Thursday, May 29, 2014

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Claire O'Sullivan

Claire isn't yet published, but soon will be. Learn what she likes about writing, and what, quite frankly, she doesn't like, though the task must be done.

Tell me a about yourself. What got you started in writing?

I started writing in earnest in the 8th grade. I was in an English/Literature class that incorporated creative writing, and I started with a Danielle Steele-Esq romantic tragedy. I read it to the class at the teacher's behest, and to my surprise, my short story caused a great deal of tears to fall from the girls in the class. Without that teacher, I'm not sure if I would have continued writing. It propelled me forward into high school creative writing. Life has tossed me a twist or two, and I ended up writing for some time in the 1980's, and participating in a literary guild in S. California. Some more twists and turns and suddenly eighth grade is so far away-yet that spark to write remains. 

How and where do you write? Do you prefer a lap top or do you prefer writing freehand?

I've written in all venues. Now, I prefer a laptop. 

What's your favorite part about writing? Your least favorite part about writing?

My favorite part of the creative process is when my characters do things I never told them they could do, and yet my fingers fly over the keyboard - even without consent! My east favorite is editing. For the most part anyway- sometimes it's there where I find a more descriptive way to illustrate my thoughts. Still, editing can be truly heinous. 

How do you come up with your characters? Why would readers want to get to know them? 

I usually come up with a thought or spark of an idea.  My best characters create themselves - doing a written, sit-down 'interview' with my characters. I found once I know what type of character I want, 'conducting' an interview brings my imagination to life. 

What types of marketing do you do to promote your writing? 

None thus far-  I'm still editing my novels. My cookbook, in my professional name, I simply put on the shelf in my office. I self-published for convenience. 

How do you schedule your writing time? When do you write?

I write mostly evenings and weekends. I try to write an hour on week nights and I schedule 8-12 hours on the weekends. 

What are you currently working on? Do you have a new book out? 

I've finished Collision, which is still in editing. I'm working on Glass Slipper, from a man's POV, with the mindset and thoughts of a man struggling after war and in - film noir style. It's been my biggest challenge yet, especially since I'm not a man nor have ever served in the military. Also, approaching it from the 1940's lingo in modern day is interesting. Poor guy, gets himself in a jam no matter what he does. 

Do you have a project on the back burner? Tell me about it. 

I've several. I have several in a series based in the fictional town of Whiskey River. One is a children's book based on two dogs, solving doggy crime. 

What would you tell a beginning writer who wants to publish but doesn't believe he/she has enough talent?

If you have the desire, read a lot, devote yourself to the craft and don't give up. Join literary guilds. Get honest critiques - people who are just being sweet don't have your interests in mind. Take criticism and make it work for you. I find, the tougher my critic, the better my writing. 

Most authors write because it's in the blood, not the wallet. Always keep your day job. For me, the last thing I want to do is take my greatest joy and turn it into drudgery and deadlines.

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Thank you, Claire!

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