How long have you been writing? Has writing always been something you wanted to do?
Becoming a writer has been dream in the back of my mind since I was young, but I never pursued writing until after my daughter was born. Eight years ago was the busiest time in my life with three young children, one of them being a special-needs child, but believe it or not this was when my focus became clear on what was really important—and one is to turn your dreams to reality.
Although I’d always wanted to write, it was not something I shared, and it wasn’t until I received an offer for publication for my first novel that I shared it with my family and friends. In 2009, my first novel, “The Captain’s Lady,” was published.
What books or stories have you written?
I’ve written three full-length novels and one young adult historical. Two of my novels are contemporary romances, and one is a romantic suspense filled with an element of mystery, the first of a series.
The young adult historical, “A Father’s Love,” is fully illustrated by Vancouver Island artist Sherrill Welz for all those young readers who love a short story filled with adventure, mystery and suspense.
My contemporary romances are “The Captain’s Lady” and “The Forgotten Child.” “The Forgotten Child” is my newest release, a western romance surrounding a man betrayed by the wife who abandoned him and his autistic son, and the woman who loves them now. Reviews have been exceptional, so have the steady rise in sales.
My romantic suspense, “The Choice,” is the first book in “Walk the Right Road” series, and the sequel “Lost and Found” is scheduled to be released next month.
What are some of the hardest things you’ve had to overcome as a writer, in order to be published?
Persistence! Don’t give up, which has actually become part of my vocabulary, and if something isn’t working out the way you’re approaching it, re-evaluate and come at it in a different direction. This business is filled with criticism, so you must develop a thick skin, tune out all ill-wishers and align yourself with positive people who are in this business to succeed in a positive way to help others.
One of the most important lessons is to overcome procrastination and learn that in order to have a great novel you’ll need to rewrite your story so many times you’ll become sick of seeing it. Seek out professionals. Hire them to edit your work and really listen to the feedback they give you to help improve your novel—you’re writing.
Become an expert in your industry. What I mean by that is it’s essential to study your market, know what’s going on in the industry and remember don’t blindly sign on with a publisher if it’s not in your best interest. Recently technology has become available allowing authors to take charge of their own career. I’m both self-published and traditionally. But even though I’m self-published, I still hire a professional editor and cover artist to ensure my novel and its presentation is the finest it can be.
Is there any advice you have been given that you could give to a young up-and-coming writer?
You need to like your own company in order to write because it’s an isolated occupation. If you truly want to write, then write and don’t let anything stand in your way. Be persistent and make time every day to write.
It’s important as well if you decide to self-publish that you hire a professional editor and book cover designer. You want to put your best foot forward. Presentation is everything, and the criticism directed at self-published authors is much harsher than traditionally published.
Absolutely. It’s the opportunity to tell your story and get it in front of a great number of people to read. I believe we all have a message in our stories–knowledge to share with others.
Has writing made you a better person? Was there a point in your life where writing helped you deal with something, a death or a problem relationship perhaps?
I like to be able share some of what I’ve learned in life with others and found the written word to be quite a powerful tool. Writing helps to keep me in balance and in the present so whatever life deals my way I’m dealing with in a more grounded, calm manner.
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