Heartland, a Novel

  1. When did it dawn on you that you wanted to be a writer?  I’ve known since I was in middle school that I wanted to be a writer. I’ve written short stories, poetry, and now novels.
  2. What inspires you to write? My stories sometimes start as a dream. I also try to write about what I know. Many of my memories and experiences find their way into my stories.
  3. How often do you write?  I try to write daily, but life sometimes gets in the way.
  4. Writers are often associated with loner tendencies; is there any truth to that? I am an introvert by nature. However, I try to get out and observe people, listen to conversations.
  5. Do you set a plot or prefer going wherever an idea takes you? I’m more a fly by the seat of my pants writer. I let my characters tell me their story.
  6. What would you say is the easiest aspect of writing?  For me, the dialogue is the easiest part of writing.
  7. Do you proofread and edit your work on your own or pay someone to do it for you? I proofread and edit my own work, give it to a Beta reader, edit some more and finally, I submit to my editor.
  8. Have you ever left any of your books stew for months on end or even a year? I have let books stew for years! It sometimes takes that long for ideas to gel.
  9. What is your take on the importance of a good cover and title? For some people, the cover draws them in. For me, it is the first couple of paragraphs.
  10. Any advice you would like to give to your younger self? Don’t give up and don’t get discouraged. Just keep writing!
  11. Did you ever think you would be unable to finish your first novel? All the time!
  12. Do your novels carry a message? Yes. In Heartland the message is that you can rise above your circumstances and be true to yourself.
  13. How much of yourself do you put into your books? A great deal in Heartland. Many of Cam’s memories are my memories.
  14. How realistic are your books?  I try to ground my books in reality. I hope they are very realistic.
  15. Is there anything you are currently working on that may intrigue the interest of your readers? I have two WIPs. The first is a mystery involving a Military Training Instructor and her former recruit, now lover. The second is a time-travel.
  16. When you were young, did you ever see writing as a career or full-time profession? I wanted to write; however, I majored in journalism.  I didn’t believe I could make a living straight out of school as a writer,
  17. If given the opportunity to do it all over again, would you change anything in your books? I would change quite a bit! But I think most writers feel that way.
  18. Do you have a day job other than being a writer? And do you like it? I retired from the military and then worked another 20 years as a Veterans Service Officer.  So now I can write full time.
  19. Have any of your past loves inspired characters in your books? Yes, along with friends and relatives.
  20. Did you have a lot of differences with your editors in the beginning while you were still becoming used to getting your work edited? Yes. I have had to learn to let go of what I’ve written, no matter how painful.