Thursday, December 5, 2013

Brenda Maxfield

Brenda Maxfield
1. How did you pick the genre you write in?

I think my YA actually picked me! I teach high school so I’m plunged into teen drama every day. I really appreciate my students: what they share with me and what they teach me. So, writing about teen life was a natural outgrowth.

2. Do you plot or do you write by the seat of your pants?

I’m a mix. I do plot the overall story line, and I know where I want the story to end up. But my characters take over! Often, they’ll do something totally unplanned and I’ll cry, “Wait! You can’t do that.” But they talk right back and tell me that they most certainly can – and in fact already did! I’ve learned to leave them alone when that happens. Ha! I do admire those writers who can plot down to the last detail. Wow, totally amazing.

3. What do you know now that you are published that you didn’t know pre-published that you wish you knew?

Hmmm. I’ve learned so much, and I continue to learn. I think one happy thing I’ve learned is how wonderfully generous and knowledgeable my fellow writers are. We all know that writing can be lonely work, yet I can’t count how many times wonderful writers have stopped in (via Internet) and given friendship and support. I appreciate them so much!

4. How many rejections have you received?

I haven’t kept count! Ha! Plenty. It’s part of the game. The trick is to see rejections as proof that you’re going forward as an author. (Which, admittedly, is sometimes easier said than done.)

5. What was the best writing advice someone gave you?

Put butt in chair. Write. That’s really what it comes down to, isn’t it? Produce those words. You can edit them later.

6. Describe your book.

Seeking Christmas is a short story about forgiveness. I often hear my teen friends talk about their struggles to forgive absent parents or parents who neglect or abuse them. I’ve seen their determination to put it all behind them and go forward with their lives. It’s hard. More than hard. In Seeking Christmas, Courtney wants to do the right thing, not only for herself but for her brother. But she finds that the right thing is often the hardest thing of all.

7. What’s your writing schedule?

I get up very early and attempt to get 1,000 words written before school starts. After school, I work on editing, social media, promotion, etc. (Will someone please figure out how to add 3 – 4 hours to the day?)

8. What is your favorite word?

I love this question! I don’t really have a favorite word, but I do love words. When I teach vocabulary at school, I sometimes have the students repeat a word aloud over and over because it feels so good on the tongue. They think I’m nuts, but it’s fun!

9. What’s your favorite food?

I adore pizza. Now, that I’m vegan, I’ve learned to love pizza without cheese. (Sounds impossible, but actually, it’s quite good!)

10. What would you like to learn to do that you haven’t?

I’ve often thought it’d be cool to learn how to fly an airplane. I’ve been on hundreds and hundreds of flights, and I think it’d be fun to do the driving!

Author Bio

My passion is writing! What could be more delicious than inventing new characters and seeing where they take you?

I've lived in Honduras, Grand Cayman, and Costa Rica. Presently, I live in Indiana with my husband, Paul. We have two grown children and three grandchildren, special delivery from Africa.

When not teaching, I love to hole up in our cabin and write -- often with a batch of popcorn nearby.

I enjoy getting to know my readers, so feel free to write me at:

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Book Blurb
Seeking Christmas (an Ocean Mist short story Two)

The Christmas season has eighteen-year-old Courtney crossing the state line with her little brother Dennis to rendezvous with the man who deserted them years ago. Courtney remembers him only as the tall man who ran away. Dennis doesn’t remember him at all.

Courtney is furious, but Denny is curious. Will their meeting result in a happy Christmas memory or another miserable disappointment?

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