About Heidi Herman:
I was born and raised in Central Illinois, the youngest of ten children, and my parents had a movie-level romance. They met during WWII at a USO dance in Iceland – he was Navy and she was Icelandic. I grew up aware of the uniqueness, but really embraced my Icelandic heritage after my mom penned her memoirs. I began writing children's stories based on Icelandic folklore. I had always loved writing but previously had focused on technical reports, white papers, and magazine articles. Fiction was entirely new to me and I was immediately hooked. After a 30 year career in telecommunications, I retired to devote my time to full-time writing. I travel for inspiration, but still make my home in Illinois with my two Schnoodles, Dusty and Thor.
What inspires you to write?
I have always loved books. I had read more than 100 books before the fourth grade, volunteered at the community library when I was in elementary school, and always dreamed of being a writer. Stories passed, either orally or written, serve so many purposes – to entertain, teach, warn, and inspire.
Tell us about your writing process.
I am definitely an outliner, gradually working down layer by layer. I get an idea for a story and work it over in my head until it's almost like a memory. Then, I outline the high points of each chapter, build the details, and add in the secondary storyline. The characters and events come to life as more detail is added. I find the more real it becomes to me, the more I am pulled in to get the story out of my head. I start slow in writing, them it consumes all my time until it's done.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I suppose I listen, in that I imagine the conversations between the characters. It's almost like eavesdropping.
What advice would you give other writers?
Whether it's thought, snippets of dialogue, or a fully-formed book, write it down. Write what's in your heart, and write the story you want to read. Don't think that one day you'll start, just start today.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
My first books were children's stories based on Icelandic mythology and folklore. The Icelandic community isn't large enough for a traditional publisher to risk the investment so I self-published. After publishing four books and two coloring books, I was comfortable enough to release my novel as self-published as well. This novel has elements of Iceland in it as well, so it was a good fit. I think that traditional publishing provides some big advantages – cover design, editing, distribution and promotion to name a few – and if this were my first book, I may have gone that route. I know I would have research and talked to as many authors from both sides and I could.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
Books of all sorts will always have a part in our lives and our culture. I think eBooks are convenient and I have hundreds in my own collection, but nothing can replace the physical book for many publications. I also think self-publishing is here to stay but will never replace traditional publishing houses. I'd like to see more standards put in place to ensure quality releases are available to readers and I think that is on the horizon.
What do you use?: Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?: Women's literature, sweet romance, children's, folklore
What formats are your books in?: eBook, 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.