1. What inspired you to write A New Dream?
A New Dream actually came from my love of the mountains. They have always been a great inspiration for me. The peace and quiet refreshes me and renews my strength. It just seemed natural that my very first published work would take place in a mountainous area. The other thing that inspired me was my desire to see a story that I wrote published. It was my dream and so the name just seemed right.
2. It seems like two separate but equally extreme life situations have occurred in these character's lives, what do you feel was the commonality that brought them together?
Wow, what a good question. My answer would have to be pain and loss. Sure, they each had different types of pain and loss, having lived through very different lives but it was still had similarities. Walt was determined to see his dream of Olympic gold come true and when life handed him a complication, he couldn’t see past it for the pain of his injury and loss of his goal. Curt’s pain came from the rejection of his family’s and the loss of the love every child deserves to have.
3. Where do your character's develop from? Do you know them entirely before you write them or do they develop?
One of the best things for me about writing or reading for that matter is watching a character develop…grow into something more than they were when you started the book. Do I know them entirely when I begin? No. Do I have an idea of how I want them to be at the end? Yes. It’s getting them there through the trials and the good times that makes writing personal for me.
4. What is your writing process? How do you get from start to finish on a book?
I read an interview of another author I know and they ask her if she was a plotter or a panster? I had no idea what that meant at the time. Being a writer, I did a little research and guess what, I’m both! I definitely make a list of characters where I briefly describe them and I make a short outline of what I’d like to see happen in the story but that’s about all the plotting I do. Oh, and I always know what the end will be. The rest is more of a process of mixing the main characters with the additional characters. Watching them struggle with their issues and working through the little things life throws at them to get them to that happily ever after.
5. How long does it take you to write a book?
With A New Dream it was a two part process. It started out as a short story that eventually developed into more. The book I just finished Drifting Sands took me a little over four months. I just began the concluding book and I believe it will take about the same. I am a slow writer and I tend to rewrite things if I’m not happy with the way a plot or scene is going. I also hand write everything first (very old fashioned, I know) and then I transfer to the computer and more rewriting takes place.
6. What part of writing do you like the least? What is your favorite aspect of writing?
The part of writing I like the least has always been the end of the story. It’s almost like I don’t want to let it go. It’s become a part of me and saying good bye is so hard. On the other hand, my favorite part of writing is bringing the characters through to the happily ever after I wanted for them from the very first time I thought of them and their story. I know it sounds conflicting but I feel pulled in two directions when it’s time to write The End.
7. What was your favorite character trait of each of these guys?
With Curt, it has to be his self assuredness. He had gone through hell when his parents had deserted him, but he had pulled himself up and made a life for himself. Walt took some time to get to love. He was so focused on the failures in his life; he couldn’t see what a good person he really was. He cared about the people around him. Not just his sister but the people in his community, the workers at the lodge and even the visitors. It just took him awhile to figure it out.
8. Why do you write?
That question makes me smile. I write because it makes me feel so good. It’s a way to express my own sadness or joy. For as long as I can remember, I’ve always kept journals, wrote little stories and made up stories to tell my children. It was my dream to be a published author from the time I was in high school but life happens. You grow up. You get married. You begin a career. You have children. Then one day your grown son says, “Mom what kind of dreams did you have when you were growing up. You’ve helped us follow ours. Why can’t you follow yours?” So A New Dream was my dream too.
9. Who are you when you are not writing? (hobbies, family, pets etc)
Who am I? I’m a wife. I’ve been married to the same wonderful man for almost 38 years. I’m a mother. I have two almost grown children. My youngest is a senior in high school this year and she is making life very busy right now. My son, the one I mentioned before, is becoming the man that I always dreamed he would be. We have a dog named Muffin because she was so tiny and fury when we got her she looked like a bran muffin. We have a cat named Mouse because my daughter has a sense of humor. I’m a country girl who lives in the city and runs away to the mountains every chance she gets. And my absolute favorite thing in the world is reading…period. Since I discovered e books, I haven’t gone a day without having my reader by my side.
10. What is the most interesting thing about you?
I think the most interesting thing about me is I am a middle aged straight female who writes M/M romance and mystery stories. Most of the people who know me personally were totally shocked when I first revealed what kind of story A New Dream was. That’s one of the best things about being on the other side of middle age, you’ve lived long enough to realize that love is special no matter the age, race or sex of the individuals involved and you better hang on to it with all you have in you, when you find it. The other thing I’ve learned is it’s never, ever too late to follow your dream!