Exclusive Interview with
Let’s start with your Career as a writer!
When did you start writing?
When I was 5 years old. I wrote sweet little romance books for my grandmother. My mom would make me little blank books out of notebook paper that I would fill in.
What makes writing your passion?
Ever since I can remember, I've loved the written word and writing. There is no other form of communication like the written word. You can convey depth and meaning and many layers of meaning with writing. When I write, I am happy.
How long have you been writing?
Since I was five, so five decades. I earned a degree in journalism in college and have written nonfiction for many years. I have also written fiction during that time.
What was the feeling when you published your first book?
Elation, euphoria, joy!
What’s the story behind your choice of characters?
My characters choose me. They walk onto the page/computer screen and start talking and acting, and I start writing.
What annoys you the most in pursuing a writing career?
That I have to sleep and take care of life's daily tasks! There's always so much more to write...
How do you get over the “writer’s block”?
I don't get writer's block.
We all know the writer’s path is never easy, what makes you keep going? What advice would you give to new authors?
I love writing and creating characters and worlds. Advice to new authors: Keep going, keep going, keep going. The only way you will "fail" is to stop. You keep going, you will "make" it. There is just no other way when you keep going.
If you could go back in time and talk to your younger self, what would you say?
You're doing a great job!!! Keep going!
Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with the bad ones?
Yes. If the "bad" ones have any merit, I take note for future reference. If they are from what I call "serial" bad reviewers with obvious bad intent, I ignore them.
What is the feeling when you get a good review?
I am very happy that the reader enjoyed the book, because in addition to writing to make myself happy, I write to make readers happy and inspired, and to give them a good escape.
Have you ever incorporated something that happened to you in real life into your novels?
In a way, yes. Experiences. Reactions to events.
Which of your characters you can compare yourself with? Did you base that character on you?
There is a little bit of me in all of my characters.
What do you think, the book cover is as important as the story?
Because we are a visual society, the cover is the first and sometimes the only thing that readers see. I also believe in having the cover reflect the story in some way.
Do you connect with your readers? Do you mind having a chat with them or you prefer to express yourself through your writing?
I LOVE connecting with readers. I answer every reader email, and any comments on social media.
How do you feel when people appreciate your work or recognize you in public?
I am elated , inspired and extremely grateful.
Who is your favorite author? Why?
Although his style is much different than mine, I have always loved John Steinbeck. His descriptions and character development are excellent.
What’s the dream? Whom would you like to be as big as?
I prefer not to compare myself to anyone. I only compare myself to me. I look back at how far I've come and where I want to go, and then I keep going.
Would you rewrite any of your books? Why?
No. When I finish with my books, they are done. I don't release them until I feel that they have wings to fly.
If you could switch places with any author – who would that be?
No one. I like being me.
What would you say to the “trolls” on the internet? We all know them – people who like to write awful reviews to books they’ve never read or didn’t like that much, just to annoy the author.
To the "serial" bad reviewers I mentioned above: "Your opinion doesn't matter, and your intent is very transparent."
What would you say to your readers?
I love and appreciate you all! Thank you so much for taking this journey with me!
Thank you for sharing! Let’s talk about your Personal Life!
Share a bit about yourself – where do you live, are you married, do you have kids?
I live in Southern California. I have three grown kids and a grandson, who is the most adorable little boy in the world!
What is your day job if you have one?
I have always supported myself writing. I am a fulltime freelance journalist.
What are your hobbies? What do you do in your free time?
Gardening. I am an avid gardener and a garden writer. I have a gardening channel on YouTube, and I create my own fertilizers and grow and sell plants. I also enjoy cooking from the garden.
Did you have a happy childhood?
I have many happy memories from childhood--especially those communing with Mother Nature.
Is there a particular experience that made you start writing?
I was born.
Do you have unpublished books? What are they about?
Only the ones I'm still working on.
What do you think should be improved in the education of our children? What do we lack?
Creative play/learning. The ability to think for themselves.
If you were allowed 3 wishes – what would they be?
I have so many wishes all day long--many of which come true.
What is your favorite music?
I like most kinds of music.
Share a secret with us 🙂
I need to chew gum when I write. I can go through a whole pack of gum in a writing session.