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Sunday, November 27, 2011

Author interview: Willow Cross

 Willow Cross is the author of Inheritance, Oceans of Red volume one and Birthright.  She resides in Arkansas, The United States. 

o you've written and published Birthright and Inheritance (which, for the record, published before Christopher Paolini's version) and are working on the third, Legacy. How goes it?
Legacy is slow moving. I’m in the process of finishing Oceans of Red volume two. After it is published I plan on throwing myself into Legacy.

When did you first start writing? Do you recall your first writing project?

I don’t recall. The first big one was Birthright.

When did you finish your first book?

January of 09. I will remember that day for as long as I live. I wrote the last paragraph realized the book was finished, typed “And so it began...” Then cried for several minutes. It was amazing!!

Do you ever experience writer’s block (be honest, I see you posting about some online game all the time!)? 

 Absolutely!!! My muse seems to take great pleasure in vacationing. Usually to places I have no interest in going. LOL

Do you work with an outline, or just write?
I just write. I’ve tried working with an outline and it never works. My stories have their own ideas of where they want to go.

Is there any particular author or book that influenced you in any way either growing up or as an adult (other than The Hobbit)? 

Hmmmm. Well that’s not a tough one, but there’s no short answer. Robert Hienlein: THE MOON IS A HARSH MISTRESS. Madeline L’engle: A WRINKLE IN TIME. Richard Bach: JONATHAN LIVINGSTON SEAGULL. I still have the copy I was given in 7th grade. And Anne McCaffrey: Dragons series. I’ve read them all repeatedly. Each of these books (among many others) have not only taught me something about life and love, but they opened my mind and imagination to infinite possibilities and destinations. Before learning to create my own worlds, I learned to live in theirs.

Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?

Many of the characters in my books are based on people I know. All of the places exist. You can find the actual houses, buildings, etc. on a map. Everything else is imagination.

What was your favorite chapter in Inheritance (or part) to write and why?

I really can’t say I had a favorite part of the book. I enjoyed writing every word of it. ;)

Are there certain characters you would like to go back to, or is there a theme or idea you’d love to work with?
Oh my. Another long answer. LOL I have at least 15 starts of different book ideas in files waiting for me to get to them. (And there may be more than that, I haven’t counted.) I’m enjoying working on both The Dark Gifts series and Oceans of Red series. I’m very attached to those characters. However, there’s another book I’ve been working on here and there that I’d really like to spend more time with. It has nothing to do with either series. And I’ve been thinking lately of doing a straight on Horror story. A particular plot has been floating around in my head for a couple weeks now. (Hasn’t made it to the files yet, but I’m sure it will.)

Tell me about your writing environment. Do they use a pen and paper, laptop? Quiet room, music or what? Dog at their feet? Cat on the desk? Just whatever makes it comfortable to be productive.

Absolute silence. If the dog is making too much noise he’s invited to go outside. LOL I always use my computer to write. Desktop not laptop. (I hate laptops. There’s just not enough room to type comfortably.) And I have to have a lit candle. It doesn’t matter which scent it is, I just need to see it flickering out of the corner of my eye.

Star Wars or Star Trek?

Both!!! But if I have to pick one, then Star Trek!!!!

Are you working on any other creative projects at the moment?

Oodles and gobs. Seriously can’t name them all. LOL (because some don’t have names yet.)

Will you tell me about these ghosts you've seen in your house?

LOL!!! I have told you about the ghosts. Some of the stories are in Haunted. ;) I am ghost free at the moment. (Knock on wood) But with my luck, I don’t expect to stay that way forever.

What do you think of what's happening with the publishing industry right now? Any speculation as to where it is heading?

In all seriousness, I don’t pay much attention to what’s going on in the publishing industry. I think ebooks are the wave of the future. I think print books will always be around. (There’s no way I’m giving up my JONATHAN LIVINGSTON SEAGULL for an e-copy.) As far as which publishing company is buying out or going under, I don’t keep up with it. My focus is on my readers and my writing. If they’re happy, I’m not going to worry.

Do you have any funny stories involving a creative project you've worked on?

Tons, but I don’t have time to write them all. I will say that it’s amazing what you can miss after doing revisions. One of my beta readers for Birthright found that I’d changed Michael’s hair color 3 times in the first two chapters. And that I had Minerva run into a room and help Liz with something 2 full pages before she was introduced. LOL Gotta love those beta readers!!!! :D

Best show on TV? 

Supernatural!!! (And no I’m not kidding!!! LOL)

If you could have dinner with one person dead or alive, who would it be? 

Robin Williams. Can you imagine how much fun it would be to spend just one hour with him?

What makes you laugh?

Nearly everything. I don’t take a whole lot seriously. LOL

Have you ever cast a spell, drank blood or ate raw meat due to a subconscious predatory urge you weren't aware of? (or maybe you were)

Only once, but it was because my brother dared me to. And just for the record, raw hamburger is disgusting!!! LOL

Who's the best character on The Walking Dead?

Rick Grimes

Do you have any idea if the rumors of its cancellation are true?

I haven’t heard those rumors!!! Are you serious????
From is my show cancelled.com: 

The Walking Dead Renewed For Season 3 
AMC issues a quick renewal of the sophomore horror drama.

If you could have one preternatural power, what would it be?

Telekinesis. If I had those powers, I could write and do all my housework at the same time. ;)

Have you ever been paintballing?

No, but I’d really like to.

You're in a desert walking along in the sand when all of the sudden you look down and see a tortoise. You reach down, you flip the tortoise over on its back.The tortoise lays on its back, its belly baking in the hot sun
beating its legs trying to turn itself over but it can't, not without your help, but you're not helping.
A.Why is that?

Because I like turtle soup? (I don’t, but it’s as good an answer as any. LOL)

B. What movie was that question from?

It sounds familiar, but I have no idea.

And finally, the question that all author interviews end with... What are your thoughts on the 2011 Nobel prize winner's findings on dark energy? Just kidding! (unless you'd like to answer that)

 Ummmmmmmm....... LOL

Okay last question... really: Have you managed to make peace with all the social media marketing required to get your name out there as an author or do you feel overwhelmed by it? How do you find a balance between 'working' that market and being creative (writing). I find it easy to get sucked into everything and completely distracted from writing. How do you cope?

I’m just doing the best I can to balance the two. There are times it is overwhelming. I feel the constant need to check fb, twitter, email, ect. But I try to limit myself on how long I spend online. Some days I fail and others I succeed. My writing distractions usually have more to do with family obligations than social media. Now if I could figure out how to balance that.....LOL

 Willow Cross is the author of Inheritance, Oceans of Red volume one and Birthright.  She resides in Arkansas, The United States. 

You can find her on facebook HERE
Her website: HERE
On Twitter @willowcross
Oh, and feel free to email her at willowsfanmail@yahoo.com

If you are an author interested in being interviewed or guest posting, a student interested in guest posting or someone who wants to give me money, drop me a line.

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