Wednesday, September 25, 2013

ASPIRING AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Jennifer Roche

For those of you not in the loop, this is my first aspiring author interview. I decided to focus on aspiring authors every Wednesday. Authors at all levels of learning have something to teach us. About writing and about life.

I'm pleased that Jennifer is my first aspiring author interview. Jennifer began as a teacher; today, she fills her time with short stories, non-fiction and poetry. Find out how trials in her life have helped her improve her writing.


How long have you been writing? Why did you decide to write?
I have always written poems and short stories throughout my life since I was a child.  I have notebooks full of poems and short stories that I wrote in. I enjoy researching information and learning new facts.  My official writing company, Rainbows of Happiness LLC, that I created began this summer after I left the teaching field. 
I decided to write because it's something I am passionate about.  Writing excites me like nothing else.  I've always kept a notebook next to my bed, should I get the urge to create a poem late at night.  Writing has helped me through some of the hardest times in my life.  By getting my thoughts out onto paper, I am able to release any pent up emotions.  For me, writing has always served as a type of therapy.  Some of my best pieces, I feel, come out of those tough times in my life.
What makes you keeping going?
I feel that one day I will come across an idea for a book that will be so fabulous, that I will finally be able to create a best-selling book!  That has always been my dream and I hope to make that dream a reality!
I also am lucky to have a strong support system in my husband, family, and friends.  Their constant encouragement to follow my passion fuels my desire to write.

What does your writing day look like? What do you do to study the craft?
I originally planned to write a few hours each day, but I've been known to work until midnight, longer than a regular job!  For me, each day is different.  Since I work from home, I'm constantly checking my smartphone for job updates, writing proposals for jobs I'm interested in, working on my own writing pieces that I want to copyright, checking emails, updating my blogs, writing articles for jobs I have, doing research, and improving my profiles on sites.

As a writer I am always learning.  I am probably among one of the last remaining pencil and paper authors out there.  I like to physically write everything out in front of me.  I had to play catch up in the world of technology when it came to writing.  A month ago I never would have thought I'd be creating blogs from scratch, or understand technological terms such as SEO, but now I have learned all these things and more!  If there is something I am unfamiliar with when it comes to technology and writing, I search the web and research that subject. I also read posts or articles from writers that have been in the field for awhile, and compare my writing with theirs to see how I can improve.  I've participated in Webinars that have been offered. Finally, I have a wonderful tech-savvy husband who is willing to find useful websites and send them to me!
Do you have a goal when you'd like to be published? What is it? If you don't have a goal, why haven't you set one?

I would ultimately love to be published in the next year.  I feel this first year is for networking, getting my blog up and running, and getting traffic to my sites so I can create a strong following. 
Are you thinking to go the self-published or traditional route?

I plan on self-publishing.  Nowadays with options such as using the Kindle Platform or promoting your book on Amazon, and LinkedIn available, more authors seem to be going the self-published route.  Not to mention more people seem to be downloading books from online sites such as Kindle or Amazon, as opposed to going to the book store and buying a physical book.
Tell us about the genre(s) you write and why you like them.
I write in several genres.  Poetry is my favorite because you can create poems about any issues on your mind at the moment.  I've written poems on everything from butterflies and dragonflies, to world issues such as homelessness.  Poetry, I find, is the most carefree genre because you can design and format your poem into the style that you want.  Poems don't have to rhyme, they can be short or lengthy, it is based on the author's discretion.

I also enjoy writing fiction and nonfiction.  When I write fiction, it is usually a story aimed at young children, having taught elementary school.  I  have created teen fiction mystery stories as well.  In the nonfiction genre I created several self-help books.  These topics range from ways to find happiness in the everyday, to a book on overcoming miscarriage by looking for signs.  People often try to make their own lives better, so I assumed that self-help books would be popular.
Why is The Little Engine That Could  your favorite book? What have you learned from it to help you to be a better writer?
Product Details
The Little Engine That Could is my favorite book because it talks about never giving up, even if something seems too hard.  This message can be translated into trying to become a published author, in that the writer tries time and again to get their book published to no avail.  Do you give up? No! You keep trying to create that perfect poem, book, or story until you get it right, thus overcoming your personal mountain.  The engine's chant of "I think I can" turns to the affirmative as it reaches the mountaintop.  This is the message I like to apply to my writing.  If you think you can become a better writer, you will succeed when you believe in yourself!
What would you tell a writer like yourself, struggling to get published?
Don't give up!  There are a lot of highs and lows in a writing career.  Concentrate on the highs to help get you through hard times, and never stop writing!  Your time will come! You have to market yourself to people so they know who you are and can recognize your work. You may have to accept lower paying jobs along the way, writing about things you may find uninteresting, but you're gaining exposure and experience.  Those are invaluable resources!  Each experience brings with it a lesson to be learned. Writers are always learning and improving themselves as part of the writing process.
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