Sue Perkins is an author at Desert Breeze Publishing which is also one of my publishers. She was gracious enough to agree to be interviewed about herself and her book, Blitz which I think a lot of you would like as it is based during WWII. Without further ado, here’s the interview with Sue.
JILLIAN: What is your favorite genre?
SUE: In both reading and writing my favorite has to be fantasy romance. I love creating other worlds and although I always have humans I also like to create animals and cultures. Throw in magic and mystery and I have a book I love to read or write.
JILLIAN: Can you provide a link to a site where we can read some of your work or learn something about it?
SUE: My website is http://www.sueperkinsauthor.com this has all the links for my books with blurb and excerpts. There’s also my blog which is a bit more fun. You can find this at http://sueperkinsauthor.blogspot.com.
JILLIAN: What is your creative process like? What happens before you sit down to write?
SUE: I’m a bit haphazard I’m afraid. An idea comes to mind and I stew on it mentally until I have enough to write down the first few paragraphs or even the first chapter. Then it sits there until I’m ready to write. I don’t plot as once I start to write the words just flow from me. I tried plotting once and all the sparkle went out of the characters and settings.
JILLIAN: I know what you mean about that. I’ve tried not to be a pantser and it sucked the joy out of me. What voice do you find most to your liking: first person or third person?
SUE: Definitely third person. I have written a successful short story in first person, but that was an experiment which paid off. Usually I find myself drifting into third person and I feel more comfortable writing this way.
JILLIAN: What well known writers do you admire most?
SUE: Depends on which genre. Fantasy – Anne McCaffrey and David Eddings. Fun Fantasy has to be Terry Pratchett, but romance I love Georgette Heyer, but also the more modern authors. Ebooks make it so much easier to read books by authors who are new to publishing.
JILLIAN: What is required for a character to be believable? How do you create yours?
SUE: A character must be well rounded for me to find them believable. Variable moods good and bad, interest in others, concern for others. All these things plus a strong personality make for a character who could be standing next to you in the supermarket.
JILLIAN: Deep down inside, who do you write for?
SUE: Dare I say me? This is only partly true. I love to see my words appear on the computer screen and know they weave a story which has developed inside me. My Middle Grade and Young Adult books are written for the age group concerned. Mainly due to wanting to see a variety of genres on offer for them to read.
JILLIAN: Does reader feed-back help you?
SUE: Definitely. If my readers absolutely hate a part of the story, it warns me to think very carefully before using that type of structure again.
JILLIAN: Do you share rough drafts of your writings with someone whose opinion you trust?
SUE: I do. I’ve tried critique groups but the members always seem to fade away. People drop out and eventually you’re left on your own. I now have a very good fellow writer who is in a completely different genre to me. We get together about once a month and are completely honest with one another. I find this a real help to my writing as she has pointed out anomalies in my writing several times which has helped me to straighten it out before I submit it.
JILLIAN: Do you believe you have already found “your voice” or is that something one is always searching for?
SUE: I’ve definitely found my voice – or several voices. Romance, Fantasy and Middle Grade are the areas I love to write for. I find the ideas for these genres pop into my mind at any time and eventually emerge as full grown manuscripts. It may take a year or two for the final draft, but they definitely grow.
JILLIAN: What discipline do you impose on yourself regarding schedules, goals, etc.?
SUE: None whatsoever. I lead a busy life with work, home and writing so I write when I can and don’t worry if I haven’t done any for a while. At least twice a year I go to ground in retreats in other parts of the country so I can write to my hearts content. I find this absolutely fabulous as it means I work uninterrupted and can get so much done.
JILLIAN: Do you write on a computer? Do you print frequently? Do you correct on paper? What is your process?
SUE: I do work on a computer and I never print. I believe if I’m going to write ebooks I should take the process of producing a book from start to finish on my computer. No I don’t correct on paper. I edit my manuscript as many times as it takes. I usually have an incomplete feeling if it needs more editing so I continue until this feeling has disappeared. I do all of the above and then send it off. I have learned not to sit around waiting for a reply but to get on with the next manuscript.
JILLIAN: What has been your experience with publishers?
SUE: On the whole extremely good. There have been one or two who seem to put the manuscript into a big hole and it’s never seen again, but most publishers are businesslike and help their authors gain the exposure they need.
JILLIAN: What are you working on now?
SUE: An adult fantasy. I don’t talk about my works in progress in detail as I find the sparkle goes out of the idea if I do that. Suffice it to say it’s set on an alternate world and has magic and an unusual setting. I also have an idea for a Middle Grade novel but I there’s still a lot of thinking to do regarding this one.
JILLIAN: What do you recommend I do with all those things I wrote years ago but have never been able to bring myself to show anyone?
SUE: That’s easy. Never, ever throw anything out. Edit or re-write the novel and you’ll be surprised how it will brighten up. A creative writing teacher once told me the secret of writing is re-writing. Try it and see how it goes.
A summer of love can last forever, but clouds of war darken the horizon. Velma and Jack’s happiness is overshadowed by an uncertain future. Jack must leave to fight the enemy. Velma remains at home and does her best to aid her country. Will they survive and live the future of their dreams? Or will bombs and fighting destroy their lives and love?
Buy link for Blitz is: