1. Tell our readers a little bit about yourself.I’m a home-schooling mom of three children and write while they work and any spare moment I can find when not cooking (and I cook almost everything from scratch – silly really,) and tackling piles of laundry and dishes. I think that I always wanted to write – even as a kid, I used to read ferociously and dream about being an author one day. I rediscovered my passion for writing when I was living up in Zambia where there wasn’t much technology or anything to do to occupy the mind. So, I started writing children’s books because I’ve always enjoyed working with children. They weren’t the best, but they were fun to write at the time. Years later, I decided to try an adult novel and it turned out to be a romance. That’s when I realised I wanted to write romance. After years of perfecting my craft, I’ve finally found a genre that works for me – sweet, contemporary.
2. What number book is this? First? 100th? 200th?(Nora only!)First traditionally published!
3. Everyone who writes knows it's not easy - what methods do you use to keep at it on days when it would be so much easier to go shoe shopping?I don’t know if I’m too good at that! I’m a terrible procrastinator. The best way for me is just to sit down and write whatever comes. I can’t analyse what comes out too deeply else it won’t get done. That’s for the editing stage later. Reading good romance books helps to inspire me to write, so sometimes I take a break and read a good book or do something totally mindless like knitting or washing curtains or something. Shoe shopping is not my favourite pastime as I have such small feet and I absolutely despise wearing high heel shoes. Maybe a new pair of running shoes or flip-flops could be a temptation when I earn some good royalties.
4. What is your top promo tip for other authors?I’ve been doing some promotion with my book, but it would be very hard to say which of those things have caused sales or not. I think the best thing is to write good books and to connect with your readers through facebook, blog posts and word of mouth. I would say, a bit of everything works – you can’t go wrong, but don’t be too pushy. Just connect in a fun, interesting way. And make sure you’ve got a decent website – you don’t have to pay for one –there are lots of free blogging options available. Find the one that best fits your style. The hardest part is keeping it current.
5. How does writing fit into your day? Or does your day fit in around your writing?Unfortunately, during the school term, writing has to fit into my day. There are moments when my kids have to read their literature books or science, and then I have some quiet minutes without their many questions, to work on my books. I also try to write in the evenings when I get a chance. The school holidays are usually my best times when I can get some decent word count done. I can’t wait for the long summer holiday! But, many times, writing takes precedence, i.e. I’d rather write than watch TV or do gardening, car-washing or anything to do with combatting dust.
6. Is there a book you haven't written yet that you're dying to? What genre?One day, I want to write an Edgy Inspirational Novel – basically it’s inspirational that pushes all the boundaries and can be controversial in some circles. I want to write a book that changes someone’s life and touches them in a deep way.
7. Any craft books you recommend?I would definitely recommend these grammar books – Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style and My Grammar and I (Or should that be ‘Me’?) by Caroline Taggart and J.A. Wines.
8. In what way is being a published writer different to how you thought it would be?I honestly thought a lot of the angst would go, but it’s still there. At times it’s been even worse, yet other times I can see my confidence level has risen significantly. I also didn’t realise how much extra work goes into editing and promotions, but I do enjoy that part too.
9. Do you write to music, or with the tv on in the background, or do you need complete silence?I think if I had a silent home, I may be able to tolerate some music, but at the moment, silence is rare, so music just adds to the distractions. I can write while the family watches TV though, but I wouldn’t say at my best.
10. Do you have any tips, tricks or sacrificial rituals you do when you hit a story roadblock?Take a break and do something else for a while – it should come to you while you’re doing something mundane. If not, the break alone should clear your mind so when you sit down, it will probably come to you. If it doesn’t, there’s something that needs to be changed earlier on – the conflict possibly or maybe your characters are acting out of character.
Another thing I do is go back and read the whole book from the beginning to get a feel for the story because with all the interruptions of life, I sometimes lose a feel for my characters.
There’s nothing like a deadline though to force you to finish.
Kienna loves dressing up her clients in beautiful gowns at the bridal shop where she works but she doesn't believe in fairy-tale weddings or happily ever afters. After all, her prince turned out to be a frog, and her divorce broke her heart. So when she realizes one of her brides doesn't love her groom, she tries to warn him. If only he would listen, she could help him avoid her same fate.
Blake is sure Rachelle loves him but she leaves him at the altar. He should have listened to the wedding gown girl's warning. He should have been hurt, but instead he's only relieved--and in pursuit of the woman who tried to save him from a broken heart. If only she'd trust him not to be like her ex. Doesn't she know that when he says he loves her, it means forever?
Wedding Gown Girl is available from Astraea Press, Amazon, Amazon UK and Smashwords.