Welcome to Indie Author Interview Month hosted by Never Too Old for YA and NA Books group from Goodreads.
Today we welcome author Becki Brannen!
Have you seen Becki's books?
(Click the books to be taken to the blurbs on Goodreads!)
And now let's hear what Becki has to say!
1. Did you always know you wanted to be a writer or did you want to be something else?
It’s always been something I’ve wanted to do, but never something I thought I could do. I grew up writing, having gone to a language/literature arts magnet elementary school, so it was always a big part of my life.
2. How long does it take you to write a book from start to finish?
It depends! I write “Breathless” in 29 days as part of NaNoWriMo 2011, where as “Strapless” took 4 ½ months. I’m currently at right under a year (I know, I know, I should be writing!) for “Sleepless,” but I also have ideas for several others I’m fleshing out.
3. How do you come up with themes for your stories?
Dreams! I dreamt the same dream for a couple of months, and it became “Breathless.” I had to get it out of my head and on paper, so I could finally dream something else, ha!
4. Do you have a schedule of when you write?
I wish I did, but with a full time job, twin (almost) 4 year olds & just life in general, I’m lucky if I write once a week sometimes! I aim for at night after my girls go to bed.
5. How are you able to balance other aspects of your life with your writing?
I *wish* I was able to balance life with writing! Right now, writing gets the short end of the stick, but when inspiration hits, I might pump out a couple thousand words.
6. What elements do you think make a great story line?
I think romance is always something I look for, so whether you prefer YA, paranormal, suspense or otherwise, a good love story is always a good background theme. I actually have a few more serious novels in the works, but love is a part of them.
7. What was the hardest thing about writing a book?
Time management! And with sequels, doing research both into your own work and into where you want it to go. If you don’t have to research a sequel, you’re not doing anything new that wasn’t covered in the first book.
8. How many books have you written so far? Do you have a favorite?
NOT count books I wrote in school – 2, and Breathless is definitely my favorite! If you DO count what I wrote in school, 8 (one for each year of elementary school and one for a book I wrote in middle school). Of course, some of the earlier books were probably more drawings than actual writing!
9. Do you have a favorite character?
Good question! I *love* Carly because I feel like she’s real. She’s semi-based on me, although much more put together in her life. She still struggles with what she wants to be when she grows up, despite having a great job. I feel like she’s really relatable, and that’s what makes her so great!
10. Where do you write?
Almost always my living room recliner. I wish I had a decent office, but honestly, I’m so ADD that if I tried to write in pure silence or sequestered from my family, I’d go nuts!
11. When deciding on how to publish, what directed you to the route you took?
I looked into traditional publishing, but it was so intimidating! I was offered 5 free paperback copies of “Breathless” for finishing NaNoWriMo, so I decided to offer them for sale through Amazon. When I realized that I could charge significantly less for e-book while still receiving a profit, I starting publishing for Kindle and Nook, as well. Kindle actually accounts for about 95% or more of my total sales!
12. Have you gotten feedback from family about your book(s)? What do they think?
My mom loved my books! My husband loved them, for what they are, despite not being his preferred genre. My dad, however, after reading “Breathless,” said “You didn’t tell me it was a romance novel.” I told him NO, it’s not a romance novel! Romance has certain stuff in it that I couldn’t write & still tell him and my mother-in-law that I wrote a book. Oh, no – there is no use of “throbbing” or similar words in my books!
13. What kinds of things do you like to do outside of writing?
I love to read. I know, every author does, but to me, it’s research. What do I like about this book’s phrasing, chapter style, etc? What do I not want to see in a book? To me, every book I read brings me one step closer to the next great novel! I also love spending time with my husband and children. My girls can be so funny – instant novel fodder!
14. What kinds of advice would you give to someone who wants to start writing?
Just start! The hardest part is deciding to do it! Don’t get discouraged, or think you might fail. The only failure is in not trying.
16. What is your favorite book? favorite author? Do you have an author that inspired/inspires you to write?
Ooh, all of these can be answered in two words – Heather Huffman. She’s amazing, talented, and inspirational. She actually started out giving her books away for free to raise awareness for human trafficking, a common theme in many of her books. As for favorite book, anything by Heather Huffman.
17. Do you have any go to people when writing a book that help you with your story lines as well as editing, beta reading and such?
My mom has been such a big help to me. My husband also chips in when I need a quick answer or some editing help, but it mostly falls on my mom’s shoulders.
18. Are you working on anything now?
Ha! What am I NOT working on, is the better question! I’m working on “Sleepless,” the third book in the Breathless Series. I’m also working on several other books, which can be found at http://beckibrannen.weebly.com/other-projects.html
Visit my webpage at http://beckibrannen.weebly.com or find me on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/beckibrannen.author