I'm thrilled to welcome author Christi McMillen to the blog today. She's got some positive and upbeat words for all writers!
What motivates Christi McMillen the author? Why do you write?
My husband & kids motivated me. I would write short stories for them to read back to me & they loved that. My husband would always see me write short stories and poems and he really encouraged me to start actively writing. Once I started getting serious with it though? I realized how much I loved it. It makes me feel so good on the inside when I finish a chapter. And when I finished my first book? Oh, I danced around the living room doing a happy dance!
When did you know you were a writer? Was it always your destiny or did you stumble upon your craft by accident?
I’ve always loved to write, ever since I was little. But seventh grade was when it really hit me. I would write in my diary or in notebooks all the time and my English teacher (who was the editor of our school newspaper) caught me. She began pushing me to write all the time and, in fact, talked me into joining the school newspaper- just to write short fictional stories for it.
What is your favorite genre to write and why?
It’s hard for me to say, although it would all be connected to the romance genre. I read anything from historical, paranormal, f/f, BDSM. I have a wide variety of books that I love. It really depends on my mood at the moment.
How did you get into eBook publishing?
RESEARCH! Lol Honestly, I researched for months before I finally decided to go into EBook publishing, especially self-publishing. I love my printed books but I am running out of room (they are on the floor next to my bookcase) and I have been playing around with getting a Nook or Kindle. Since I decided to self-publish, EBooks was the easiest and cheapest route to go. I do pay for my cover art, copy rights & all the other stuff that goes with it but it’s all in what you put into it.
How many hours a day do you devote to writing? Do you have a set routine or do you write when the mood strikes?
When my kids are home for the summer? I write whenever I can find the time but now that school has started back, I normally write at least 4 hours a day. Even if I only write three pages… one page, even, I still sit there and focus on thinking of the story. Eventually, you get yourself trained to do it automatically.
Tell us about the most intriguing character you've created.
It would be have to be Jeffrey Wells from my big “work-in-progress”. He is gorgeous and makes being the villain look almost… hot. Even though he IS the most disturbing, cruel & vicious character I have ever made. He makes evil look good while he is being evil.
Who is your favorite author? And, if given the opportunity to meet them, what would you ask them?
That would be a LONG list, lol. I would have to say Christina Dodd & Larissa Ione. I would ask them both what drives them to write and how they handle the marketing, the nerves and the terror of having people read their “dreams” they managed to bring to life.
What did you do when you found out your first book had been contracted?
Well, even though I self-published, I still jumped up/down like an idiot. Hitting the “publish” button was the hardest thing I have ever done. (And I gave birth to my twin daughters and my youngest daughter naturally… seriously). I felt sick- literally scared witless and then the greatest thing happened. The next day, three people bought my book. That’s when it hit me that I “could do this”.
Has there been a person or influence in your life that has helped you reach your writing goals?
Two people- one being my English teacher (Edna Scott, you rock!) and the second is my husband, James (Jamie). Mrs. Scott pushed me to write when I didn’t think I was good enough to do anything and my husband for always believing in me, for encouraging me when I was down… and kicking my rear when I pouted about it. lol
Do you have any words of inspiration to aspiring authors? What advice would you offer a writer trying to publish?
Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t write. You have a story that deserves to be shone to the world and if you will just apply yourself, even for only a page or two a day, you can tell your story to the world. And we will love you for it. As far as advice? Research everything before you finish. Don’t assume that everything will fall into place because it won’t. You have to work for it… but if you do, it will be worth it.
Tell us about your current release.
A Fire Within
Rayna Daniels is a woman marked for death. To escape the horrible fate two serial killers have planned for her, she finds herself depending on the unique assistance and protection of Detective Chase Stone. Though her own abilities are powerful, Rayna and Chase learn that only together can they defeat the killers and find the fire within each other.
Rayna snorted in disbelief but decided to keep her opinion to herself… for a couple of seconds.
"I'm closing my eyes now. I'm tired of stupid people and I’m afraid it's contagious. Look at you; it's already spread."
Do you have any upcoming projects in the works?
Yes, I have the sequel to “A Fire Within” that I am working on now. It is called “Crossing Steele”. I also have the bigger project that I mentioned earlier, “A Broken Path”.
Where can readers connect with you?
I am addicted to Facebook and Twitter. This is sad, I know~
Thanks so much for stopping by today. I wish you much success in your future writing endeavors.