This page is links and answers to some of the most frequently asked questions people have about writing, publishing, and my books.
How it all Began: The Birth of a Writer
Preparing for life as a Writer – Love of Books
Preparing for life as a writer – Research
Preparing for Life as a Writer – Writing
What experiences enriched my writing
What led you to self-publishing?
Why I Self-Published my work
How I did it: Indie Book Publishing
Q: Do you have stories that sound good in concept but suck when you write them? Will they ever be published?
At last count I have 20 stories started and 18 abandoned and alone in my filing cabinet. Usually this happens when I have a spark of an idea and no planned ending to write toward. Most of them will never see the light of day. That said, I have cannibalizing bits and pieces in future work and The Raven King , one of my current works-in-progress is just such a story. Once I figured out the problem with it and cut out all the scenes that made it a mess, the basic plot was a sound one.
Q: What are your favorite and least favorite things about writing?
I love planning. I love figuring out who my characters are, what they look like, what they want, what I’m going to make them do, and the world they live in. I like outlining the story, but not to death. I’m not going to be drawing detailed maps are fill out pages of unless information about my characters. As long as I know where to start, where they are going to be mid-story, what the climax should be, and how it all turns out, that’s enough planning for me.
The first draft can be scary, especially at the beginning, but it’s still fun. It’s the later work, like editing, revising, and proofing that are my least favorite things. It’s necessary for a good book, but very tedious. It gets to the point I almost hate my books and never want to read them again. It’s one of the reasons beta readers are so important.
Q: Where do you get your ideas?
From all around me. Ideas can be sparked by an image I see, a scene in a movie, a word or phrase, questioning what is already being done, books, my kids, or a dream. They’re then added to my “Ideas Files” either on my hard drive or in my folders. Once I have an idea, I play the “what if” game. What if Hades wasn’t the man everyone thinks he was? What if there was a reason behind Aphrodite’s affairs? What if Odin isn’t the nice guy? Brainstorming “what-ifs” enhance the plots of the story from one dimension to many.