I draw my stories and characters from a diverse business and personal background. I owned a national antique and art appraisal business for many years, leaving that industry and opening two yoga centers where I taught yoga and certified yoga instructors. I have traveled extensively throughout the world, most recently dividing my time between Huntington Beach, California and Sacramento, California, where my husband is a Senator. A gourmet cook, I have entertained Governors, Congressmen and numerous other political figures in my homes. A life-long avid reader, I bring the richness of my life experience to my novel, Blue Coyote Motel.
My second novel, Tea Party Teddy, a tell-all California political novel, will be out in early 2013.
What inspires you to write?
People’s stories. Everyone has one and each one needs to be told. A story may lie in something as simple as a phrase or as complicated as a messy divorce and marriage. We all think our story is the one that’s the most interesting, and so it is, to each of us.
I find people fascinating. I am constantly amazed at their resiliency to deal with whatever life hands them. I can do no more than honor them by putting their story to paper.
Tell us about your writing process
Most days I write. It’s pretty much as simple as that. I’m at a place in my life where I have the freedom to do that. I usually start with an idea of what the book will be about and then I jot down some working chapter headings. After that it’s a matter of fleshing it in. I tend to go back and edit a couple of times before I ever let anyone else read them. The first time it was really difficult, because I couldn’t imagine someone criticizing my baby. After the initial criticism, I realized how important it is to get feedback from others. They look at the story with fresh eyes and show me things I missed.
I wish I could say that I wrote the stores I write. It’s not so. The characters demand that the story be written a certain way. I remember one time when my husband called me and I was crying. Naturally, he was very concerned and wanted to know what was wrong. I told him that such and such had happened in the book and it was so sad. There was a long silence and then he said, “You know that you’re the author. Write it so you don’t have to cry.” I don’t think he still understands that I’m a conduit for the characters. They write the story.
I write on a computer and when I’m traveling, I use an iPad and then transfer it to the main computer.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I would say that I listen in on their conversations and record them. I don’t think I’ve actually talked to any of my characters, but they are as real to me as any flesh and blood person. I would be able to spot any of them in a crowd and sometimes, when I see someone who resembles one of them, I wonder if they have come to life! I always have thought about what’s real and what isn’t. For instance, do we live in a parallel universe? Is the book real or is day to day life real? Do we go somewhere else when we dream?
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I had a mentor in Sacramento, a well-known political lobbyist, who had published his first book, a thriller, with a publishing house. They said they would distribute it, proof it, etc. They went bankrupt, the proofing was shoddy at best and money owed to him was never paid. He decided to self-publish his second book and strongly urged me to do the same. He gave me the name of a highly recommended copy editor, who in turn, told me about a graphic artist. Patience is not a virtue of mine and I didn’t want to wait for several years and amass a stack of rejection slips.
Although the learning curve has been huge, I have no regrets. I’ve made some mistakes and spent some unnecessary money, but I will be well-positioned when I’m read to publish my second book, Tea Party Teddy.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
Based on everything I read and what I’ve heard from other authors, the future is in e-books. What I have not heard and yet I think is critically important, is that the younger generation has been raised on tablets, rather than relying on the printed word. They are going to continue to use them for reading books. I think newspapers are a good example. People are now looking to the web to get their news. I know a number of people who have cancelled their subscriptions to newspapers. An added plus for people who travel, both for business and pleasure, is the ease of having a number of books at one’s fingertips rather than packing a bunch of heavy books.
What do you use?
Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?
Fiction: suspense, thriller, romance mystery, mystery, political
What formats are your books in?
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