When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
How long does it take you to write a book?
I started Lost Helix in 2014. It as published in 2020. In between there were many many edits. From outline to first draft took a year. Before that, it hung out in my head until a bunch of random ideas came together to create Lost Helix. After the first draft, it went through three writers groups and multiple rounds with editors at Dancing Lemur. Writing is hard.
What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
I keep hearing the same thing. LOST HELIX was so engaging and fun that it makes for a fast read which tells me I achieved my primary goal in everything I write: to entertain the reader
Does writing energize or exhaust you?
Both. I love creating worlds and honing my work until it's ready for readers. But at the end of the day it often leaves my brain drained. It' like I've been lifting heavy boxes all day but with my mind.
What is your writing Kryptonite?
My cats. I have three of them and they need attention and they need it NOW. Meow!
Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?
I see no reason why you can't do both. Every story will have some similarity to some other group of stories, but they are still original.
What authors did you dislike at first but grew into?
At what point do you think someone should call themselves a writer?
If you dedicate enough time to the craft, you're a writer.
What do the words “writer’s block” mean to you?
For me it means my cat Princess has nudged her way between me and my keyboard, like she's doing now.
Are there therapeutic benefits to modeling a character after someone you know?
What comes first for you — the plot or the characters — and why?
I reverse engineered the characters to fit their role in the story. I knew the setting and the plot and then fit the character into their places. Along the way, my planned characters grew within their rolls, and other characters seemed to just appear, like Katie. She's a little girl who pops in and out of the later part of the story. Katie appears shy at first but, as she opens up, she becomes a delightful character with some wonderful lines.
How would you describe your book’s ideal reader?
Anyone who enjoys a good adventure, with side of mystery.
How much research did you need to do for your book?
My whole life is research. I watch a lot of documentaries, news, and entertainment that is current and old. To be a good writer, I believe one should be a jack of all trades. I wrote a paper on that for The STEAM Journal at Claremont University.
Tell us more about your book/s?
LOST HELIX is a sci-fi adventure/mystery. Stuck on an asteroid mining facility, DJ dreams of writing music. But when his dad goes missing, DJ finds a file containing evidence of a secret war of industrial sabotage, a file encrypted by his dad using DJ's song Lost Helix. Caught in a crossfire of lies, DJ must find his father and the mother he never knew.
I am also featured in the anthology IT CAME FROM HER PURSE, my short story about yoyos on a quest, "Tangled Fate."
I will also have a short appearing in another anthology this fall, if all goes according to plan.