What motivates you as a writer?
A “mash-up” of two weird ideas that change an ordinary world into an extraordinary one, the ultimate “what if” scenario. For example: What if squirrels were really aliens? What if fairies lived in the woods out back? What if you discovered a dead stranger in your car this morning? I enjoy thinking about where that beginning will lead and what adventures lie in wait.
What types of books do you like to read?
Mysteries, because ultimately every book is a mystery, and any book that will take me somewhere I’ve never been before. Time-travel and outside-of-this-world travel books are also favorites. Stories with unexpected mash-ups like the Narnia Series, where real-world kids are pulled into magical lands, and the October Daye Series, where a half-human, half-faerie woman struggles with mysteries in a faerie world that exists hiding in our own. I avoid horror books because I have too active an imagination and therefore am unable to sleep after reading one.
How has becoming a writer affected your own reading habits?
I read more - roughly a book a week. I read books with adventures that interest me and along the way I study the pace, character development, world-building, and theme development in the book. I keep notes on what worked well and what I might do differently.
I read non-fiction books that help me delve into what motivates the characters I'm writing such as books on art, artists, history, and techniques in painting for my main character and books on police procedure and real-life police experiences for her love interest.