Welcome Sloan Seymour to my blog! She is a The Wild Rose Press author with "That Montana Summer."
1. So, tell us a little about yourself? What is your typical day like?
I'm in my early thirties and I've been writing for six years now, although it's gone by fast. My current novel, That Montana Summer comes out in print this November, and I'm really excited about it's release! :)
A typical day for me starts around six o'clock and end around ten. Living on a horse farm, "sleeping in" is unheard of. The writing doesn't begin until all the animal are fed and attended. I try to write in the morning; it seems my head is most clear at this time and my imagination is best.
2. When did you start to write and how long did it take you get published? How many stories did you finish before you were published?
I began writing six years ago. It took five years before I got published. In that five years, I worked on the same novel, That Montana Summer. I toyed some with other writing projects, but just to keep my writing sharp. Getting That Montana Summer published was my main focus.
3. How did you break into publishing?
By sheer stubbornness. Rejected several times, I just stuck with it. "No" was not an option!
4. What influenced you to write?
Pure romance. I just love a good romance novel. I'm an avid reader and thought I'd try my hand at writing and see where it took me (hoping and praying it would take me somewhere.)
5. What inspired you to write romance?
Ditto to the above. There's nothing better than sitting down and reading a great love story. What better for it to be something you created?
6. What genre or sub-genre do you write? Why did you choose this genre?
I currently write western contemporary. One of my current WIP is in this same genre (a spin-off to That Montana Summer); the other is a romantic thriller. I would also like to write a historical, one day. I've had horses since I was seven so horses are easy knowledge for me. Throw in a dusty cattleman and, bingo, it's a book. :)
7. What difficulties does writing this genre present?
It's a tough market to break into. A lot of readers look for western contemporaries so it's got to be a great book in order to get published. Editors are tough.
8. What motivated you to write your current book?
I knew I wanted to write a book set in Montana, so I took several trips out west. I really wanted the book to seem real and authentic. Montana is such a beautiful state. It's what I think of when I image "the west." Plus, the cowboys out west are great eye candy. :)
9. How much time do you devote to writing each day?
If it's a writing day, usually five to six hours. After that, my brain turns into something resembling tomato paste (mush)! If it's a normal work day (nursing or on the farm), I try to spend the first hour of the day on writing, whether it's in the form of checking e-mails or plotting.
10. Tell us about your other works, books, stories, etc.
My current WIP is a romantic thriller about twin sisters. It captures your attention from the start and maintains your interest. The plot is complicated so it's taking a long time for me to get it wrote, but it's coming along. It's a fun book to write.
How do you write? Are you a panster or a plotter? Is it your characters or your plot that influences you the most?
Oh, gosh. I'm definitely a panster but I'm trying to break-out of it, a little. Never will I be one to have every scene plotted. My brain simply doesn't function in this manner. Some of the best ideas are spur-of-the-moment, and I don't foresee that changing in the future. I think it's best to have a detailed layout of your plot, and then let the writing go where it will.
What was the most usual way you came up with a story idea? I mean, I’ve gotten a plot idea from a song I heard, from brainstorming with a classmate. What unusual thing caused you to think, ‘hey, I could make that into a story?’
I've come up with some good ideas, just by listening to the stories people tell. Paying attention to the little things in life can, believe it or not, make for great ideas. Trying to keeping it all real and not let it get too far-out is the key. A good writer has to look outside the box and know when she/he have screwed-up a great idea.
If you could spend an hour talking to anyone from any time in history, who would it be? And Why?
Hmm....I'd like to talk to someone who was on the Titanic, I think. I have a fascination with large ships and I loved the movie; plus, the historical facts of the Titanic are so interesting. I'd like to talk to anyone from the early years (1600's, 1800's). I'm a history buff and read a lot of historicals so I'd love to know the accuracy of life back then and hear how it really was.
Tell us some of the things interviewers are saying about your story or stories.
I get asked about reviews quite a bit. I've gotten two great reviews and one not so kind. You can't please everyone, that's just a fact of life. Everyone loves the authentic feel of That Montana Summer; I get a lot of feedback from readers saying they felt as though they really were on vacation in Montana. It makes my day to hear this.
What is your all time favorite book?
Whitney My love, by Judith McNaught. The Notebook takes second place. Both of these books are great.
How do you do research for your books? What’s the most interesting bit of research you’ve come across?
I like on-hands research. I'm not one to visit a library and feel confident enough to write on a subject. Nope, if I'm writing about Montana, I need to go and visit the state. One fact I learned about "out west" is that Montana (at least the south part of the state) has red dirt. I always though dirt was brown, and nothing more, but that's not true. Now, how much research would it have taken for me to find that out? A lot. And yet it's so simple it could be easily over-missed.
17. What advice would you give aspiring writers today?
Keep plugging along. Find a fellow author who you connect with and is willing to take you under the wing. If you don't find a buddy right away, don't sweat, just keeping writing and it will all fall into place. And never, never quit aiming for your goal.
How do you like your fans to contact you?
E-mail. I check it often and love to hear back from readers. It's why I write. :)