Writer interview- @LovinSunshine97

1. Hello! Thanks for taking part in this interview. Now, tell us a little bit about you and your work!Firstly, thank you so much for inviting me! This is my very first interview I am so excited! So, about me: I’m Alice, 24 years-old, from São Paulo, Brazil. I’ve been creating stories long before I knew how to write. During my school years, I was considered a troublemaker, huge loser until I asked a teacher to speech-proof a short story I had written. After that, I was known as the writer. I won two writing contests in my school, and one national contest in Brazil.

2. Before we get into everything else, do you have anything published? If yes, you can add links to your work and your socials in question ten!

Not yet, I am currently participating on Button Poetry’s Chapbook Contest with two different chapbooks, one is called Not a Walk in the Park, is about my struggles with mental illness while the other one, Bitter Cocoa Butter Kisses, is about love and betrayal, heartbreak and forgiveness. I am also planning to self-publish my third chapbook, Secrets of the Concrete Life about my life in the big city, on Amazon really soon.

3. Why did you start writing and how did you start writing?

I was very lonely growing up, an only child of divorced parents. I I spent all free time reading and watching music videos on MTV, at one point I stumbled across fanfiction and I started writing about my favorite band members as if they were part of my life, and suddenly I was alone anymore. I guess I never really stopped; I used my fanfic ideas to create original characters, background stories and got addicted to writing.

4. Do you have a specific writing schedule or do you just write at any time?

I usually write at night, after everyone in the house is asleep. But when I feel specially down I’ll write no matter the time, sadness always has a way to inspire me to travel through my imagination and create a better setting for myself, even if it’s just pretend.

5. What inspires you? Does life itself inspire you? Do ideas just come to you? What about searching online for ideas?

I never tried searching for ideas online for my personal writing; sometimes I would check little scenarios for my fanfics though. My ideas and inspiration come from everyday life situations or traumatic events. What gets me going is the need to run away from my reality into something I have control over.

6. Has your work every made you laugh? Smile? Cry?

Yes! Bitter Cocoa Butter Kisses was the hardest chapbook I’ve ever written, it always felt too real, and I didn’t have all the answers to write them down and make it a fairy tale. I wrote those poems while crying and having anxiety attacks, and needing long breaks to recompose myself. While Not a Walk in the Park is just as intense, I felt in control and even proud of myself looking back at everything I accomplished to fight my demons and get my disorders in check. Secrets of the Concrete Life made me angry, made me laugh, and just look outside my window and thank God for the privileged life I live.



7. Do you have a number one supporter, or even multiple supporters!?

My mother, she is the single most angelic creature to ever grace this Earth. She believed in me from the start and has supported me no matter what. She’s an absolute gift from God, I’d be dead (literally dead) if it wasn’t for her love and kindness. What I know from love comes from her, honestly, she’s the best friend I’ve ever had.

8. Do you have any advice for someone who may be feeling negatively towards their work? Perhaps they feel it’s not good enough or are struggling to find ideas and motivation. What would you say to them?

We all go through this these moments of doubt, and that’s okay. MY question would be: Do you love what you’re doing? Does your work touches your soul? Does it make you cry? Laugh? Does it matter to you? Once you start believing in your work’s potential no one will ever bring you down. And if you think your work is not good enough, it’s okay. No first draft becomes a book, and even if someone did it before, you are on your own path. Your work is unique like you are, no one can write your story like you can. Take a deep breath, take a break, have fun a little. Remember this always: “It’s better to write for yourself and have no public, than write for the public and have no self.” (Siryll Connolly), your writing is supposed to please only one person in this world: yourself.

About inspiration, listen to music, read different books from your Twitter feed, and if all else fails to get your juices going, brace yourself and look at those things that you try to ignore, look at your demons straight in the eyes and write them down. That’s what I usually do.

9. Before we wrap up, how about a fun question! Do you enjoy editing!?

No. That is not a fun question! It brings me flashbacks of trying to rewrite a sentence because I used too many “buts” and “ands”. All the “teh”, and “through” instead of “thought”, and my personal favorite “throught”. Look, I don’t hate editing, but it is not my favorite part (unless we are talking about that moment where I find the perfect sentence to replace that one bit I disliked). But honestly, everything I write for the first time is an automatic draft to work on for at least a week. I re-write A.LOT.

10. Okay, now for the real stuff, post the links to your work and your socials!

Okay, I have a few, if you just feel like googling me go for @LovinSunshine9.

Now for some links:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/LovinSunshine97
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/LovinSunshine97/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LovinSunshine97
WordPress: https://lovinsunshine97.wordpress.com/
Ko-fi: https://ko-fi.com/lovinsunshine97
Medium: https://lovinsunshine97.medium.com/

Thank you for taking part in this interview!

Writer interview- @CaronPescatore

1. Hello! Thanks for taking part in this interview. Now, tell us a little bit about you and your work!

Hi my name is Caron Pescatore. I am a wife, a mom of two, a tween and a teen, an author, a lawyer, and a nurse. I live in Florida, USA. I write a middle-grade series titled Kids’ Court. It’s an innovative legal fiction mystery series about a group of children who start a court and resolve conflicts between kids in their neighborhood.

 2. Before we get into everything else, do you have anything published? If yes, you can add links to your work and your socials in question ten! 

Yes! Currently, I have three published books in the Kids’ Court series. Book #1 The Doll Dilemma Book #2 The Go-KartAstrophe and Book #3 Goodbye Goody Bag.

3. Why did you start writing and how did you start writing? 

Hmm. I’ve always love to write, even as a child. I was always that kid in school who would complain when the English teacher assigned a paper and put a word limit on it.  In Elementary school, I found an old manual typewriter of my mother’s and wrote a play, and in high school, I co-wrote a story with a classmate. We’d take turns taking the manuscript home each weekend and add to the story. It was pretty fun. I never thought about writing as a career but always felt that I would write a book at some point in my life. After I had my daughter, I gave up my job to become a stay-at-home Mom. My husband knew of my love of writing and encouraged me to use the time to write. That’s when I developed an interest in writing children’s stories.

I started by dabbling in short stories for children, which I would tell to my children. I also wrote health-related articles for an online magazine for a short while, but it was pretty boring and, I soon gave it up. The idea for the Kids’ Court series came from my husband. My youngest was approaching school age, and I began to obsess about what I wanted to do when I went back to “work.” I had no desire to return to either the practice of law or nursing. I had discovered a love of arts and crafts and was getting pretty good at making personalized plaques. I told my husband I was considering opening an Etsy store. At this point, he suggested that instead of driving myself crazy trying to figure out what I wanted to do, I should write. I’ll never forget what he said. His exact words were, “You’re a lawyer. Go write a book about a kid lawyer.” And then he made that shoo motion with his hand! Two days later, I had an entire story outlined in my head. I went and told him, the joke’s on you! I have a whole story about a kid lawyer in my head. His response was, well, write it then.

4. Do you have a specific writing schedule or do you just write at any time? 

No, I don’t, but I should! My schedule very much depends on my family. I have two school- aged kids, and there is always something that needs doing. This past year with the pandemic has been challenging what with them schooling from home. The last month has seen us return to some semblance of normalcy now that they have returned to the physical classroom. But their school day is much shorter than it had been before. To compensate, I get up early in the mornings to get some writing or writing-related work done. Now that things are slowly getting back to normal, I am slowly trying to figure out a writing schedule that works best.

5. What inspires you? Does life itself inspire you? Do ideas just come to you? What about searching online for ideas? 

My inspiration comes from my children and my love of writing. My husband, of course, is responsible for planting the seed for a story about a kid lawyer, which is how the Kids’ Court series started. As for the ideas for the particular stories in each book, I have no clue where they originate; they pop into my head at random times.

6. Has your work every made you laugh? Smile? Cry? 

My books make me laugh and smile very often. There are several humorous LOL moments in each story. My son and I were rereading my first book a few nights ago, and there were several times when we both laughed aloud.

7. Do you have a number one supporter, or even multiple supporters!? 

If I had to choose a number one supporter, it would be my husband. If it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t have the luxury of indulging my love of writing. My children are also super supportive. They and my husband are my beta readers, and my children are mini editors. Lol.

8. Do you have any advice for someone who may be feeling negatively towards their work? Perhaps they feel it’s not good enough or are struggling to find ideas and motivation. What would you say to them? 

Wow! I need help with this one! I always question my ability and think my work isn’t good enough. When I first write a story, I like it; then, after I edit it, I like it even more. But when it’s returned from the editor, I love it! I always say she turns my manuscripts into “book books.” But this love affair with my work is here one minute then gone the next. Sometimes I love them; other times, I think they don’t measure up. I think that feeling of inadequacy isn’t all bad. I believe that it has, to some extent, helped me to improve my writing. The moment you begin to think you’re amazing is the moment you stop growing and trying to improve. I think I’ve finally figured out what the problem is with my perception of my work. I told my daughter the other day that I don’t see the story; I see the individual words that make up the story. Whereas when I read books by other authors, I appreciate the story as a whole. It’s almost as if I’m always in construction mode when I read my books. I analyze each word, each punctuation and am always thinking that there is room for improvement. I guess it’s like building a piece of machinery from scratch. There is the whole, but you see each piece that you added to create the whole. I’m not sure if I’m making sense. This realization is helping me to understand why I’m so hard on myself and my work. As for my method to stop beating up on myself too much, I’ve started that exercise where you look in the mirror and say something positive about yourself. My mantra nowadays is “my books are good.” Hopefully, with time this will help me to be less critical of my writing. As for advice to writers who struggle with negative feelings about their work, I would say the first and most important thing to do is make sure you do your best. You have to know that you’ve done your best before you can have any hope of liking your work. If you think you’ve cut corners, you’re never going to be happy. As for the rest, I’m still figuring it out. If anyone finds the answers before I do, please let me know.

9. Before we wrap up, how about a fun question! Do you enjoy editing!? 

Hell to the NOOOOOOOO!! I’m in the midst of a three-week streak of editing. OMG, it’s horrible! Editing is tedious work. And being a type-A personality with a perfectionist streak a mile wide does not help! But editing does provide such a deep sense of satisfaction that I get from nothing else. There’s nothing like having a completed, polished manuscript.

10. Okay, now for the real stuff, post the links to your work and your socials!

Author Website: https://caronpescatore.com

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/CaronPescatore/e/B01FZS7AVI/ref=dp_byline_cont_pop_book_1

Instagram: https://instagram.com/caronpescatore

Twitter: https://twitter.com/CaronPescatore

Facebook: https://facebook.com/CaronPescatore

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXcRWi5ckiRiOAlNhe1IRJg

Thank you for taking part in this interview!

Writer interview- @bstrykerwrites

Hey there bstrykerwrites! Let’s get to know about you and your work!

1. Hello! Thank you for taking part in this interview. Now, tell us a little about you and your work!

Thank you for asking me to do this interview with you; I am thrilled
and honored! Well, my name is Brianna. I am a 20-year-old blogger and
content creator. I started my blog Brianna Stryker Writes less than
three months ago. This is not my first blog, but this is the first
time I have been serious about blogging. Brianna Stryker Writes is a
multi-niche blog, meaning I write about multiple topics. These topics
include blogging and social media, New Jersey travel (which includes
my own photography), and college/teaching. Additionally, I write a
monthly “Virtual Coffee Date” post, which is a raw and honest look
into my life and my thoughts. This series is a way for me to
meaningfully connect with my readers and discuss a variety of topics.
I love writing and photography so having a blog is a dream come true
for me.


In my personal life, I am a college student. I am graduating from
community college this month with an Associate’s Degree in Education.
After this, I will be transferring to a different school to complete
my Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education with endorsements in
Special Education and ESL. I also work part-time as a floater teacher
at a daycare. I switch around between classrooms of infants, toddlers,
preschoolers, and kindergarteners. In addition, I coach soccer for
ages 18 months to seven years old. Since the children are young, the
classes are fun games that introduce soccer, rather than heavily
soccer-based activities, and coaching is a ton of fun.


2. Before we get into everything else, do you have anything published? If
yes, you can add links to your work and your socials in question ten!


I do not, unless you count my self-published blog posts on my website!
It is a goal of mine to one day publish a novel. Nevertheless, I am
nowhere near that point and I am okay with that because I am focused
on growing my blog right now.


3. Why did you start writing and how did you start writing?

I have always loved writing. As a child, I kept dozens of journals and
notebooks, full of random stories and ideas. As a teenager, I used
journal writing as an emotional outlet, and still to this day, I
frequently write in a journal. I also had a brief stint of writing fan
fiction and publishing poetry on Wattpad, but all of that is way in
the past. When I started college, I chose journalism as my major. I
quickly realized that the program was not for me, meaning that the
career probably was not for me either, which is why I switched to
teaching. Despite that, I still have such a passion for writing and I
enjoy focusing on it in my free time.

I discovered blogging through Instagram. I encountered someone who had
their own blog and after checking out her website, I became fascinated
with the idea of trying it out myself. I created a free blog on
Blogger and within six months, I purchased a domain. I truly loved
maintaining it, yet I realized I was putting a significant amount of
time and effort into it so I decided to get serious and convert to
WordPress instead. After doing research, I realized that basically
everyone suggests WordPress for any serious blogger because that is
the best platform for you to grow on. I started from scratch and my
blog is more popular than ever. I am immensely grateful.



4. Do you have a specific writing schedule or do you just write at any time?

I publish new blog posts every Sunday evening. As for when I actually
write them, I do not have a specific schedule. Having classes, my two
jobs, and everything else in my life means that sometimes, my writing
sits on the backburner. I wish I could make it more of a priority,
although my schedule is too hectic at this point. Basically, I write
when I have time for it. There are weeks when I am able to work on
multiple posts and plan ahead, while there are weeks when I write my
new post on Sunday morning and rush to get it done by the time I
intend to go live with it. I have to go with the flow to an extent,
but I try to be as consistent as I can.


5. What inspires you? Does life itself inspire you? Do ideas just come to
you? What about searching online for ideas?


My life primarily inspires me. Almost all of my content on my blog is
personal since my blog categories are all relevant parts of my life. I
try to use my platform to help others by sharing the tips and advice
as I learn from experiences I have in college, at my jobs, and in my
blogging/social media journey. I do not search online for ideas, but
there are times when I am reading other blogs and they inspire me. For
example, my “Virtual Coffee Dates” are based on the “If We Were Having
Coffee” trend in the blogging world. The concept is similar, yet I
tweaked it so it would be original.


6. Has your work ever made you laugh? Smile? Cry?

Definitely! I cried after I launched my blog. I had four posts on
there and I kept watching as all of them gained views and comments. I
made a Twitter account about one month before my blog launch so I
could attempt to promote and establish an audience. I suppose I
succeeded because within one week, I reached 500 page views. As for
specific pieces evoking emotion from me, I have a rough draft of an
unfinished novel about something traumatic that I went through.
Writing certain scenes of it made me cry, yet ultimately, it was a
healing process. I will probably never finish it, but it helped me
when I needed it. Writing is extremely therapeutic and can be a very
emotional process, which is what I love so much about it.


7. Do you have a number one supporter, or even multiple supporters!?

I have mentioned this already, but I have a lovely support system on
Twitter. From the start, I connected with talented writers and
bloggers who were nothing but kind to me. Diana, Victoria, Harumi, and
Joharra are close friends who were cheering me on right after my blog
launch. At this point, Burk and Biren are friends who consistently
read my blog and compliment my work. My friend Jerrad mentioned me in
his newsletter fairly quickly after my blog launch, which was really
cool. There are more people, but I will be here all day if I name all
of them. Not many people in my personal life read or support my blog
so having an online community show me so much love is a wonderful
feeling.



8. Do you have any advice for someone who may be feeling negatively
towards their work? Perhaps they feel it’s not good enough or are
struggling to find ideas and motivation. What would you say to them?


I thought long and hard about how to answer this question. I have to
go with the cliche saying of writing from your heart. I feel like many
times, we look towards others for validation. For example, I know for
me, if a blog post does not get many comments, I worry that I did not
do a good enough job with writing it. I am learning to accept that my
best writing is writing about topics I am passionate about, which is
why everything I cover on my blog is personal to me. Everyone will not
always love everything I create so my idea of “good enough” has turned
into staying true to who I am and writing what speaks to me. For
people who are struggling with finding ideas or motivation, I would
say to be gentle with yourself. Give yourself time. Inspiration comes
in waves and you will find it again. If you force yourself to write,
you most likely will not feel satisfied with what you come up with. It
is okay to take breaks and allow yourself to recharge.


9. Before we wrap up, how about a fun question! Do you enjoy editing!?

Editing for me is proofreading my blog posts and no, I loathe it! They
say you should enjoy reading your own work, but after spending so much
time writing it, I normally zone out by the time I need to go back and
edit it. I am also too particular with it; I will reread something
repeatedly and still be convinced that there is a typo I am missing. I
know I could always finish writing ahead of time, take a break, and
then proofread it, but as I said previously, I am normally running low
on time.


10. Okay, now for the real stuff, post the links to your work and your socials!

Website/Blog (Brianna Stryker Writes): www.briannastrykerwrites.com

Twitter: www.twitter.com/bstrykerwrites/

Instagram: www.instagram.com/strykbri

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/briannastrykerwrites

Buy Me a Coffee: www.buymeacoffee.com/briannastrykerwrites

Thank you for taking part in this interview!

The Benefits And Dangers Of Self-Diagnosing.

Self-diagnosis is the act of diagnosing yourself with a mental or physical health problem, including diagnosing yourself with an illness. In this blog, we will specifically focus on self-diagnosing mental illness.

Those who self-diagnose themselves with a mental health problem do it for a specific reason. Whether this is because they can’t afford the healthcare, they’re unable to get diagnosed for a specific reason (They’re underage and their parents won’t allow them to go to the doctors), or perhaps the person hates the idea of going through the process of talking to doctors in order to find the right diagnosis, maybe because they feel they will be judged, ignored and/or misdiagnosed.

With these reasons, there are benefits and dangers to self-diagnosing yourself with a mental health problem.

Benefits

– Self-diagnosing can help people find a name to what they are going through which can help them to feel less alone and find others who are going through similar experiences.

– With this, it also opens up possibilities for them to receive help in the future.

Dangers

– Self-diagnosing can be harmful to a person because if they misdiagnose themselves, they will not get the right care and treatment and may not be able to have a good quality of life. Involved with this, self-diagnosing incorrectly can have serious negative effects on a person’s mental and even physical health.

– Self-diagnosing incorrectly can also add to the stigma and misinformation of a certain illness. Anxiety and depression can be easier to diagnose purely for the fact that they are the most common and the symptoms are more straightforward than another mental health problems such as DID, bipolar, psychosis and even OCD. For example, OCD is much more than just liking things neat, tidy and in order.

– If the person is finally diagnosed by a doctor but the diagnosis is completely different to the self-diagnosis, this can cause a range of problems from the individual not believing them to believing the doctor but feeling really guilty and sad for misdiagnosing themselves and they may struggle to accept the new diagnosis.

So, should you self-diagnose?

This is a complicated question. There are reasons as to why people may self-diagnose and these reasons are completely valid and I also have personal experience with self-diagnosing.

By doing thorough research into anxiety and depression and also reading about and listening to other’s experiences with anxiety and depression, I was able to self-diagnose myself with anxiety and depression long before I finally got a diagnosis from a doctor, and low and behold, I was thankfully correct. (Thankfully correct in the way of I’m glad I didn’t misdiagnose myself.) With being correct in my self-diagnosis, I was able to confidently tell people that I had anxiety and depression without people constantly asking me if I had been properly diagnosed or not.

If you are going to self-diagnose, you MUST do research, and even then, you should consider getting advice and a diagnosis from a professional, especially when you believe you have a mental health problem such as psychosis or DID, (especially as these mental health problems are some of the most stigmatized and misinformed mental health problems), so you can move onto the next steps of finding the right care and treatment in order to live the best life you can. 

Writer interview- @samiswritingnow

1. Hello! Thanks for taking part in this interview. Now, tell us a little bit about you and your work!

Hi! I go by Sam, but those are actually my initials, not my actual name. My name is Sytske and I’m from the Netherlands. I don’t have anything published, but I’m working on a contemporary YA. I’d love to write dystopian or fantasy too, but that’s not what I’m currently working on.

2. Before we get into everything else, do you have anything published? If yes, you can add links to your work and your socials in question ten!

As I already mentioned at question one, I don’t have anything published (yet).

3. Why did you start writing and how did you start writing?

When I was young, my brother and I used to imagine stories together. Later, during high school I would always write random paragraphs about my feelings. It was a way to deal with what I was feeling without actually opening up to people around me. Eventually I started an Instagram account where I shared some of my stories (in Dutch). I don’t know why I started writing, it’s just something that I’ve always done.

4. Do you have a specific writing schedule or do you just write at any time?

Not really. I’m still in university so I’m busy with that a lot of the time. I just write whenever I have time to write.

5. What inspires you? Does life itself inspire you? Do ideas just come to you? What about searching online for ideas?

All of the above! In my current story lots of things just came to me, but some characters are based on people in my life too. The main characters, however, are not inspired by real people. They’re just people that are living in my head. Sometimes ideas just come to me, but I also love to see things on for example Pinterest and take inspiration out of that. I also take inspiration from music, sometimes a song just means something, and I take those feelings into my story as well.

6. Has your work ever made you laugh? Smile? Cry?

When rereading my first draft, I laughed, I smiled, and I got angry. The last one mostly because of a character that was so annoying, I’m trying to make her less annoying now! I haven’t cried while reading my own work, but I suppose that’s because I’ve already read it lots of times. I do hope my work has the ability to make other people cry and feel all the emotions. We’ll have to see if it actually does.

7. Do you have a number one supporter, or even multiple supporters!?

Yes! I have a couple close friends that are very supportive. I met most of them online or through concerts, I met one of them traveling, and they’ve been the most supportive ever. I’m so grateful for them. I also met lots of lovely people on twitter, but most of those haven’t actually read a word I’ve written…

8. Do you have any advice for someone who may be feeling negatively towards their work? Perhaps they feel it’s not good enough or are struggling to find ideas and motivation. What would you say to them?

I’m not sure I have enough experience to actually give advice. But the first thing I’d say is that of course it’s nice if people like your work, but you should write for yourself first and foremost. For ideas, I’d say look to your own life, look online, try writing prompts and read books! Anything you feel is important enough to tell, tell it. The world needs your stories. About motivation, remember that it’s okay to take a break too. Maybe try writing something else, look towards yourself, what story do you want to tell? Also, practice makes perfect. I don’t know if this is in any way helpful, it’s something I can struggle with as well, but I’m trying.

9. Before we wrap up, how about a fun question! Do you enjoy editing!?

Again, I don’t have a lot of experience. I’m currently halfway through my first rewrite of my story. But, so far I do like it! I like reading back my own stuff and being able to make it better. I love knowing that it’s better than it was before I started editing. I like seeing the progress. But, I may change my mind on this. Editing is very time consuming and I’m far from done, maybe I’ll end up hating it. But for now I really enjoy it!

10. Okay, now for the real stuff, post the links to your work and your socials!

My twitter is @samiswritingnow.

I don’t have any other writing socials. Thank you for the interview!

Thank you for taking part in this interview!

Writer interview- @HealingThru

*Warning for mention of a high school shooting in a non-graphic way and mentions of grief*

1. Hello! Thanks for taking part in this interview. Now, tell us a little bit about you and your work!

My name is Michelle Jeffreys. I am an American-born indie author who became an author due to tragedy. My daughter Zoë was murdered in a High School shooting in 2014. I began blogging shortly after as an outlet for my pain and as a way to connect with others who had undergone tragic events. The writing was a coping mechanism for me and a way to help in any way that I could. Grieving is a lonely, tiring and endless process. Some people have no one to connect with when they are stricken with a catastrophic loss. I felt compelled to become a safe space for anyone in need. 

My background is in Health and Wellness, and I spent many years coaching and helping others. I knew when my tragedy struck that I still had a purpose in this world. My drive just had a new meaning. My work consists of a memoir in honor of my daughter Zoë called My Rainbow to Keep. A children’s book for my younger daughter to help her grieve the loss of the sister she never knew called Sister In My Heart, and I am currently working on some uplifting journals. I also have another nonfiction book in the works.

2. Before we get into everything else, do you have anything published? If yes, you can add links to your work and your socials in question ten!

Yes.

My Rainbow To Keep

Sister In My Heart

3. Why did you start writing, and how did you start writing?

I was very nervous about putting myself out into the world at first. I created a website and began a small blog with zero followers to use as a journal. I used my social media presence to post when I had written anything new and waited to see if anyone read or noticed. After a while, I started to get some feedback from people other than friends and family. A woman reached out to me to tell me how appreciative she was that I had poured my heart and soul out. She was searching for someone who had been through a loss similar to her own, and she came across my blog. She finally felt validated in her thoughts and feelings and had found someone who understood a little bit of what she was going through. This had a profound effect on me; it allowed me to move forward with writing the book, which was always in the back of my mind but felt out of reach. My neighbor, who has written several books, took the time to guide me through the process of self-publishing, and here I sit today.

4. Do you have a specific writing schedule, or do you just write at any time? 

I am an early bird! I do my best work from 6 am to 8 am. My husband gets off to work at 6 am, and then I write until my little one wakes up around 7 am. She usually wants to watch a show for an hour, so that gives me a little more time to write before she is ready to go for the day. I also get time in the late evenings and on the weekends, but I find that the early hours are when I get the most done.

5. What inspires you? Does life itself inspire you? Do ideas just come to you? What about searching online for ideas?

I generally am inspired by positivity and the kindness of others. Nothing fuels my spirit more than to see the heart, love, and true beauty in humanity. If I had chosen to become a writer without becoming one due to tragedy, I could see myself still writing in the nonfiction genre tailored to the self-help area. I still may venture into that in the future, given my health and wellness background. I don’t like to put myself in one box, that’s for sure!

Ideas come to me all the time. I am very creative, and I constantly have ideas floating around in my head. I have a file next to my desk where I write statements down and put them in there for future books, blogs, or who knows what! You never know what may happen. Sometimes, my ideas combine themselves. It’s always fun to see where they go! Sometimes, they just sit waiting too.

I do a lot of research online as far as the grief genre goes, mainly because it is vast! There are so many different areas of grief. As an advocate for those grieving, I want to make sure I have as much information as possible, but I also don’t want to be naïve about those suffering. We all do it differently.

6. Has your work every made you laugh? Smile? Cry?

Unfortunately, my work makes me cry more often than laugh. But, what can I say? Grief is a very heartwrenching topic. I enjoy social media and meeting other authors. I feel this is an outlet that allows me a place to laugh, smile and be myself. I have enjoyed my book signings, where I have met people that I have inspired and helped—meeting strangers who leave as friends have brought a smile to my face and allowed me to cry tears of joy and pain at the same time.

I smile every time I know that someone has read my book and has gotten up from the floor and realized that they are going to survive child loss. I smile, knowing that my work is making a difference in this world.

7. Do you have a number one supporter, or even multiple supporters!?

My husband is number one. My son and daughter-in-law and my youngest daughter for sure! My parents. My entire family, of course! I’d say most of the town I resided in before we moved away. A quote from one of my reviews “I hope this book Will help our community Continue to heal and remember to live each day to its fullest!.”

8. Do you have any advice for someone who may be feeling negatively towards their work? Perhaps they feel it’s not good enough or are struggling to find ideas and motivation. What would you say to them?

My advice to anyone struggling is that we all have to start somewhere. If this is your passion, then keep going. What inspires you? Don’t be afraid to write about what inspires you. Don’t be scared to offend people. Write about the things that ignite your passion or interest you the most. Write for you! Not what you think is the golden rule of writing.

If you are struggling with ideas or motivation, look into a creative writing course. Change up your environment. Take yourself out of your ordinary and get inspired. Sometimes, we become stuck in the daily routine, and that can cloud our vision. Go out and find your inspiration! People watching is always an excellent way to find new ideas and creativity.

9. Before we wrap up, how about a fun question! Do you enjoy editing!?

Yes and No. I enjoy using Grammarly, haha. I do not enjoy paying my editor, but I realize it is essential for someone like me who is not a natural writer.

10. Okay, now for the real stuff, post the links to your work and your socials!

Blog and Website- https://healingthruwellness.com/

Twitter- https://twitter.com/HealingThru

Facebook- https://www.facebook.com/healingthruwellness

Instagram- https://www.instagram.com/healing_thru_wellness/

Amazon- https://www.amazon.com/~/e/B08HNC4BWC

Thank you for taking part in this interview!

Writer interview- @starcaller_

1. Hello! Thanks for taking part in this interview. Now, tell us a little bit about you and your work!

My name is Star, and I’m a jack of all trades. I love to write, sing, dance, act, and well…let’s keep the list short and sum it up with I like staying creative and busy! As for my writing, I do write things on my own, but story role play is the most fun I’ve had in writing. It’s like writing a book, but with friends, and you have to think and reply in a timely fashion, so it keeps you on your toes. 

2. Before we get into everything else, do you have anything published? If yes, you can add links to your work and your socials in question ten!

Nothing published, but I do have a little book of my main character’s back story on Wattpad. I’ve had horrid writer’s block with it (seriously, it’s been at least 2 years) and I went back and read it and cringed. But, I did also want progression to be seen, as so many people have told me that they don’t believe they’re good writers or can write. And by seeing progression in a story as it’s being written might show those that have worries that it can be done, you just have to keep trying! I will stress, and heavily so, that if you wish to read about my character, please do so at your own discretion. It can be a very triggering read for some. 

3. Why did you start writing and how did you start writing?

I don’t know why I started writing, honestly. I was 5-6 years old and I just remember having all these ideas, and started writing them down, I suppose. 

4. Do you have a specific writing schedule or do you just write at any time?

 I write when I feel the mood. Sometimes I get too in my own head about my writing process, and how I want the finished product to be perceived, while building bits of a story like bullet points in my head before I flesh out the story as I write it after I’ve gotten it all sorted mentally. 

5. What inspires you? Does life itself inspire you? Do ideas just come to you? What about searching online for ideas?

I find inspiration in many things. Life, music, art, movies, or sometimes I’ll find a spark just letting a train of thought run rampant. Some ideas come to me, some I try to find writing prompts and then shift the prompt a bit to something that is closer to being “mine” if that makes any sense? 😂 But yes, art, music, movies, prompts and so on are usually online searches.

6. Has your work ever made you laugh? Smile? Cry?

Yes and yes. My main character is a “therapy” character that I created whilst in therapy after a rather traumatic event. My therapist at the time suggested making a character that is wholly me, be it a direct line or metaphorical. For example, my main character is a cyborg. That’s because I never feel or have felt like I’ve fit in anywhere. I’m always seemingly somewhere in between. She has a chip in her brain that essentially cancels out her having any type of heightened emotions. She can feel some on a base level, but that’s about it. That chip is a metaphor for my own struggles with my emotions, or emotions in general. So writing her can be painful, joyous and overall, cathartic. 

7. Do you have a number one supporter, or even multiple supporters!?

 I honestly don’t know. I have one person on Wattpad who is absolutely my hype man. I owe him a lot. Otherwise I’d say that my friends and husband support my writing and enjoy reading some things I show them.

8. Do you have any advice for someone who may be feeling negatively towards their work? Perhaps they feel it’s not good enough or are struggling to find ideas and motivation. What would you say to them?

Writing is art. You’re gonna hate it. That’s the life of an artist. LOL! But jokes aside, it’s okay to look at your work and dislike what you see, just as long as you realize you have to keep pushing. Keep learning. Find others who challenge you in your writing. And don’t force ideas or motivation so much. Let them come to you. Rumi once stated that what you seek, is seeking you in return. So seek. Don’t force, just seek. Look around. Breathe. Reread what you’ve written, or what others have. Ask for help, too! Don’t pressure yourself so much! 💜

9. Before we wrap up, how about a fun question! Do you enjoy editing!?

 HAHA! Oh man! I wouldn’t say I enjoy it, but I don’t mind it. Especially if I’ve made a really silly mistake or typo, I chuckle at it because sometimes the mistakes and typos can be really hilarious. Learn to laugh at your mistakes, or cone to leave with them at least. That helps quite a bit, I’ve found! 

10. Okay, now for the real stuff, post the links to your work and your socials!

Twitter: @starcaller_ 

Wattpad (specifically the aforementioned story): https://www.wattpad.com/story/126046241-sender

Thank you for taking part in this interview!

Writer interview- @arlenrenwriter

1. Hello! Thanks for taking part in this interview. Now, tell us a little bit about you and your work!

Hi, I go by the pen name Arlen Ren (but you can call me Ren), and I write varying degrees of fantasy – usually low/urban fantasy, but I have some high fantasy planned! I think my work would be categorised as YA. I’m an artist as well as a writer and I live in England with my family and my dog, Rufus.

2. Before we get into everything else, do you have anything published? If yes, you can add links to your work and your socials in question ten!

Sadly no, not yet :(. This year I’m thinking more seriously about getting my work out into the world, so watch this space.

3. Why did you start writing and how did you start writing?

I’ve always loved reading and started writing at a young age. In my teens this turned more to making comics, but in my early twenties I returned to writing novels with NaNoWriMo.

4. Do you have a specific writing schedule or do you just write at any time?

I used to only be able to write in the evening, and I completed one NaNo by writing every day after work. As my job has become more stressful, I now find it really hard to write after work – my brain is fried! At the start of the first lockdown in the UK, I used the time I would have spent commuting in the morning to write instead, and completed the first draft of my current novel. I now find I write best in the morning, but due to my changing shift patterns, on the mornings I don’t have time to write I try and make myself write after work. I feel stressed if I don’t get any writing done in a day, so I try to make it happen no matter what…not always successfully.

5. What inspires you? Does life itself inspire you? Do ideas just come to you? What about searching online for ideas?

I used to read a lot of comics and manga, so they inspired me a lot. As I’ve moved away from manga, the stories I wanted to tell have evolved – a lot of the stories I’m writing now started out as ideas/concepts I had years ago, and they’ve grown with me to become what they are now. I’m now inspired by tv that I watch, films that I see, particularly Star Trek, not even necessarily by the content but by how their stories are crafted. For settings, I’m inspired by the world around me. I love going for walks and imagining new worlds. Forests in particular are places where I feel at home, and my current novel is set in a very peculiar woodland setting.

6. Has your work every made you laugh? Smile? Cry?

I have a sense of detachment from my work that comes from the fact that I’m dictating what happens. I’m a plotter, so everything I write has been decided in advance, and even with things I come up with on the spot I mull them over before committing to them, so by the time the words end up on the page I’m already very familiar with what’s happening, so I’m one step removed from the emotions. Sometimes I think it would be cool if my work could move me, because as it is I’m not sure if what I write just isn’t moving or if it’s me!

7. Do you have a number one supporter, or even multiple supporters!?

I have a little writing group and they’re very supportive in listening to me whine about how difficult I find editing. My parents also encourage me to write, even though they don’t read my writing (though to be fair to them, I don’t offer it to them to read!)

8. Do you have any advice for someone who may be feeling negatively towards their work? Perhaps they feel it’s not good enough or are struggling to find ideas and motivation. What would you say to them?

We’re all our own worst critics, so I think it’s worth bearing in mind that it’s probably not as bad as we think it is. And even if it is, we can always improve it! Reading, watching TV, movies, listening to music, all of these things can be inspiring and help us work out our ideas. Sometimes, if an idea isn’t working, you just need to sit on it for a while. My current novel started out very different to how it is now, and for the parts that weren’t working, I just kept them in the back of my mind and worked them over until I came up with how to make them better. For motivation – you have these stories inside of you. You owe it to yourself to let them out.

9. Before we wrap up, how about a fun question! Do you enjoy editing!?

Ugh. No! Okay, I’m starting to hate it less. But when I started editing my current novel, I had to revise a LOT of the plot, which was incredibly daunting. Once I figured out how to make myself an editing guide it became a lot easier, because I could keep myself on track and not have to think, what am I doing next? But it just feels so slow compared to drafting. I really can’t wait until I finish editing and can start drafting again.

10. Okay, now for the real stuff, post the links to your work and your socials!

I’m arlenrenwrites on Twitter and Instagram!

Thank you for taking part in this interview!

Writer interview- @ShelleyFKnight

1. Hello! Thanks for taking part in this interview. Now, tell us a little bit about you and your work!

I am a former nurse and clinical hypnotherapist turned podcast on the subjects of positive changes, and grief.

My books are Positive Changes: A Self-Kick Book, and Good Grief: The A to Z Approach of Modern Day Grief Healing (out 24th September 2021 with O Books).

Positive Changes: A Self-Kick Podcast is my award-winning mental health podcast, where each week I am joined by an guest who overcame a life-changing event and went on to create a Positive Change, sharing the tools which they used to do so.

I am also founder and host of Good Grief: Northampton Death Cafe.

I am currently beavering away behind the scenes creating new products and services to inspire and support more people to create their own Positive Changes.

On a more personal note, I am mum of four and wife of one!

2. Before we get into everything else, do you have anything published? If yes, you can add links to your work and your socials in question ten!

Yes, Positive Changes: A Self-Kick Book (November 2018) and (nearly) Good Grief: The A to Z Approach of Modern Day Grief Healing (24th September 2021 but available to pre-order now).

3. Why did you start writing and how did you start writing?

I hit rock bottom and had a semi-colon moment where I wondered if to end my life sentence or go all in and aim for my best possible outcome and life.

I was forty years old and at twenty-weeks we were told to terminate the pregnancy as the baby would not survive beyond twenty-eight weeks gestation, and never survive beyond my body should they manage to reach full term.

Despite a gorgeous husband and three cute children, it did not feel enough to stay for as was so grief-stricken…However, I kept having a recurring vision of a baby girl to come, and so I finally decided to go all in and whilst the medical world had given me doom, the spiritual world had given me a glimmer of hope, so I tried all things new and spiritual to get me through.

My first book, Positive Changes: A Self-Kick Book, contains many of my humorous stories of my journey, dollops of science around positive thinking and mindset, and lots of personal development tools to try to get you to look at your life from a new perspective. It took about four years from the idea of writing a book to actually publishing it (I used to have Imposter Syndrome but I have been cured now) but the five star feedback is amazing, as it shows me that we are all capable of creating small positive changes, even if at rock bottom.

Good Grief: The A to Z Approach of Modern Day Grief Healing is a more sombre book, sharing my thirty year career in healthcare, and my spiritual growth from life itself. Good Grief looks at life, dying, death, and life thereafter from both a clinical and spiritual perspective. It shows how we all grieve different aspects of out life, but we hold great power within us to heal ourselves, our past, and the path ahead. Good Grief was a more speedy affair, taking just nine months to landing a book contract with the wonderful O Books.

4. Do you have a specific writing schedule or do you just write at any time?

I would love to say that I right every single day, rising up when the sun does and journaling my soul away…but I would be lying! I do try and write for thirty minutes a day, mostly book number three, but sometimes it is writing in the form of shopping lists, to-do lists, brain dumping new business ideas, or other pen to paper ideas. Yes, I am old school and use pen and paper in the initial stages of a book or business idea.

5. What inspires you? Does life itself inspire you? Do ideas just come to you? What about searching online for ideas?

I am a huge advocate for self-love, and can often be found saying “The relationship we have with ourselves is the most important one of all. It is the only one to be with us from our first breath to our last.” With this in mind, I always try to inspire myself so that I am always taking action and not becoming stagnant or complacent in life.

I worked as a chemotherapy nurse for many years, and when people receive a life-changing diagnosis, or are at the end of their life, much wisdom was bestowed upon me about what it truly important in life. I use their key life lessons to inspire me to live my best life.

I have a very active mind, and will often have light bulb moments of inspiration, often from moments of silence. I always have a pen and paper nearby to quickly jot down these weird and wonderful thoughts!

6. Has your work every made you laugh? Smile? Cry?

Words truly lights me up, whether it is me writing the words, or hearing the words from my guests on Positive Changes: A Self-Kick Podcast. I have laughed a lot lately writing my crazy third book, I have cried recording recent podcast guests with suicide survivors, and I smile every day.

7. Do you have a number one supporter, or even multiple supporters!?

When I overcame the Imposter Syndrome and finally released Positive Changes: A Self-Kick Book, some of the earlier readers left the most amazing reviews. These wonderful souls are still Shelley cheerleaders now; interacting on social media, subscribing to the newsletter and podcast. My husband says it is better to have one hundred true fans rather than thousands of followers.

8. Do you have any advice for someone who may be feeling negatively towards their work? Perhaps they feel it’s not good enough or are struggling to find ideas and motivation. What would you say to them?

We can be so guilty of being our own worst critic which results with people getting in their own way.

I tell my children that there is no such thing as perfection. No one is perfect which means no-one’s definition of perfect is valid.

I am a great believer in “feel the fear and do it anyway” which also comes from the life lessons of the dying, where I learned time and time again, that at the end of our lives, we only come to regret the things we did not do in life, not the things we did.

Get the words out.

Speak your truth.

Trust the process.

Be an original not a copy.

Know that you were born to stand out and not fit in.

Live your life your way.

9. Before we wrap up, how about a fun question! Do you enjoy editing!?

Ha ha, no, I feel my soul shrivelling inside, and I am not the most conducive editor either, as I inevitably read the words as I think they read, having written the words originally, rather than what is on the page. If there is an error there, it will still be there post-edit, albeit with a slightly more shrivelled soul!

10. Okay, now for the real stuff, post the links to your work and your socials!

Website: http://shelleyfknight.com/

Facebook: https://www/facebook.com/shelleyfknight/

Good Grief Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NorthamptonDeathCafe

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/shelleyfknight/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ShelleyFKnight

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/shelleyfknight

Positive Changes: A Self-Kick Book: https://shelleyfknight.com/books/

Good Grief: The A to Z Approach of Modern Day Grief Healing: https://shelleyfknight.com/books/

Free newsletter: https://pages.shelleyfknight.com/free-chapter

In case I missed anything: linktr.ee/shelleyfknight

Thank you for taking part in this interview!

Writer interview- @emalcom508

  1. Hello! Thanks for taking part in this interview. Now, tell us a little bit about you and your work!

Hello! My name is Erin and I write mostly magical realism. I really love blending fantasy with reality and right now I’m even working on something a little autobiographical. My main focus is a book I finished a couple years ago called “Fays,” but it is rather huge and dense, so I’m still in the process of editing it. I also write a monthly blog where I watch movies from my childhood and analyze them from a trans perspective.

2. Before we get into everything else, do you have anything published? If yes, you can add links to your work and your socials in question ten!

Nope, nothing published yet. Just the blog and a podcast called “Sexdentified” (I can’t listen to it anymore because I’m pretransition on there, but I am proud of my work on there).

3. Why did you start writing and how did you start writing?

I’ve always loved writing, and before that I loved stories. I did not speak until I was about 5 or 6, but even then I remember being obsessed with movies. “Robot” was my first word as I pointed to R2-D2. I couldn’t yet talk, but I still remember knowing without a doubt that I wanted to make stories, I wanted to make people feel things. Once in school, I initially hated reading, but once someone gave me a book I liked I couldn’t stop. So really, ever since I can remember, I knew I wanted to be a writer.

4. Do you have a specific writing schedule or do you just write at any time?

Any time. Soooo random. I can go months without writing, and then just start and not be able to stop for another few months. Other times, I’ll have short little bursts. I find that for me, it’s best if I just wait for the spark or inspiration. Once I’m on a roll, or on a deadline, that’s when I push myself and sometimes that’s when some really magical stuff happens, but if I just pushed myself all the time I have a feeling it’d be pretty awful, forced and lifeless. I really try to emotionally write.

5. What inspires you? Does life itself inspire you? Do ideas just come to you? What about searching online for ideas?

Well, while I was writing “Fays,” I kept saying that the fairies within me were writing it, and I still kind of believe that. I’m a huge believer of Collective Consciousness and think that we can tap into eternal stories. I kind of believe that every possible story has happened, every possible world or reality has existed, countless dimensions and realities all happening at once, and we can tap into them and tell them. I also view writing as a sort of alchemy. When I was a kid, it was hard for me to emote, so movies and books were magical to me, they could actually make me feel things, so the fact that I can create things that can make people feel things feels like magic to me.

6. Has your work every made you laugh? Smile? Cry?

All of those things! Especially when I read over them a year later after coming out as a trans woman. “Fays” allowed me to speak as a woman through Stella, the narrator, before I could even speak for myself as Erin. And wow, “Fays” is so emotional, I felt trapped in an abusive relationship and I was hiding myself every day, all of my emotions found their way into that book, for me, it’s an emotional powerhouse!

7. Do you have a number one supporter, or even multiple supporters!?

My ex was a pretty big supporter, so even though she wasn’t perfect and there was some other stuff going on with us, that aspect really helped motivate me to finish the book. And now, well, I feel blessed by the support I have on twitter. The writing community has kept me writing and being pro-active even though that past couple of years have been brutal and there have been quite a few times when I thought about just giving up.

8. Do you have any advice for someone who may be feeling negatively towards their work? Perhaps they feel it’s not good enough or are struggling to find ideas and motivation. What would you say to them?

Just indulge in all the fiction that you love. Write notes if you need to, but mostly, just focus on what it is technically that you like: the non-linear story, the humor, the tragedy, the satire, the timing, the world building, anything that appeals to you, and then just try to employ those elements into your work, mix and match have fun, and tell your story how you want. After that, at least you will know it’s something you love.

9. Before we wrap up, how about a fun question! Do you enjoy editing!?

Hahaha. “Sometimes,” is my answer to that. But lately, after three years of editing a work that took ten years to write, I’m getting a little tired of it.

10. Okay, now for the real stuff, post the links to your work and your socials!

https://mydeconstructivecriticism.wordpress.com/2021/04/02/the-ambivalent-paradoxes-of-camp/

Twitter: emalcom508

Instagram: erinaetheria_

Thank you for taking part in this interview!