AuThursday – Susan V. Vaughn

suePlease welcome my fellow Liquid Silver author,   Susan V. Vaughn to the Clog Blog.  Susan, tell us a little about yourself and your background?

Hi, everyone! My name is Susan V. Vaughn. I am a contemporary romance author with eight published novels and one more due to release this summer. I live in Michigan, right off the shores of Lake Huron, with my husband and three amazing children. I worked as a hairdresser for over ten years, and am currently finishing my early childhood education degree. When I’m not caring for my family, working, or finishing school, I am writing, reading, and embarrassing my children.

Do you aim for a set amount of words/pages per day?

I do not set a word count or page goal each day. Writing is a treat for me. It’s a creative release. If I have a story I want to write, I let the process take over. I don’t force it. I let my characters tell me where they want to go. While I write, I try not to allow outside forces to manipulate my work. I put my all into that story, and only surface for air when I’m finished.

How did you deal with Rejection Letters if you received any?

I don’t take myself too seriously. I love to write, as do so many people. But that is not who I am. I want to be remembered in life as someone who cared about others. Someone who gave back to this world in a good way. I have people in my life that love and support me, and that is all that matters. When I receive rejection letters, I take it in stride. It is part of life. There are ups and downs. There will always be people out there who are better than you. They only thing you can do is move forward, learn from your setbacks, and improve.

I see you write for two different publishers. How do you juggle the demand for your stories with two different houses?

I work for two amazing publishers. I have learned a lot from both of them. My first two years as a romance author were ridiculous. I sort of dove into the industry all the way, publishing several stories at once. I was working with different editors at the same time for different stories. I barely slept. It was a lot of pressure, but I learned a lot from it. I have scaled back since then. I take time when I write, edit, and publish. I make sure I don’t do too much at once. And I keep a good calendar!

How did you come up with the idea for your BAY SHORE series?

I got really sick with the flu a few years ago, and while I was stuck in bed watching TV, the show Intervention came on. The episode I watched was about three siblings, one girl and two boys, whose mother was struggling with addiction. I have two sons and a daughter, so it was easy for me to put myself in their shoes. I fell in love with this family and felt for their plight. After I recovered from the flu, I realized I was still thinking about that family. I was wondering what would happen to them. That curiosity triggered my creative process. I decided to write each of those siblings their own love story. I wanted to give all three of them a happy ending.

What excites you most about your current WIP?

I have four romance novels I have been working on this year. I am excited about them all. My writing has really transformed over the years. When I first started writing romance I came at it with a lot of humor. I still use humor, because laughter is part of falling in love, but my stories are more focused now. I want my readers to take a journey with my characters and watch them grow.

How do you relax?

My entire household is obsessed with watching professional wrestling. The WWE is on in my house constantly. This is how my three kids, my husband, and I relax. We watch wrestling, yell at the TV, and on commercial breaks we wrestle each other. We have gone through two couches already this year!

Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

Website www.susanvvaughn.com

Twitter (URL – not @) https://twitter.com/susanvaughn1124

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Susan-V-Vaughn-123758787958942/?ref=bookmarks

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14660814.Susan_V_Vaughn

Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/Susan-V.-Vaughn/e/B016H54WWI

Join me on Saturday when we read an excerpt from Susan’s story, BEYOND FATE! ~Tina

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Teaching at Writer Zen Garden

wzgI’m teaching my FEARS workshop this weekend at Writer Zen Garden if anyone is interested. Classes are free to members. Membership is free.

http://writerzengarden.com/forums/

Feel free to share with any writer friends.

AuThursday -LT Kelly

Please welcome my fellow Resplendence author, LT Kelly to the Clog Blog.   Welcome LT!

Hi, Tina, thanks so much for having me!

Q:  Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

I was in the Royal Air Force from the age of seventeen. I loved that life up until I had children, it was fantastic career that provided a story rich environment. I left when I was pregnant with my second child.

It was when I was home with the children that I started revisiting my love of writing. I hadn’t really done anything much since I left school, but I’ve always been an avid reader and that has never and will never fail to be a part of my life. I took a level 3 qualification in Fiction Writing and the rest is history…

Q:  Where do your ideas come from?

All of my ideas come from experience. It’s so difficult to write what’s not in your heart, whether it’s good or bad.

Q:  Do you write every day, 5 days a week or as and when?

I would love to write 5 days a week, but the reality is much different. I have 2 kids and 2 dogs as well as a full-time job. I write as and when, but when I do it seems to flow because the story is continuously writing itself in my head.

Q:  Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just see where an idea takes you?

I used to plot to the letter, the problem is my characters always seem to ignore me and do what they want. Much like the aforementioned children and canines! So, I draw up initial loose plot and don’t beat myself up over changes or developments.

Q:  Do you ever get writer’s Block?

Honestly, I don’t believe in it. I think I spend so much time thinking about what I’m going to write and sitting there appearing to be in another world that by the time I eventually sit down and start typing it simply flows from my fingertips.

Q:  I see you write two book series, FALLING and KISSING, can you tell us a bit about them?

The Falling Series is about a woman called Teagan Lewis who just so happens to be a vampire. What I mean by that is that the two books don’t merely reply on the paranormal aspect to get by. Book one, Falling to Pieces is set in London and has a Romeo and Juliet forbidden love theme. Book two, Falling into You is where intricate plotting and twists and turns came out in my writing style. So, I’m not going to say too much about what happens.

The Kissing Series is entirely different. The series is contemporary romance, and they are standalone books. Both of them invite the reader into fantasy land in the form of making your desired Hollywood movie star, favorite model, or rock star assess-able in the realist of situations. Kissing Cassie for instance is a story about a British high school teacher who bumps into her movie idol on a European beach and he refuses to let her go. Whereas Kissing Katie tells a moving tale of the war widowed single mother who learns to love again with a rising rock star.

Q:  What are your thoughts on writing a book series?

I have written a follow on series, a standalone series, and a standalone so far. If I’m honest the standalone has killed me the most because the ending leaves no series potential. I felt a little bereft at the end of it. For the most part we grow to love our characters and to leave them behind is a struggle. I especially struggled with Teagan. Alas, we must let go and move on to avoid the sluggishness writing a long series can bring.

Q:  Do you read much and if so who are your favorite authors.

As I said previously, I am an avid reader. Although, now I’m a writer I admit I find it less enjoyable than I once did. I have a total girl crush on JK Rowling because I never thought I would like Harry Potter in a million years, but I was completely and utterly captivated.

Another writer whom I adore completely is MK Meredith. She’s a writer of contemporary romance, and I adored the books in her Malibu Sights series.

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

I’m usually found on FB. Please feel free to tell me to get off it and get some work done. You can go ahead and like my page here:

https://www.facebook.com/authorltkelly/

I run a review blog as well. I’m always happy to help other writers with getting their stuff out there, as well as enabling readers to find their next new treasure, so please follow along:

https://ltkelly.com/

Find me on twitter here:

https://twitter.com/@ltkelly2

Kelly

Join me for a new author, next Thursday.   ~Tina

AuThursday – Nicole Evelina

Nicole Evelina headshot horizontalPlease welcome, Award Winning Author, Nicole Evelina to the Clog Blog.  Nicole, you write in multiple genres, are there any particular challenges with that?

Branding is a little more difficult because I can’t simply say I’m a historical fiction author or a romantic comedy author, I have to explain that I do both. But it’s not much of a hassle. I mainly write historical fiction and I have more trouble moving from one time period to another when I change books than I do from moving from past to present or from historical fantasy to straight historical fiction.

Q:  Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured?

I have a full-time job, so most of my writing happens on the weekends and on vacation days. My day job is as a writer in a marketing department, so a lot of times by creativity is done by the end of the day, but I do write at night or on my lunch hour if I’m particularly inspired or if it’s during NaNoWriMo.

Q:  How did you come up with the idea for GUINEVERE’S TALE TRIOLOGY?Camelot's Queen eBook Cover Large

When I was in college, a friend of mine gave me a copy of The Mists of Avalon for Christmas. I LOVED it, but I hated the author’s portrayal of Guinevere as meek and well, boring. That made me seek out other books about Guinevere and I read Parke Godwin’s Beloved Exile, which tells the story of what happened to Guinevere after the fall of Camelot. That made me wonder what happened to her before and after Arthur, which is something you don’t hear much about. Then Guinevere came into my head, telling me she wanted me to write her story, including her time before and after Arthur (which I thought at the time would be all one book). The rest, as they say, is history.

Q:  Why did you choose Indie (self) publishing vs. Small Press or Traditional Publishing?

It was a combination of things, and a decision that I took a long time in coming to. One of the main factors was that it was time for me to get my work out there. It had been four and a half years – and six books – since I started querying agents. My work was just stacking up with no place to go, even though I had people telling me through my blog and social media that they wanted to read it. I wanted to be able to learn from it, which I can’t do unless others can read it. That, combined with wanting to have my historical fiction book Madame Presidentess published before the November 2016 Presidential election (which was by then impossible to do traditionally because of the time it takes to produce a book), and a desire to have more control over my career, led me to start my own publishing company. However, I am open the possibility of traditional publishing in the future. I haven’t ruled anything out.

Q:  What would you say are the main advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing?

Marketing and gaining visibly in a crowded marketplace are the biggest challenges for me. Even though my background is in marketing, it’s still a challenge because there are so many books out there and without a big house behind you, it’s hard to get people’s attention. I’ve been doing everything myself up to this point, but for my next book I’ll be working with a publicist, so I’m hoping that will help.

For me, the biggest benefit is the control. I get to have full input on the cover, the blurb on the back of the book, how and when sales take place and am responsible for quality control. I get to pick my own audio book talent and give them direction based on how I’d like the book to be performed. Those are all things most traditional authors have little to no say in. The downside is that all of this takes time and money, valuable commodities for every author, and you don’t have anyone helping in that department.

Q:  Who edits your books and how did you select him/her?

My editor is Cassie Cox of Joy Editing. I found her on the recommendation from an author friend who had used her previously. Listening to that friend is one of the smartest things I’ve ever done.

Q:  Who designs your book covers?

Jenny Quinlan (Jenny Q.) from Historical Editorial. I found out about her at the Historical Novel Society annual conference. She’s designed covers for many highly-respected authors and I couldn’t be happier with her work.

Q:  How do you market your books?

The short answer: every way and everywhere I can!

Obviously I use my website and blog, my newsletter and social media. I also do a blog tour for every book. I have one coming up with Chick Lit Goddess for my romantic comedy, Been Searching for You, and for my historicals I use Historical Fiction Blog Tours. I make use of guest posts, articles in publications like The Huffington Post and giveaways to get my name out there and my books into people’s hands. I also attend several conferences a year. Sending books to reviewers is high on my list and I do occasional advertising on Goodreads and Pinterest.

Q:  What are your current projects?

I’m hard at work on final edits to Madame Presidentess, a historical fiction novel about Victoria Woodhull, the first woman to run for President in the United States in 1872, which comes out on July 25.

After that I will be writing the final book in the Guinevere’s Tale Trilogy, Mistress of Legend, which will likely be out in early 2017. I have a first draft, but it needs serious help.

Next will be a WWII book that tells the story of an unsung real-life heroine. But you’ll have to wait to find out who.

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

My website/blog is http://nicoleevelina.com.

 

I can also be reached online at:

Join me on Saturday when we read an excerpt from not one but two of Nicole’s stories.  Also if you are in the Chicago area, Nicole will be signing at the The Spring Fling 2016,  book signing will take place on Saturday, May 21st from 3-5pm at the Hyatt Regency in Schaumburg, IL.   ~Tina