Wednesday, December 6, 2017

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Rita Avaud A Najm

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

I‘ve always loved writing. I remember writing my first play and the lyrics of its songs when I was 7 years old. Besides me, the actors were my brother and my close friends. I even once won the first prize during a competition in Arabic poetry between all Lebanese Catholic schools, when I was 11 years old. The results were on national TV. It was the first time I stood in front of a microphone and a huge camera. I was shaking, but I did a good job.  


The hectic life took me from writing for many years until I went back to college in Houston, and I had to decide on my graduation project.
Since I was volunteering at my children’s school, mostly at the library, I decided that my project should be a guide for teachers to encourage students to read more non-fiction and poetry books.

I haven't stopped writing since then.

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

I actually don’t schedule my writing time. I always have a notebook next to my seat to write down whenever I have a new story idea. I used to wait until my children went to sleep or got busy watching TV or playing a game to write. But since I moved to Utah, and because of my children go to a year-round school with many off-track times, I have plenty of time now, especially when I am not substituting any French teacher. 

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

My notebook is always handy to write ideas. Random funny thoughts make me create a cute little story!  

When I write Arabic poetry, I usually prefer white blank papers.
But since English is my third language, in addition to my Arabic and French languages, a laptop is always needed. Honestly, it’s the spelling check and grammar that I need, to make sure that no mistakes are left.

Get the Book at Amazon

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

My least favorite thing is not finding the right word. Feelings are difficult to express sometimes.

My favorite part is when I reread my work and find that there is nothing that needs to be changed, removed or added. I know then that what I wanted to write about is perfectly done. 

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

“Memories are special moments that tell our story!”

The memories of my childhood and all the things I did back then make me smile now and wish to share them with my children. I have plenty of them. Some are like timeless treasures, some are sad, but all of them tell my story.

It doesn’t take me much to write a story when I have the main idea or character to talk about. Sometimes it takes an hour or two. But editing takes more than that. My two books didn’t take much! But it took me a year and a half to find the right publisher.
       
 What types of marketing do you do to promote your writing?

I have plenty of friends, and I work for many schools that have dual immersion French programs. That’s my main focus for a beginning, besides the KDP (kindle direct publishing) and media groups on Facebook and Instagram.

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

My two new books are already out “La Petite Rita” Volume 1 and Volume 2. I am working on my “La Petite Rita” volume 3.

Get the Book at Amazon

Besides my childhood stories, I also write short funny bedtime stories for children and families, that hold a moral lesson too. I have 5 stories ready to be published in picture book format that needs illustration. 

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

I actually have those 5 stories that need lots of illustration. I tried to do it myself since I am an artist, but painting portraits are one thing; landscape in an impressionism style on canvas is totally different. It is a special field of drawing.

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

Go ahead! Do not wait for the encouragement! Believe in yourself! Know your value! We all need someone to support our ideas…. But if we don’t have that someone we shouldn’t give up. We are all talented in different ways! Do not let discouragement stops you from doing what you like! Overcome any fear or frustration of not reaching your goal! Your effort will be rewarded at the right time by the right people. But guess what! You have to seek these people. You may not find them the first time, or the second time, but you will… Just go ahead! Make your words, thoughts and ideas come alive, your imagination visible and create your own world between the lines of your book!     

***
 Connect with Rita on Facebook or LinkedIn.






0 comments :

Post a Comment

Thank you for your comment.