Tuesday, November 29, 2016

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Anne Evans

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

When I was a child, my dad had a personal library of 4000 books. He got me hooked on the reading addiction early. From there it was a natural step for me to start wanting to create books of my own. As a middle schooler, I fell in love with Rosemary Sutcliff’s juvenile historical fiction and at age 15 I finished my first full length novel. The rest is history.


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

As the mom of a preschooler and new baby, I write either before the kiddos get up, or after they’re in bed. While on deadline, though, I’ve been known to attempt trying to string sentences together while my 4-year-old “Joe-Joe” has his preschool songs turned up to an ear-blasting amount of decibels.

How and where do you write? Do you prefer a lap top or some other method of getting your words down?

I type 120 wpm so trying to piece together thoughts on anything slower than a laptop keyboard drives me crazy. Thumb typing on my phone is sheer torture.

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

My favorite part about writing is getting people’s edits in my critique groups and seeing my story through their eyes. My least favorite part about writing is getting people’s edits in my critique groups and seeing all my mistakes through their eyes.
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How did you come up with your book idea? How long did it take you to write your book?

Several years before I had written Hot Lead & Cold Apple Pie, a romantic comedy set in the 1890s in the silver-mining town of Gilman, CO. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get a book contract for it. Then my literary agent sent out a call for Christmas novella submissions. Using some of the characters from my former novel, I came up with Plum Pudding Bride on a whim and pounded out the entire manuscript in a month or so. Happily this year I got a contract on Hot Lead & Cold Apple Pie, so if you like Plum Pudding Bride, you will be able to stay in Gilman, CO a little longer for another love story full of adventure and comedy.

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

I do a little bit of everything. Right now though, I just started a Facebook group connecting book bloggers and authors. Unlike other groups, it’s blogger focused and bloggers get to pick the books they want to request rather than having authors contact them. Here’s the link. If you’re a blogger, please do check out the group. https://www.facebook.com/groups/192888064470707/

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

Rosemary Sutcliff initiated my love of Ancient Rome and taking two years of Latin in college cemented that love. The first novel I ever wrote was set in the Roman Empire and finally I got a contract for novels set in that period. I have a four book series set in Ancient Rome coming out next year and I am currently working on edits. The Love & Warfare series follows a family of elite Roman patricians, the Paterculis, through the first and second century A.D. Each book is a love story, but there are plenty of villains, barbaric uprisings, smuggling, and slave revolts as well.

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

As soon as I get edits out of the way, I will start in earnest on my contemporary romantic suspense, From Harvard to Al-Qaeda. An atheist Harvard grad student ends up in Saudi Arabia posing as a native under a fake passport for her Ph.D. thesis in middle eastern studies. A Christian CIA operative falls in love with her and they get tangled up in Al-Qaeda of the Arabian Pennisula in Yemen trying to stop a terrorist plot. Still looking for beta readers if the premise intrigues you.

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

Most writing lectures I’ve attended start with a form of this quote: “If there’s a way you can convince yourself to give up writing, do so, because writing will drive you insane.” It’s true. You have to look far and wide to find as low paying, highly frustrating work as writing. I personally have tried to give up writing on numerous occasions and I just can’t. I need to write. Stories jump at me and I can’t seem to push them away.

So don’t worry about talent. If writing is in your blood, you’ll find a way to make your writing publish-worthy. One can’t write all the time for years without getting good at it. And if writing isn’t an all-consuming passion for you, do yourself a favor and find a job that pays more. Your checkbook will thank you.

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