fate usually works that way with Artist and Poets. Nevertheless, if it ever did happen anytime soon when someone discovers my work. Then awesome! I’ll be happy and I’ll die happy knowing that I accomplish on publishing my first book ever. Not many poets aren’t ready to read my poetry works, it’s way too out there for any minds to comprehend.

15. Who would you like to change places with… i.e. live someone else’s life for a week?
Friedrich Nietzsche. The man was way ahead of his time and he sought a generation that would collapse on its own and be controlled by religious dictators. Plus, he wrote some amazing poetry. I recommend
Dionysian-Dithyrambs by Friedrich Nietzsche

16. If you weren’t a writer, what would be your ideal profession?
Probably doing art designing. Or, be a motorcycle enthusiast.

 
17. Two-part question: Bill Murray or Chevy Chase? And John Cleese or Michael Palin?
Bill Murray all the way. He’s come along way…and he’s such a respected actor and 
comedian. John Cleese he’s phenomenal, sharp, and always a witty sense of humor
and he’s got some very very nice teeth. hahahaha!

18. What’s your most rewarding literary accomplishment to date (one that just blew your mind!)
Two poems – “
Beethoven Down Syndrome” and “The Alchemy Stretches Its Teeth” These two blew me away just because how far I was able to take it, visually and cinematically.
Plus, The Alchemy Stretches its Teeth gave me a reboot in my writing style and ability and launched my writing career into a whole new level.

19.  What quote do you live by?
“The only way your soul will ignite – is if you press your ears against curiosities chest.
That is true madness waiting to undress inspiration.” ~ Charlie Zero

20. What would be your ideal writer profession ambition? (famous Pulitzer Prize winning author, successful self-published author as a day job, etc.)  
Hmm??? I’ve never been asked this question before. I guess a successful self-published author. Be remembered as someone who challenged the idea of poetry and ripped the very fabric of traditional poetry and made it something that no one has ever read or envision before. I’m what you call unconventional, but no one is laughing.

21. Would you like to ask me a question?
Yes. If you could be any planet, which planet would you be?
Jupiter, hands down.
Many thanks to this talented and unique writer –  Charlie Zero, I look forward to reading more from him soon.
 
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Posted by on March 7, 2016 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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Author Interview With Christina Butcher

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  1. When did you start putting pen to paper?

I’ve been writing poetry since high school, but I only started writing fiction six months ago (I’ll let you figure out how old I am on your own). While in school, I was lucky enough to have an amazing writing teacher, Jonathan Wall, who opened up my literary world with Poe, Plath, Ginsberg, Snyder, E.E. Cummings, you name it. The literature I read and the writing exercises that I was introduced to changed how I saw the world: my understanding of identity was completely changed. I am forever grateful to you, Mr. Wall.

  1. What’s your literary poison – prose, poetry, etc.?

Poetry! Especially poetry that plays with placement on the page and punctuation. When it comes to fiction, I’m a sucker for a good micro story.

  1. Who is your favorite fictional hero?

Hig, a middle-aged man who survives an epidemic and is struggling to find meaning in his post-apocalyptic life with his dog. Hig is the main character in Peter Heller’s “Dog Stars.” I love his character because he’s often scared as hell, but he doesn’t let that fear control his life. This book was an amazing, accidental find at an airport.

  1. Which famous writer can you most identify with?

David Sedaris, without a doubt. Sedaris allows readers to take part in his most personal, and often humiliating, moments, and I can really commiserate with his bumbling nature. Plus, he keeps me laughing, hoping, and smiling about life, too (something I hope to do for readers one day, myself).

  1. What are your current projects? (*Include books, novellas, short stories, poems, blogs, awards or anything of interest.)

Write now (like how I did that?) I’m working on two projects. The first is a compilation of short stories that coincide with the seasons and which will hopefully be coming out next fall. The second is a novella that follows a robot who’s been stranded on earth and is desperately trying to get back home.

  1. If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book or writing piece?

Luckily, I’m right in the middle of my first project, so I can (and will) make a lot of changes as I go. If I could go back in time, though, I would definitely have joined a writing group much earlier in life. Writing groups help push us to recognize our flaws and fix our bad habits as writers, and I’m truly grateful that the group I’m in now is so honest and supportive.

  1. Do you have any advice for other writers?

Edit your work. Please. And don’t be afraid to rework your pieces. Show them to your toughest critics and put your pride aside. I know it sometimes hurts to have your work critiqued (and probably brutally torn apart, in my case), but after a while you’ll begin to recognize similar threads of criticism from different people; you’ll be able to identify reoccurring problems with your writing that you’d otherwise look over. And although it sucks to have people point out all the flaws in your work, it’s also incredibly beneficial to your improving your craft. Write. Edit. Critique. Rewrite. Edit some more. I promise it’ll all be worth it.

  1. What were your grades like in English class? (A, B, anything less than this is shameful 😉

A’s baby, all the way.

  1. How much research do you do for your writing?

Over time, I’ve begun to notice that I the amount of time that I spend researching has been increasing steadily, but I honestly don’t think I spend enough time researching yet. For now, let’s just say there’s a direct correlation between how much coffee I have in front of me and how much research I’m willing to conduct for a piece.

  1. Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?

For the most part, I write on my computer. But if I’m having a hard time starting a piece, or if I’m on vacation, I use good ol’ pen and paper. There’s something to say for the intentionality of writing with pen and paper, a certain sense of purpose, you could say, that I appreciate and enjoy.

  1. What is the best advice you’ve been given?

Don’t put financial pressure on your creative writing. It’ll kill your creativity and your inspiration and you’ll end up feeling resentful. For now, just let yourself fall in love with writing.  – Sage advice from Elizabeth Gilbert in “Big Magic.”

  1. What book do you think everyone should read?

The Alchemist, by Paulo Coelho, and the Giver, by Lois Lowry. These two books had a huge impact on me during points in my life where I wasn’t sure how best to approach obstacles in my way. If you haven’t read them, they’re worth the time and energy. They’re amazing books and they both have a stark beauty to them that will take your breath away.

  1. Two-part question: Do you play an musical instrument? And what instrument would you like to learn to play?

I don’t play any musical instruments, but I’d love to learn to play the piano. I have one in my home that currently serves as a mail collector, key holder, clothing rack, and basically anything else except a musical tool. Hopefully, that’ll change one day soon.

  1. What process did (or are you going) you go through to get your book published?

I’m going to self-publish, and I’m going to try like hell to have a good time doing it. My goal is to sell one hundred copies in one year (most books don’t sell more than 100 copies, ever). It’s scary and exciting at the same time, but I feel compelled to just get my work out there in the world, despite the fear.

  1. Who would you like to change places with… i.e. live someone else’s life for a week?

I don’t want to change places with anyone, really, but I’d love to spend a week with Gary Snyder in California. I want to love and live like a crazed Zen beatnik, talking to the desert and hiking with (a younger) Gary Snyder and writing my little heart out. That’s where I think I’ll find my zen…

  1. If you weren’t a writer, what would be your ideal profession?

Editor! Professional book reviewer! Journalist! (I know, I know, these all include writing, but I can’t help it)

  1. Two-part question: Bill Murray or Chevy Chase? And John Cleese or Michael Palin?

Can I choose Will Ferrell instead of BM or CC? Oh, and I choose Michael Palin, thank you very much.

  1. What’s your most rewarding literary accomplishment to date (one that just blew your mind!)

It may not sound all that amazing, but a drabble (a story with only 100 words) that I recently wrote, titled “The King’s Coat,” was chosen for publication online at 101words.com. I love writing short stories and micro fiction, and this piece was a lot of fun to work out. I felt very content and satisfied when I completed this piece, and when it was chosen for publication on Christmas day, I felt a surprising sense of accomplishment and validation. A small thing, really, but it brought me a lot of joy.

  1. What quote do you live by?

I don’t have a quote as much as I have guiding principles that I try to embody in everything I do. I strive to live a life of quality, a life filled with courage, compassion, and humility.

  1. What would be your ideal writer profession ambition? (famous Pulitzer Prize winning author, successful self-published author as a day job, etc.)

Local Poet Laureate! And columnist for the New York Times.

  1. Would you like to ask me a question?

How did you break into the writing field for online magazines? Was it a long process? Did you stumble into it?

Great question.  I had a research project at the law firm I worked at regarding online publications and stumbled upon some that were looking for newbie writers to write for them and jumped at the chance. I relished a great distraction from the perils of writing my fiction novel (and still do). My most current online gig is for The Review Review magazine, such a huge opportunity to write about fellow authors and publishers.

Special thanks to Christina for interviewing with me! A super talented writer (impressive New York Times columnist!) we all look forward to reading more of Christina’s work!

Follow her here:
Website: http://www.writebrave.org
Twitter: @write_brave
Facebook: facebook.com/writebrave/

 
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Posted by on January 19, 2016 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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Author Interview with Michael Fedison

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1. When did you start putting pen to paper?

The first story I ever wrote was in the second grade.  My teacher gave an assignment to the class–write anything you want, as long as it reached two pages in length.  For a second-grader, two pages felt like a novel!  But once I got started and the words came out, I had a lot of fun, and the story reached four pages.  It was called “The Magic Key,” and I’ve been hooked ever since!

2. What’s your literary poison – prose, poetry, etc.?

I’ve dabbled with poetry, but I am definitely a prose writer.  I love to get lost in stories and ideas and let the characters take me where they will.

3. Who is your favorite fictional hero?

That’s a good question!  If I had to choose just one, I’d probably say Sherlock Holmes.  I’m a big Holmes fan, and love his quirks and dry sense of humor.  Arthur Conan Doyle’s famous detective was well ahead of his time, in many ways.

4. Which famous writer can you most identify with?

Probably Ray Bradbury.  He was in love with the fantastic, the imaginative, the world of “what-if” and “maybe,” and “out there.”  Many of those aspects are what drive my own writing.

5. What are your current projects?

I am currently writing the sequel to The Eye-Dancers, a YA sci-fi/fantasy novel I published a couple of years ago.  It’s been a lot of fun, and very rewarding, revisiting this world and these characters!  I also maintain The Eye-Dancers blog, and post fresh material on there on a regular basis.

6. If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book or writing piece?

I don’t think so.  When you write a novel, or any long piece of writing, there is the first-draft stage, the second-draft stage, the third-draft stage, the copyediting, proofreading, fact-checking–a whole slew of versions, revisions, rewrites.  You pour so much of yourself. your time, your energy into the process, and do the very best you can.  And, when it’s all over–if you know you’ve done everything you can do to create the best possible product, I don’t think you can allow yourself to feel any regrets.  As writers, we do the best we can, and hopefully our work reflects that.

7. Do you have any advice for other writers?

Write what you love–the stories, ideas, themes, characters, passions, dreams, fears that resonate for you, not for anyone else.  Don’t worry about what’s “hot” or in vogue.  Don’t worry about following the right trends.  Create your own trends.  Write the stories only you are meant to write.  Your readers will be glad you did.

8. What were your grades like in English class? (A, B, anything less than this is shameful 😉

No, they were generally A’s.:)  I always loved English!

9. How much research do you do for your writing?

I suppose that depends on the project.  If it’s a personal short story, there would be very little research.  If it’s a novel that takes place in a different era, or if it deals with a technical or historical subject, I’ll definitely want to make sure I have my facts straight.  For example, in The Eye-Dancers, there is a parallel-worlds dimension, and one of the characters, Marc Kuslanski, is the class science wiz.  He discusses several quantum theories that he thinks might explain some of the incredible adventures he and the other main characters are going through in the novel.  I wanted to make sure I brushed up on basic quantum theory before writing The Eye-Dancers!

10. Do you write on a typewriter, computer, dictate or longhand?

I just use Microsoft Word on my PC–a trusted and an old friend.:)

11. What is the best advice you’ve been given?

Probably from my academic advisor in college, who also taught several of my classes.  He knew I wanted to be a writer, and he emphasized the “small stuff”–the grammar, the editing, the rewrites, all the “grunt” work that goes into a finished manuscript.  “Don’t leave it to your editor,” he said.  “Sweat the small stuff yourself.”  And he was definitely right–the “small” stuff is, in fact, not really small at all.

12.  What book do you think everyone should read?

The Eye-Dancers, of course!  Just joking.  Well, sort of.  I’d have to put To Kill a Mockingbird right up there at the top of the list–the greatest novel I’ve ever read.

 13. Two-part question: Do you play an musical instrument? And what instrument would you like to learn to play?

I do not!  But if I ever take the time and effort to learn it, I’d love to be able to play the guitar.

14. What process did (or are you going) you go through to get your book published?

I initially created query letters and a synopsis, and was ready to go the traditional route.  But after thinking it over, weighing all the options, and observing the way indie publishing has come into its own–not to mention all the flexibility it offers–I decided to self-publish The Eye-Dancers.  I haven’t once regretted the decision!

15. Who would you like to change places with… i.e. live someone else’s life for a week?

I suppose, just to get the “inside story” and really see what it’s like, I’d want to “sit in” the White House for a week and serve as president of the United States. In addition to everything else, it would also provide ample grist for the writer’s mill!

16. If you weren’t a writer, what would be your ideal profession?

I don’t even know!  It’s so hard imagining a life without writing at the center of it, I don’t even think I can answer that . . .

17. Two-part question: Bill Murray or Chevy Chase? And John Cleese or Michael Palin?

Bill Murray and John Cleese!

18. What’s your most rewarding literary accomplishment to date (one that just blew your mind!)

I think publishing The Eye-Dancers–after all the rewrites and revisions–and then starting and continuing to maintain a blog devoted to the book, producing so many posts on the site, virtually meeting so many great people from around the world.  The entire experience has been fantastic.

19.  What quote do you live by?

I’ve always tried to aspire to FDR’s “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”  I often fall short of that, of course, but at the same time, I always make a concerted effort to put myself and my work “out there.”  Anytime any writer does that, he or she risks criticism, negative feedback, bad reviews . . .  But it’s the only way to share your work, your passion, your heart with others.

20. What would be your ideal writer profession ambition? (famous Pulitzer prize winning author, successful self-published author as a day job, etc.) 

I guess selling enough copies of my work where I can devote all my time to writing, and not have to go to a “real” job every day.  Writing creatively full-time, and making a living from that–it doesn’t get much better than that!  Maybe someday . . .

21. Would you like to ask me a question?

I’d actually like to ask you one of the same questions you asked me!  What would be your advice to other writers?
I also wanted to take this time to thank you for interviewing me, Lisa!  I really appreciate it, and I had fun answering your questions! 

Awe… so glad to hear you had fun interviewing with me and likewise! In answer to you question, see no. 7 answer 🙂

Special thanks to Michael and if you haven’t checked out his awesome book yet, do so.

Happy Thanksgiving Weekend! XO, L.

 

 
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Posted by on November 25, 2015 in Unedited Quill Spills

 

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