Your book, Corridor of the Mind, a collection of poetry that reflects your life, has garnish very good reviews. How did the book come about?
It took twenty years to write. I looked around for a place to self-publish it and found Createspace. It wasn’t what I intended to put out first. But the deal I made with myself was whichever one of my books I finished first I was going to put up for publication. My novel wasn’t ready yet and the poetry book was. I still regret I put it out first instead of my novel because that’s all people think I can do is poetry, which isn’t the case.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
When I was 13 years old and wrote my first short story for a middle school English assignment.
You have a long list of planned writing, a second book, plays and several mysteries, how do you manage all of this.
I have no social life that’s how. I also write when my son is at school. I write in the doctor’s office. I stay up late and write because I’m an insomniac and a writing addict. Any spare time I have I write, even if it’s two minutes a day.
Which sometimes it ends up being that. I make sure my son is occupied which isn’t easy to do, when I finally get him settled down, I write in between those times, which is shorter than most, but I use my time wisely. I don’t procrastinate.
But I also take that time/ per day to make sure my work is quality before releasing for public consumption. My mind is always going, it’s been like that since I was a kid. Hmm, maybe that’s where my son gets it from.
What’s my staunch motivation? Poverty. I live in poverty every day. I don’t live on welfare or food stamps, or anything like that (just want to put that out there). The income I do make which is barely enough to feed me and my son so I go without everything so he can have. My computer is mine because I bought it outright when I was recently taking college courses, through financial aid so I’m able to continue what I do best which is writing. With my income I’m able to keep a roof over our head, air/ heat and running water in a rented house. I walk, take the bus, or ride in a cab to get to the store, etc. Mostly walk which is dangerous for a female walking by herself in the big city. I get no child support from his father, my estranged husband. Giving my son the best life is my motivation to keep writing and the fact I’ve been doing it for 25 years. It’s also my inspiration. It’s why I persevere.
Writing poetry is very different from writing novel, how do you make the transition.
Writing a novel isn’t a transition for me. I started out writing novels and short stories first for several years. Poetry was a way of self-therapy. I started writing “Corridors of My Mind” when I was 15 years old. Besides, I’m a jack of all trades. I can write anything and have done so.
Which writers inspire you
Edgar Allan Poe, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Shirley Jackson, Langston Hughes, Bret Harte, the list goes on and on.
Was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your work?
Nothing surprises me when I’m creating.
What are your ambitions for your writing career?
The sky’s not even the limit. I aim to go beyond into the universe, galaxies, light years.
What’s your views on social media for marketing?
You don’t have to have money to promote your book. I don’t either. I promote it by particular groups on Goodreads that look for author’s to promote their work. I put samples of my work on Wattpad to gain an audience there. I do a lot of interviews with bloggers who some of them also review the book.
What is your advice to Indie Authors? On writing? Marketing?
Building buzz before your books initial release helps also. Networking and building a social connection works and social media is a part of that. But, I suggest you do this network building by sharing common interests with followers on Twitter and Facebook. I’ve found its better and it may eventually get you a sale or two. I have over a 1,700 Twitter followers and over 300 on Facebook. I talk about my book only a few times but, mostly talk about t.v. shows and movies I shared interest with other Facebook people or Twitter followers, which brings more interest to my Facebook and Twitter pages.
I’ve been in this writing/author business both on the traditional and indie side (I prefer the indie side by the way) for 25 years. A lot of it takes patience and perseverance. But, networking making connections with readers, bloggers and other authors on a down to earth level is the key. You can never stop networking it’s the main thing that will keep you afloat in this business. Also if you make a promise to someone keep it.
That is rare in this business and its invaluable, and paramount. It’s how I’ve been able to preserve and survive this business all these years because of my integrity to my readers, bloggers, and followers. I always keep my promises and I don’t make a promise I can’t keep.
Also the word “No” is a good procurer for you as a writer. It can keep you grounded and relevant when there are people demanding more than you feel you can handle. Also there will be haters don’t let them discourage you. A thick skin and an even thicker skin is needed for this business. It’s how I’ve maintained my place in this writing/publishing world. Also be humble and keep your eye on the prize, run your own race.
What is the toughest criticism given to you as an author?
That people are so shortsighted when it comes to my non-traditional way of writing. They always misinterpret it because it’s different and new, not what they expect it to be and oh, yes, being automatically critical of me thinking it’s my first time writing a book because I’m indie. I’m sick of people’s misconceptions when it comes to that.
Anything that comes from the authors I’ve listed above.
What book that you have read has most influenced your life?
What gives you inspiration for your book(s)?
Life, the darkest layers of humanity, reality, everything, even a broken window.
What part of your writing time do you devote to marketing your book?
As much time as I need to.
What do you love most about the writing process?
How can readers discover more about you and your work?
Just ask or keep an eye on my Goodreads blog or follow my other social media sites. But, mostly ask. That will give you more information.
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00O4KZI8Q