AUTHOR: Suzanna J. Linton
BOOK TITLE: Willows of Fate
GENRE: Urban Fantasy
Are you a full-time writer or part-time, and how do you organize your writing time?
I am a full-time writer. I left my job at a public library last year to pursue what I really love. I’ve tried to organize my time down to the hour but I learned I don’t function well that way. Mornings are generally reserved for social media, blogging, and business-type stuff. Actual writing happens in the afternoon and I don’t stop until I reach my daily word count or met my editing goal, unless something serious comes up. That usually takes me anywhere between two hours to all afternoon, depending on how well the words are coming or how often I’m interrupted.
What inspired you to write your first book?
My first novel, Clara, is something I had been writing and re-writing on and off ever since I was thirteen. I first wrote it during a very intense time in my teenage years, when I was feeling a lot of pressure from my family and a lot uncertainty as to where I was going to be living and what kind of person I was going to be. It was a very intense time of soul-searching and self-discovery. I suppose I needed an outlet for all that internal chaos. Each re-write reflected that chaos until I finally was able to write it as a story and not as a mirror.
What do you do when you’re not writing/editing or thinking about writing/editing?
When I’m not writing/editing, I’m doing other things with my blog and other tasks associated with publishing. When I’m not doing that, I’m reading, playing with my pets, playing Dragon Age, gardening, or just spending time with my husband. We love to watch movies and TV shows on Netflix. I also like to do some volunteer work for the poor and homeless.
What are your thoughts about promotion?
I hate it! I wish I didn’t have to do it. I’d much rather be focused on my writing and editing. However, it is a necessary evil and I do the best I can. I think my main philosophy about promotion is that it isn’t about me, it’s about my novel.
Do you ever have writer’s block? If so, how do you get through it?
I don't like the term "writer's block" because it sounds like something coming from outside that can't be helped. If I find writing or editing difficult, I ask myself, "What am I afraid of? Does the idea seem too big or complicated? Am I afraid of failing? Or is it something else? Am I sick or bored or just need a short break?" I try to find the root problem and solve it, either through a pep talk or some outlining or just taking a walk.
What are your current projects?
Currently, I am promoting Willows of Fate, my latest novel and working on the sequel to my debut novel, Clara. I'm also working on an urban fantasy short fiction series called The Bookwyrm Series. It's available on Amazon.
What do you plan for the future?
I plan on publishing a sequel to Clara. Hopefully, I'll have that out either later this year or next year. I also plan to continue the series that Willows of Fate started, which is called The Lands of Sun and Stone Series. Everything else is up in the air, like a novel that wraps up The Bookwyrm Series and a whole other idea that's been percolating in my mind for a while now.
How can we find you? Website, Facebook, Twitter, blog, etc.?
I have a website on which is my blog and other information at http://suzannalinton.com. On my website, you can sign up for my monthly newsletter. I’m also on Twitter at @suzannalin and I am on Facebook. My Facebook url is http://facebook.com/SuzannaJLinton. I also have a Pinterest account! You can find me at http://pinterest.com/suzannajlinton.
What genre do you write in and why?
I write a lot of fantasy and urban fantasy. I first began writing fantasy because I could make up my own rules and that felt easier to me. Now, I write it because I enjoy creating new worlds.
Tell us about the current book you’re promoting.
My current book is an urban fantasy called Willows of Fate. It is partially set in South Carolina, in a fictitious town based on my hometown, and follows Desdemona as she discovers family secrets in the wake of her mother’s death. It drives her to search for why she keeps seeing fantastical creatures, like knights and centaurs, that no one else can see. Things take a new turn when these creatures, which she calls ‘phantoms’, begin to talk to her and tell her that if she doesn’t go with them to their world, things will get much worse for her.
What comes first: the plot or characters?
Characters! To me, you can’t have a story without people, so it only makes sense that the people come first. Once I’ve learned the people and their voice, then I can put them into the context of a plot.
How long does it take to write a book, and what is your process?
It depends on how complicated the story is and how long it is. A rough draft can take me anywhere between one or two months to six months. I generally start with the characters and the problem, then I sketch a rough outline (beginning, middle, end) before I get started. Sometimes, I'll write the ending first and work backwards.
What are your current books out right now, and what are the books coming up for release?
Currently, I have out Clara and Willows of Fate. Their sequels are a little up in the air in terms of release.
However, each installment of The Bookwyrm Series comes out at the end of every quarter, so the next installment will be out September 30. Those who are interested in urban fantasy like The Sookie Stackhouse Series might enjoy The Bookwyrm Series.
Describe your writing space.
Very small, unfortunately. My husband and I live in small trailer, so space is limited. The spare bedroom has been turned into a library/writing room/man cave. There are books, camping gear, my husband’s National Guard gear, a white board, a smattering of posters on the walls, and my tiny little desk, which is crammed in between two bookcases. My desk has papers and pens all over it with barely enough room for my laptop. Oh, for a room of my own!
What has been your favorite part of being an author? What has been your least favorite?
My favorite part is the writing, the fiery act of creation. My least favorite has been the promoting. Some days, I feel like I’m in the middle of a crowd, waving my arms and yelling for attention. Not a good feeling for an introvert!