Author Zoe Ashwood #interview

Please give a warm welcome to author Zoe Ashwood

Have you always wanted to become an author?

Well, I’ve always been a reader. I also have notebooks and little scrap pieces of paper scribbled with terrible snippets of never-finished stories and angsty poems dating back to the 90s when I was in elementary school. But I didn’t set out to be a writer until I had a book blog for a couple of years – and then I heard about NaNoWriMo from another blogger and decided to give it a try. That was in 2015 – but it took me until 2019 to publish my first novel. 

What was your inspiration for your current book/series?

Ooh, I’m so glad you asked. The Nora Moss series is inspired by my love of action-adventure movies and ancient civilizations! It’s a love letter to Indiana Jones, Tomb Raider, and Atlantis, as well as a steamy love story about a woman who fights for the people she loves. Cursed in Love, the first book in the series, takes place in Egypt – because the Ancient Egyptian civilization is my absolute favorite ancient culture. I had so much fun writing it!

What are you working on now?

I’m writing Captured in Love, which is Book 2 of the Nora Moss series. Nora and her guys are heading to Iceland next! 

Do you have any quirks while working?

I plot my stories obsessively because I hate editing! I also drink a lot of barley coffee with almond milk – I’ve trained my brain to have a sort of a Pavlovian response to it! So now barley coffee means work. It’s a strange but effective little ritual.

What are your hopes for the future?

Well, I’m about to become a full-time author, so my goal is to grow my author career to the point where it’s the primary source of income for our family! I’d love for that to become our reality. I want to write beautiful stories that my readers will enjoy.

Do you have any advice for new authors about the publishing world?

I would say: be kind. Don’t engage in drama (there’s always drama in the author world) and be a source of kindness and motivation instead. And work on your mindset too! I just started with that – and it’s so important! Other than that, just finish your book and/or series. If you don’t finish the first draft (which will invariably be crappy), you can’t edit it and polish it and make it into a finished product. You can do it! Take that story you love and make it shiny.

Do you have anything to say to your followers?

Oh yes! Thank you for being here! Another blogger recently asked me about my greatest writing success – and I said it was having actual readers! I fangirl over my favorite authors a lot, so having someone tell me that they loved my books is the best feeling. It’s so awesome to know that my stories are read by real humans. 🙂 

Author Vivienne Hart #interview

Please give a warm welcome to

Tell us a bit about yourself… 

I have my MFA in Creative Writing, and I write all things magical and mysterious. Captivated by fairy tales from a young age, I gradually began to create my own worlds filled with fantastic creatures and monstrous beasts, and it’s my great joy to now share those worlds through my books.

In addition to spinning a good story, my loves include chocolate, reading good books, and taking as many bubble baths as I can. When I’m not writing, you can find me roaming around the southern U.S. with my husband and two very fluffy cats. I’m the redhead in pajamas.

Have you always wanted to become an author? 

Yes. I love making up characters and worlds, and I think writing is the thing I’m best at. I’ve had a series of boring jobs, and I’ve also worked with books in various other capacities, including publishing, but none of it really spoke to me. My favorite thing is getting out a pen and paper and playing around with weird ideas, mashing up things that seem like they don’t go together, and finding ways to use my favorite words. I really love words, and I have a lot of fun molding them into tales.

I’m an only child with two creative parents: my dad made up endlessly hilarious bedtime stories when I was little, and my mom was great at helping me with unique homework projects, like creating board games and building dioramas. So I think I inherited that creative spirit, and because I was the only kid in my house, I spent a lot of time in my head, making up stories and worlds. I also saw a UFO when I was about eight, and I think that instilled a sense of possibility in the fantastic that has stayed with me. (I’m not saying I had an alien encounter, but I definitely saw something weird, round, and unidentified hovering in the sky!)

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What was your inspiration for your current book/series? 

I have a deep and abiding love for and interest in fairy tales. When I was getting my MFA, I did my graduate project on fairy tales and the enduring nature of retellings. Then I had the opportunity to explore alien romance, so I thought it would be really interesting and fun to take traditional tales we all know and give them a science fiction spin. Hence, my Interstellar Fairy Tales series was born. The first book, Aura Awakened, is out now. The second book in the series, Zella Unlocked, will be in Alien Embrace. It’s a space retelling of Rapunzel, complete with a xenophobic colony, a detention tower, and an alien military force. There are more books to come in the series, so interested readers should stay tuned to my newsletter or social media for updates.

What are you working on now? 

A few different things. Zella Unlocked releases in August 2021, so I’m busy putting the finishing touches on it and gearing up for promotional stuff. I’m also working on the other books in the Interstellar Fairy Tales series, as well as some non-SFR fairy tale projects and some standalone SFR books. I have years’ worth of books planned; I wish I could write faster so I could release them all right away. I’m working on epic fantasies, paranormal mysteries, urban fantasies set on other worlds, different kinds of retellings, and so much more!

Coming Soon

Do you have any quirks while working? 

I almost never work at a desk. I’ve always been this way, and I don’t really know why, other than I find desks/tables inherently uncomfortable. Instead, I make work nests. I’ll settle on the couch or bed with a bunch of pillows, my favorite throw blanket, and some water. I snuggle into my nest and get lost in worlds and words.

I also can’t write to music. I know a lot of authors like to create a playlist for each project to help them set the mood and tone of the book, but that doesn’t work for me. I’m so connected to words that I immediately get distracted by the lyrics, which interfere with the words I’m trying to write. I suppose I could write to instrumental music, but honestly, it’s just not for me. I will write to rain and storm sounds, though.

What are your hopes for the future? 

I hope that I can continue to do this as my career for many years to come, that I continue to find new readers, and that my books resonate with people. I love telling stories, and I genuinely hope that more and more people discover my books and love reading them.

Do you have any advice for new authors about the publishing world? 

When it comes to indie publishing, authors have a lot more control than they do in the traditional publishing world. You don’t have to get through the gatekeeping of agents, editors, and publishers, and you can (mostly) control royalties, covers, release schedule, and more. All of that is really alluring. However, indie publishing comes with its own challenges. You may have all the control, but you also have to do all the work. There are no agents or PR teams backing you and spreading the word. 

A career in indie publishing is about so much more than just writing. I was naïve when I started and thought that as long as I could tell a story and had solid writing mechanics, I could be successful. But if you want to truly succeed and make a living, you have to learn how to run a business. There are so many behind-the-scenes business factors to consider: popular trends, writing to market, bookfunnels, how and when to offer freebies and giveaways, newsletter networking, social media, marketing and advertising, and more. I’m still learning about the business part of the indie publishing industry every day. New authors should be aware of how much work it really takes!

Do you have anything to say to your followers?

First and foremost, thank you for sticking with me and reading my books! I wouldn’t be able to write for my job if it weren’t for my readers, and I’m so grateful to them. I’m always encouraging readers to sign up for my newsletter, because I don’t spam and I do offer news, updates, cover reveals, giveaways, freebies, and more! I try to make sure my newsletter always has something valuable for the subscribers, to serve as a thank you for supporting me.

I’d also ask readers to take the time to review their favorite books, especially on Amazon. Positive ratings and reviews help authors immensely; conversely, three stars or fewer can be very damaging to an author’s career and visibility on the platform. If you don’t enjoy a book, that’s more than fine, but if you genuinely like it, I encourage you to go give it four or five stars. It’s more important and beneficial than many readers realize, especially for indie authors. Also, if you find errors or typos in a book, it’s best to reach out to the author privately. Reporting it to Amazon can get the book permanently removed from the site, which is something many readers don’t realize. They’re trying to be helpful, but might inadvertently damage the author’s platform. 

That’s part of what I meant before when I said that indie publishing as a business is more complex than many people realize. Authors can’t just write whatever they want and expect it to sell, and they’re often forced to rely on factors outside of their control — like reviews — to be successful. The relationship between authors and readers is a symbiotic one, so I always try to give readers the best bang for their buck, but also ask them to be aware of how their actions — even small ones! — can help or harm indie authors.

Author Whimsy Nimsy #MoonlitFalls

Please give a warm welcome to author Whimsy Nimsy

Tell us a bit about yourself…

I am a workaholic coffee lover currently living in Southern California. I spend my free time binge reading through my TBR then telling my Betta Fish Boo about said books.🐠 I also have way too many plants, love watching anime and k-dramas, and creating unrealistic expectations over fantasy men I can’t have.😂

Have you always wanted to become an author?

I have always written poems,songs, books and stories but It wasn’t until this past year that I gained the courage to start sharing them with the world.

What was your inspiration for your current book/series?

I adored the original Silver Springs series that this series shares a Universe with and I simply couldn’t resist the chance to write about a person in that world.

What are you working on now?

I am finishing Moonlit Diamond while writing a story for Fearless which is a charity Anthology with some amazing fellow authors.

Do you have any quirks while working?

I tend to bounce Ideas off my fish. I also write a lot of my stories while I am laying in bed. I don’t know why, but the second I lay down stories just flow.

What are your hopes for the future?

Release more of my stories to the world!

Do you have any advice for new authors about the publishing world?

Step one is write, write, write, write. It will never become a book if you don’t make it happen.

Do you have anything to say to your followers?

Thank you so much for supporting me on this Journey! I hope you love Moonlit Diamond and all my future projects.💜

Diamond (pics from Pinterest)

Author Valerie Mars #interview

Please give a warm welcome to author Valerie Mars

Tell us a bit about yourself

Hello, world! I am 29 years old and hail from Alaska, where I graduated with a BA in Japanese before teaching in Japan for 3 years. Upon returning home, I became a barista on the Alaskan oil fields. Currently, I write while readying myself for motherhood this summer.

Have you always wanted to become an author?

This all feels like a prank that went too far. When COVID shut down my coffee shop in March, I was able to find work in the same facility cleaning toilets and vacuuming hallways. During those long, repetitive 12 hour days I discovered a story taking shape within my mind. I started listening to writing podcasts, taking notes, and in May began writing Ferrous. I figured it would flicker out by June, but for some reason I kept going. You have toilets to thank for this book.

What was your inspiration for your current book/series?

I think I was in a reading rut at the time, horribly craving something reverse harem with a rich fae world. I wasn’t finding what I was looking for, and decided to craft my own. A bit of a fever dream, maybe.

What are you working on now?

I ought to be working on Zealous, the next book in the Fae’s Folly world, but I’ve been reading Sarah J. Maas’ A Court of Thorns and Roses series instead! *guilty look* I discovered her books during my research phase last spring, but swore them off until I had developed my own world. They’re my reward for releasing Ferrous.

Do you have any quirks while working?

I have to eat Skittles, but they can only be the green ones. I’m currently searching for a PA to take up the task of sorting them for me. But, nah. In all seriousness, I’m pretty boring. My favorite place to write was in my room on the oil field, because it was dead quiet. And dinner was always prepared for me! When at home, I prefer Ghibli instrumental soundtracks or something related so that I don’t get distracted by the soundtracks of my neighborhood or family. There’s a Ghibli cello one with a HEADBANGING rendition of the Totoro theme song, I tell ya.

What are your hopes for the future?

To push out a healthy baby this summer and to see my husband discover his own fever dream. In the short term, I hope to discover my readers and create a great sequel for them. :3

Do you have any advice for new authors about the publishing world?

[The End] is only the start for indie authors. Unless blessed with full pockets and friends in convenient places, you will not only be a writer, but an editor and entrepreneur as well. The good news is, there are resources out there. It will be a journey of discovery you must take on your own, but you are 100% capable of taking it. And when you do, be proud of yourself. You earned it.

Do you have anything to say to your followers?

I am horrible at taking any sort of praise. 5 years into my marriage, I STILL struggle to accept the love of my in-laws. So while I may be stoic most times, know that your kind words and enthusiasm have brought many tears and giddy spurts of energy over the creation and release of Ferrous. I’ve said this too many times already, but I am so glad to hear Ferrous may have made you laugh or read past your bedtime. ❤ Thank you for telling me.

Author Willow Hayes #interview

Please give a warm welcome to author Willow Hayes

I announced to my parents when I was sixteen years old that I wanted to write a book. When they asked me what kind I simply shrugged my shoulders and said, “I don’t know yet, but someday I’m going to write a book.” It was exactly twenty years later that I published my first book, Flicker and Flame. I love the quote by Stephen King, “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.” I was a voracious reader from the time that I was in second grade, reading at nearly middle school level. From the sheer number of books I’ve read between second grade and the day I published I’d say I’m doing pretty well at that ‘write a lot’ portion of Stephen’s advice, and I’m hoping this is just the beginning of the ‘write a lot’ part. 

What was your inspiration for your current series?

I’ve known the VERY basic premise of girl finds out she’s magical/royalty and must take the throne back for years, but try as I may I was never able to get past the initial stages of planning. Early this year I dove down the reverse harem rabbit hole, and something about the switch in genres helped me get the story to paper. Having been a voracious reader and fantasy lover since I was young I have many authors who have inspired me as a person and a writer. There are so many aspects of Flicker and Flame (and the other two books in the series) that reflect that. It was as if I was collecting threads to this great story as I read these great books, and those threads finally came together in the form of my Magic Bound series. 

What are you working on now?

I’m currently working on the final book in the Magic Bound series, Shadows and Lies. I’ve also started the research for a new fae reverse harem series, and I’m hoping the first book will be out sometime in July. 

Do you have any quirks while working?

I invested in some great noise cancelling headphones because it has be nearly silent in order for me to really work, and with a twelve year old at home silence is hard to come by. I’m a total control freak and plot obsessively. In fact, I’m often teased about my color coded sticky notes that sit on the back of the door outside my office. I can’t write (like at all) until I know exactly where the story is going to go. Now, that’s not to say it doesn’t change, but I can’t start until I have plan. 

What are your hopes for the future?

Once I started writing Flicker and Flame I figured out just how much I loved the entire process, and I would love to make this my full-time forever job. I’m a single mom, and my son watches me carefully, so making this work, making my dream work, has never been more important. He’s picked up a few habits and has started keeping journals of story ideas and talks constantly about the different things he could do in his writing. I want to live out my dream as author for me but also so my kiddo can see that it’s possible.

Do you have any advice for new authors about the publishing world?

Invest in the right people. I couldn’t do any of this without my PA, Hannah. She’s amazing. Having the right team of alpha and beta readers is everything, and hiring an editor was an absolute must for me, really anyone publishing. See, as much as I love to write and read…I’m crap at grammar! Ha! So much of my anxiety is reduced by simply having the right people on my team, and it’s made writing that much more enjoyable. 

Do you have anything to say to your followers?

I am so incredibly humbled and blessed that you’ve shared this journey with me. Your kind words are seriously what get me through my moments of doubt. Thank you for letting me tell you my stories. 

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Author Xen Randell #interview

Please give a warm welcome to

Tell us a bit about yourself

First of all, thank you for taking interest into this new author. To be honest, I’ve always abhorred questions of this kind. I find it easier to talk about my writing, than myself. But then, that may be the same thing, right. In short, I’m a 35-year old artist. I paint, I design, I illustrate, I tattoo (or am learning to)… and now I’m a writer. I guess the art is in my blood and whatever shape it chooses to take, I always feel good creating.

Have you always wanted to become an author?

Yes. I have always felt the push, the need to write, but I wasn’t very good at it. Not at first. It took years and years of reading and learning the English language to finally feel confident enough to try and pour my imagination into words.

What was your inspiration for your current book/series?


The inspiration came in various forms: places, knowledge, dreams, music… I am what you might call a pantser writer, and I find my characters and plots in all things life can offer. The Wave inspiration came when I moved into the building with an atomic shelter underneath it. I imagined what it could be used for and the rest just… happened.

What are you working on now?

I’m working of finishing The Wave of Silence trilogy, then I’m about to start publishing a short novella series in Paranormal / UF genre with a twist. Also, I already have some ideas ready for The Wave spin-offs.

Do you have any quirks while working?

Uh, yeah. I find it hard to concentrate, or when I do, I dive into the hyperfocus where nothing exists but what I’m doing. The house may just burn out around me and I’d still be plotting my story. Needless to say, I’ve burned quite a few lunches while working.

What are your hopes for the future?

My plans and my hopes are different. My plans are to publish The Wave trilogy ‘till the end of the year and at least one or two novellas. My plan is to slowly start getting back the money I’ve invested into what I now consider my life-calling: writing. And my hopes? My hopes are that I’ll soon be able to write and design, and nothing more. It’s a dream come true.

Do you have any advice for new authors about the publishing world?

I’m still too green to have any real advice, but I guess I do have two: 1. Don’t design your own cover if you’re not a designer! It’s a mistake many make, and it just may be the difference between success and your book sitting on the Amazon’s virtual shelf without being picked up. I say this as a designer and a librarian.

Learn. Read. Read a lot! Read authors that are better than you, read about writing, just read! Not all knowledge will be made for you but you will be able to take a bit from everything and create something your own.

Do you have anything to say to your followers?

Just – thank you! I am often amazed by the support I get, and I won’t ever cease to be thankful!

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Xen’s Paranormal Squad

Author Zoe Parker #interview @zoeparkerauthor

Please give a warm welcome to

Tell us a bit about yourself

I’m a pretty average person, really. I have my eccentricities of course, lol. But some basics are that I live in a very small town in the country. I spend too much time on the computer and I love video games when I have time to play them.

Have you always wanted to become an author?

I’ve written stories since I could write, about 4 or so and it’s always been my dream to publish. So a lifetime.

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What was your inspiration for your current book/series?

My current series was started because of a cheapy movie I saw on Netflix about Sin Eaters. That started the wheels moving.

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What are you working on now?

Since of Sora series, about a Sin Eater who discovers she doesn’t have to save the world and suffer the pain on its sins. So I guess her making a big life change for her own happiness.

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Do you have any quirks while writing?

I have lots of quirks, lol. I have a small obsession with notebooks and I still hand write a lot of my notes and stuff. Putting pen to paper lets me think clearer.

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What are your hopes for the future?

Honestly, I just want to be a better author. I’m working on improving my style. My goal is to one day write that book that people remember.

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Do you have any advice for new authors about the publishing world?

For new authors, the biggest thing is actually writing the book. There’s a bazillion self-help books on what to do that focus on outlines, character bibles etc. While the most important thing of it is to finish the manuscript. That’s my best advice. THEN worry about editing, covers, etc.

Do you have anything to say to your readers?

I love my readers. Honestly, I think they’re some of the most intelligent, witty people I’ve met. I’m honored that they read my books and hope one day I can show them how much.

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Hand In Fire

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Author VB Gilbert #interview

Please give a warm welcome to

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Tell us a bit about yourself

I am a stay at home mom of two teenage boys. I love coffee and reading (read over 800 books last year) and am a sucker for strong female characters. Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Claire from Outlander, and my personal favorite Anne from Anne of Green Gables.

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Have you always wanted to become an author?

I don’t know that I always wanted to be an author per se. but I’ve always written. Short stories, poems. I’m the girl who wrote a novel when signing her friends yearbooks. It was always just for me… until I got involved in the RH community and received encouragement to share my work.

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What are you working on now?

I am currently writing book 3 of my Thrive series. Titled Hunters of Spring, is the conclusion. it is a suspense story, about a Texan woman surviving a pandemic.
Literally, my inspiration came from a picture on Pinterest— an angel statue with a sad face and arm outstretched.
That statue is part of the second chapter of Reds of Summer when my MC has to venture into the deserted town via the cemetery.

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Do you have any quirks while writing?

I listen to music while writing… often when reading a word will stick out and I’ll find I’ve zoned out and am ‘writing’ the next chapter of my book.
I try not to read the genre I’m writing … I don’t want to be influenced.

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What are your hopes for the future?

In terms of writing I just want people to enjoy my books and to enjoy writing them. I don’t expect to make a ton of money or be recognized or famous.
I have at least 4 books planned for next year and just today thought up a new idea listening to Billy Joel. Lol

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Do you have any advice for new authors about the publishing world?

My advice is to put the words on paper. Don’t worry about the fine points, just get your storyline down. The rest can come when you revise. Whether or not you get a lot of readers, any story you write is an accomplishment.
DON’T READ YOUR REVIEWS

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Do you have anything to say to your readers?

To my readers: thank you. I am humbled by your support and love for my babies that I’ve shared. You are awesome and I love you. All the words are for you.

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The Midding Gate

Reds of Summer

Blues of Winter

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VB Gilbert Book Lovers

Author W.J. May #interview

Please give a warm welcome to Tell us a bit about yourself

USA Today Bestselling author, W.J. May grew up in the fruit belt of Ontario – St. Catharines. Crazy-happy childhood, she’s always had a vivid imagination and loads of energy.
The youngest of six — four older brothers, and a sister — taught her at a young age to be competitive in all aspects of life.
At sixteen, she began competing in athletics (track and field) and before she turned seventeen, she was representing Canada in high jump. She continued to compete, breaking Canada’s JR High Jump record (1.92m – 6′ 3 1/2″ for those metric-ly challenged). She attended University of Toronto, and Kansas State University – winning CIAU’s and becoming All-American 6x – NCAA Indoors Runner Up + more.
But you’re not interested in her athletic career – unless of course you’re curious to know she stands 1.70m (5’7″) and has jumped 20cm over her head on more than one occasion. She’s represented Canada at the World Championships, World Jrs., won Francophone Games, been all over the world and loved every minute of every competition. From the grueling workouts, the crazy weights she lifted, the days she thought her lungs were going to spit out of her mouth for lack of oxygen, the travelling and the opportunity to read – her favourite past time.
Life continued with her husband (a distance runner from Liverpool, UK, who she met at KSU) and then their first, second and finally third child. Their house became full of more imagination and stories.
After her father passed away in 2009, from a six-year battle with cancer (which she still believes he won the fight against), she began to write again. A passion she’d loved for years, but realized life was too short to keep putting it off.
She wrote RAE OF HOPE, the first book in the Chronicles of Kerrigan series, which became an international success and the series has continued into 12 books, plus sub-series, twisted plots and more!
May loves fantasy, paranormal and maybe the odd twist of something darker, something sweeter and something just off the charts.
When she’s not writing or reading, she’s either hanging with her kids, shopping, watching movies, into sports, or plotting the next story in her head.

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Have you always wanted to become an author?

I LOVED reading as a kid (and teen, and adult lol) and used to always imagine stories in my head. When I was training for athletics, I used to make up stories and continue them for weeks in my head as I was working out – great distraction lol.
I honestly never dreamed about being a writer… I never thought I was good enough lol. I just dove in and went for it… and the rest, well, is a story in the making …

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What was your inspiration for your current book/series?

The characters themselves. They become like family and it’s like catching up with each one of them when I write their story

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What are you working on now?

RESOLVED – the last book of the Queen’s Alpha Series is in my head at the moment.
I’m also working on the Mending Magic series, the new Kerrigan Kids series, a completely new idea called ROYAL FACTIONS as well… lots of fun stuff going on!

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Do you have any quirks while writing?

Apparently I make weird faces when I write lol. My husband always comes in the room and has a laugh. “Serious part?” “What are you laughing at?” Guess I can’t keep it all in my head. lol

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What are your hopes for the future?

To continue writing for as long as I can. I’d love to see one of my series put into a movie or TV series one day. That would be a dream come true.

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Do you have any advice for new authors about the publishing world?

Write, write, write! Write what you are passionate about, what genres you enjoy reading and edit, edit, edit! Reread what you write and be willing to change things up. Have fun with it… writing should never feel like a job.

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Do you have anything to say to your readers?

Thank you for reading the crazy stories in my head.I am going to be doing some giveaways this summer so be sure and follow me.Twitter

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Author Wendy Potocki #interview

Please give a war welcome to author Wendy Potocki

Have you always wanted to become an author?

Yup, sure did!

It was a secret desire and I never told anyone because I never thought I would never be good enough—or have the ideas that spark good stories. Since I was a booklover, I thought authors were magical in their ability to keep me spellbound. So for more than half of my life, it remained a dream … something tickling my fancy … but nothing more. Then one day, my muse whispered an idea in my ear. Once started, I’ve never stopped.

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What was your inspiration for your current book/series?

Okay, so this is actually kind of interesting. I wrote a short story for a writing competition hosted by J. Ellington Ashton Press. The short was entitled “Fate Worse than Death,” and was about zombies. The lead character was a teenager who had to write a story for her English class using stream of consciousness. That method of writing has always fascinated me as there’s no filter on what comes out. One night, the concept got the better of me, and I decided to give it a try. I sat down and just wrote the first thing that came into my head. It was:

A liquid night.

A lucid dream.

A one-eyed girl buried in the rain.

I loved the words and the mood struck, and before I knew it, the three lines burst into an entire novel. It’s what I’m working on now and I hope it’ll be finished by Halloween. At least, that’s the plan.

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Do you have any quirks while writing?

I don’t think so. I do like to write in the daytime which is always a surprise to me given that I’m such a night owl. I guess the only things that would pass for quirks are: (1) I do not like to talk about ideas I’m working on, and (2) I design covers for any new work I’m about to write. The cover allows me to establish a mood and feeling. It also helps consolidate or ground the visualization so there’s a tangible representation of the creative process going on in my head. I suppose one could liken it to a mood board, but for me, it’s designing covers.

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Do you have any advice for new authors about the publishing world?

My main advice is: WRITE. In personal training, there’s a concept known as “ exercise specificity.” What it means is that if you want to swim, at some point, you have to get in the water and swim! Running, lifting weights, eating healthy all might contribute to conditioning the body to swim, but swimming is the key in learning to swim. And it’s the same with writing.

Just write. Write anything, everywhere, and anything. If you write novels, try a short story … or poetry. If a friend needs to write a letter, write it for them. Also, write for blogs or other outlets that require you meeting a deadline. It’s the only way you’ll get good at firing out a paragraph or two. It comes in handy when you get an opportunity—like this one, for instance.

The next piece of advice would be to continue to hone your craft. Don’t get stuck in the notion that you can’t improve or that there’s a limitation on what you do. The best way to accomplish this is to distance yourself from what you’re doing, and be as objective as you can about your work. It may require putting your work away for a few weeks or months and looking at it with a fresh eye, but stagnation is the worst sin so don’t stay where you are. Continue to flex your muscle—and wings. Yes, they’re there waiting for you to use. Never be afraid to fail; it’s in the failing you’ll learn and eventually transform.

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Do you have anything to say to your readers?

Yes, thank you so much for supporting me and my work. I love writing so much and I hope that it always shows.

I’m also very happy to announce that, after a long absence on the horror scene, I am coming out with two new chiller-dillers so please look for it them this fall. In the meantime, love to you all.

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