Interview with Stacey Watts author of Jelly’s in a Jam

Do all authors have to be grammar Nazis?

No. It is true authors should pay attention to Grammar.  I think a good story should be readable and free from errors which may trip a reader up. There should be a good flow. I am far from a grammar Nazi. I rely heavily on my editors.

Writers are often associated with loner tendencies; is there any truth to that?

Writing tends to be a job you do alone.  Unless you are collaborating with someone else.  I like socializing with people. I can be introverted and a loner at times.  I know some writers love to meet with their readers. I do too.

Do you set a plot or prefer going wherever an idea takes you?

Not a plotter at all. I like to enjoy the ride. See where it takes me. I like not knowing what is to come until it pops into my head it is more challenging that way.

What is the most important thing about a book in your opinion?

I like to escape.  I know it is sort of a romantic ideal.  I just like to disappear and you can practically go anywhere and be a bystander. One day you are in the icy lands of Antarctica and the next book the Sahara dessert.

How would you feel if no one showed up at your book signing?

I would be disappointed but ultimately I would look at the conditions surrounding the reason why. If it wasn’t a good book or perhaps the weather kept people away.  Things happen.  I do the best I can with the resources I have.

Do you read any of your own work?

I do read my own work.  I want to see it in print. I usually reread to see how things flow.

Writers are often believed to have a Muse, your thoughts on that?

I believe a muse can be anything that inspires.  I think a muse can be an idea, person, place or thing. Anything you can wrap your head around to make a good story. I would clarify muse as a noun.

Did any of your books get rejected by publishers?

Yes.  Many times. I finally got accepted by a small house and have two books published with Class Act Books.  I have three independently published.

Have you ever taken any help from other writers?

I have a friend who is a published author who I trust to read and give me advice.

When can the readers expect your next book in print?

Soon, I have one completed and in the editing process. I am shooting for a next month release date.

How big of a part does music play in creating your “zone”?

Oh goodness huge!  I love everything from classical to rock and roll depending what I am working on.  I create playlists for the books I write to set the tone for those books. It helps me cut the noise out so I can focus on the story.

Do you encourage your children to read?

I have 3 children and encourage them to read as much as possible.

Do you think the charm of public libraries has toned down much in the last decade?

With e-books so readily available, I think libraries and small book stores are struggling.  We, as a family, try to support our library and stay involved with the programs. It is fun and you can learn various things.

Do you need to be in a specific place or room to write, or you can just sit in the middle of a café full of people and write?

I can write anywhere.  I have three kids and would never get any writing done if I disappeared into quietness.

What other genres do you enjoy reading?

Romance, romantic suspense, historical romances

What does the word ‘retirement’ mean to you? Do writers ever retire?

I hope I never retire.  I would hate to think someday I would run out of ideas to write about.

If you die today, how would want the world to remember you?

Fun and entertaining.  A girl with a dark sense of humor and a flair for drama.

Have you ever destroyed any of your drafts?

No, I keep every starts and bad ideas.  I have a folder on my computer entitled “What were you thinking?”

Did you ever have a rough patch in writing, where nothing in the story seemed to fit or make sense?

Yes those at the end seem to be the best work. The most gratifying.

Did you specifically plan your studies around your interest of writing?

I am a learning nut.  I love to read and study things for myself.  I want to know more about any interests I enroll in a class or take a workshop.  One is never to old to learn or think.

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