Name Stacey Broadbent
Where are you from Ashburton, New Zealand
A little about yourself `ie your education Family life etc
I am married with three children who keep me on my toes! I work part-time in an office, and the rest of the time I can be found reading, writing, or editing. Last year I began a book review blog after realising how important reviews are, and how hard they can be to get as an indie author.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
I am about to release my seventh book. It’s a novella called Never Judge a Book and
it releases on April 26th. This one was originally part of an anthology last year, but I have extended the story, giving the characters more life. It’s one of my favourites 🙂
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I started writing almost four years ago after completing my proofreading certificate. I’d always wanted to write as a child, but could never quite get a whole story written. Once I started, more stories kept popping into my head, and I haven’t stopped since!
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I have to say it wasn’t really until last year. I’d already released two books, but I would duck my head and mumble that I was an author, expecting people to think it was a silly idea. After I struck up a conversation with Sloane Howell, he gave me some advice and I began to actually market myself more, and started getting feedback on my books. People other than my friends were reading them and it felt amazing.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
It’s actually based loosely on my time as a salsa dancer. There were a lot of ups and downs in that period of my life, and I felt like it would make a good story. Of course, I embellished a little too.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
Not really. I tend to write whatever comes to mind. Some of my work is in third person, some is in first. I write in all different tenses and genres too. I like to keep things varied.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Of my first book? It was called Dancing in Circles and it was about salsa dancers. When I first learned how to dance salsa, we would always dance in circles, swapping partners every few steps. The story was also written about a group of top dancers who could dance circles around others.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Each of my books have different messages. My latest one is about making your own decisions, and not being quick to judge people. It’s about finding your inner strength and believing in yourself, and of course, finding love.
The dancing novella series is about friendship and love, competition and moving forward. They’re not instalove stories. Relationships are built from the ground up.
The Super Mum series is about being able to laugh at yourself, and knowing that you’re not alone in this crazy world of motherhood.
The flesh-eater series is about survival and forging strong relationships. It’s about problem-solving and above all else, hope.
The ink-slinger series is a light-hearted series based on myself and my author bestie, Shannon Lessner. They’re a little bit crazy, a little bit sexy, and a lot about friendship and the relationships you can forge even when you haven’t met in person before.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
A lot of what I write is based on things that I have experienced myself, or a friend has been through. Some of it is completely made up. I get an idea and then go with it. My characters quite often have traits of my friends or family.
My Super Mum books are 98% true stories of things that have happened to me personally.
Dancing in Circles has a lot of my experience in it too, but the rest of the series is made up.
Never Judge a Book has a character who has been through a lot of things that I’ve been through myself.
Fiona: What books have influenced your life most? a mentor?
Jamie McGuire’s Beautiful Disaster was one of the first books that made me want to look up an author. I started following her and Colleen Hoover, then it wasn’t long before I was interacting with more.
Colleen Hoover and Sloane Howell are two of the most giving authors I know. They both do a lot for charity and their readers. I think they are amazing. Not only that, Sloane was always happy to answer my questions as a newbie, and offered advice freely. He was also the first author to take us on as proofreaders, and he helped spread the word.
Celia Aaron is a literary genius, and I can only hope to one day write the way she does. The characters she creates are always intriguing. She can make me fall in love with the darkest soul. I want to be Celia when I grow up.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest and who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
Shannon K Lessner, my author bestie, is a brilliant writer. We stumbled across each other one day when I accepted an offer to review her first book. This book was amazing. It’s still one of my faves. You think you’re just reading a romance, and then BAM! The twist hits you right in the gut. I couldn’t put it down.
Obviously, all the authors I mentioned in the question above too. I’ve also fallen in love with HQ Frost and M Dauphin and their stories. I love that their characters are so relatable and raw.
Maggie Jane Schuler is another new author who is brilliant. I love stories that show you something different, and her debut certainly did that. So much emotion was put into that story and I felt as though I was really there with them. I could picture everything so clearly. Fantastic.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
I’m going to name three! My friend and business partner, Trina, has been amazing. She is always the first to read my stories and give me her honest opinion.
Shannon is not only someone I can bounce ideas off of, she is someone going through the same things as me. We confide in each other, build each other up, and pimp each other out all the time!
As I already mentioned, Sloane Howell has been amazing. I honestly think I would still be back where I was a year ago, bumbling about, with no idea how to get the word out there about my books, if it hadn’t been for him.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Yes. It may not bring in the money that I would like, but I hope to one day do it full time.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
In my book, no. The only thing I would possibly change is the release date. I don’t like working to deadlines, but I’d already promised this one to release this month.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I’ve always had a love of the written word. Reading was always my favourite pastime as a child, and I guess it stemmed from that.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Sure. Here is a little snippet from Never Judge a Book. (copyright Stacey Broadbent 2017)
*From Chapter Two*
To take my mind off him, I’ve immersed myself in books. I’d actually forgotten how much I loved to read. It had always been a favourite pastime of mine as a child until life got in the way. There’s nothing quite like losing yourself in a story. It’s the perfect way to escape when you can’t go anywhere.
I’ve taken to walking the short distance to the public library every few days to peruse the shelves and grab more books to keep me occupied. I know there probably won’t be much time for it once baby arrives, so I’m taking full advantage of the peace and quiet while I still can.
I stayed up rather late last night to finish the latest novel in the series I’ve been reading, so I could be ready for another trek this morning.
I slip my feet into some ballet flats – I’ve given up trying to tie laces now, it’s too difficult to bend around the bump – and don my coat and scarf, before draping my bag across my shoulder. The air outside is cool and every breath I take is visible. I pull my scarf tighter around my neck to keep the chill out. One hand rests on my belly, while the other reaches around to rest on my lower back as I waddle down the street. The closer I get to my due date, the more my back starts to protest. They say it’s good to keep active throughout your pregnancy, but I’m not sure how many more walks I’m going to be able to make.
The library is quiet at this time of the morning. I quickly drop my books into the returns pile and head for the fiction shelves. It doesn’t take me long to find several books by my favourite authors. My feet haven’t recovered from the walk yet, so I amble towards the couches in the corner to rest for a bit. I drop my bag by my feet, and slowly attempt to lower myself onto the couch. It’s a lot lower than I thought and it takes me a few goes.
“Here, let me help.” A firm hand grasps my elbow, and another is placed across my back, gently guiding me to the couch below.
“Thank you,” I say breathlessly, as I gaze into eyes of green and gold.
“You’re welcome.” He smiles, and his eyes light up, the gold flecks somehow even more vibrant. “How far along are you?” he asks, nodding towards my bump as he perches on the arm of the chair.
It crosses my mind to toy with him and pretend that I don’t know what he’s talking about, but my mouth won’t co-operate and all I manage to say is, “Wha? Um…” I can feel my cheeks reddening with embarrassment as I stutter. “Nearly um, full term.” I tilt my head to the side, allowing my hair to fall across my face.
“Wow, and you’re still walking here every day?” he asks.
“Um, yeah. I love to read.” Why could I not be better at this?
He’s just a guy and you’re about to burst. Relax. He’s not hitting on you.
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Blurbs. I hate writing them. As a reader, I don’t actually read them because I prefer the story to unfold before my eyes, rather than having a preconceived idea. I guess that’s why I find them so hard to write, because I don’t want to give away anything.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
I don’t have to, but I have. I’ve flown up to Auckland twice for book signings, and I’m going to Brisbane in October for Riveting Reads Australia.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
The first few books were designed by my sister with input from me. My son drew the pictures for the Super Mum books, and I designed the others.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
With my latest one, it was probably trying to link together the original story with the rest of it. I’d written the beginning and end, but wanted to give my characters more life, so I filled out the rest.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
Different reactions to drugs. One of my characters is an addict and I had to read up a bit to make sure I was as accurate as I could be.
Fiona: If any of your books was made into a film who would you like to play the lead
Ooh, good question! I think Drew Barrymore would make a good Dinah from Awesome Applesauce.
Chris Pratt as Chad in Fear the Fever.
Jennifer Lawrence as Jess in Never Judge a Book.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Write what you like writing, not what you think will sell.
Invest in a good editor.
Don’t be afraid to promote yourself. If you don’t believe in your story, then how can you expect others to?
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Thank you for all your support. It means the world to me that out of all the books available, you have chosen mine to read.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I just finished reading Taunt by Eve Dangerfield, and am now starting an ARC of Get Wilde by Shelly Alexander
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Not really. I read a lot when I was younger. Matilda and The BFG by Roald Dahl were probably up there. I devoured anything by Christopher Pike and loved Sheryl Jordan books too.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Men showing emotion will always get a tear out of me. There’s something about a big, burly man who isn’t afraid to show how he feels.
Wildly inappropriate conversation seems to be something that will have me laughing out loud. I love it when a character surprises you with some out-of-the-blue comment.
Fiona: Is there one person past or present you would meet and why?
Shannon 🙂 We speak every day through messenger, and I want to actually give her a hug and thank her for holding my hand through this incredible journey of indie publishing.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why ?
Gosh, I’ve never really thought about it, I have no idea!
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
Reading, experimenting in the kitchen, making jewellery, cross-stitch
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Game of Thrones, Sons of Anarchy, Broadchurch, The Walking Dead, This Is Us, Life in Pieces.
As for movies, I love a bit of everything.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
Chocolate or chips and dip.
I like a lot of different music too. Anything with emotion, ballads, poppy stuff I can dance too – depends on my mood.
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I never really knew what I wanted to do other than writing and editing. I wanted to work in a publishing house.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
Yes. My website is www.staceybroadbent.weebly.com
and my blog is www.staycsbookblog.blogspot.com
My amazon page is: