People ask me questions. Some of those questions are asked more frequently than others. Here are the ones that pop up over and over.
What books have you written, and what are they about?
The best way to stay up-to-date with my writing is to visit the individual novels’ pages. You can find the links in the navigation bar at the top of this website.
Who is your agent?
Emma Patterson at Brandt & Hochman Literary Agents.
Do you write full-time?
Nope. I teach high school Spanish during the day. Which is pretty cool, because I get to hang out with my target audience all day long.
Are you married? Do you have any kids?
Yes and yes! I’ve been married to my husband since June 2008. We have one daughter who was born in December 2010 and another who was born in January 2013. If you join my Facebook page or follow my Twitter account, you just might see some pictures of them!
How do you balance a full-time job, a family, and writing?
I find that ignoring housework provides me with the time I need to write. Just kidding…mostly. For real though, I take shortcuts wherever I can. I don’t separate whites and colors in the laundry, clip coupons, vacuum every day, cook every night, or make the bed.
If you’re looking for a more detailed answer, I wrote a blog post about how I manage my time. You can find it here.
Where are you from? Where do you live?
The answer to both questions is Birmingham, Alabama. I went to college in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and spent a semester in Madrid, Spain, but otherwise I’ve never lived anywhere else.
What’s your favorite TV show / movie / book / band / color?
TV Shows: Arrested Development, How I Met Your Mother, The Big Bang Theory, and Seinfeld.
Movies: Snatch, The Bourne Identity, Pride and Prejudice, any of the Harry Potter movies…and that’s all I can think of. Apparently I don’t see many movies.
Books: ALL OF THEM.
Band: I’ve got a thing for British music. David Gray, Coldplay, and Oasis are definitely in my top five. On this side of the pond, my musical heart belongs to Gavin DeGraw.
How old are you?
I was born in June of 1983. I’ll let you do the math!
How tall are you? (Yes, this is a FAQ.)
With no shoes on, I am 5’10″. In heels, I am terrifying.
Where did you go to college? What did you major in?
I went to the University of Alabama. I have a degree in advertising and a second major in Spanish.
Do you speak Spanish fluently?
Yes, I hablar the español.
Where do you get the ideas for your books?
From the voices in my head. No, really. Writers are all a little bit crazy. We spend a lot of time worrying about people who don’t exist, and if that won’t make you batty as all get-out, I don’t know what will. The stories I write sort of sneak up on me and then, over the course of several days or weeks, take over my brain until I can’t think about anything else. At that point I have to make a choice: write them down or risk my head exploding. I usually choose to write them down.
Are your characters based on real people?
Many of them are, but I’ll never say who because those people would probably be horrified/feel embarrassed/hate me and then things would get awkward between us.
How did you get an agent?
The first time around? Well, I did a lot of research on www.agentquery.com. Then I made a list of agents I wanted to query. And then I queried them. I know that’s not particularly helpful, so now I will direct you to a book called Writer’s Market. There’s a new version every year and it will tell you exactly how to go about finding the literary agent of your dreams.
The second time around was pretty much the same, but with more color-coded spreadsheets.
How long did it take you to find an agent?
The first time, with Alanna Ramirez: One month. The second time, with Emma Patterson: Eight months. Don’t ask me what took so long the second time, because I have no idea!
So, you lost your first agent?
Yep. Alanna left Trident unexpectedly in September 2011, mere hours before I was going to send her my new manuscript for review. As you might have guessed, I was shocked and SO sad. She did her best to place me with another agent at Trident, but it didn’t work out, so I started querying again and ended up with the fabulous Emma Patterson at Brandt & Hochman.
Can you read my chapters, query, or synopsis and help me with them?
Nope. I apologize for having to say no, but I have to do so for two reasons: 1) I don’t ever want to be accused of plagiarism (not that anyone who is reading this would ever do that, but I have to be overly cautious) and 2) I just don’t have the time. So, unless you are a very good friend and I offer those services to you, I’m afraid I can’t help you out. If you send something to me anyway, I’ll delete it without opening it and then feel terrible about it, so please, just don’t send it.
Will you read my book and review it on your blog?
No, and I am so sorry. I got into some sticky situations back when I reviewed books–especially for author friends–and I just can’t do that again. So as of January 2012, I am closed to all reviews.
Can you give away my book or swag on your blog?
The only things I give away are: 1) ARCs, 2) published books that I love and believe in, and 3) the occasional non-book item that comes from a personal friend.
If you’re looking to send me an ARC for a giveaway, by all means, get in touch with me. Otherwise, I’m afraid the answer is no. I’m sorry!
I thought you had a book out called The Clearing. Why can’t I find it?
So, okay. After Alanna and I weren’t able to sell my first novel, we decided it might be good to self-publish it for a while. And it was a great experience–I had a lot of fun getting it out there. But at the end of the day, I don’t have the time or resources to be a successful self-published author. The Clearing had a limited run of one year, and after that, I pulled it from publication.
The good news is that a heavily revised version of it, entitled Shadows of the Hidden, was published in December 2012 by Compass Press!
I read The Clearing and loved it! Are you going to write a sequel?
Probably not, but never say never, right?
Why do you call your blog readers “Grasshoppers”?
It’s a throwback to Mr. Miyagi. Not that I consider myself a master of martial arts–or of anything, really–but I used the term one day in a Karate Kid type situation, and it stuck.
Hey, you didn’t answer my question!
I’m sorry! If you still have a burning question for me, please use the information on my Contact page to get in touch with me. Thanks!