TJB: Ann, please tell my readers about yourself and how many books you have written.
Ann: To date I have published 25 books with traditional publishers and four books on my own. We won’t mention the books I cut my teeth writing, many of which are too poorly written to ever share. 🙂
TJB: What is the name of your new book?
Ann: Currently I am working on Mr. May, book #5 in a series. Heroes of Rogue Valley: Calendar Guys. Twelve months, 12 gorgeous firefighter heroes and the women who steal into their hearts and forever change their lives. I enjoy creating these stoies and I’m having a great time with them.
TJB: What is the book about?
AR: It’s a romance, of course. Here is the back cover teaser: When firefighter Hank Gardener fails to contain a fire before it destroys Deanna Oliver’s home and damages the bed & breakfast she is painstakingly restoring, he suffers a crisis of faith in himself. Can he right the wrongs caused by his errors, or is Deanna’s dream of turning the bed & breakfast into a first-class establishment gone forever?
TJB: Do you have any unusual writing habits?
AR: Not that I’m aware of. Writing is my passion, and I write nearly every day. Here’s a little motivation trick I use to keep me on target. Each day I record the number of pages written for that day on a spread sheet. My daily goal is eight pages per day. Sometimes I exceed that, sometimes I miss the mark. Regardless, I reward my efforts by drawing a smiley face on the spreadsheet and by paying myself $.25 per page written. Lousy money, I know, but it and the smiley face work for me. The money goes into a box kept near my computer. By the time I finish the book, I have enough saved to spend on something just for me.
TJB: What authors or books have influenced you?
AR: The Romance Writers of America has had a huge influence on me. https://www.rwa.org. The organization is comprised of 10,000-plus writers from around the world, a number of whom are traditionally published or purely indie-published. Some, like myself, have published both routes.
RWA publishes an excellent monthly magazine that focuses on developing and honing the craft of writing, the publishing industry, and the business of writing. RWA also hosts an annual conference as well as conferences at local chapters throughout the country. I have met so many of my writer friends through RWA.
I also read all genres and I own a number of craft books. Some favorites are GMC: Goal, Motivation & Conflict by Debra Dixon, Techniques of the Selling Writer by Dwight Swain, and Scene & Structure by Jack Bickham. All three are on my keeper shelf, and from time to time, I still refer to them. I don’t think I’ll ever stop learning and improving my craft of writing.
TJB: What other books are you working on now?
AR: For now, only Mr. May.
TJB: What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
AR: I’ll be honest—I’m not the best promoter of my own work. I use my website, of course, and Facebook and Twitter, but I also rely on experts. There are a variety of sites offering great services for minimal cost. Ask David and Fiverr are two examples.
TJB: Do you have any advice for new authors?
AR: Don’t be impatient. Take the time to learn your craft. I worked for seven years before I was published. Besides writing during that time I also held a fulltime job as a corporate banking trainer and raised three daughters with the help of my very supportive husband. I wrote. And wrote, managing about twenty pages a week. I joined critique groups and critiqued others’ work, which taught me a great deal about the craft of writing. I accepted feedback even when it hurt and continued to work hard. When possible I also attended workshops (both in person and online). I went to conferences and entered contests.
One more piece of advice: Never give up!
TJB: What are you reading now?
Euphoria, by Lily King. It is a fascinating read.
TJB: What’s next for you as a writer?
AR: I have so many plans. Write Mr. May, send it to the editor I trust and work with, fix any problems, send to my copy editor. Publish, then begin Mr. June. Recently I got the rights back to several traditionally-published books and I want to put them for sale.
TJB: If you knew you were going to be stranded on a desert island, and you could take 3 or 4 books with you, written by me, which books would you take with you???
Ann: Too many to choose! (smiling)
Thomas: Ann, again, thank you so much for taking the time to be here today. I appreciate your generosity very much.
Ann Roth: It was my pleasure to be here Thomas. And thank you back for inviting me.
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Curious about Mr. January, the first book in my Heroes of Rogue Valley: Calendar Guys series? Go here:… https://t.co/ViftJOORXd
— Ann Roth (@Ann_Roth) April 11, 2016