- How long have you been writing? Forever. But seriously for publication for about fourteen years.
- What made you finally decide to get serious about writing? I worked on my writing when my two older sons were young, but it was hard to find the time between job and taking care of them. When I became pregnant with my youngest son, (two older sons were teenagers) I decided I wanted to be a stay-a-stay-at-home mom. So I decided it was time to get serious with my writing. I took a writing course at Institute of Children’s Writing. It taught me how to get published. I had my first short story published in 2001. I’ve had several short stories published until I got my first novel, Ghostly Clues, published in Nov 2012.
- Describe what you consider your ideal writing conditions. My ideal writing condition would to be all alone in a cabin in the woods so that I could sit and write all day without interruptions and distractions. But, of course, that ideal writing condition has never happened. I write best when it is quiet, but that doesn’t happen very often either. So I have learned to adapt and let the writing flow.
- Describe your rituals for preparing to write. I’m always thinking about stories ideas and my works in progress. So I jot down ideas in a notebook and write out scenes or do character sketches. I don’t really have any ritual for preparing to write. I just make my self sit in front of my laptop and write.
- How often do you write? I try to write everyday which is kind of hard when I have a three year old grand nephew living with me now. I used to love to write in the morning, but I have adapted to writing in the evening after he goes to bed. My youngest son is fourteen so having a three year old around gives me a lot of picture book ideas. So hopefully one of these days I’ll have some picture books published.
- Are you a plotter, a pantser or some combination of both? Panster. I love to sit down at the computer and just type whatever comes into my head. It’s a good way for my character to speak to me. Sometimes I wish I was a plotter first, but that comes later after I have a very rough draft done.
- Describe one of your favorite characters and tell us who you patterned them after and why. Right now my favorite character would have to be Sarah Kay, the main character in Ghostly Clues. She is patterned after myself. She is the daughter I will never have.
- Where do you go for inspiration? My kids have always been a great inspiration from my writing. Right now my grand nephew is a great inspiration. I need to come up with a picture book that has alligators, spiders, and snakes in it just for him. Also my dreams are a great inspiration for my stories.
- Name an author or authors who never fail to inspire you. My favorite author is Nora Roberts. I like they way she makes her characters come to life on the pages. Heather Graham is another author that inspires me.
- Tell us about your current WIP. Family Secret is at MuseItUp right now. Still waiting to see if they will publish it. The story is about a boy who discovers secrets about his parents that put his life in danger. There are demons, witches, and a ghost in this story. Another story I’m currently revising is Mysterious Visions about a girl who has visions and uses those visions to solve a mystery. Then there are other projects I’m working on plus countless story ideas rummaging though my head.
Thank you, Susan, for hosting me on your blog. Fun questions. Thank you for coming, Kay. It’s been a pleasure having you. And for those of you who haven’t read Ghostly Clues, you’re missing a treat. Even though it is a children’s book, I enjoyed it thoroughly and would recommend it highly for any middle grader.