2/6/15

Michaela Miles Day 3

Guest Post by Michaela Miles
I've been asked to write about my muse, and I found it a very odd thing to put down on paper. If
I didn't identify as being an author, I dare say I could tick a lot of the boxes for a mental illness of
some kind: I hear voices in my head, they are hard to control and are often quite insistent, and
among other things they make funny and usually sarcastic comments at very inappropriate times.
I say 'they' because there isn't just one. Each character has their own voice, their own personality.
They direct my writing, interrupt me when I'm working, reading, or even driving, and invade my
dreams to make me see what they want me to write about them next. It's sometimes exhausting
and confusing, especially when I'm writing a first draft. And it can get worse when I'm editing, their
most common complaint being, 'I wouldn't say that!'.
When I write it down like this, it does sound slightly crazy, but it's really rather similar to recalling
a conversation with a friend, humming to a song, or replaying a scene from a movie in your head.
And it's a lot like those discussions you have with yourself about asking someone out, making that
presentation at work, what to have for dinner, or those moments when you berate yourself for a
silly mistake.
The only difference is that the conversations, movies, and discussions are fictional. And that I get to
write them down, shape and edit them, then share them with all of you.
And that makes me a happy author. :-)

Interview with Kris Calvert
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m a former PR and advertising executive who’s been a closet novelist since college. I have two
talented children, both in college (University of Kentucky and New York University) and an amazing
husband who happens to be a composer for film and television.
Which, of all your characters, do you think is the most like you?
Samantha Peterson Callahan from Sex, Lies & Sweet Tea and Sex, Lies & Lipstick. She is a young
widow. I was once a young widow. And I even held the same job she has in the book at one point in
my life.
Why did you pick your particular genre?
I love love stories and I love crazy thrillers. Put those together and I get romantic suspense.
What makes your books different from others out there in this genre?
My books are set in the South, which gives them a unique voice. But I always like to sneak little
pearls of wisdom in each book for people to take away. I always want the reader to pause and think,
I never thought of it that way before.

Interview with Katie Stephens
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
If you discovered a sealed box with “Katie’s memories” scribbled on the side, you’d find a lifetime of
partially completed stories, plays and musicals. A retired music teacher and curriculum writer, Katie
Stephens has opened that box and switched her need to create from music to literature. She writes
both non-fiction and fiction, where she happily experiments with all genres.
When her muse takes a break, Katie is a staff reader for freeze frame fiction and a grant writer for
the Empire & Great Jones Creative Arts Foundation. Although her grown children are scattered east
and west across the country, she lives solidly in mid-America with three kitties and a husband who
keeps asking when she’s really going to retire.
What are five things most people don’t know about you?
• I dated a Saudi Arabian prince
• I used to sing opera and musical theatre
• I am the 36th great-granddaughter of King Egbert of Wessex, the First King of England
• I’m a very shy person; I’d rather lurk and watch
• I’m a great cook
What is the first book you remember reading?
The first book(s) I remember reading was the entire Tom Swift series the summer after kindergarten.
I think I recall this so well because my older brother was into electronics that year. He would take
things apart and then solder them together again. I’d hold wires and read the adventures at the
same time. Random thought.
What are you reading now?
I just finished Suzanne Brockmann’s Born to Darkness and downloaded J.R. Ward’s The King, the
latest offering of her Black Dagger Brotherhood series. I’m obsessed with cookbooks; I probably have
at least 350. I’m also beta reading for a friend, a sci-fi novel called Working Stiffs. Look for it in a few
months!

Interview with Isabella Harper
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m a stay at home mother of two to the cutest kids on Earth. I’m a little biased, but what mother
isn’t? In my previous life, I was an elementary school teacher but I’ve always wanted to be an
author. I’m married to the absolute love of my life, who also happens to be my best friend. Everyone
should be so lucky to have someone stand by them when they want to pursue crazy, big dreams!
When I’m not reading or writing, I love chatting with people on social media and working out. If we
had no financial worries (meaning I could afford all the certifications I want), I’d teach fitness classes
to get out of the house, and keep writing in the rest of my “spare” time. Pregnant and post-partum
mamas are near and dear to my heart, so I’d love to help them while also getting to live my dream of
writing! Still holding on to those dreams.
What made you decide you want to write? When did you begin writing?
I’m honestly not sure. I’ve written for as long as I could remember. I have a recollection of my
teachers telling me in school that I had a knack with words and descriptions and that I should really
focus on it because I was good at it... so I did. I still have notebooks and notebooks of stories I wrote
growing up. I suppose for me, writing has always been an outlet. I’m much better with words on
paper than in person – I get nervous and my words get all twisted and I either ramble like a lunatic
or stick my foot in my mouth somehow, or both. Ha!
Do you have a special place you like to write?
Anywhere that’s quiet! With two young kids it takes a small miracle to have moments of peace
where I can be alone with my thoughts and actually get them down on paper, or on the computer. If
I could, I’d happily go to Starbucks for a couple of hours every day and tuck away in a corner just for
a change of scenery. But for now, I’m happy being tucked away in our bedroom on the other end of
the house from the chaos when I get the opportunity to be alone. Otherwise, it’s on the couch with
my laptop.
Do you have any quirks or processes that you go through when you write?
I’m a pantser. No matter how much I want to plan my novels out, it just doesn’t work for me. I’ve
always struggled with that. It used to drive me crazy when “pre-writing” was required in school and I
had to do web-mapping to show where I planned to take my story. I usually wrote it, then came back
and mapped it out just to appease, ha!
As far as quirks, I battle wanting to edit as I go. I tend to re-read since I have to come and go so often
from my writing – so I’ll be like, that sounds horrible, and I’ll butcher it until I’m happy with it. It’s
not very productive. I’m working on it!

Interview with Aubrey Wynne
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am a primary teacher and author who loves to read, travel and trail ride with my husband and
horses. I write contemporary and historical romance and also short stories.
Where do the ideas for your books come from?
Oh gosh, real life is usually the premise for my contemporary romances. Short stories come from
contests, dreams or a conversation with someone. Movies, songs and my travels provide the rest.
What books have most inspired you?
Morning Glory by LaVyrle Spencer and The Velvet series by Jude Devereaux.
Is there anything about writing you find most challenging?
Length. I cannot write to a specific length. I hate padded stories so I have to end my tale where it
ends. If that’s not novel length, then so be it.

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