About Silvia Villalobos:
Silvia Villalobos, a native of Romania who lives immersed in the laid-back vibe of Southern California, is a writer of mystery novels and short fiction. Her stories have appeared in The Riding Light Review, Pure Slush, and Red Fez, among other publications. Stranger or Friend, a mystery novel, was published by Solstice Publishing.
When not writing, taking long walks through the local paseos, or hiking the Santa Clarita Woodland Park trails, she can be found writing, blogging, or preparing and giving speeches for Toastmasters International.
What inspires you to write?
I am inspired by a certain idea, by the risk of not knowing how such an idea will turn out 200 pages later. I am inspired by long walks through the paseos, by hikes, and by nature. Being outside and moving gets my creative juices flowing. I am inspired by watching people and the world around me. I am drawn to premises filled with questions which arouse feelings that are often beyond imagination yet seem real.
Tell us about your writing process.
I don’t outline, but I do have a plan at least in the beginning. However, as I move along, most of my plan goes out the window. While strive to organized the plot and have some character sketches ahead of time, the rest — character interaction, narrative, direction — take a different shape from what I had imagined, and that’s what I like about writing. It’s a process I don’t control. It’s freedom.
So, I’ve learned to expect changes, expect everything will take longer. The process will develop organically. I must be prepared to adjust. Let the story develop. In the end, it’s all about the story.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
While I write, I try to listen to the internal voice, my muse, and that is a way for my characters to communicate. I form strong bonds with my characters, so yes, I certainly listen and talk to them. It can get strange when I find myself having audible conversations, sometimes in public places if an idea strikes. But I’m learning to save my character conversations for the privacy of my home.
What advice would you give other writers?
My advice to other writers is to listen to your heart. Writing is an emotional endeavor. Readers want to be moved, they want to care, emotionally, physically, intellectually. Also, read in and out of your genre, but particularly in your genre. It’s easy to give advice, but in reality the best way to learn is to watch how other writers do it. And write, write, write. Find a good critique group, take the feedback and write some more.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
Publishing was something I didn’t want to do alone. Once that decision was made, it was a matter of arming myself with patience and submitting to publishers. There was a large number of rejections. Certain publishers offered advice and invited me to re-submit, but in the end there was always a reason to say no, until one publisher said yes. It took years, but that was all I needed. One yes.
I would advise new authors to explore all their options and to be patient. Whatever the final decision, it should be based on lots of research, and on understanding the market.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think publishing will continue to evolve based on demand. Publishing is a business, and like every business it must keep up with the times in order to survive, whether we like it or not.
I would love to see more books based on real stories, real emotions, real people. There are so many good stories out there. I would love to see indie publishers taking risks. Sure, it’s easier said than done, but looking back at successful businesses, it was always the risk takers who brought us the most amazingly successful and loved product.
What do you use?: Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?: Mystery Thrilled Literary
What formats are your books in?: eBook, 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.