Blog Post

50 Good Questions to Ask an Author

I thought a list of questions would be the perfect way for people to get to know me.

 

This list of questions was taken from Interview Questions

Here are my answers:

 

  1. What literary pilgrimages have you gone on?

I haven’t had the honor of doing this, but I have a wishlist.

  1. What is the first book that made you cry?

Charlotte’s Web.

  1. What is the most unethical practice in the publishing industry?

Plagiarism

  1. Does writing energize or exhaust you?

It energizes me and allows me to let my creativity flow. I also feel good about expressing my emotions. Writing never exhausts me unless there is a physical reason.

  1. What are common traps for aspiring writers?

False Promises. Don’t listen to publishers who want to publish your work without caring about your work. There are too many who want you to spend money to get your work out there. But, you end up putting poor work out if you don’t do it right. I’ve learned that the hard way.

  1. Does a big ego help or hurt writers?

I think it hurts to have a big ego. It’s great to be confident, but if your ego is so big it puts people off, you’re doing something wrong. I hate egos.

  1. What is your writing Kryptonite?

Non-Fiction

  1. Have you ever gotten reader’s block?

Yes. There are times when I can’t pick up a book and get into it. It usually means there is way too much on my mind.

  1. Did you ever consider writing under a pseudonym?

Yes, I have. I once thought about it, but I really like my name. Plus, I’m not embarrassed to share my work with the world.

  1. Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?

I just try to write what I want to read. I try to create stories that interest me. If others get into it, great. Not everyone has to be interested in the same subjects. If an idea I have isn’t original, I try to give it a different spin. It’s all about how you present it and what emotion you evoke.

  1. Do you think someone could be a writer if they don’t feel emotions strongly?

Sure. Emotions are relative. At times, you can write about emotion more than you can feel them.

  1. What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?

I have a few writing groups on Facebook I join. I also work with critique partners. Scribophile is full of supportive writers. Having someone read your work and give you honest feedback, always makes me a better writer. Our writing group #CreativeMisfits is starting on Twitter. It should be a lot of fun.

  1. Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?

All my work stands on its own unless it is in a Series or Trilogy. I try to be as diverse with my work as possible. Challenging myself is always best to improve my skills.

  1. If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?

Don’t be afraid of rejection. Don’t try to please everyone. Write because you love it.

  1. How did publishing your first book change your process of writing?

I am unpublished currently.

  1. What was the best money you ever spent as a writer?

Writing Programs

  1. What authors did you dislike at first but grew into?

Sparks, Poe, Hemingway, and James.

  1. What did you do with your first advance?

When I get one, I will spend it on writing materials.

  1. What was an early experience where you learned that language had power?

When I was in fourth grade, I learned that words held power. I was able to write a letter and win a contest about being kind.

  1. What are the most important magazines for writers to subscribe to?

Writer’s Digest, The Writer, Esquire, WRITER’s Journal, One Story

  1. What’s your favorite under-appreciated novel?

Villette, Charlotte Bronte

  1. How do you balance making demands on the reader by taking care of the reader?

I don’t make demands

  1. As a writer, what would you choose as your mascot/avatar/spirit animal?

An Elephant

  1. What do you owe the real people upon whom you base your characters?

I owe them nothing. I choose many attributes from different people to create my characters.

  1. How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?

Nearly 50

  1. What does literary success look like to you?

Having my work published and respected for its value

  1. What’s the best way to market your books?

Writing communities. Social media.

  1. What kind of research do you do, and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book?

I use the internet, books, travel, and interviews to research stories. I like to spend time on culture, history, and atmosphere.

  1. Do you view writing as a kind of spiritual practice?

At times, yes.

  1. What’s the most difficult thing about writing characters from the opposite sex?

Inner turmoil

  1. How long were you a part-time writer before you became a full-time one?

Around a year. I am still a part-time writer.

  1. How many hours a day do you write?

I work between 2-4 hours on writing. Another 1-3 on research.

  1. What period of your life do you find you write about most often? (child, teenager, young adult)

Now

  1. What did you edit out of this book?”

I did not edit anything yet.

  1. Have you read anything that made you think differently about fiction?

Too many books to count. I think the more I read, the more I expand my knowledge and thinking strategies.

  1. What are the ethics of writing about historical figures?

Be accurate and ensure you are writing about the proper historical events. Too many times, people get it all wrong.

  1. How do you select the names of your characters?

This is my secret. There are a few funny and crazy ways I choose names.

  1. If you didn’t write, what would you do for work?

I’m a student of Social Work. So, that.

  1. Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?

I used to publish my work on Wattpad. Yes, I have read all the reviews. No, I didn’t always like them. However, it really helps to edit and improve my skills.

  1. Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find?

Yes, I do this often. There are always little tidbits I like to add about people or places I am familiar with. It’s fun.

  1. What was your hardest scene to write?

I had to kill off the sweetest character I’d ever written. My first character kills and I cried. A lot.

  1. Do you Google yourself?

No. Okay, yes. Once. My name isn’t really registered online.

  1. What’s one thing would you give up to become a better writer?

Procrastination

  1. What are your favorite literary journals?

Ploughshares, The New Yorker, New England Review, CutBank

  1. What is your favorite childhood book?

The Little Prince

  1. What is the most difficult part of your artistic process?

Having the courage to let people read it.

  1. Does your family support your career as a writer?

Yes, they are very supportive.

  1. If you had to do something differently as a child or teenager to become a better writer as an adult, what would you do?

Experience more things and go outside. I was a bookworm who stayed inside all the time. If I had more world experience, I think it may have helped me.

  1. How long on average does it take you to write a book?

Between 4-6 months. The longest it took me to write a book was 9 months.

  1. Do you believe in writer’s block? (DO NOT ask whether they’ve had writer’s block).

No, I think it’s a matter of priority. If you can’t write, there are always other aspects of the book you can work on.

 

There you go. A little bit about me as a writer.

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