Welcome back, Sue. God has really been moving in your writing life. What do you see on the horizon?
A horizon to me is simply a visual perception of how far I can see and that's how I apply it allegorically. I concentrate only on what's happening now. I can't afford to spend time speculating about what lies beyond what I can see. What do I see on the horizon—me writing stories that appeal to a lot of readers. And to that I must quote my favorite Captain, Capn' Jack Sparrow of course, "Now give me that horizon."
Has your writing changed your reading habits? If so, how?
Not really. But many other things have changed my reading habits. For example, since so many talented authors have had to go the self-publishing route to escape an industry set on their demise, I now DEFINITELY look at those books as well as ones coming from small publishing houses like mine.
What are you working on right now?
Finally I can get back to the third book in my Thirsting for Blood Series, Cyn No More. My 2007 Bram-Stoker Short-listed, 2009 Pluto Award Finalist Never Ceese has been republished through my new publisher Black Bed Sheet Books. The second in the series, Forever Richard, is due out this September republished by the same publisher. Finally the series will be under one publisher. Black Bed Sheet will also publish Cyn No More. I'm also working on converting all my books into all the different e-book versions available and DRM free too. They will be available exclusively through my publisher.
I'm also having all my books approved by Spring Arbor. Though it doesn't help get my work in to larger Christian bookstores that sell "targeted" Christian fiction (as Spring Arbor says it should) it does make it so my readers can at the very least order my work through these venues. No rest for the weary.
What outside interests do you have?
None. Writing is all I do when I have free time. I love it that much.
How do you choose your settings for each book?
The stories choose the settings. I've no idea where my characters will end up but it's always fun finding out.
If you could spend an evening with one historical person, who would it be and why?
Robert Kirk, an Episcopalian minister in the Scottish Highland [1800's] who set out to collect many striking stories from his parishioners about elves, fairies, fauns, doppelgangers, wraiths, and other beings who, in Kirk's words, were "a middle nature betwixt man and angel." I would love for him to teach me Gaelic as well.
What new lessons is the Lord teaching you right now?
That Pharisaical tendencies still exist. And while being pleasant with folk that lean heavily on these tendencies is indeed tough, it is the Christ-like thing to do.
What are the three best things you can tell other authors to do to be successful?
1. Respect your readers and hire a professional editor. Most small publishers can barely afford to exist much less provide a "free" edit to their authors. Though it's a pricy endeavor, it's an investment that will make the difference in sales.
2. General market publishers aren't inherently "secular" publishers and "Christian" publishers write for one very targeted demographic. Therefore if you're simply an author who is a Christian and choose to write for that one demographic, seek a "Christian" publisher. Otherwise general market publishers are the publishers you need to seek.
3. You need approval by Ingram's Spring Arbor for customers to even order your books via a Christian bookstore. But since Spring Arbor doesn't check for "targetedness" (it's a word I just made up, ) large Christian bookstores still won't put it in their stores because they have to check to make sure their core market readers won't be offended by it.
Tell us about the featured book.
Here's the description: Because of her cancer, Anna Chadwick wouldn't live long enough to carry her twin infants to term. Yet she wanted nothing more than for them to have a chance at living. Learning one would be stillborn didn't lessen her desire. It would take a miracle....so she prayed for one. When an electrical entity arrives to take the place of her stillborn, some would reflect that prayers aren't always answered the way we'd expect them to be.
This is one of the first stories I ever entertained writing when I thought I might like to write something for others to read. In some ways it "sort of" is like the movie Powder in that it's about an electrical entity. It's my usual fast paced style of writing and is currently at the British Fantasy Society for their take on it at their request. In fact, they more or less begged for it. You may get an e-book version in any format DRM free at my publisher’s site.
Please give us the first page of the book.
The two-lane road wound its way around the foothills
of the lower
Appalachians like a ribbon carelessly tossed on the
ground. Anna Chadwick gripped the steering wheel tighter and
eased her foot from the gas pedal. The long day’s drive bearing
down on her, she began to reconsider. Nothing about this
makes sense. No one just picks up and leaves everything
behind. I don’t even know where I’m headed.
Panic took root. Confused tears blurred her vision. She
wiped at them with the back of an uncertain hand, then gave her
head a determined shake.
"No! You can do this. You have to do this." She
placed a maternal hand on the small bulge of her stomach. "They
deserve a chance. Both of them."
With this thought, she pushed away her panic and drove
on. Yet when dusk threatened, the uneasy feeling returned. How
much farther would she have to go? Was she on the right road?
The landscape looked the same no matter which road she took,
rolling hills populated by thick pockets of pines. With no
directions, one could easily get lost in an area like this. She’d
taken this road because at the moment she had to make a
decision, it seemed the road to take. Now, she wasn’t sure.
Nothing really distinguished this road from the other five or six
she passed up already. That suffocating thought was enough to
make her consider turning around.
You may go to my publisher website and read the entire first chapter!
How can readers find you on the Internet?
Thank you, Sue. It's always a pleasure to host you on my blog.
Readers, leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)
Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.
The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.
If you’re reading this on Feedblitz, Facebook, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link.