Thanks for coming Lori! I hope you don’t mind, I’m just gonna dive right in here. How long have you been writing?
My writing career began in an unusual way, back in 1995. I owned a dog training school at the time and started putting out a monthly newsletter for marketing purposes. I was surprised when I began receiving requests from other publications to write for them, too! My writing career has progressed over the years to include many magazine and newspaper articles, a weekly syndicated newspaper column, three books, and more!
What was the first piece of writing you published?
The very very first would be the Best Paw Forward Newsletter, back in 1995. But if we’re talking books, it would be my first book, nonfiction, “Everything You Need to Know About House Training Puppies and Adult Dogs,” which was published in 2005 and continues to be highly recommended in its genre.
Do you have a favorite among your own works?
I don’t think I do. Each of my books is special to me in its own way. With the dog training book, I feel really good about helping so many people to keep and enjoy their pets. With Momnesia, I enjoyed getting to know so many moms and feel good about all the letters I’ve received from readers telling me it made them feel understood, or helped them enjoy their lives more. With Unexpecting, I think there will be a similar sense of commiseration amongst readers… “all of our families are crazy!” LOL.
What people, places, or situations have most influenced your writing?
All of my writing, whether nonfiction or fiction, has been inspired by real life in some way. Whether taking my worst nightmare and turning it into a story (Unexpecting), or sharing my own personal growth experiences in the form of a fictional story (Momnesia), it’s the happenings and emotions of real life that most inspire me to write.
Can any of your own personality traits be found in your characters?
Absolutely! Shelley, who is the main character in both Momnesia and Unexpecting, has a lot of the same personality traits as I do: Definitely Type A, kind of off-color, sometimes very funny, and other times way too serious!
What are your most and least favorite steps of the writing process?
What I struggle with the most are my own emotions, which fluctuate between one moment feeling like my work in progress is fantastic, and the next moment feeling like it’s unfit for human consumption! I find that when I’ve worked on a book so hard and for so long, I’m “pretty sure” it’s a good book (otherwise I wouldn’t let it go to press), but honestly, it isn’t until readers start doing reviews that I’m really sure!
Do you have time for reading? If so, what are you reading right now? What do you plan to read next?
Yes, I read a lot! At this very moment, I just finished reading, Memoirs Aren’t Fairytales, by Marni Mann. I enjoyed it a lot! It’s the gritty, realistic story (fictional) of a heroin addict. Next up? I’m not sure. Probably a murder/mystery. I tend to like to mix up genres from one book to the next.
What about movies? Do you have a favorite book-to-movie adaptation? Do you see any screenplays in the future of your own novels?
Like most avid readers, I’m not a big fan book-to-movie adaptations… I always feel like the book was better. However, I recently discovered that the classic movie, Shawshank Redemption was originally a Stephen King novel! I love the movie and have been searching to try and get my hands on the book, which is out of print. If one of my own novels were to become a movie, I’d have to recommend Momnesia. It would make an excellent romantic/family life/chick flick comedy.
If a film crew followed you around for a day, what would you most want to show off? Conversely, what would you most want to hide from your fans?
Hmm. What a scary question! I guess what I would show off is how much I get done each day, which I do believe is astronomical for the most part. What would I hide? The fact that many days, I don’t get dressed until late in the afternoon! (It’s a trade-off!)
How many stories do you think you have left in you?
(Bonus Question) How do you feel about the state of publishing today?
Honestly, I am very worried about the future of books while at the same time I am confident that something will be done to “save them!” With the uprise of independent (self) publishing, I’ve had the opportunity to read some fantastic works by some fantastic authors. Yet at the same time, I’ve had (more often than not) many negative experiences wherein I pick up a book only to find that it is riddled with spelling and grammatical errors. I think that indie publishing needs to mature, and that some quality controls need to be put in place, so that more authors will invest in professional editors and proofreaders before putting their books out there. Readers deserve to read quality material, and in my mind, indie publishing doesn’t excuse that responsibility.
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Very fun interview
Glad you enjoyed it! Don’t be a stranger!