About Anne Marie Stoddard:
Anne Marie used to work in radio, and it rocked! After studying Music Business at the University of Georgia, Anne Marie worked for several music venues, radio stations, and large festivals before trading in her backstage pass for a pen and paper (Okay, so she might have kept the pass…). Her debut novel, Murder at Castle Rock, was the winner of the 2012 AJC Decatur Book Festival & BookLogix Publishing Services, Inc. Writing Contest, and the 2013 Book Junkie’s Choice Award Winner for Best Debut Fiction Novel. It was also a finalist for Best Mystery/Thriller in the 2014 RONE Awards.
Aside from all things music and books, Anne Marie loves college football, Starbucks iced coffee, red wine, and anything pumpkin-flavored. She is a member of Sisters in Crime and the Sisters in Crime Guppies chapter.
What inspires you to write?
I’ve always been a mystery lover. I’ve been reading them for years, but I’ve rarely come across one that was set in the music industry, and never one set at a concert venue. Having spent part of my life working in and around venues, I decided to give writing a try using my experience in the music industry for inspiration, and the plot just sort of evolved on its own.
Tell us about your writing process.
I am a huge fan of Scrivener–it helps me to keep my ideas, scenes, and chapters organized so that I can easily go back and locate the exact spot of the story that I’m looking for when a new idea strikes! I also keep a notebook with me at all times so that I can jot down ideas for dialogue, scenes, and character descriptions as they pop in my head. I’ve also been known to text myself an idea or two on my cell phone while working out at the gym–I’ve gotten pretty good and speed-texting plot ideas to myself while on an elliptical.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I totally listen to my characters, though I usually only respond inside my head. I get funny looks if I answer them out loud 😉
What advice would you give other writers?
It’s never too late to start writing. I used to write short stories and poetry in elementary and middle school, but I took a 16-year hiatus and didn’t begin writing “Murder At Castle Rock” until after five years of college. Use the life experiences you’ve had to shape your stories and characters, and the writing will come more easily than you think.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I originally self-published “Murder at Castle Rock” through a package I won in a writing contest. After a couple of years, the book got picked up by Gemma Halliday Publishing, and since my writing had changed a lot in that time, I was able to revisit the manuscript and whip it into shape. I’m much happier with it now, and I’m excited to introduce Amelia and her friends to new readers. In fact, the second book in the series, Deception at Castle Rock, is out on November 12!
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think that publishing is gravitating toward a DIY-method that opening up opportunities for more and more aspiring writers to achieve their dreams. My favorite method is the hybrid model of publishing with boutique imprints like Gemma Halliday Publishing–you get a lot of the creative control and input that traditional publishers don’t typically offer while also receiving the marketing support that you wouldn’t get if you self-published. It’s the best of both worlds!
What do you use?: Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?: Mystery, Romantic suspense, thriller
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print
All information in this post is presented “as is” supplied by the author. We don’t edit, to allow you, the reader, to hear the author in their own voice.