Name Bette Lee Crosby
Age – Old enough to know better, young enough to keep trying
Where are you from – Right now I live in Florida which the Southernmost state in the continental US, but I am a Southerner and believe me Florida is not truly Southern.
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc
My mother, born and raised in the mountains of West Virginia, was not a writer, but, she was a wonderful storyteller. Not realizing that at heart I was my mother’s daughter, I studied art intent upon becoming a graphic designer. My first job was that of a packaging designer, but it was a short-lived career. Faced with an immediate deadline and a blank space where the copy should have been, I began to write. I never looked back, and it didn’t take long for me to realize that my love for words far outweighed any design skills I acquired along the way.
In the early years of my career I wrote for business and when I switched to fiction I realized that I am more than a writer, I’m a storyteller. Just as brushes are the tools an artist uses to create a picture, words are the tools I use to create a story. With the right combination of words, emotions explode and characters come to life.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
I am currently working on The Memory House Series.
It began with Memory House, which is book 1 and the Loft, Book 2, was released September 15th. The Loft was an Amazon Hot New Release and the readers are loving it. Book 3, What the Heart Remembers will be released in mid-November. This is a truly heartfelt romantic series that looks at love, life and the power of friendships.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
As I said earlier, I’ve been a writer for most of my career, I began to consider myself a true novelist when my books began to win Literary Awards. To date I have 23 awards for my books and I can honestly say it never gets old – each one is a new and exciting thrill.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
A love of storytelling.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
Yes, a Southern voice and very strong character development. I virtually get into the head of every character I create.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
On some books I have the title in mind, on others, it comes to me through something poignant that one of the characters say or think.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I think almost all of my novels have a life inspiring message. There is both good and bad in life, each person chooses what they want to see.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic?
My novel Cracks in the Sidewalk is based on a heartbreakingly true story, most of the others reflect life experiences but are not tied to one specific event.
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
The people and events f your life just naturally color what you write. My characters are not just one person, but rather a collage of the people and events of my life.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? a mentor?
I have dozens of novels that I classify as favorites, but the book that has the greatest actual influence in my life is the Bible.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
All the Light we Cannot See
Fiona: What are your current projects?
I am just finishing up a novella that will be part of Toby Neal’s Lei Crime Kindle World. It is not a crime story but a look inside the life of one of her most inspiring characters.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
The community of Indie Authors – these writers are incredibly generous in sharing knowledge and lending support to one another.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Absolutely. It is my career.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
No. I am a perfectionist when it comes to writing and if I were not 100% satisified with it, I would not have released the book.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Yes, following is the opening paragraph from “What the Heart Remembers”
They say with age comes wisdom, but I’m not so certain that’s true. By now I should have learned to temper my expectations, but I haven’t.
I am in my ninety-first year of life, which is somewhat of a miracle. Women in the Browne family do not live long lives; it’s a proven fact. For as far back as anyone remembers, there has been only one cousin who made it to ninety-one, but she’s three-times removed and hardly worth a mention.
The truth is I expected to be long gone by now, but here I am. Alive and well. I’ve tried to adjust my expectations and take each day as it comes, but this is not an easy thing to do. Expectations are a way of life. Sadly enough, they are also what causes more heartache than anything else. I spent most of my ninetieth year, waiting to die. Now I’m wishing I had that year back. Instead of worrying about dying, I’d be celebrating the fact that I’m still living.
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Storytelling is the magic part – editing is hard work.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
I have too many to name. I don’t so much have favorite authors as I do have favorite books.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
Not really. I spend most of my time glued to the computer.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
A design group called Damonza
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Editing. And letting go of the final manuscript.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Be yourself. Discover what’s in your heart and create characters you love or love to hate. Never allow yourself to follow in the tracks of another author simply because he or she sold a million copies of their book. If you stumble onto that pathway, your readers will know; your characters will sound shallow and superficial. But if you’re true to yourself and work to develop your own voice it will ring loud and true with believability. It isn’t something that happens overnight. I wrote four novels before the fifth was published, but the truth is that the first four didn’t deserve to be published, they were all part of my learning curve. So, stay with it and learn from the writers who inspire you, from the books you love, and from the books you hate. You learn something from every book you read, and sometimes that something is what not to do. Most of all enjoy every minute you spend writing—because if you’re not writing for fun, you shouldn’t be writing.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Yes…thank you for taking time to review. Reviews are so helpful to readers looking to try a new-to-them author.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
A touching scene will bring tears to my eyes – something that reads true, that you can actually feel. I love to read books that touch my heart and it’s what I strive for in every one of my novels.
Fiona: Is there one person pass or present you would meet and why?
Harper Lee, I’d love to know what prompted her to release that second book now.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why ?
I guess I would like it to say that I was kind and generous.
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
LOL – reading, shopping, and floating around the pool in my lounge chair
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I love good movies but I am not a big fan of TV. I much prefer reading to watching television.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
Ice cream & chocolate, Black to wear, red to have around me, and easy listening music
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I can’t imagine not being a writer.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
Amazon Authors page http://www.amazon.com/Bette-Lee-Crosby/e/B005TLT1PK/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1