Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Author Interview - The Amazing Wolf Boy - By Roxanne Smolen

What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 30 or less words, what would you say?

My book is The Amazing Wolf Boy. It’s a young adult romance about a newbie werewolf who falls in love with a beautiful girl after he’s banished to Loxahatchee, FL.

If you gave your characters an opportunity to speak for themselves, what would they say?

Hi, I’m Cody. I’m a werewolf. I thought it would be easy to keep a secret identity. You know, like a super hero in a comic book. But I’ve only been in town for three months, and already four people know my secret. At this rate, I’ll have to enclose a werewolf newsletter with my Christmas cards.

Have you based any of your characters on someone you know?

I tried to. (laughs) In The Amazing Wolf Boy, the character of Brittany was originally based on my granddaughter, Nik. But Nik loves tattoos, and I didn’t want that for Brittany. That one change snowballed. Now Brittany likes McDonald’s and sausage pizza, even though Nik is vegetarian. Brittany wears dark clothing, while Nik goes for comfort. They both like to dye their hair bright colors, however, and they share the same taste in music. Sweet girls.

Do you have plans for a new book? Is this book part of a series?

Yes, I hope to write a dozen books about Cody’s adventures. I purposely exiled him to Loxahatchee, FL, because of its potential for mischief. It’s near the northernmost tip of the Everglades, so it has abundant wildlife. There’s a nudist colony there, and a drive-thru zoo. What’s not to love? I’m happily writing book two.

Have you ever read a book more than once?

 Oh my goodness, yes. I’ve been known to re-read a favorite book fifteen times or more. I run to books the way other people go for comfort food. The characters become my friends. Tops on my current list are the Harry Potter series, and the Sookie Stackhouse series. I’ve re-read the Dresden Files several times. I read the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy so many times I had to keep replacing it. In the past, I remember reading Lord Foul’s Bane over and over again. I wonder what happened to that book…

Do you prefer ebooks, paperbacks, or hardcover?

Nowadays, I prefer to read ebooks. I have an old Nook that I love. It’s easy to hold while lying in bed, I can set it down without losing my page if the phone should ring or if the kids start finger-painting with peanut butter on the kitchen table, and I can browse my entire library without leaving my chair. But I understand that not everyone shares my passion, so The Amazing Wolf Boy is published as both a paperback and an ebook.

What are your thoughts on book trailers?

I love book trailers. They’re just darn fun to watch. Of course, I like watching commercials, too. Especially if they have babies in them. But I digress. Simply put, a book trailer is a synopsis of your book printed on a slide show of pertinent photos. Because it’s both visual and print, the author can impart not only what the story is about but the overall tone of the book. It can be very effective. Whether or not it helps with sales is yet to be seen.

Do you have a book trailer?

Yes. You can see all my trailers at my YouTube channel http://www.youtube.com/moonroxinc I make them using Windows Movie Maker. The important thing is to keep trailers under a minute and a half—it’s a teaser not a full length movie. I start with the script. Once I know exactly what I want to say, I put images to the words. I use fotolia.com but there are plenty of places to buy stock photos. Then I add music. Incompetech.com is a good place for soundtracks. When everything is in place, I start to edit. I don’t want music just playing in the background; I want it to emphasize my words. Likewise, I want the slide show to fit the beat of the music. Finding the right music is as important as the script itself.

Laptop or desktop for writing?

I have both, and I’m very strict as to how I use them. My desktop is for email and marketing. I include social networks in marketing. Facebook and Twitter eat up so much of my time, I have to ration myself. Because of that, I use parental controls on my laptop. I can get on the Internet but only for research. I’ve blocked my social networks. The laptop is exclusively for writing. And the fun thing is my mind knows that. All I have to do is sit down with my laptop and I go immediately into writing mode. I split the screen—my novel on one side and the outline on the other. I’m a great believer in outlines, but that’s another topic.

Where and when do you prefer to do your writing?

I’m a morning person. My typical day starts at 6:00. I fix myself a pot of tea and sit with my laptop in an old overstuffed rocking chair kept for that purpose. There are no windows nearby, nothing to distract me from the images in my head. On a good day, my tea will grow cold because I’ve forgotten to drink it.

Do you ever write in your PJ’s?

I’ve been known to write stark naked if an idea hits while I’m in the shower. My husband just shakes his head. I think he’s getting used to me.

What is the best advice you have ever been given when it comes to writing?

Don’t quit. Once I told a friend that I’d had it, I was never going to write again. Because it’s not just the writing that’s hard, it’s trying to get published afterwards, and then trying to get readers to buy your book. It never ends. But she just shrugged and said, “Oh? What are you going to do instead?” That’s when I realized I couldn’t quit. Writers write. That’s what we do.

Where can readers stalk you?

Please feel free to add me. I follow back, and I love new friends.

My Goodreads author page: http://www.goodreads.com/roxannesmolen

Is your book in print, ebook or both?

The Amazing Wolf Boy is currently out in ebook format for the Kindle  http://www.amazon.com/The-Amazing-Wolf-Boy-ebook/dp/B005SX2JLM/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1318117379&sr=8-1

And it will be in print shortly.

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