Hi Laurel. Thank you for taking time to be with me on my blog today. What made you decide to become a writer?
Reading. You know how children go through the “When I grow up, I want to be…” stage with the intended profession changing every other week? I did that, too, but the one that never changed was writer. Unfortunately as I got older, I opted for the security of other professions and didn’t focus on writing until I retired from the 9-5 life.
How long did it take you to get published the first time and how did it happen?
Back in the nineties, I wrote three romantic suspense novels and submitted two to Silhouette. I received rejections, but they were personalized rejections telling me what was right and what was wrong. From what I’ve read, that was a good rejection-if there is such a thing! I was working 12-hour shifts as a nurse and wrote on my days off. Shortly after I received the Silhouette rejections, I took a technical writing job and stopped writing on my own. After sitting at the keyboard all day, I just couldn’t do it in the evening or on my days off. I didn’t try again until 2014 when I decided to go ahead and self-publish. I did that through Smashwords and Amazon at first, but now I’m just with Amazon.
I know what you mean about not wanting to write in the evening after writing all day. You would never have a break from it and you’d get burned out. Would you do anything differently the next time? If so, what would it be?
I would focus on becoming a successful author earlier. At the very least, I wouldn’t have taken the technical writing job.
I can imagine writing technically is so different than writing creatively. So, what advice would you give an aspiring author?
Write. And when you’re not writing, read–about the craft, sure, but also just for pleasure. The more you read, the more you learn about writing without even realizing you’re learning.
Ah, to read for pleasure is such a great treat. What are your latest releases and when/where can we find them?
I released Whiteout, a thriller I wrote as Laurel Heidtman, in March of this year. I will soon be releasing the first book in a cozy mystery series under my Lolli Powell pseudonym. I also write romances under that name.
So how long have you been writing professionally and do you write full-time or part-time?
I’m not sure how to answer this. I don’t usually put in 8-hour days like most jobs, but including writing and all the promotional work that goes with being self-published, I guess I could call it full-time work.
What do you do for fun when you are not writing?
I read (primarily fiction), engage with other writers and friends on social media, exercise (not as much as I should, but I’m trying!), and spend time with my husband and animals.
Where do you reside, Laurel?
My husband and I are lucky enough to live on private land inside Daniel Boone National Forest in Kentucky. We’re ten miles from a country road on a ridge overlooking a lake and surrounded by trees. There are other people out here, but the houses are far enough apart that we can’t see each other. We’re originally from Ohio, but we found this place nearly twenty-six years ago.
That sounds like an inspirational place to be writing. So do you have any appearances or book signings scheduled this year?
No in-person events scheduled for 2016 at this time. I will be at the Louisville (Kentucky) Author Event on May 13, 2017.
Thank you Laurel. You can find Laurel at her website: www.laurelheidtman.com or as Lolli Powell at www.lollipowell.com. Her blog is linked to both her websites at www.ridgewriter.com. You can also contact Laurel Heidtman at email@example.com. Laurel writes mysteries/thrillers as Laurel Heidtman, and romances/cozy mysteries as Lolli Powell.