Wednesday, June 14, 2017

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Elizabeth Maddrey

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

I don’t remember ever not writing. My mom used to give us blank books as kids and tell us to go write a story—and so we did. I have one from when I was in Kindergarten. And while my handwriting and spelling aren’t the most amazing, there’s still definitely the bud of a little story there.

Other than that, I’ve been married to my husband for almost 22 years now. We have two wonderful boys who I homeschool. We used to have Shetland sheepdogs, and I miss them desperately, but the boys have allergies, so we’re now pet free. When I’m not writing or doing mom/wife stuff, I enjoy crocheting (can’t knit to save my life – something about the two needles throws me off) and I used to adore counted cross stitch, but I think I overdosed on it and am still on a break. :) I also love to read. I’m rarely without a book within ten feet of me, ‘cause you never know when you’ll have time for a page or two. I also love action movies and anything sci-fi, which is maybe odd for someone who writes romance, but there it is.

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

The short answer is “whenever I can.” Usually that works out to an hour or so in the afternoon when the boys have “rest and read time” up in their rooms and then in the evenings after they’re asleep, when hubby is on the Xbox.

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

I use my trusty laptop. Often I’m at the dining room table in the afternoons and then in the recliner next to hubby in the evenings. Sometimes, if the weather’s nice and the boys are running around in the yard, I’ll sit out on the deck.

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

I love watching the story unfold. I’m not a plotter, so the story just happens as I write – it’s always a bit of an adventure. But I love seeing the threads come together and getting hit with the occasional twist out of left field that I didn’t see coming.

My least favorite part? Editing. Hands down. I have a fabulous editor, which is a definite bonus, because it means I don’t have to do as much on my own. I just let her tell me what I messed up.

How did you come up with your book idea? How long did it take you to write your book?

I usually start with a seed of an idea – and those can come from anywhere: conversations with friends, a sermon (truly!), random musing in the shower (I get a lot of ideas in the shower, something about the hot water, probably.) Generally I can finish a book in about two months.

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

I probably don’t do enough of this, but I do guest blog posts and interviews when I can, I have a Facebook page that I try to keep active and interact with people (not just market), I’ll place ads in various reader-oriented emails, all the general types of things that I think most authors do.

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

I’m currently working on Cookies & Candlelight, which is book two in the Baxter Family Bakery series and part of the larger Arcadia Valley Romance multi-author series. (But I’m also writing this in March – I’m guessing by the time June rolls around it’s going to be different. At least, I hope so! By June I should be working on the 5th and final book in my Taste of Romance series, A Tidbit of Trust.)

I have a book, A Heart Reclaimed, coming out on the 20th of June as part of a box set with several other authors. This box, Cherish, is eight brand new full-length Christian romance novels. My book is book 2 of the Peacock Hill Romance series (book 1 is in the Love at First Laugh box set currently and will release as a solo when the box is no longer available for sale.)

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

I have several speculative fiction/sci-fi projects on the back burner. I want to get to them – and I really hope I do eventually. But for right now, I’m pretty happy in romance novel land.

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

I’d tell them a couple of things. First, they’re probably wrong. Most of us tend to underestimate our abilities. We’re just not good judges when it comes to that. Second? Talent is only a small fraction of what it takes to write and publish – so much of writing is like any other skill, it comes from practice and study. So if they want to do it – really, really want to – get craft books and read them, go to conferences, and write. Write all the time. Find a critique group. And never stop learning and improving.

Social Media:
Twitter: @elizabethmaddre


Elizabeth Maddrey is a semi-reformed computer geek and homeschooling mother of two who lives in the suburbs of Washington D.C. When she isn’t writing, Elizabeth is a voracious consumer of books. She loves to write about Christians who struggle through their lives, dealing with sin and receiving God’s grace on their way to their own romantic happily ever after.

***
A question for Kathryn:

A question I often get asked is: Do you ever get tired of your characters before you finish your story (or series)?  (and for me, the answer is no.)

I would say yes on my end. When I began the Susan Cramer Mystery series, I was all gung ho on Susan Cramer, a middle-aged detective who bungled practically everything. But as her daughter, Brianne, grew up, I began to see in her a love for a great mystery as well, and so during book four of the Susan Cramer series I felt the need to start a new series with Brianne as the main character. Book one of the Brianne James series, Tie Died, will be released this summer.


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