Almost all of the stories I have written come to me in either a vision or a dream – sometimes in a flash – other times fully formed from top to bottom. When they do come I am so grateful. There is no way I couldn’t try to bring them to full fruition on the page. I assume that’s why they came to me. At the heart of that commitment is a simple and abiding love of stories. Small ones. Big ones. It doesn’t matter. A story – any story – that touches you is a blessing and as long as I have a story in my heart, I will tell it.
Is there a particular book or series that really inspired you to be a writer yourself one day?
Not really. I think mostly because I never thought I would be a writer. I grew up reading and loving the work of Maya Angelou, Toni Morrison, Alice Walker, John Donne, Alexander Pope, Octavia Butler, and Frank Herbert, but I never thought I would share a profession with any of them – as a poet, a writer. I can’t imagine anyone picking up Octavia Butler’s Wild Seed and thinking, “Oh yeah. I can totally do that!” I’m so glad I never read any of those stories with the aspiration of being a writer. I would have been too intimidated. But I do love a good story, so when I was given one, I had enough humility and respect for the miracle of it to try to write it down.
I can write anywhere really. Most of my books have been written in my house, specifically in my office, at my desk or on my purple couch. I don’t really need anything, but a good pen or pencil, some paper, and quiet. I usually start with an outline because I’m a planner. I need to know how the story is going to work before I start. I just don’t have the spiritual fortitude to write 50,000 words then throw them out. I can’t do it. Once I have an outline, I write each chapter, usually, in the same order they will appear in the book. I write long-hand, so the process takes longer than it should, but the words come to me more easily that way. In my soul, I am an analog girl.
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