Monday, February 11, 2013

Author Interview – Billie Thomas

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Genre – Mystery

Rating – PG

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What is your favorite quality about yourself? My optimism. I naturally approach things from a positive place, with humor and enthusiasm. I think that expecting things go your way is the first step toward making sure they actually do.

What is your least favorite quality about yourself? I always think I’m right. And I’m not.

Do you recall how your interest in writing originated? I’ve been a writer since before I could hold a pencil. In school, I would actually write the books I did book reports on. (I can’t believe my teachers let me do that.) It always came so naturally to me that it was – and still is – a joy.

What do you consider the most challenging about writing a novel, or about writing in general? Writing is easy and fun for me. Storytelling – that’s another matter. The structure of a well-paced story didn’t come naturally to me the way it seems to for other writers. It’s something I’ve taken classes for and continue to work at.

Do you intend to make writing a career? I work in advertising so I do write for a living. It’s a very creative, but at times very stressful job As long as I can balance the two – writing novels and writing commercials – I’ll do so. But if I had to choose, I’d choose novels. Unfortunately, right now, the choice is between writing novels and eating. And a girl’s gotta eat.

Have you included a lot of your life experiences, even friends, in the plot? Several of my characters are inspired by real people in my life. The mother-daughter relationship is like a greatest-hits version of the one I had with my own mother. I’m so thankful I have this series When my mom died unexpectedly of an aneurism at the end of 2011, I was so glad I had this book and that it was the first in a series. Working on it makes me feel close to her.

How important do you think villains are in a story? In a mystery, the villain is crucial because their actions set the story in motion. They have to be tricky enough to keep the investigation interesting, but careless enough to make one fatal mistake that gets them caught.

What are your goals as a writer? I would like to keep the Chloe Carstairs series going and going. It’s a numbered series so Murder in a Two-Seater is next, but I want readers to still be clamoring for another book when I sit down to writer Murder, SPF 15. Meanwhile I’d like to experiment with other genres as well, including a YA series.

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