When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
When I was in the 6th grade we were assigned to write a book with a friend and it was so much fun I knew one day I would be a writer. Of course, it took me a while as I became a nurse, got married, and had children but I never gave up the dream.
How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?
I have written several books which include picture books, chapter books, middle grade books, a self-care book and nursing books. I also have several children’s books being published by Clear Fork Publishing, TouchPoint Press, and PenIt Publications. It is difficult to pick a favorite because they are all near and dear to my heart.
Are there any books or authors that inspired you to become a writer?
There are so many books and authors that have inspired me. I have always loved Dr. Suess, Carolyn Keane, Judy Blume, Roald Dahl, and Beverly Cleary, Tomi Depaolo, and Rick Riordan.
Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?
My ideas come from personal, family, and life experiences. I love to sit at the beach and daydream about possible stories. I often write when I am out on Montauk.
Do you have any suggestions to help me become a better writer? If so, what are they?
Becoming a writer and published author takes perseverance, patience, and practice. Writing every day can help stimulate creativity and improve writing skills. It is important to think about your story, the narrative and character arc, and your intended audience. It is vital to follow publishers and agents guidelines and submit your most polished work. Joining a writing group, taking classes, and being open to constructive criticism is also important. Learning how to accept rejections and engage in self-reflection and being open to edits will increase the odds of being published.
If you’re planning a sequel, can you share a tiny bit about your plans for it?
Although I have several books, the one that was just re-released by PenIt Publications is “The One-Eyed Pug” which is a work of fiction based on a true story of my pug and Boston terrier. The sequel will be another work of fiction based on the day Chewy Belle got lost and had an exciting adventure before the pug and her human family eventually find her.
How did you come up with the title for your book?
I usually brainstorm while thinking about the plot and characters of the story.
What do you think is the best way to improve writing skills?
The best way to improve writing skills is to write, write, write. It is also helpful to take writing classes, read tons of books particularly in your genre, and seek out beta readers and professional editors who can help you refine your manuscript.
What do you think makes a good story?
A good story has a strong plot, narrative arc, character arc, well-developed characters with a clear protagonist and antagonist. and flawless writing. You also need to have stellar first pages so you can hook the reader into wanting to read more and care about the characters.
What’s your favorite and least favorite part of publishing
My favorite part is taking a seed of an idea and turning it into a finished story. My least favorite is the time it takes from submission to acceptance to publication which can take between two and three years.