Since I’m between drafts at the moment, I’m taking the down time to do some extra blog posting. I’m realizing these things come in waves.
I have hired Angi Black, owner of Wise Owl Words, to be my full-service editor for Swept Up. Angi was one of my first Twitter friends, and has generously given me much advice and encouragement in the last eight months. Angi not only edits, she is also working on a novel of her own, but I’ll let her tell you about that.
Your life seems to revolve around words. What is your writing background?
Well, my life really revolves around creating things. I’m a dancer and singer by trade, but I’ve always written. I’m in love with words. I mean IN LOVE! I’ve always had a notebook or five to jot things down. I excelled in my English classes and was the only one who got excited at the prospect of writing papers and essays.
But a few years ago we moved and for the first time in my life I was without a dance job. I started putting all the little tidbits and things I jotted down into a story and pretty soon it was a manuscript. I found the writing community on Twitter and met the most amazing people. It’s pretty much taken over. The writing, not Twitter. Okay, a little of both.
What made you decide to start up an editing service?
I was an intern for a rock star agent and I learned so much from her. She told me repeatedly, this is what will make you a great editor. She really got me thinking about it. I’ve always been good with the details and this field proved no different. So I took some classes and BAM, here I am. My editing company is called Wise Owl Words
I know you love to read. What are your top three favorite novels?
I love Gatsby because it’s told by a narrator that is not the focus of the book and he sees Gatsby with rose-colored glasses. Plus we only learn about the main character well into the book and through his words plus our enamored narrator. The set-up and dynamic is so different and brilliant.
I love Lestat because Anne Rice is my favorite author and this was the moment I knew I wanted to write books. I read this book and just knew there would be a place in the world for my books.
The Westing Game is simply a classic. I’m sure it’s no coincidence that Clue was my favorite board game growing up.
Who or what inspires you?
What inspires me is music. Music moves me and makes the ideas, words, and stories to the front of my brain and out on to the page. The plotting part of my brain is strangely inspired by the History Channel. I’m not sure what that’s about, but it happens.
Who inspires me is a bit more difficult. Obviously, the first people are my children. They keep me going.
The rest of that answer is broad and vague but absolutely true. Every person I come in contact with inspires me in some way. I’m an observer. I like to take in the world and all of it seeps into my work.
What drew you to the New Adult and Schmexy genres?
My novels hover on the upper line of New Adult and Adult. People assume I write YA because I work with kids, but I’ve tried and I can’t. The things I like to write about aren’t what you’re finding on the NA shelf at the moment. I loved my twenties so much, you’re still doing so many things for the first time and I love reliving that through my books.
The schmexy side of things is simple. I love the flirting, the kisses, the romantic and sometimes naughty scenes. There’s just something I adore about writing the relationship side of things. I love the first kiss, the first time, the first sleepover.
Do you write and edit full-time?
Yes. In addition to my ‘real’ job. Haha! Seriously though, I teach dance and theater but most of my time is devoted to writing and editing. Plus I’m a mom and a wife and I try to leave my house for fun sometimes, too.
Do you have a book coming out soon? Which direction will you go: indie publishing or the traditional route?
I’m currently seeking representation with a rock star agent. I just did a big R&R (revise and resubmit) with her and I’m playing the waiting game. Ideally though, I’d like to be a hybrid author. I’d love an agent and to be traditionally published, but I’m a fast writer and have so many ideas, that I know only doing traditional publishing will move too slow for me. Hopefully, my agent and I can work together to make this happen.
I’m working on a series of NA books about baseball. I’m really excited to get it out there. The characters are so dynamic and fun. I’m simply in love with them. I also have an adult book I’m working on, but it’s too soon to tell about that one.
What has been your experience with indie publishing?
I put out a book last year which has now been pulled and is getting a major overhaul. I hit some bumps with the book I hadn’t counted on. But I got good reviews and I learned some very valuable lessons. The actual experience though was great. I met some amazing people and have found nothing but support.