It all began with a Conference I attended two years ago. Masaru Emoto, the author of Messages from Water, was coming to town and I had to go see his latest discoveries. For those of you who aren't familiar with Mr. Emoto, he's known for his claim that water's structure can be affected by human thoughts and emotions. Amazing, huh? So, as I was listening to some experiments he'd done with Magnetic Resonance, an idea started forming in my mind, and that's when the two magic words popped into my head. What if. In those few minutes, I created a character, Tristan. An hour later, I already had a story. A few hours later, I already had a Trilogy. And that same night, I started writing, with a big smile on my face.
How long did it take you to write The Ylem, from conception to release?
Mmm. It took me a long time, actually. Since it was my first writing experience, and since English is not my native language, it took me about eight months to end the first draft. Then other three months to polish it. And then other four months to add new chapters and rewrite several scenes (I was working with Bob Plunket, a stellar editor, back then). And then more and more countless nights after I realized my book was still too long (more than 140 000 words!) and had to start working on trimming it down a bit. So, overall, it took about 2 years to really finish The Ylem and release it.
Yep, publishing, even if it's self-publishing, is a long process where patience and perseverance come hand by hand.
Self publishing, what is the deal?
Writing is a wonderful thing. You can go to places in your mind you would never expect to go. But if you want to share it with the world and make a living out of it, there's definitely a high price. Being an indie writer is tough work. You don't have a design or marketing team, everything falls down on your shoulders.
Not everything is shady and dark, however. Being a self published author gives you more freedom, something I value tremendously when it comes to editorial and cover art decisions.
What are a few things you’d tell someone who’s looking into being a self published author?
As I said before, patience and perseverance are your best buddies to become a self-published author. Learn to accept criticism, because you'll have loads of it in your path, and savor it as the most delicious chocolate. Everyone says a writer needs to be tough-skinned, but self-published writers need a Spartan armor. There's still a big stigma attached to indie books, so if you want to make your way in the vast publishing sea, you have to face that stigma and try to change it. Yes, big changes always mean hard work, but God, don't they feel good once you've brought them to fruition? I am still hoping I can be part of that Change :)
Five random things about yourself?
I love to sing in the shower, buy baggy shirts, eat Wonka candies (though Jolly Ranchers too), ride rollercoasters (I am a big adrenaline junkie), and practice Poi (fire dancing, but I just started and can't actually dance with fire. I have to admit I am kind of afraid of searing my skin).
The Away series, can you tell us a little bit about it?
I love my new series *sigh*. There's more sexual tension in this one and more wit, which I absolutely adore. I can't tell you much about it right now, only that its lead character, Dafne, is the epitome of female power and that Ian, her twin's boyfriend is absolutely dazzling and everything a woman wishes for in a man *an other sigh*. You'll just have to wait for Break Away to come out this Fall and see it for yourselves. I promise a good dose of mystery and fantasy!
If you could live inside a book/story for one day, which would you choose & why?
I am torn. The first thing that comes to my mind is Harry Potter. I mean, casting spells and living in a magical castle with a cute white-bearded grandpa as a principal? You can't get any luckier than that. But then I think, where's the heart-stirring, good-looking man in the story? I need one. That's when it gets tricky. There are so many I would love to meet and get cozy with. Maybe it's because I've just recently read the Fever series by Moning, but I would love to meet Jericho Barrons. Yes, I have a weakness for bad guys, and Barrons is the crème de la crème of sexy badness.
So, since The Ylem doesn't count here, I choose a version of Harry Potter with Jericho Barrons in it. Oh, the joy…
Besides reading & writing, what do you like to do on your free time?
Reading on my Nook. I am kidding. I love to sing and compose songs. It's mostly pop rock, so if you happen to like Kelly Clarkson, you have a good shot at liking mine.