Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I was born in Chicago, Illinois and lived there with my family until we moved to Japan when I was 8. We lived there for four years so my dad could become a professional golfer. When we came back to the States, we moved to Phoenix, Arizona—my mom called it a big sand trap. I graduated from Camelback High School and went on to Arizona State University. However, college wasn’t for me at the time and I dropped out in the second semester. I joined the U.S. Navy and became a photographer for three years. After I was discharged, I got married and went back to college. This time I graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting and an MBA. I went back in the Navy as a commissioned officer and retired with 22 years of service. During this time, I also earned another degree, an MMAS, Master of Military Arts and Sciences from the U.S. Army’s Command and General Staff College. After my retirement, my husband and I spent a few years living in our motorhome, crisscrossing the country until he passed away. I went back to work as a federal civil servant in the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. I retired once more to devote my time to writing. I’ve published seven books in two series. The first series is called “The Seaward Isle Saga” and includes “The Black Elf of Seaward Isle,” “Tangled Omens,” and “Blood Mission” as well as a short story, “The Island Game: The Inside Story of Seaward Isle.” The second series, “The Chronicles of Eledon,” includes four books, “Spell Breaker” (2016 Book Excellence Award finalist), “The Blue Witch” (2017 International Book Award finalist), “Gossamer,” and “Noble Magic.” More books are in the works.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
The latest book is called, “Noble Magic” and it’s the last book of the Chronicles of Eledon. The original inspiration for my books was “Lord of the Rings” by J.R.R. Tolkien and the movie series of the same name directed by Peter Jackson.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
Sometimes, it feels like I’ve become a hermit or a monk because I have to write alone and in complete silence—no music, no food, only water.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
Tolkien, of course, for the original inspiration, but not his writing style. J.K. Rowlings, Suzanne Collins, Deborah Harkness, James Rollins, and Tom Clancy are some of my favorite authors and I just read a sci-fi book by Jay Posey called “Sungrazer,” a new favorite. I like to read a variety of books, not just fantasy. I’m also a member of the Writers’ League of Texas and they have an outstanding schedule of classes. I no longer live in the area, but I take online classes with them.
What are you working on now?
I’m working on the next series. It will be another trilogy and the first book should be out in 2018. The latest working title is “Curse of the Sea.”
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I use Enchanted Book Tours for promotion and have a tour for “Noble Magic” coming up in November 2017. It helps but I haven’t found a sure-fire method that works consistently.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Work with a good editor to improve your writing.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Writing is like pushing an airplane. It takes a little while to get it rolling, but once it does, it’ll take off. Would you believe my mom told me that in a dream?
What are you reading now?
“Escape Clause” by John Sandford. It’s a mystery.
What’s next for you as a writer?
I’m a member of the Tucson Science Fiction/Fantasy Writer’s group and we’re publishing an anthology of short stories in October 2017. Two of my short stories will appear—“One Way Journey” and “The Bonds of Earth.”
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?
A survival guide to living on a desert island, a blank journal to write my thoughts down with a couple of pens, and a dictionary to learn a new word every day or to use as kindling to start a fire.