A little while back, I asked SC if she'd be willing to let me interview her for my blog. She was so kind and willing. I first heard of her when I read her fantastic amazing debut Thoughtless and knew when I started this blog I wanted to have her here. If you haven't read her books, I strongly suggest you change that. I promise you won't regret it.
Without further adieu, my interview with SC!
1. I want to go for the obvious question, what started your interest in writing?
I’ve always had the desire to write, but no real story to tell. I’m a big fantasy fan, so I initially dabbled in that genre. But it was surprisingly difficult for me to build a world from scratch. I found that basing my characters in the real world made things flow a lot easier. The one thing I found myself returning to whenever I tried to write anything, was romance. Eventually, I gave up on trying to force myself to write a certain way, and just went for the full-blown love story. It’s my favorite part of books anyway, whether I’m reading them or writing them—the first look, the undeniable attraction, the longing, the desire, the eventual caving. I’m a sucker for a love story.
2. What is your first published book and what year was it published?
Thoughtless was my first, my baby. I wrote it in the first part of 2009, finished it in June, and published it chapter by chapter on FictionPress.com in August. I never expected anyone to find it, let alone read it, but it didn’t take long for the feedback to roll in. I still remember the first review it received. It was after the espresso scene. The reader was…upset…with how Kellan treated Kiera at the end of the chapter. Getting feedback made me giddy. I got a little obsessed with checking my email for “story alerts.” By the end of the book, everyone had fallen for Kellan. Having other people love him as much as I do was a very surreal experience. I was hooked on writing after that.
3. Many many of us, me included, have fallen in love with Kellan. Tell us how he came about?
Lots of daydreaming, lots of listening to music. I was obsessed with One Republic, and listened to the album Dreaming Out Loud nonstop while I ran on the treadmill (okay, I walked with the occasional slow jog). Anyway, I started seeing a very clear image of Kellan singing on stage. His character blossomed from those early visions. I also had a tiny crush on an Australian actor at the time, so I threw the two guys together in my head and out popped Thoughtless.
4. What is something about you that may surprise us?
Hmmm, I don’t know if there is anything “surprising” about me. I haven’t taken an English class since high school, which was many moons ago, but I think that’s apparent in my writing. I’m working on it every day, and I’ve learned so much in the last few years. I’ve thought about taking some creative writing or grammar classes, but I don’t want to bog down my mind with the “mechanics” of writing. It squelches the creativity. I consider every story I write a learning experience, and that’s one of the reasons I love self-publishing. I don’t think a traditional publisher would ever allow me that sort of freedom.
Oh, and it may be surprising to know that Thoughtless is the only story I wrote “out of order”. I wrote individual scenes and then weaved them together to create the story. I don’t recommend doing it that way. I ended up doing a LOT of rewriting! I changed my writing style after Thoughtless to a more linear style: chapter one, then chapter two, etc. There are a couple of “outtake” scenes from Thoughtless that are collecting dust in my computer, including a scene where the “smack heard around the bar” happens in their home, right in front of Denny. The confession scene happens right afterwards, in Kellan’s car. I must say, I like it happening at the Space Needle a lot better.
5. Tell us a little about yourself.
I live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with my two equally beautiful children. I have a monstrous coffee habit, up to an entire pot a day—yikes! I wake up early every morning to write before I go to work. I work for four different people, and they are all amazingly supportive of my writing career. I’m more like Kiera than I want to admit—quiet, reserved, and constantly feeling like an idiot, lol. I also have the sense of humor of a thirteen-year-old boy…hence, Griffin. I’m horribly self-critical, so I’m constantly surprised that anyone likes my stories! Lol. I am definitely my harshest critic. In fact, I’m picking apart these answers as we speak…
6. What is the craziest piece of fan mail you've received?
Hmmm, I don’t think I’ve received anything crazy. I get the best mail from people! My favorite ones are from people who have a story of their own that is similar to something in one of my books. I had one woman write me to tell me that reading one of my novels helped her open up a line of communication with her husband about a tragedy in his past, and they were able to talk about things they never had before. The fact that some story in my head created such a positive experience in someone else’s life, blows my mind. I’m awed by every person that is touched by my characters.
7. If Thoughtless were to be made into a movie, tell us who you'd pick to play Kellan, Kiera, and Denny.
This question is so tough for me! Well, except for Denny. He’s the only easy one! As I mentioned before, he’s based on an Australian actor, Craig Horner, such a cutie, so it would only be fitting if Craig played him. Kiera, I’m not sure. If they could make her look girl-next-door pretty instead of yowzers-pretty, than I really like either Minka Kelly or Leighton Meester for her. Kellan is impossible for me to pick so I won’t even try. He’s too specific in my head, so nobody in real life comes close. Except this one guy I saw at the grocery store once! He was so similar to the Kellan in my head that I could not stop staring at him. I’m sure he thought I was mental.
8. How do you write? Do you outline or do you just one two three go?
I am a write-by-the-seat-of-my-pants girl. I typically have an idea of where I want to go, or certain points that I want to hit along the way, but it’s usually a very organic process. It’s like watching a movie unfold in my head, and sometimes the things that happen even shock me! There were quite a few parts in Thoughtless where some small thing that happened earlier in the story became critical later in the story. Kiera disliking talking to Griffin, for instance. I had no idea how important that detail would become to the storyline later on. Or Anna’s visit. At the time Kiera first spoke with Anna, I had no idea how that visit would go, other than badly.
9. Who is one of your favorite authors? What is one of your favorite books?
I have two older brothers, so I grew up on fantasy—Piers Anthony, Margaret Weis & Tracey Hickman, Robert Jordan, Terry Goodkind. I think fantasy has some of the most romantic characters out there. I’m also obsessed with Richelle Mead and Stephenie Meyer. The characters they write are unforgettable. I can’t pick a favorite though! There are just too many good books out there. I’m also a huge supporter of both indie authors and unpublished FanFiction/Fictionpress writers. I got my start there, and let me tell you, there are some crazy talented girls and guys that have yet to publish their works—my girl, K.A. Linde, being one of them.
10. Tell us what you're working on right now.
I’m halfway through the third book in the Thoughtless series which I recently announced the name of, Reckless. My goal is to have it out this year, but, we’ll see how that goes! I am having such a blast writing for these characters again. And, in different ways, I am so proud of each and every one of them. It will be hard to let them go.
Thank you to SC for joining me on here today. For more information on her, you can find her on Facebook here.