This week’s guest post is an interview with my good friend and writer, Rachel Poli. Enjoy!
Q01 – When did you decide you wanted to become a writer?
I had decided when I was 10-years-old. My older sister began writing and found a fan fiction website to post her stories on. I basically just wanted to copy her so I started writing fan fiction about the Ninja Turtles.
She was kind enough to allow me to post my story on her account. When I was old enough, I got my own account and it sort of stuck. I eventually started writing original characters and plots and now here I am.
Q02 – Are there any authors who inspire you?
Erin Hunter. “She” is actually a group of six writers. Together they’ve written a few middle-grade series, Warriors, Seekers, Survivors, and Bravelands. Warriors came out when I was 11 and the series is still going on today.
I still read and enjoy the books very much, especially since that series is what got me interested in reading in the first place. It amazes me they’re still writing the series to this day and coming up with new ideas.
Q03 – What is your dream goal for your writing?
My dream goal is to be able to write full time. I used to think that meant I needed to be an author and write novels, but there are so many opportunities ahead.
I still strive to publish my many novel ideas, but I would happy blogging full time writing articles and promoting other authors and their books. Being a published author is still number one on the list, though.
Q04 – What is the title (or working title) of your current manuscript and can you tell us a little bit about it?
George Florence is a comedic mystery series. While the title of the first book still remains a mystery (even to me), it’s been written and rewritten a few times at this point.
George is a private investigator, a former detective who was fired. Lilah Williams seeks his help for her elderly neighbor.
Being the daughter of George’s former partner on the force, she ends up sticking around to be his partner in his P.I. practice. It’s a series of murder mysteries, but it’s light-hearted and comedic.
Q05 – How long have you been working on this manuscript?
I have been working on this manuscript since 2011. As I said, it’s been rewritten a couple of times.
Now I’m finally going to jump into hardcore editing and have it done by the end of 2018.
Q06 – Do you plan your stories or just leap into the writing?
I plan most of my stories. There have been times when I’ve pantsed a few ideas, but I prefer to outline first.
I’m a very organized person and I like to have an idea as to where the story may end up. Every book in my mystery series is all planned out.
Q07 – Do you have a writing routine?
I’m trying to get into one. I feel like every time I get into a decent routine, something changes and I can’t do it anymore. I’m trying to work out a schedule for myself so that I can get ample writing time in as well as blogging and life.
As of right now, I spend at least four days a week working on my manuscripts and I spend the other three days writing articles or other pieces, blogging, and other work or life things.
Q08 – What is the hardest part of the writing process for you?
Editing. Once I get to the editing part, I switch gears and start working on a new project. Editing is hard and I don’t want to deal with it.
I’m proud to say I have been getting a lot better at it, but it’s definitely pulling teeth for me.
Q09 – What are your thoughts on Self Publishing vs Traditional Publishing?
I teeter back and forth on this topic. I don’t have a lot of information on either one but I do know that you have more freedom with self rather than going traditional.
You have the potential to make more money and you get to make a lot more decisions, such as your book cover.
I always wanted to be traditionally published. I know it takes a lot of rejections, but having some “very important person” deem my writing worthy enough to be on bookstore shelves seemed like it would be a great feeling.
But the more I think about it, the more I see my WordPress friends self-publishing their own books, I’m realizing that “very important person” should be yourself and your readers.
Publishing houses deem your book worthy if they believe they’ll get a good chunk of change out of it.
When you self-publish you’re doing it for yourself and your audience. Yes, you want to make money and make a career out of it, but that will come if you’re passionate enough and work hard.
Q10 – What is the single best piece of advice you could give to new writers?
Just do it. It’s scary, but you can do it. Even if you don’t think your writing is good enough, it can only get better the more you write.
You can’t please everyone, so there will always be someone who doesn’t care for the way you write. However, there will be plenty of people who love your writing.
Listen to everyone – people who give positive feedback and negative, people who tell you can do it and people who say you can’t do it. Prove those people wrong. Work hard and love what you do.
Q11 – Are there any authors you would love to meet in person?
Erin Hunter. I’ve love to chat with all of them and pick their brains about how they came up with the Warriors series and how they’re still going.
Plus, I’m curious how they work as a team… I’ve heard it’s difficult to co-write a book with one other people, let alone six.
Q12 – Tells us why you love writing
I can’t imagine doing anything else. I have a wild imagination and have a need to be creative. I’m not a great artist and not musically inclined so writing seemed to be the way to go. Once I started I couldn’t stop.
I’m a writer, blogger, book reviewer, assistant book publicist, freelancer, and gamer.
I run two blogs, one about writing and reading, the other about gaming. I enjoy reading or playing video games while snuggled on the couch with my dog and cat.
When I’m not working, I’m either cleaning or organizing something. The internet is my home and WordPress is where my friends are.
Check out her earlier guest post – Why do you write?