Copyright: Devon Shanor Photography
I am really glad you’ve accepted my interview. Thank you so much for taking the time to answer my questions.
No problem! It’s my pleasure. I’m excited when people from around the globe have read my book and reach out to me!
Can you tell us a bit more about how you became a writer?
I studied engineering in college, but being a clear and competent writer was always important to me. Most of my classmates were terrible writers, so I ended up doing almost all the lab reports. While I was in the navy, my proofreading skills were useful and sought after, and I helped write a lot of the curriculum for the junior officer leadership class. Once out of the navy, I had a blog about things our family did, and that helped me become a better storyteller. Then a time came when all the kids were in school and I had more free time than I knew what to do with, so I started writing out a story idea, which eventually became The Traitor’s Kiss. I honestly never expected to write a book, though. I’m still amazed that it worked out.
Was it difficult for the first book to find a publisher?
It went much faster than I expected. I had an agent who was very confident, and when she told me who she had sent my manuscript to in November (all the biggest publishers!) I thought she was crazy. But I hoped when they said no, they might tell me how to make the story better, and then we could revise and try some smaller publishers. I was ready to wait months or even years. Nope. Right after Christmas we had an offer, then another shortly after.
Could you describe literature in three words?
Vital to humanity.
Is there a book you would never read? Why?
Fifty Shades of Grey. I read the description before it became super popular, and it never tempted me.
What’s your favorite book?
Just ONE?!?! That’s so hard! I usually go with Michael Crichton’s Timeline because it is quantum physics and medieval history in one story.
“As long as there is air to breathe and the bowels move regularly, all other problems are temporary and minor.” -Robert A. Heinlein (I said that once to my grandmother, and she looked me dead in the eye and said, “That is so true.”)
If you mean from my book, I always smile at “You see, the way this works is, I say I’m sorry for the horrible things I said, and you say you’re sorry for the horrible things you said. Then we smile and pretend we believe each other.”
EBooks or paper print?
Print. I like being able to go back (or ahead). Part of my memory of a book is also where certain passages are on the page.
What inspires you?
History and how we (the world today) stand on the shoulders of the giants who came before us. I get emotionally weepy over awesome things that many, many people have come together to make, like a rocket launch (Apollo 13 is one of my absolute favorite movies) or a huge bridge or an epic battle or a symphony.
Imagine you were given the opportunity to meet a book character in real life. Who would that be?
Aerin Firehair from The Hero and the Crown. She’s such an amazing fighter-not so much in combat but in spirit. No one cared about what she did, so she learned how to kill dragons just to do something useful. Most of her life was so lonely, too. I would totally be her friend and go dragon hunting.
What’s your worst nightmare?
Something bad happening to my kids.
The best decision of your life was?
Marrying my husband. He puts up with so much, poor guy, but he’s always been 100% supportive of anything I wanted to do. Even this writing stuff, though maybe he regrets that.
I can’t wait to read your next book. Are you currently working on a project? Is there any release date to reveal?
Thank you! The sequel to The Traitor’s Kiss, The Traitor’s Ruin, will be out in the U.S. this July. I wish I knew when the translations will be done, but I’m usually the last to know. Right now, I’m editing the 3rd book in the series, and I’m so excited about it. Seriously, it’s going to be awesome. That comes out in the summer of 2019 here, but again, no idea on the translations. After that, who knows? I have lots of ideas and something else I’ve been working on, but I don’t know yet if a publisher will want it. At the moment I’m super focused on finishing this trilogy, though.