Name: Erin Breckenridge
Where are you from?
I was born and raised in Sacramento, though I lived in Memphis and Tacoma very briefly.
A little about yourself i.e. your education, family life, Etc…
I took my Proficiency exam and left high school early and have taken a spattering of classes at Sacramento City College. I live in midtown with my husband, six cats and out pit bull puppy. I am close to my parents. Mom lives only a few blocks from me. My dad moved to Orlando three years ago but we still talk all the time.
Tell us your latest news.
The biggest thing that happened to me recently was having my book published. That was a huge milestone in my life and one that I though I may never attain.
When and why did you begin writing?
About five or six years ago, I started going back to school, wanting to do something with my life that would make more money than my current job. Thinking at first that I would get a degree in nursing, I took a handful of basic education classes. I quickly realized that that path was not for me. I asked myself what I liked to do and came up with the answer of telling stories and reading. It hit me then that I would try and become a professional fiction writer.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
When my first book was published, I considered myself an actual writer. Before that it I thought of myself as an aspiring writer.
What inspired you to write your first book?
My book began as a short story called Dana and the Old Woman. I wrote it for a creative writing class at City College under the tutelage of Professor Danny Romero. It was the only story I got a solid A on in class.
Do you have a specific writing style?
I tend to write mostly in third Person limited and I switch characters in a new section when I want to show events from a different perspective.
How did you come up with the title?
The title was a modified version of the one I thought of first. My original idea was Life, Death and the In Between but when I googled that I found some type of clinical book had already chosen that name.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Not really. I want my readers to enjoy the story and the characters and to be able to see a clear picture of what is happening just like I did.
How much of the book is realistic?
I always take bits and pieces of my real life, personal opinions and from the people I know, but there is nothing that concretely reflects reality in my book.
Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your real life?
Just bits and pieces, nothing major.
What books have influenced your life most? A Mentor?
I’ve always had an infinity for horror, science fiction and drama. I would say the books that have influenced my life are Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert A Heinlein, The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck, Enders Game by Orson Scott Card, Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, and Lisey’s Story by Stephen King. Well, pretty much any novel by Stephen King.
As far as a mentor goes, I don’t know. I haven’t really thought about it.
What book are you reading now?
I tend to read a few books simultaneously. Right now I’m reading Apache Nation by Dan Glover and Return of the Pale Feather by E.B. Brown.
Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
E.B. Brown that I just mentioned. I read her first book in her Time Walkers series, The Legend of the Bloodstone, and fell in love with the characters and their struggle.
What are your current projects?
I just finished a zombie novella that I won’t mention the name just yet as it hasn’t been copyrighted.
Name one entity that supported you outside your family members?
I would have to say my coworkers at Western Feed and Author Marenda, my publisher.
Do you see writing as a career?
I would love to write as a career. I hope it happens that way and would love to be able to support myself with writing alone.
If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
If anything, I think I would just revise it once more, searching for any continuity errors or inconsistencies within the characters; anything they do that contradicts my depiction and inner image of them.
Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I’ve always loved reading and telling stories. That led to writing.
Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Yes, I am presently revising a zombie novella. It’s about a woman and her brother who make their way through the apocalyptic fall of civilization.
Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
The most difficulty thing about writing is the necessity to do it every day no matter how you feel.
Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
I would have to say Stephen King is my favorite. He is a masterful storyteller and can write anything from horror to drama and make it work. I can always lose myself in a King book no matter which one. He is proficient at developing characters, any type of character that run the gamut of human nature.
Do you have to travel much concerning your book?
Not yet, but traveling to book fairs with my fellow authors in Kings and Queens Publications has been talked about. I hope there will be a lot of it in the future.
Who designed the cover?
My publisher took care of that through CoverMe.
What was the hardest part of writing your book?
I think the hardest part was remembering key things that were important to the plot and bringing the story back to tie in with those things. I would get these great ideas, like how to finish off an antagonist and begin to write it in then forget about it. I had to do a lot of reviewing in order to keep everything straight.
Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
I learned that I had to reread while I write on a constant basis or I lose touch with the characters and the story.
Do you have any advice for other writers?
Keep writing. There are days when I’m sure the section I’m writing is worthless and that nobody will like it, but I keep pressing on anyways. I come back to those sections days later and find that they aren’t so bad after all.
Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
I would like to thank each one for reading my work and I promise that I will try to make each book better and more fluent than the last.
Do you remember the first book you read?
In my sophomore year of high school at Sac High they instituted ten minutes of silent reading at the beginning of each period. That’s when I found my love of reading. I read Stephen King’s The Eyes of the Dragon. Sometimes I would keep reading long past the ten-minute cutoff.
What makes you laugh/cry?
The funniest thing to me is when I’m at work and am trying to say something and the words and syllables come out all jumbled and nonsensical.
I cry during movies when a group of people stand up for their fellow humans, regardless of the consequences.
Is there one person past or present that you would meet and why?
I would love to meet Stephen King. I would feel like I really made it as a writer then. I would just like to shake his hand.
What do you want written on your headstone and why?
I would like to be cremated so there wouldn’t be a headstone, but the plaque could say. Here lies Erin. She gave all she was to her writing and her life.
Other than writing do you have any hobbies?
I exercise a lot and read when I have the time.
What TV shows/ films do you enjoy watching?
Lately my husband and I have been watching Fear the Walking Dead, The Walking Dead and I’ve fallen in love with How to Get Away with Murder. I love horror films and drama.
Favorite foods/colors/ music?
My favorite food is probably meatloaf or cookies. I like dark colors, black and burgundy with a bit of green. As far as music goes, I listen to a lot of nineties rock like White Zombie, Nirvana and Sublime. I also like punk, like Rancid, the Sex Pistols, the Ramones and the Real Mckenzies.
If you were not a writer what else would like to have done?
This may sound strange but I was always fascinated with diseases. When I was young I thought working with level 4 viruses like Ebola and Marburg would be fascinating.
Do you have a blog/website and what is it?
I use Facebook mainly and Instagram. You can find me under Erin Breckenridge or Author Erin. The second is an author page that I haven’t used very much yet but plan to soon. My Instagram is EMBYKITTY30.EB. I use Twitter a little but keep forgetting to post there. My twitter handle is author_erin. Any reader can contact me anytime via Gmail at firstname.lastname@example.org