Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I'm the award-winning novel of the diverse and inspirational equine series Angels Club that's not just for kids. Three books are currently published, and my co-writer and I have outlines and plans for three more. We could write more. I've also written the Royal Blood Mystery Thrillers, Kings & Queens and Sapphire Reign, which lean weird, gritty and dark.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My latest book features a girl with cerebral palsy as the main character. Since she is striving to make her hunter jumper skills come true and save some wild mustangs at the same time, we were going to use the subtitle The Fight for Free Spirits since it was broad and so apt. It fits, but with the importance of keyword usage and horse-lover discoverability in stores, we changed it to Angels Club 3: The Fight to Save Mustangs. Being a little more on the nose helps.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
Not really, but my dreams and sometimes sermons or bits of conversation serve as inspiration for me all the time, so I guess you could say I'm often writing in my head and not just on paper.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
Dean Koontz and John Saul have probably influenced me the most. I love kid-in-peril triumphs and bizarre, twisted storylines.
What are you working on now?
Angels Club 4: The Mighty Power of Two. The main character is an African-American tween who aims to solve the mystery of the horse-napping in her town while helping a foster kid fit in, driving a horse rescue, and trying to keep her friendships intact, all while doing good deeds with her clubs, Earth Helpers and Angels Club.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I don't know. I really stink at marketing. There's no one site that works for Middle Grade. You kind of need multiple ones showcasing your work, especially when you're writing for kids. You're hoping parents looking for fun, wholesome reads come across your book because my exact target audience doesn't typically browse bargain sites looking for reads. Plenty of adults love our books also though. Men too, which is surprising, because the books do lean girly, but the theme of perseverance in a tough world is fairly universal.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
I know you really, really want to be published, but please do not Google publishers with your just-finished manuscript and start sending your book out. All the sites that top search engines are predator presses. They will suck your finances and joy dry. You don't have to shell out money like that, in the thousands, to be published. You can self-publish for basically free. If you really want to go traditional with a publisher, then learn to do things the right way. You'll either need to find an agent first or land a deal with a well-known press that accepts un-agented submissions like Tor UK for sci-fi, horror and fantasy or Bloomsbury for YA and NA. Take your time, don't get duped, and learn the ropes of professionalism and polish. The last thing you want is to rush into a major mistake that'll cost you in more ways than you can imagine.
What are you reading now?
The Slight Edge
What’s next for you as a writer?
More fiction, maybe a sweet romance series.