About Belinda Stevens:
Belinda J. Stevens was born in Yazoo City, Mississippi, the gateway to the Mississippi Delta, in 1948. She grew up in the turbulent sixties, and has a true appreciation for the difficulties experienced by Katherine in her first novel, “Just Out of Reach.”
An attorney by profession, Belinda tells the story of young love and dark secrets in the turbulent Sixties. Inspired by her own experiences as a Yazoo City High School student, Belinda writes about the impact President Kennedy’s assassination, James Meredith’s integration of the University of Mississippi and the Vietnam War had on one young Mississippi woman.
Belinda is a graduate of Belhaven University and earned a Masters in Social Science and a Law Degree from Mississippi College. From 1987-1997 she served as Special Assistant to Mississippi Attorney General Mike Moore.
Belinda resides in Brandon, Mississippi with her dog Barnabas, and practices law in Yazoo City where she is a Public Defender.
What inspires you to write?
I’ve always loved books. From the time I was in junior high, I wanted to share my own stories. My parents were avid readers and they encouraged me to read. As an adult, I find writing to be a great creative outlet. I find relaxation in writing and watching the stories unfold.
Tell us about your writing process.
Even though we’re in the 21st century, I still love writing on a legal pad. I write my books by hand. From there, In doing so, I feel the story come alive. I do a very broad outline, but from there I kind of go by the seat of my pants. If it’s been more than a day or so, I’ll go back and re-read what I wrote. In the process of reading, I get new ideas which help me flesh out characters and scenarios.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I listen to the characters and let them lead me! When you try to force them to go a certain way, it won’t always work. I have found that my characters tend to take on a life of their own.
What advice would you give other writers?
Get a good editor! You need someone to help with that process. If you can’t get an agent, get a publicist. There is so much involved with getting a book out into the marketplace. Interaction with readers is super important. Then there’s social media, developing a website, and sites like Bookgoodies.com. You need to get yourself out there in front of as many readers as possible.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I had publicists help me decide how to publish my books. I went through Amazon and self-published, although I’m looking at possibly going with a hybrid press with my next novel. I’m happy to see that self-publishing is no longer frowned upon.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think there’s going to be an expanded marketplace. There are so few bookstores now and not that many large chaines. I think the self-publishing industry on Amazon and hybrid presses (where the author and publisher both have financial obligations) is the wave of the future.
What do you use?: Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer
What genres do you write?: Novel (historical romance) and parody.
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.