Shawna Romkey

Read more about Shawna Romkey.

Interview By: Tamazon

Date: March 15, 2013

Shawna Romkey's Web Site

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Current Release: Speak of the Devil

Describe your current release in two sentences?

Speak of the Devil is a young adult paranormal romance focusing on Lily, who suffers a tragedy which causes her to question herself and her faith. At her new school she ends up meeting a group of people who can keep her from falling into madness if they can only keep themselves from falling from grace.

What have you had to give up to pursue your writing career?

Luckily, I haven't had to give up very much other than a few spare hours here and there. I try to do most of my writing when the kids and the husband are out of the house anyway. Really anything I've given up was for the best. Things like fear of failure, self-doubt (ha just like Lily), and procrastination.

What are you working on?

I'm very close to finishing the second book in the Speak of the Devil series. In fact, by the time this interview comes out, it should be completed and off to beta readers. The second book, The Devil Made Me Do It, takes Lily to some very dark places. In this one the demons strike back.

What is your ultimate writing goal?

I just want to keep writing. I have fantasy goals like being on bestseller lists and being able to support myself on writing alone, but really if I can write a book a year and get it sold and published, I'd be thrilled.

Do you have a comfort food? What is it?

I'm a definite chocoholic, but I love donuts, too. Not good.

Where is your favorite place to write?

In bed! As soon as everyone else clears out of the house in the morning, I climb back into bed in my pj's while it's still warm and cozy, get out the laptop and write.

What career fields have you worked in?

I've taught English and business courses for over twenty years, everything from 7th grade to university level. I think that's what draws me to writing YA. I've had a lot of experience with that age group. They're so funny and in touch with their emotions. The highs are so high and the lows, so low. There's a lot of range to work with. And with them anything is possible. Teaching them and even writing about them keeps me young. At heart anyway.

What are your plans for the next year? Any books you are looking forward to?

I'm looking forward to Speak of the Devil releasing and holding a copy of it in my hands. I also plan on attending the RT Booklovers Conference in Kansas City in May. I'm from KC, so I look forward to seeing friends and family while I'm there. I also hope to finish and sell The Devil Made Me Do It.

How was your road to publication?

Brutal and long. I've been trying to get published for over twenty years. I wrote, but wasn't much into revising. I submitted, but wasn't much into researching who I submitted to. I had a con agent cheat me out of a few hundred dollars which shattered my confidence so much I stopped writing for close to fifteen years. It wasn't until the last three of four years I started coming back out of my creative shell and wanting to write. I joined my local RWA chapter and they really knew their stuff. I was able to get writing advice, submission advice, publishing advice - all of which was really invaluable to me finally getting a book deal.

If you could live in a world created by an author, which book / world would you jump into?

Instantly Alice in Wonderland and The Wizard of Oz come to mind. I love the fantastical, strangeness of the worlds. They're both so colorful and unique. But both, too, are worlds where women and even young girls are strong and powerful. The hero of the story is a young girl. The villains in the story are powerful dark females. That's pretty cool. You don't see that nearly enough.

Thanks for having me! Thanks so much to those of you who have checked out Speak of the Devil! I hope you enjoy it!