Getting to Know You

  • Tell us about yourself. How did you get into the writing business?

    • Honestly, I kind of stumbled into writing. I used to act. I performed improv, which I still do now, but not as much. I’m talking minor roles here, like some commercials and things like that. Although I did get the lead in a few indie films/ student films, one which involved romance books and another that involved a threesome… it was a wild time. But I’m always up for a laugh, so I never turned down a good comedy role. Anyway, there were definitely some things I didn’t like about the industry. As I found myself pulling away, I noticed I liked the idea of improv since it was more freeing. At the same time, I started dabbling in writing some fan fiction, and then blogs, short stories, and then boom. I decided I wanted to write a story about what I experienced when I acted. Before I knew it, I was taking real life experiences I encountered and started writing Hollywood Dreams. At first, it was supposed to be my therapy, but then I fell in love. To make an extremely long winded answer shorter, here I am. I wouldn’t trade this career for anything in the world. I’ve never been happier.
  • Why did you choose to become a romance writer? Are there any other genres you enjoy reading or writing about?

    • I used to shy away from it, but now I attempt to bring light to it, but I’m severely dyslexic and have horrible learning disabilities. I had a tough time learning how to read and write when I was younger. And sadly, I even had people that were supposed to help me say I would amount to nothing and I should give up. I don’t give up. Learning Curves, goes into more detail, but I wouldn’t take that as an answer. Anyway, through much trial and error, I found that romance books were easy for me to digest. Mind you, I didn’t get into hard core romance books until I was in high school. I saw a shirtless dude on a cover and thought, huh, why not? Let me tell you how surprised I was to find there was sex in the book. Blew my mind. And, I was hooked. Since then, I’ve branched off into different romance sub-genres for my reading pleasure, but I stick with romance or self-help books for the most part. I’m a sucker for a good self-help book.
  • Do you have any helpful tips for fellow insomniacs? Are you more productive in the mornings or at nights?

    • Insomnia is…. Ugh. It’s tough. I’ve suffered from chronic insomnia for over twenty years, if not more. My body likes to do this fun thing where it stays up for two to three days, maybe getting an hour of sleep in that time, and then crashes for a solid six hours. I usually just ride the wave. However, I’ve found I will tend to fall asleep when I tell myself stories. To this day, it’s how I fall asleep. I’m always able to pick up where I left off the night before, and most the time, scenes from my books come from them or even full stories. So, my suggestion, tell yourself a story, make it as detailed as you can. You never know what could happen and how that might even spark a whole new career for you. As for productivity… I’m going to have to say I’m an early morning writer. I’m talking six in the morning until ten or eleven. After I pass lunchtime, I get lazy and I want to play on my phone or read a book. However, on a deadline, I’ll work all day and all night. It’s also not uncommon for my husband to see me in my office plugging away at two in the morning. If it’s a bad insomnia night and I have words in my head, I’ll write.
  • What’s on your reading list right now?

    • What’s not on my list right now? Not only do I enjoy writing curvy girl romances, I also love reading them. And in every subgenre of romance. Right now, I’m on an alien, sci-fi, shifter kick with books by Eve Langlais and Evangeline Anderson to name a few. I go through phases with my reading. Right before this kick I was in a cowboy mood, and before that ménage. What can I say, I’m just weird.

Your Work and Life as a Writer

  • On your website, you expound on why you write. Describe the moment you realized your “WHY”.

    • I know the exact moment I found my why. In 2016, I had read myself out of the plus-size genre. And I mean, that year alone, I read 675-ish books. I was running out of reading what I loved. Add with everything else I was going through with acting and life in general, I needed more. All the pieces fell right where they needed and before I knew it, I had my why. I knew I wanted to give other people the opportunity to read books that potentially had characters that looked like them in it. I wanted to write characters with learning disabilities and strong female leads that even when they were told to give up, they wouldn’t stop. I’m truly fortunate that my why has solidified me in a fantastic career.
  • What are romance stereotypes you want to break with your characters and stories?

    • Not every female needs to be the typical Hollywood starlet type. Although, I have to say, as the years have gone by, I’ve observed that less and less, which thrills me. Ultimately, though, I’d love for the whole genre to break the stigma around romance books. Romance books are so much more than sex. Heck, there are many romance books without sex in them. And, yet, romance has this tarnish on it, and I’m not a fan. I’m not ashamed of what I write or read, and others shouldn’t be either. I will proudly display a bare-chested man on the cover of the book I’m reading for the whole world to see. When it comes down to it, romance movies are accepted, and I would love romance books to be just as widely accepted in the public one day as well.
  • What’s the book/s you keep going back to whenever you feel lost or unmotivated?

    • Do we have ten-hours? ’cause I got an extensive list. We all have those times when we really aren’t into it, and we need to go back to some old faithful books. I have a few that I’ve reread more times than I’d like to admit. RL Mathewson’s books have always pulled me out of a funk. Trust by Kylie Scott, anything by Sugar Jamison, Sweet Dreams by Kristen Ashley. Anything by Angela Verdenius. The list goes on and on. I think I have about two or three books in any “mood” I’m in that can get me back to a clear head.
  • What do you hope to accomplish in the next five years?

    • Before 2020 I would have said something like be a NYT Bestseller, USA Today Bestseller, or something like that. And although those would be a dream come true, my only hope is to write books and for those books to get into the hands of someone that needs it at that time. Whether it’s because the character looks like them or has characteristics they have, whatever it may be. But ultimately, I want to help give people an escape when they might need it most. If I can do that, I’ll consider my career a success.
  • Would you ever consider writing for TV or film? Who do you want to work with?

    • This is a tricky question for me to answer. I think because I was in the industry for so long, it’s changed my perspective. A lot. At this moment, I would say no. I really do enjoy my life as a romance author. I love everything about it, from meeting and hanging out with readers to becoming friends with authors I’ve admired for years. And at this time, I think if any of my books were to be auctioned off for film or TV, I’d have to have a considerable amount of say in who was cast. I don’t really know. But time changes everything. Ask me in a year or two and my answer could be completely different.

Something Extra for Your Fans

  • When is the most magical time to write?

    • When I am completely and utterly alone. I’m talking complete solidarity on my end. Zero interruptions make for a perfect writing flow.
  • What’s your go-to drink for a fun night out?

    • Mint Mojito, hands down. My Irish comes out when you hand me a Mojito. I can throw them back like I’m drinking water.
  • Lipstick or lip gloss?

    • I can’t apply either correctly, but if I had to choose, it would be lipstick. My hair is always a mess, and it will get stuck on my lips if I have lip gloss on.
  • Decade you wish you lived in?

    • I’m in my 30s right now, but I grew up with my parents listening to the “oldies.” I’m talking ’50s, ’60s, & ’70s music. Until this day, it’s my favorite genre of music. So, if I could live in any time period, I’d love to live right in the heart of the ’60s and be able to enjoy the music in its live form. Which is probably an unexciting answer. You will hear me rocking out to the good ole oldies in my car like I am a one woman concert and the world is my audience.
  • What’s something you can’t leave the house without?

    • Water. I can’t go without water. My phone, ehh, I can leave it. Really, the only thing that is a requirement for me is water. It’s probably from my solo concert songs that I scream at the top of my lungs. I need water to help my throat recover from the off-key mess of a singer I am in the car.
  • Which of your characters do you want to be BFFs with?

    • This is probably the most challenging question you’ve asked. When it comes to my characters, they are 85% me. Holly, trips over her own feet, Ellie has my learning disabilities, Maggie is an actor, Olive loves aliens, and Abbie is always threatening to throat punch someone… So they are all kind of me… wait, who am I kidding. Lord Waffles. That’s who my BFF would be. The overly-opinionated corgi from the Stumbling Through Life series. Or maybe it’s Rupert, the fashionista hairless cat, who leaves butthole kisses on the furniture… Okay, so clearly, I’ve just realized the answer is all the animals in my books.

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