Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I’m a retired children’s psychotherapist with over forty years working as a child advocate. Rarity from the Hollow is my debut novel, and follows publication of three short Lacy Dawn Adventures in magazines.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
Rarity from the Hollow is adult literary science fiction, not for the prudish, faint of heart, or easily offended. It was inspired by the resiliency of a victim of child abuse in treatment at the community mental health center where I worked — victimization to empowerment. The novel is satiric and comedic of everything that it touches upon, leading the reader from tragedy to outrageous. The female protagonist was a composite character based on my professional experiences working with kids, speaks in a colloquial voice, and, just like the real-life Lacy Dawn, envisions not only saving herself, but a better universe for us all.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I tend to close scenes during dreams, get up in the middle of the night to write lines that link one scene to the next, and then return to bed.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
Many authors have influenced my writing: Charles Dickens for his ability to present images in his social commentary, George Orwell for his belief that a novel should be more enjoyable than simple escapism, and Douglas Adams to insisting that even serious content must be great fun to read.
What are you working on now?
I would like to tell your readers that I’m putting the finishing touches on the next Lacy Dawn Adventure, Ivy, which asks: “how far will a child go to save a parent from addiction?” Frankly, I’ve been spending a lot of time self-prmoting Rarity from the Hollow instead. One of my poems just won first place in an international competition by the Fantasy Fan Federation.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
As a retiree on a fixed income, I’ve never paid for advertising of Rarity from the Hollow. It is a traditional small press publication, which means that while I didn’t spend any money to have the novel published, the press also doesn’t have a budget for advertising it. I’m hopeful that this interview and listing will draw attention and become the best website for advertising my work, pro bono.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Unlike me, I recommend that new authors start when young. It is my understanding that Andy Weir, The Martian, spent three years self-promoting that single title until he got a good bite. That’s a lot of time and if you wait to get started on the mission of having published works to promote, time will be short to achieve one’s dreams.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
The best advice that I’ve been given was from my deceased aunt: “It never hurts to ask, all they can do is to say no.” This advice has carried me through a lot of challenges in life, and not just ones related to writing and publishing.
What are you reading now?
I’ve been reading and commenting on one after another works by new authors in a variety of genres. My reading tastes are eclectic. However, I do not post reviews and my TBR pile is a mile high. So…..
What’s next for you as a writer?
I will continue to self-promote Rarity from the Hollow until I decide to put the finishing touches on Ivy and submit it to the publisher for editing. Since I just place first in a poetry competition, that door may be open, so I’ll write and submit more poetry for fun. I have a few short stories in the works if I slow down on marketing enough to get them submitted.
What is your favorite book of all time?
Well, I going to have to say that my favorite book of all time is Rarity from the Hollow, my own. Every time that I read it critically, I learn something knew as if I wasn’t the author. It’s been almost magic. Do you believe that creativity flows through a person instead of from that person? I’ve read a lot of writer’s talk about their works, especially song lyricists, an have wondered whether the author had even read her own writing.