Please tell us your latest news!
My husband just caught four crabs and four fish with a Hawaiian sling in the Sound in front of our house.
Please describe your writing environment.
Chaotic. See photo:
Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
My favorite author is Susan Wiggs. What strikes me about her work is that it enables her to pay her taxes and feed her family. Seriously, I always seem to go back to Edith Wharton. She captured settings and emotions like no one else. And Dr. Seuss. The first book I ever bought with my own money was Yertle the Turtle.
If you had to choose one person to have dinner with, who would it be? And why?
The reader of my latest book! I adore hearing from readers–what they think, how they feel, what their expectations are....It’s the best dinner conversation I can think of because it motivates me to get cracking on the next book.
What’s been the most challenging part of writing for you?
The commute from the couch to the computer. I love writing, but I’m a terrible procrastinator.
Who has been your best supporter? How have they been there for you?
My literary agent. She is unflagging in her enthusiasm and patience. No matter what is going on in my life and my career, she always keeps me on track.
Who’s your agent? Please tell us about her.
Meg Ruley at the Jane Rotrosen agency, and I also work with her associate, Annelise Robey. They’re terrific. See above.
Do you have any other author names?
No. I wrote a family saga in 1988 under the name Susan Childress, but it has been out of print for a long time.
Do you like to mix genres?
Yes, I love writing both contemporary settings and hope to do plenty of it.
What book are you reading right now? What are your thoughts on it?
Paris, Paris by David Downie, not really a guide book but a series of essays on the City of Light. It is beautifully written and brings the City of Light to life. I’m going there this summer, so I’m loving this book.
Tell us about “The Call” or “The Email”!
Gosh, it was a hundred years ago. 1986. Way before email. An editor names Wendy McCurdy called...my daughter was a baby at the time, my life was crazy with dogs and work (I was a teacher) and a hundred other things, so I didn’t have time to say much more than, “YES!”
What inspires your writing?
My readers, friends, family, memories, places I’ve been, places I dream about, emotions I have about life’s events. Return to Willow Lake was inspired by both my mother and my daughter and the deep love I have for them both. And Zach was inspired by...oh, my. Someone with amazing abs, right? Someone who says just the right thing at the right time and who can transport you with just a glance or a touch.
Do you recall how your interest is writing originated?
No, because I was so little. I self-published my first novel at the age of eight. There’s a photo of it here: http://susanwiggs.wordpress.com/about/
Do you have any advice for other writers?
Read and write. Learn your craft and work hard. There are no shortcuts, so be sure you love the work.
Do you have a cool promo tricks you can share with other writers?
Get on Facebook and get talking with readers. It’s really fun, and you can learn so much just by listening.
Do you have any animals? Do they influence your writing?
Four dogs: Barkis, Lenny, Fisher and Goose. They influence my writing by slowing me down with all their neediness. But they’re adorable and I can’t imagine life without them.
Do you have a favorite object that is pertinent to your writing?
My pen. I wrote a whole thing about here: http://susanwiggs.wordpress.com/2007/01/24/passionate-about-peacock-blue-ink/ and to this day, it’s one of the most popular articles on my blog. Left-handed people like me really like fountain pens because it keeps your sleeves cleaner!
RETURN TO WILLOW LAKE is really my return to a fictional place in my heart where stories seem to grow. I loved writing this book, even though it made me cry in several places. Happy reading to all!