A small-town Mississippi girl grows up, snatches a magnolia during her college graduation, and sets out to be a writer, newspaper editor and mama. Annie Oeth has done all three—and lived to tell the tale. A native of West Point, Mississippi, Oeth began writing from her front porch swing when she wasn’t climbing trees and drawing. She is a graduate of Mississippi University for Women, embarking on a journalism career and motherhood soon after. In 1996, she moved from Mississippi’s smallest daily newspaper, The Daily Times Leader in West Point, to the state’s largest, The Clarion-Ledger, in Jackson. Starting as an assistant metro editor, Oeth moved to editing a family of nondaily publications before returning to the daily product as features editor in 2012. She’s been writing about family and fun for The Clarion-Ledger and in The Mom Zone blog ever since. She lives in Ridgeland, Mississippi.
What inspires you to write?
For me, the inspiration to write is the sheer joy of it. It’s something I’ve loved since I was a teenager. Draw your own conclusions about how long ago that was, but it wasn’t last week. Writing, and connecting with readers, is something that energizes me.
Tell us about your writing process.
I do outline somewhat, but I think most of my outlines are done mentally. When I do write out an outline, I tend to write it in the same document as the writing, in Word. I try to not get too hung up on what an outline looks like and how it is structured, instead just making it work for me.
What advice would you give other writers?
Don’t wait for inspiration. Instead, just show up to write. Some days are better than others, but usually inspiration shows up after you do.
Also, just get words written. Once an idea strikes, just get it down. It won’t be perfect, but that’s OK. You can polish it later.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I had talked over the concept of a book with a local publisher, and after exchanging a few emails and meeting, I knew we were in agreement on the project. The publisher of “Because I Said So: Life in The Mom Zone” is local, and I liked the idea of working and supporting a local publishing house. Another plus is the size of the publishing house: It is not so large that I can’t reach the president of the company. Every time I have needed input or answers, I have received them quickly and helpfully.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think the publishing industry is changing because of technology, but I don’t think there is a shortage of readers. Readers now have more choice than ever thanks to the advent of Kindles, Nooks and the like. Independent book sellers are having to deal with the technological changes, but the successful ones are doing so by making a store visit an experience, offering readings, book signings and the like to their customers.
What genres do you write?
Non-Fiction, Humor, Parenting
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print
Link To Annie Oeth Page On Amazon
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