Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.
Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?
My name is Lissa Gromley andI am 38.
Fiona: Where are you from?
Niles, OH, USA
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I hold a few degrees; an Associate’s Degree in Accounting, a Bachelor’s in Web Development, a Master’s in Management Information Systems, and a Master’s in Creative Writing
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I just recently published Super George: A Cocky Sockpuppet, a short satire story to Smashwords and Amazon.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I was around 11 years old when I first began writing. I used to tell these outrageous stories as if they were true. A teacher of mine told me I should start writing stories instead. It picked up from there.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Probably not until I published a YA fantasy book called The Warriors: The Beginning. That was published in 2007 by Outskirts Press. Years later, I rewrote the entire novel and changed the title to The Warriors: Crimson Chaos. You can find it on Amazon and Smashwords in paperback and E-book. I think you can still find the original one on Amazon too under Melissa Gromley.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
If we’re speaking of the actual published book and not my very first story ever, I would say that I was inspired by Frank E. Peretti’s This Present Darkness.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Since I was starting to not like The Beginning, I believed Crimson Chaos would net more results at getting seen. Plus, The Warriors: Crimson Chaos just sounds cooler. For Super George: The Cocky Sockpuppet, I actually got the name George from Suzan Tisdale, but the Cocky Sockpuppet came from the explosive tweets out of Cockygate and Getloud tags. We were called Suzan’s sockpuppets.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
My writing style changes depending on the genre I’m writing. If you take a look at my three available books, The Warriors: Crimson Chaos, Super George: The Cocky Sockpuppet, and Dick Cockee, my satire erotica flashfiction, you’d see that the writing differs from one another. Although Super George and Dick Cockee have similar writing. My main stance of writing style would also be descriptive but not too descriptive. Less is more. I sometimes have a hard time describing what I want to convey when it’s something new to me.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
The Warriors: Crimson Chaos would likely be about ten to fifteen percent of realism, though it is a YA fantasy. My family and I have gone through some of these incidents. There are certain themes in the book that speak of the horrors of rape, murder, crimes, and suicide. All of these were difficult for me to write for good reason.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
No. I do everything from home.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
I bought The Warriors: Crimson Chaos’ cover from Self-published Covers website, the cover for Super George: The Cocky Sockpuppet came from Heather Leigh, and Dick Cockee’s cover came from a royalty free website. I think it was Unsplashed.com
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
The message would be to never give up if you can help it. Sometimes bad things happen, but we shouldn’t let allow them to keep us continuously down in the dumps. It’s okay to feel sad or discouraged, angry or hurt. But it’s up to us to pull ourselves out of that rut and lift our heads up.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest? Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?
Even though she’s been out for several years, one of them would be Suzan Tisdale. She has a way of tugging at your heart with her dynamic characters and her sceneries. Another would be new author Brie Farmer, author of Stars Like Fate. Her book was easy to get into and the characters were believable.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
Kristina LaFleur. She was a big time supporter. Sometimes she’d lovingly harass me until I finished my first “revised” novel.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
I certainly do. I’m trying to get there 100%.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Since Super George was just published, I don’t think so. If I were to write a more serious version of the book though, I think so. Dick Cockee on the other hand could definitely stand a rewriting. The Warriors: Crimson Chaos, not so much. It’s been rewritten multiple times. I am currently working on its sequel, Storm: The Last Aleantylar.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
I’ve learned that it’s okay to laugh at your own writing. I also learned that Splashwords is a pain to publish to. But I succeeded!
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
Oh gosh, I don’t even know. There are so many talented actors/actresses out there. Though for some reason I could see Richard Speight, Jr. as Super George.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
You’re not going to succeed as fast as you think. Writing and publishing books isn’t a quick get rich stance and it shouldn’t be. Don’t get discouraged if no one is reading your book, but keep plugging away at your writing and talk about your book. Don’t be shy about it. Produce more books, talk to other writers, read their books, and be an encouragement to them. By encouraging other authors, you also encourage yourself. Before you realize it you will gain readers.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Be wary of books that have 2000 plus pages in them but only take a little time to read and have a lot of spaces between the paragraphs. Don’t get ripped off from your pleasant reading experience. There are plenty of good books out there that don’t do this.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I’m currently reading Jamila Jasper’s The Cockiest Cowboy To Have Ever Cocked, and Nancy A. Lopes The Daywalker Chronicles. Bianca Somerland’s and Kevin’s Kneupper’s novels are also on my to read list.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
I believe it was a Dr.Seuss book. I was three or four.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Random acts of silliness make me laugh, be it from people or animals. Sometimes fictional characters make me laugh too. I tend to cry when I’m angry or frustrated over something, or when I’m lost.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet?
Why? Suzan Tisdale would be one, Frank E. Peretti would be another, and I wouldn’t say no to meeting the actor Richard Speight.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
I do. One of these is role-playing. It’s basically joining with a friend or more, sometimes even people you’ve just met who are into it too, and creating stories for fun, while getting to know them and their characters. Another is video-gaming and I enjoy walking through the woods and researching.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
The Simpsons, Family Guy, Supernatural, Walker: Texas Ranger, Law and Order: SVU, anime particularly (there are dozens and dozens of them), McLeod’s Daughters, The Golden Girls, just to name a few. I’ve also enjoyed Legion, The Matrix, Chain Reaction, Liar Liar, Harry Potter, and the Hunger Games, as well as Lord of the Rings trilogy movies and the Hobbit movies. I have yet to see the third one.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
Definitely pizza. I prefer extra cheese, no other toppings. I also enjoy turkey off the bone, chicken, mac and cheese, and certain fruits and vegetables. My favourite colors are red, blue, black. I prefer upbeat music mostly, though some sad songs are all right too. These include RnB, some country, and some classical music. I absolutely love Lindsey Stirling’s music. She’s a violinist.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
Sulk in a corner at first, but then find a way to reverse that.
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?
Probably the same way I’m spending now. Working at the computer, taking care of my dogs and cats, being with family.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
“I’ll be right back.”
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
I have a blog where I discuss different topics that concerns writing, be it mine or something else: https://lissagromley.wordpress.com/ and I have an author’s website that features my novel and some work in progresses. http://melissaegromley.wixsite.com/lissa. I also have a Facebook Group for writers. https://www.facebook.com/groups/WriterEncouraged/
The Warriors: Crimson Chaos
Super George: The Cocky Sockpuppet
My Amazon Author Page:
Dick Cockee isn’t showing up on it; it’s under my pen name L. Cockley