Today, I'm delighted to have my friend and fellow author, Loni Lynne as a guest. She's been writing quite a while. Let's see how she started and what she's up to now.
What made you decide to be an author?
I had an angst riddled pre-teen life. At times I felt there was nothing to do. My English teacher at the time thought my writing had a lot of potential and suggested writing. I wrote mostly stories about the shows/movies I saw at the time. I put Han Solo and Princess Leia together with kids before George Lucas, I think. Yep, didn’t know it at the time but I wrote Fan Fic.
What do you like best about being a writer? What do you like the least?
The best thing is writing the story—letting my characters come to life. The worst, struggling with time management and domestic issues while creating my fictional world.
How do you think your life experiences have prepared you for writing?
Oh, you mean the eclectic life I’ve led? J I traveled all over the country growing up. My step-father was an oil field engineer so we moved every 18 months or so. Wherever the Oil Boom hit, that’s where we were. I learned so much about the places we lived. We enjoyed going to the local museums and points of interest, the culture of the various people in different parts of the country…and then my brief stint in the United States Navy right after high school…let me tell you what an adventure that was! Lots of ideas, adventures and ‘what if’s’ to share.
Have you ever felt as if you were being dictated to while you wrote a book--as if the words came of their own accord? If yes, which book did that happen with?
It pretty much happens with all of them. But the one that really ‘spoke’ to me was, Wanted: One Ghost. The characters, especially my hero, James seemed to be my Muse and hero. It was as if he led me to tell his story.
You’ve written 5 novels and are working on a 6th novel. What’s your favorite time management tip?
Well technically, I’ve written four and a novella and working on the next novella in The Guardians of Dacia series. I’m struggling with my time management, I’m always looking for answers. Writing, marketing, publishing—doing it all for the most part now that I am self-publishing is not easy. I try to set a daily schedule but life gets in the way (or the Internet). One of the best things I’ve done recently is hire my youngest, adult daughter to become my domestic engineer while she’s finishing up college here locally. She’s a godsend during deadlines. Also, a good friend of mine has taken over my social media promotion tasks while he is recovering from foot surgery. When you have support like that, it helps a great deal.
Are you a plotter or a pantser, i.e., do you outline your books ahead of time or are you an “organic” writer?
I’m definitely “organic”. I’ve learned to ‘take notes’ about my characters and break down each scene into a separate document. Kind of like my own version of Scrivner but easier for me to digest. I let my characters tell the story in bits and pieces and then add them to the full manuscript, too. Breaking it down is like doing a Math problem (which I hated growing up). I learned to break down the issue to see each part fold out on its own.
If you had one take away piece of advice for authors, what would it be?
Don’t give up. Don’t write for profit…write for love, life and the pursuit of happiness.
Did music help you find your muse with this book? If yes, which song did you find yourself going back to over and over again as you wrote?
I don’t listen to anything while I write. I’m one of those people who have to have quiet, at least until I get into the zone. A good song will only make me want to get up and dance or sing along…distracting. But not to say a song didn’t inspire me with another book…that’s much later. ;)
Tell me more about Immortal Angel.
Tina Johnston is left heartbroken after the man she loves, Mike Linder turns her away. She’s too young and naïve to be able to understand the immortal, Vietnam warrior who suffers from the nightmare of his past. So she decides to work for the Delvante Clan and train to be an assistant to the immortal Dacians. What she doesn’t know is that her first assignment is about to take her into a world of danger and action, in which the very people she’s learning to protect are out to hunt her down and make her one of their own.
Vietnam was forty years ago and yet Mike Linder can’t forget the horrors of the past. His struggle with PTSD has no place for the lovely, Tina Johnston. As much as he wants her out of his life, he can’t bear to be without her. What they shared the past few months is beyond anything he deserves. But when he finds she’s gone to work for his boss, Rick Delvante and is sent to infiltrate a group of rogue vampires in Germany, he is beside himself. The only thing he can do is face his worst fear and go into battle once more to bring her home safely.
But what he finds is not the woman he left behind. Is he too late to save his Immortal Angel?
How about an excerpt from Immortal Angel?
Tina Johnston raced to the porch, keeping the treasured gift bag covered by the umbrella to protect it against the pouring rain. April showers were more like downpours. Lately, her mood matched the weather. She hoped this gift would start the sun shining again.She pressed the doorbell and its peal echoed within the ranch-style home. The darkened woods at night surrounded her with its loneliness and mystery but it was part of its charm. She missed the solitude and being with Mike Linder out here in the middle of nowhere. In a few short months, they’d made so many happy memories. A lifetime of happiness…until…The security camera above the door swiveled with a slight electronic buzz. He was home! She waved holding up the plain brown paper bag tied with blue and gold ribbon she’d curled and decorated herself.Impatiently, she waited. It would take him a while to trek up to the “house” part of his domain. The log cabin rancher, a façade for his actual cavernous abode secluded beneath the building, protected who and what he was. Protective glass and rock walls sheltered him from the harmful rays of sunlight and mortals who might destroy him because of his lifestyle.Moments went by. She rang the doorbell again. The camera didn’t move this time. Her heart slumped. Was he avoiding her? She’d tried to call, text, email but to no avail. Mike had blocked her from his phone. This birthday gift was a last ditch effort to try and get back into his life. He’d been unreasonable. He didn’t think she could handle their relationship.Not wanting to give up on their future she thought about ringing the doorbell again when the heavy wooden door opened to reveal a disheveled, shirtless Mike Linder. His sexy shadow of scruff and mussed, short blond hair were forever etched in her heart. Tina loved seeing him after they’d…“What’s up?” he asked gruffly.Her heart bottomed out at the thought. His faded, unbuttoned jeans teased a narrow strip of hair that lead to—“I…I thought…I mean I wanted to stop by and say happy birthday. I brought you a gift.”“That’s thoughtful of you, Tina. Thank you.”“It’s just a little something. I didn’t know what to get you. I hope you like it though.” She handed it to him with trembling fingers.An awkward moment of silence stretched endlessly as Mike raked his fingers through his hair. “I’d invite you inside but…I…um have company.”She grimaced. He’d already replaced her with someone else. Fighting off the lump in her throat that threatened to break through on a sob, she smiled and nodded as if his statement hadn’t cleaved her heart in two.Unable to bear the heartache of knowing he’d taken pleasure in another woman’s body she turned away, nearly running to her car. Away from the pain. She knew what she had to do now.
Where can readers find more about your stories, books and you on the Internet?
Loni, thank you so much for being with us here today. I know my readers will enjoy your work and your interview.