Q: Why do you love writing?
To be a little poetical – I love the feel of words in symbiosis under my pen. Translation: it’s just kind of cool to be able to write about experiences or make characters in my head come alive. When someone tells me that they have a crush on Henry (the romantic lead in Spin) it makes me smile – that means I made him real enough to evoke feelings in other people – how awesome is that?
Q: What do you want readers to take away from your books?
Mostly I want them to laugh, enjoy, just get engrossed in the story. In Spin I was also trying to poke fun a little at our obsession with celebrities and their life styles. There’s also a lot of music in the book and it’s nice when readers tell me they discovered a new song or band because of it.
Q: What was the hardest part about finding an agent?
Just the amount of time and the lack of general response. I sent out 8-10 query letters a day for months and didn’t hear anything from most of them (not even a no-thank you). You have to grow a thick skin pretty fast, because, hey, more rejection is coming!
Q: Was there anything that really surprised you about the writing industry or being an author?
I think it’s that there are so many resources out there for the first part of the writing process – how to write a novel, how to find an agent etc. But there is almost nothing, nothing I’ve found anyway, about how to negotiate your way through the process once you’ve got a book deal. There’s a big learning curve. You go from being a writer to a marketer overnight – not the easiest transition.
Q: Have you ever suffered from writers block? Any tips on how to work through it?
I don’t think I’ve ever been totally blocked. I think I’ve more had periods where I’m gestating or thinking about where to go next. I think the trick is to find time to write every day and write even if you are not feeling inspired. Also find thing to inspire you – good music or going for a run or whatever makes you feel creative.
Q: How did you celebrate your first publishing deal?
After I finished my happy dance, I called everyone I knew and then went for a nice dinner with my husband.
Q: How do you think social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook help support authors?
I still haven’t totally figured that out yet. I think Facebook is a great place for fans to go and leave messages for authors of support – the feedback I’ve gotten there has been so nice and encouraging. Twitter is harder to pin down. It can be a big time suck (as people say), but I know it also provides support for those that feel alone while they are writing. I’m also hoping Facebook and Twitter can be a place to bring some attention to some authors who deserve it (check out my I bet we can make these books bestsellers group on Facebook and Goodreads). I have also connected with some authors and readers on Twitter – and sold a few books that way too – hard to say how many.
Q: How do you enjoy any down-time?
I run, I read, I watch TV, hang with my friends. I think it’s important to stay connected with the world so the characters in your books stay realistic.
Q: What is your advice to aspiring writers?
Keep at it if it brings you joy. Be reader to have a lot of rejection. Don’t give up on traditional publication too early – I don’t think self-publishing is a satisfying experience for most people.
Q: Where would be your dream vacation?
A cottage on the ocean.