I have had the opportunity to interview several authors on Fab Friday Feature and it's been such a fun and enjoyable experience. I have a new line up for 2016 and I'm still searching for new faces to bring throughout the remainder of the year.
I decided today that I would put myself on blast the way I've done several other authors. So here goes...
Plotter or Pantser?
PANTSER until the end of time! But there again, I've learned the value of being a plotter. So now I have an outline that guides me and keeps things straight in my head, but I let the characters do what they do.
Tell you a little about myself you say? Who is Chelle the woman?
I’m still a little girl at heart who loves acting silly with my husband and kids. Someone who desires to see other people strive and reach for their dreams, and live their best life possible. But, I’m unorganized and chaotic on my best days. I’m a homebody who wants nothing more than to cuddle up and read a book or write another story. I’m usually up from sunup to sundown either attached to the computer or trying to coral my wild and crazy family. I love having family gatherings and entertaining.
Hmmm, creating work/life balance being an author? This is a joke right? I mean do I really ask other authors this? I guess so. Here goes...
I’m trying a new thing in 2016. I’m using a calendar that I pray with all my might I can stick to. There’s not much balance in my life and I have to get writing in whenever I can. I have to say I think I do a pretty good job at it, considering the lack of order I operate under.
A day around my house and in my ordinary life where writing is not key.
A day around my house might include my husband and daughter singing together, my baby boy aggravating everyone to no end, my oldest son trying to hide away from the world, and me bossing everybody around when I’m not attached to the computer, or Googling every single question someone asks. We usually gather in the kitchen during cooking time to talk, sing, laugh, dance and just have fun. The youngest two kids come in our room in the evening time to crash our space and try to resist our efforts to kick them out. They’re still big babies although they’re teens.
Most authors have a routine they settle into when they prepare to write. Yet, others toss routine out the window and go with the flow. Here's my writing routine:
I simply need a snack, music and something to drink. I have to be in my most comfortable writing clothes ever, a house dress, and shorts or sweats and t-shirts.
Pandora or iHeart? What would you find on my playlist?
Pandora and Spotify for me. I listen to iHeart every blue moon. I’ve always been a die hard Pandora fan, until other authors who’ve had this same interview shared Spotify with me. You’re likely to find Yolanda Adams, Anthony Hamilton, Jill Scott, Ledisi, Chrisette Michele, and Erykah Badu on my Spotify. On Pandora anything from country to R & B, or Jazz to classical, or hip hop to Soft rock. I love music.
Ahh, here it is. The million dollar question, did I keep a journal or diary as a child growing up, and what secret did I not want my parents to read?
I definitely had a diary as a child growing up. As to the secret I didn’t want them to learn about…I’m writing a book on it now. Stay tuned! LOL!!!
The genre I write and why, and influential authors:
I write women’s fiction because it explores so many facets of the human life. It isn’t narrowed down to one aspect, such as mystery, spiritual, romance, and similar genres. I can look at any real life situation and explore it in depth and give verve to the issue at hand. I can allow my characters to rise above the situation or adversity in the most unlikely of ways. I would have to say Terry McMillan and Danielle Steele have impacted my writing. I grew up reading those two, and I love them.
If I could pair up with another author to write, who would I choose and why?
I would probably pair up with Terry McMillan, Denene Milner, Michelle Stimpson, or Pamela Samuels Young. I love the flow and energy they bring to the pages and the flawed characters they deal with.
If my latest release were turned into a movie, these actors would be chosen to play the parts, and this music would comprise the soundtrack:
Check out the Pinterest board for all of those characters, because I’ve definitely created them. However, let’s start out with saying Valarie Pettiford would be the inspirational Olivia, Tika Sumpter as the timid yet strong Angel, and Jwaundace Candece as the broken, yet empowered Nikki. There are so many more, but you’ll have to check the boards to see.
The music would be a mixture of jazz tunes from Najee, Boney James, Euge Groove, Dave Koz, and similar artists. There would also be tunes from Anita Baker, Keyshia Cole, Monica, and Anthony Hamilton. Of course, Keyshia's "Let It Go," would be there for Angel and Kianna.
How do I handle writer’s block?
I don’t allow it to become an option. I continue to write, whether I start a new story, or force something that I’ll later change. I don’t allow it to hinder me. If I absolutely must take a break it’s to do something with the family, read, or listen to music.
Mountains or the beach?
I’m probably the first to have this answer, but it would have to be the mountains for me. The quiet beauty of those glorious sunrises and sunsets, and the absolute serenity of being away from the hustle and bustle of life means the world to me.
Provide one marketing tip for upcoming authors:
Be open to sharing your platform with others. Opening your website, social media or blogs up to share other authors allows them to reciprocate and also introduces their followers to you. But the greatest part is the connection you build with them.
One thing I would want my readers to know after reading my works:
No matter what situation you face in life, you can rise above your limitations with belief in yourself and faith.
Writers often have to forsake time with friends and family when deadlines are looming, or the creative muse is flowing. The most supportive person on my publishing journey:
My husband, Marvelous Marv, hands down.
My idea of the perfect “me-time.”
Cuddled in my bed with a good book and some soft jazz playing in the background. Not having any deadlines or nowhere to get up and go the next day.
Kobe or LeBron?
Really? Bryant all day, baby!
We live life beautifully inspired here at The Beautifully Inspired Blog. Therefore, I will leave you with an inspirational post, comprised of three words.
Love without reserve.
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Inspirational women's fiction author, writing the script to my beautifully inspired life!
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