While reading through the post on one of the writing workshops chat rooms I belong to, I came across an exciting message by a fellow aspiring author which said…” OMG! I just got an air mail letter from a Senior Editor at Harlequin in England…they want the full manuscript of “Her Decision” to review.” For a writer that is big, BIG, BIG news. News that needs to be shared.
Today I am introducing you to next rising star of the romance book world. That rising star is my new friend Ally, writing as Elisabeth Meadows. (I call her my friend because she let me vent to her about what a bad day I was having at work while we were preparing for this interview, only a friend would do that. )
Writing is a difficult task. Sending your work out into the world, risking rejection and bad reviews is downright frightening. So I want to say congrats to Elisabeth Meadows for her skill, courage, and strength. I cannot wait to read your new book. Thank you Ally for taking time out of your busy schedule for this interview.
1. When did you first begin writing?
I started writing poetry in middle school, but by the time I got to High School I had stopped. October of 09 after 10 years. I picked up writing again, but decided to try my hand at fiction writing
2. Who are you inspirations?
I’d have to say Nora Roberts. I’m a big fan of hers. I can relate to how she got started, needing an outlet with kids at home. That’s how I got started, too. I was ready to lose my mind and needed an outlet. Also, Candace Havens, that woman is super busy, but she always finds time to write.
3. What are your writing habits?
I write off and on all day long while my daughters are in school and in between cleaning house and caring for my twins. My goal each day is at least to write at least 1,500 words. If I can do that it’s a good day. There are days I can do a solid 3,000-4,000, but not always. When I’m working on a new book, I try my best to do 20 pages a day. I learned it from a class I took that Candace Havens taught. Now it’s not always possible, but I give it a try.
(Wow I wish I could do that, and with twins no less you are a super woman!)
4. Are you a pantster or a plotter? Do you sit down at the computer and let your story lead you where it wants to go or do you outline every twist and plot point?
Well, I guess you could call me a punster. Now with the newest story I’m working on, I sat down and did an outline all nice and neat. I’m five chapters in already and the characters have taken over and thrown out my outline. Just today, the hero named Kyle shocked me with something I had no clue would come into play with the story. So, I’ve sat back and let them have free reign to write the story.
5. Who are your favorite authors and what are you reading now?
There are so many to choose from. I’d have to say Nora Roberts, Candace Havens and Shayla Black are at the top of my reading list. If it’s romance or suspense, I’ll read it. Right now, I’m reading Wicked Ties, by Shayla Black and just finished another one of her books called Delicious.
(I’m a fan of Candace Havens as well and a member of her Write_Workshop@yahoogroups.com a wonderful resource for aspiring writers)
6. What are your goals as a writer?
I want to write, sexy, sassy and sensual books for women to read that they can relate to. And to never stop learning how to improve in my writing. To pass on my love of writing to my children and my daughters have already started writing stories.
7 If you had one wish for your writing career, what would it be?
Right now, my one wish is for one of my books to be published. Although having one hit the best seller list would be awesome, too.
8. What advice would you give other aspiring writers?
Write every day no matter what is going on in your life. Take classes from other authors to learn and polish your craft. Also, make sure you get a critique partner or a group. They are very important to have; they can pick up things you might not be able to see as you’re so close to the story. They’re great to run ideas by and get feedback I love my Twinkies. They’re awesome bunch of women.
9. Your manuscript was just requested by Harlequin England this has to be exciting. How did you feel when you got the letter?
I was scared out of my mind at first. It took me five minutes before I could open the letter. I was so sure it was a rejection letter. My husband told me to open it. He said you’ll never know until you do. I remember reading it over at least 4 times before I got that they really wanted my full manuscript. I know I screamed and couldn’t form any words. My poor husband must have thought I’d lost it finally.
10. Do you have an agent?
No, not as of yet but I have been sending out queries.
11. According to your website, you have four other novels in the works. How do you keep all the characters straight?
I have separate folders for each novel I’m working on with all the important information in it. I can pull it up any time while working and check things.
12. With four children, which includes a set of twins nicknamed Phineas and Ferb and a husband to take care of how do you make time to write?
I have a supportive husband and family. I do writing during the day while he’s at work and girls are at school and it’s just me and the twins at home. Then, there are days that doesn’t happen, and I write once the kids are in bed at night. Now that summer is rolling around and kids will be out of school, things will change and more writing done at night and weekends.
13. Have you ever won any awards for your writing?
14. Do you belong to any writing associations?
Not as of yet, but I will be joining RWA soon.
15. Please tell our readers about your book Her Decision.
Her decision is Grey’s Anatomy meets Sweet Home Alabama:
Shelby Johnson’s world was ripped apart when her now ex-husband walked out on her, leaving her six months pregnant and alone. For two years she has stuck to the vow to keep men at an arms length, focusing solely on her daughter and career as a delivery nurse. That is, until Doctor Mark Daniels strolls into her world, threatening to make her break that vow, and let her guard down for good.
Mark Daniels is determined to break through the walls that Shelby has carefully placed around her heart. But when Shelby’s ex-husband enters the scene claiming to have changed and wanting to reclaim his family, will Mark be able to prove to her that his love is the right choice for her and her daughter?
16. What are you working on now?
Right now, I’m working on a new medical romance book called The Pediatric Surgeons. Plus, I have another that is suspense that I’m itching to get to working on, but the new characters have different plans for me.
17. What do you do for relaxation?
I knit to relax and read of course.