What prompted you to write that first book? Did you always want to be an
I loved to read in my youth (in my day YA was Wuthering Heights and Jane Eyre) but got busy later in life. When I started having kids, I found I needed a leetle avenue for escape and turned to romance novels. One day I read a stinker of a novel and thought even I could do better than that. And so–I kid you not–I got an old Underwood typewriter (word processors had been invented then, I just didn’t have one) and banged out that first horrendous novel. Let’s just say it wasn’t as easy as I thought! But the bug had bitten deep and so I soldiered on through 15 years of conferences, writing classes, crit groups, while making some lifelong friends along the way.
How do you decide which story to write?
Who knows how random thoughts start in my festering brain. LOL But once I get an idea that sticks, I begin obsessing, then start character dossiers, map out plot lines, writing down the goals, motivations and conflicts–then usually ending up nowhere I started. The Z Word (book one of Apocalypse Babes) was originally about a group of empty-headed, 20-somethings who had done so much tanning, gelling, spa treatments, chemical peels etc that they were the only ones who survived the apocalypse. It’s gone in a slightly different direction and now has zombies. LOL
My latest release is book three of Apocalypse Babes, entitled iRobotronic (book two was The X Factor) . I describe it this way: “Time travel, wormholes, pink velour, Unresolved Sexual Tension…it all just keeps going. The latest entry in this skiffy-rom-goth-com (don’t ask) is called iRobotronic. Metaphors abound. Angst is ratcheted up. Pink velour gets torn. And a couple of characters even make it out of the compound, but, Keanu wants to know, it is just a glitch in the Matrix? All this and more for a measly 99 cents.”
You’ve created such wonderful worlds in both the Z Word and the X Factor,
can we expect a sequel soon?
Thanks! Book four (Kumbaya Much) will be coming out in 2 or 3 months. Let’s just say some the ‘tension’ comes to a head and we’ll leave it at that. LOL
What made you write a zombie book?
Shaun of the Dead is my all time favorite zombie movie and The Z Words pays it homage from time to time (along with nods to Resident Evil, Fido and other media. What I love so much about zombies is that they represent something you can’t outrun, whether it’s death or your past. It will always catch up to you when you least expect it. The ‘Apocalypse Babes’ have quite a few secrets and issues they’d like to keep on the down low.
Are you ever going to explain why the sky is pink and the ground glitters
in your zombie series? Yes-ish. Maybe not a scientific answer, but one that hopefully satisfies. In later books it’s known as the Pink Hair-net of Time. And the sparkly sand is a nod to the film Night of the Comet.
Do you plot your stories out or do you just start writing?
I do heavy characterization, symbolism, psychology, and sketch out major plot points, but the rest is wingin’ it (before all the editing).
Which of your characters is most like you and which is least like you? If you ask my kids, I’m most like Fiona or Addison–snarky and megalomaniackish. I feel an affinity for Malone. And I’m definitely least like Lani.
Can you describe your office or where you normally write?
On an ottoman with my laptop at the end of my bed. Someday I’ll get an office. I actually do have one, but the kids have taken it over and play their video games in there, so I hide in my room and employ dangerous yoga moves to get the kinks out of my back while writing.
Which came first the plot or the characters?
Character. All my stories are character-driven. If a rockin’ plot doesn’t have an empathetic hero/heroine, my interest wanes. I need to have a reason to care.
Have you ever gotten stuck while writing a scene or chapter? How did you
All the time. Especially while I write. When I’m in the shower away from a pen, or about to fall asleep and too tried to move, ideas come fast and furious. It’s highly annoying. Sometimes I try to force myself to power through the problem, but mostly I play mahjong or read Fail Blog and tell myself it’s to get the creative juices flowing. Uh huh.
What is the wackiest thing that’s ever happened to you since you started
Getting published. After 15 years of angst and dashed hopes (I only had 2 ebooks and a traditionally pubbed novella to my credit), the wackiest thing has been the opportunity to be published via Kindle. I’m still gobsmacked and keep waiting for it to have all been a mirage.
Did you do any research for your book and, if so, did you find any
interesting information that you had to include in the story?
I love the research almost more than the writing (and it’s a handy way to avoid editing and still call it work). I spend hours and hours sussing out symbols to use, subtext to employ, anything to deepen the layers or colorize the story.
Where can readers find out more about you?
Most of my official info is on my website, but if you want to see where I embarrass myself and others, follow my blog, and on Twitter and Facebook.
Thanks, Linda! This has been a blast!
It’s been great having you.
Help Spread The Z Word…no mad skillz, no sacred destiny, just a pink tracksuit that will take her places she never wanted to go…
Help promote Bella Street’s The Z Word for extra entries for a chance to win prizes from Juicy Couture, Victoria’s Secret, and Amazon. No purchase necessary. Grab your FREE copy of The Z Word at http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/64129 Visit bellastreetwrites.com and/or apocalypsebabes.com for details. Enter here.
Bio: Living so close to Nashville has provoked me to take up fiddle lessons. Until my tunes are fit for human consumption, I enjoy paranormal stories (Buffy, Sookie Stackhouse, Kitty Norville, Kelley Armstrong) or anything that combines romance with the just plain weird.