Thursday, January 27, 2011

All Things Romantic Suspense: S.R. Claridge

1. How long have you been writing? The first time I wrote anything was when I was thirteen years old and my grandmother died. I wrote a poem about her and I haven’t stopped writing since. Back then, and even now to some degree, it was an emotional release for me. I could take everything that was pent up inside and spew it out in words on a page… somehow I felt better. I have boxes and boxes of horrible poetry sitting in my attic. 

2. Do you plot or do you write by the seat of your pants? I am definitely a fly by the seat of my pants writer. Sometimes I have a general idea of where the story will end up, but I have no idea how it gets there. The characters take on a life of their own and steer the story from there.

3. What was the name of the first novel you wrote? Did you try to publish it? It was actually a non-fiction book on marriage entitled, “There’s a Spouse in My House.” I didn’t try to publish it because when I finished writing it, I felt like it was dry and boring. I put it on a shelf and began writing a fictional story about a married couple… this eventually became my first published novel, NO EASY WAY.

4. How many rejections have you received? I received 37 rejections for NO EASY WAY and 12 contest critiques. At that time I sat down and cried, then got back up and did one helluva re-write… I’m talking major overhaul. I submitted again and was nominated for the Heart of Molly award and had a contract from a publisher.

5. Why did you pick the publisher that ultimately published your book? This is a great question because I had a publisher interested in NO EASY WAY at the same time I had an Agent interested. I was a nervous wreck… wanting to make the right decision for my career. Ultimately I went with my publisher (Kimberlee Williams; Vanilla Heart Publishing) because she took the time to answer my every question… and I had hundreds of questions! Kimberlee was tracking with the present industry changes and the Agent felt aloof and a bit old-school to me. Kimberlee continues to take the time to educate me, motivate me, encourage me… as she does with all of her writers.

I think it’s important when you choose an Agent or a Publisher that you have a solid working relationship with that person. It’s sort of like you’re climbing in a canoe together and you have to trust that the other person is going to pick up a paddle and help.

6. If you have a day job, what is it? I’m the General Manager of our Household… a Domestic Goddess (I like that one best!)  But most of all, they call me “mom.”

7. What’s your favorite quote? “Nothing is impossible… the very word itself says ‘I’m Possible.” Audrey Hepburn (I love her!)

8. What authors do you admire? New York Times Best Selling ones!

9. What place that you haven’t visited would you like to go? I would love to go back to Italy and to Paris… two of my favorite places to visit. I want to see Greece, Australia and Switzerland.

10. What other time period besides your own would you like to experience? None from the past…. Perhaps a futuristic time period would be fun.


Sarah Westill said...

A domestic goddess... oh I so love that. I think I'm going to start making my family call me that too! And yes, I too can't believe the differences contests made in my writing and in my getting over my fears of submitting.

Really great interview you too, very much enjoyed reading!

On Da Road said...

Great Interview .. thanks Chris

Jerri said...

Wonderful interview. Can't say I haven't had my share of crying, let me tell ya!