Author’s Roundtable: Laura LaRoche

How long have you been writing? Has writing always been something you wanted to do?

I started writing at the age of 10. I loved to draw pictures (and still do) then make stories to match my art. Yes, I always loved writing, but it was only a hobby until a few years ago.

What books or stories have you written? Published? Can you tell us a little about your books? What are they about? How did you get inspiration for the characters? Are the books based on personal experiences?

I wrote many books as a child, and they are stored away with my childhood mementos.

My first published book was “Black Woods.”

My passion for mushroom hunting inspired me to write this book. I started hunting morel mushrooms when I was a toddler. My father (bless his soul) dragged six kids into the woods and taught us the technique of finding them.

“Black Woods” is a suspense based on our local forest. There is an area in the forest my sister and I are scared to hunt, and we call it “death valley.” For years, I have toyed with the idea to write about this place. Eventually I did.

About “Black Woods”

Avid mushroom hunters and volunteers with the local Search and Rescue Department, Laura and Julie, who are in their sixties, remember that first encounter in the woods years ago. Four young men, who are fun by nature, travel to the woods with high hopes of a hunt they won’t forget. A call to the Search and Rescue Department will bring them shockingly together in the… Black Woods. Parental Advisory — Explicit Language

My newest published work is a humorous book titled, “Two Sisters: Prattle Tales of Playful Girls.”

This book is based on two of my great-nieces, Addy (age six) and Izzy (age four). I have witnessed many funny events throughout their “mischievous” lives. They use their knowledge in various ways to get, or do, what they want (sometimes outsmarting themselves.) There is no hidden message or golden rule in this book. It is solely entertainment for all ages.

About “Two Sisters: Prattle Tales of Playful Girls”

Ten hilarious stories about two mischievous girls. Come explore with Addy and Izzy. Each adventure tells the playful personalities of the….two sisters. A humorous children’s/adult picture book collection.

Is there any advice you have been given that you could give to a young up-and-coming writer?

Stay true to yourself and your writing. Stick to what you are interested in. Don’t let anything, or anyone, influence you to change your writing style into something you’re not comfortable with.

Can you talk a little about the benefits of getting your work professionally edited?

I have to say, I didn’t realize how important editing was until I released my first book. It is currently out there “as is,” but it is now with an editor. Editing is extremely important! This I have learned through the process of writing and self-publishing. Believe me, the readers will let you know, but don’t take it wrong. Learn from it and move on.

What is the hardest part about finding a professional editor?

Finding them isn’t that hard. It’s finding a reliable and affordable one that’s hard. As an indie author, cost plays a factor in every aspect of the book. Editors, formats and book covers are just some of the expenses.

What are some of the hardest things you’ve had to overcome as a writer, in order to be published?

I would say, self doubt was the hardest thing. “Will anyone want to read this?” was probably the biggest question I had.

How do you find enough time in the day to write?

I write on the fly. I’m old fashioned. I grab a tablet of paper and a pen. I carry it with me everywhere. To the doctors, playground, waiting in the car, visiting with friends and family. . .

How did you find time to write your books?

Pretty well the same as the answer above.

Do you set aside a special time to write?

Not always. I wish I could. I write when the time’s available.

Do you think writing has any benefits, and if so what would they be?

I think the largest benefit for me has been meeting and making new online author friends. The indie group is the friendliest group of authors. They honestly answer your questions and steer you to who or what you need. Without them, the experience wouldn’t have been as rewarding! Thank you to all my friends now and the new ones to come my way!

Can you talk a little about how writing relaxes you? Any specific examples you can share?

In each story I write, there is a little truth in them, from my own life. Remembering experiences, and times with the people I love, is the most relaxing for me.

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?

The main reason I published my first book was to prove to my son that if you put your mind to something, it can happen. He has a learning disability and low self-esteem because of it. As he ages I worry more about his future. Hopefully showing him that even his “old mommy” can do something new, that maybe he can, too. I’m not sure if this has made me a better person, but it makes me feel better as a mom.

Do you like to read? If so, what are your favorite genres and why?

Oh, I love to read! I used to read all the time. But now that I write, the time is more limited. My favorite genre is horror. Nothing like some blood and guts to get your mind tingling. (Giggle) I think I like horror the best because it is the most-likely scenario to never happen in the real world. (Knock on wood!)

Can you talk about how important reviews are to writers? What kinds of information do reviews offer authors like yourself? Have you ever received a bad review? If so how did it make you feel?

Reviews are an important learning tool for the author. They are intended to help other readers understand the book better, and the review is only the opinion of the reviewer. But they are very much needed to help explain your writing in a different point of view. I am grateful for all my reviews because each one means they downloaded and read my book. As an author, the main goal is to get your book into the readers hands. I’ve had bad reviews and good reviews, and I have learned a little something with each one. My first bad review made me upset. It’s hard not to take it personally, but you have to understand not all people will like your writing. When I do take the time to read a review (not something I do often) I will take notes on what they liked or didn’t like and learn from it.

About Laura LaRoche

I am a native of Noblesville, Ind., where I was born in 1968, but I spent my childhood in the small town of Shoals. My current residence is Linton, Ind. I come from a supportive loving home and as the youngest of six children, probably enjoyed being the “baby” a little more than I should.

At the age of five, I was diagnosed with nephrotic syndrome (a kidney disease), and I battled this condition for many years. Most of my treatments and long hospital stays were at Riley Children’s Hospital. By the age of 12, I had outgrown the childhood disease. I missed a lot of school during my illness, but it didn’t effect my grades. I was an outstanding student, and in the first grade, I passed after only 29 days of actual classroom attendance. I believe this illness has helped shape who I am today. I’m strong-willed and look forward to adventures eagerly.

When I decide to do something new, I push myself to learn. I have many interests to keep me busy. I’m a photographer, a rock carver, a fine arts artist, a digital art designer, an author, and most importantly, I am a proud mom.
I have a sense of humor and like to play pranks whenever possible. I also love the outdoors. . . fishing, hiking, boating, camping and mushroom hunting. Actually, mushroom hunting is more of an obsession.

Writing is my release from everyday life. I open my mind unto the unusual and begin writing. My life experiences have influenced my writing style. Most of my work is influenced by family members or my country upbringing.

From birth through the age of four, I lived in a large luxury home. My parents owned a gas station and a grocery store. They purchased a 40-acre farm during those years, and we would go to the country to enjoy nature. All six of us (their children) never wanted to go back to our home after the visit. We would plead and beg them to move there. One day our parents sold everything, and we moved to the farm. We lived in an old log home. At the time, it didn’t have electricity or indoor plumbing. We carried our water from a well and used a real outhouse. Within months, our parents had the home modernized, and we never looked back. I feel I was blessed to have the experience of both worlds, and I choose the country life, even today.

“In a world of words, anything is possible…” Laura Wright LaRoche

To contact Laura Wright LaRoche or to see what all she has to offer, check out her website.


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