Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I was born in Frankfurt, Germany, my mother is a German national and my father was in the US military. My father was military so we moved around a great deal, and making friends for me was difficult. So my mother bought me a diary when I was 10 and I would scribble in it all the time. From that point on, I learned to live in my head and write everything down, so I guess I owe my mother for making me into a writer. As for inspiration, I’ve always had a deep love for the paranormal and fantasy genre, so when you begin writing you write what you love. I was the typical child in that what I wanted to be changed daily. There was a time I thought I’d be a lawyer or in law enforcement, but something always stopped me from that path. I always had a passion for both reading and writing, but it wasn’t until I reached adulthood that I started thinking that I could make a living from writing. I dabbled in short stories and even screenwriting before I finally found what made me happy.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
Sexual Confessional: Confidential Admissions From Social Media – I was at a low point in my career. I had just self-published my first novel – a YA Fiction – and had my dreams and hopes dashed when it didn’t sell the way I had hoped. Initially, I was feeling sorry for myself, so I had decided to do an informal survey seeing what people thought about the big questions in life (ie what are we here for? What’s it all about?) What happened was that I was overwhelmed with the response I received and decided to make it fun and ask more intimate questions.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I think every writer has unusual habits, it’s the nature of being a creative person. I tend to formulate chapters and how I want my books to look (and feel) in my head long before I start writing. Essentially, I will know every thought, idea and chapter, and even what I want to convey before even putting pen to paper. Once I start writing, the chapters just flow organically and it’s usually a quick process for me at that point. I tend to get hung up on the idea part.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
J.R.R. Tolkien, J.K. Rowling, Stephen King, C.S. Lewis, Ian McEwan, Edward St. Aubyn – really anyone that has an interesting voice. I love authors that will reach deep into their own darkness and lay it bare for the world to see, I find that style of writing revealing and refreshing. I think too many authors play it safe and don’t open themselves up to controversy or put themselves on the line and the writing lacks passion – my opinion.
What are you working on now?
I’m focused on religion at the moment. I’ve become fascinated by spirituality and really want to jump in and offer my opinion on religion. I recently finished a personal observation on feminism that goes against the grain and I felt that a logical next step was religion. I almost can’t wait to see what I say about that topic!
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I’ve had really great experiences with blog tours, but really I’m open to any avenue that helps me reach people that will enjoy my writing. Ultimately, I feel I have something to say, and I want the people that want to hear my voice to find me, so really I’m open to anything. I’ve recently started looking into podcasts – eek!
Do you have any advice for new authors?
I’m very opinionated, so yes! Write what you’re passionate about, and don’t worry about finding audience, etc., the voice will bring the audience, and you’ll be much happier with your work if you are passionate about it. There is far too much negativity in this world, don’t allow your self-worth to be based on negativity. Lastly, DO NOT give up – everyone’s voice deserves to be heard, and you will find an audience.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Dress for the job you want, not the job you have. I wasted too much time saying I’m a writer and hiding my passion instead of saying I’m an author and being proud of my work. I may not appeal to everyone, but I am passionate about my art, and the people that enjoy my work are the people I worry about.
What are you reading now?
I’m re-reading William Shakespeare’s Star Wars by Ian Doescher in preparation for the movie – yep I’m a geek. On my Audible I’m listening/reading The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North, The Girl on the Train: A Novel by Paula Hawkins and Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling
What’s next for you as a writer?
After I finish my religion piece I think I’m going to revisit my first novel, the fiction piece. I loved that story and I think I can revamp it and do much better.
What is your favorite book of all time?
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte – I have 17 copies and even a rare leather bound edition. And for Audible – anything read by Tom Hiddleston his voice is like liquid sex!