Here we go!
Why and when did you start writing?
I've always loved writing. I wrote my first romance manuscript about twelve years ago, but I didn't start writing full-time until 2011. I'd wanted to write a book about a sexy country music superstar for years, so when I finally sat down at my keyboard to hash out the plot for Shameless I quickly became obsessed with not only the story but the writing process. I'm still obsessed with the writing process and feel ridiculously grateful that I get to do this for a living!
What or who inspired you to write?
I've been reading romance for twenty years and early on I was inspired by Nora Robert's books. I thought it would be amazing to be able to 'paint a picture' with words the way she did. I still envy her ability to do that. I feel I'm able to evoke real emotion in my readers, but painting a picture with words is a very unique skill only a select few authors seem to have.
What is the hardest part of writing a book?
The first 500 words. I don't plot my books. I'm a total pantser, so while I always start out with an idea and a blurb, I have no idea where the book is going to go beyond that. It's exciting and scary at the same time, watching the book and characters grow and evolve into something you hope your readers will love.
Can you describe a typical work day?
It depends on whether I have a deadline looming. If so, I may write as long as I have to to reach my target, but I usually set a goal of 1000 words per day, minimum. I usually write in the early afternoon, before I pick my son up from school. Mornings are reserved for social media and marketing tasks. If I'm on a role with a book, as I am with my current work in progress, I can easily write in blocks of 2-3 hours throughout the day, often getting 4-5 k words in each day for weeks. It really just depends on the project and what else I have going on.
What would you like to accomplish in the next 5 years?
In terms of my books, which is really the only thing I can control, I intend to release the last few books in the two series I'm currently working on, Texas Titans and Music City Moguls, in 2014. 2015 will be all about releasing my back list of 11 books. I haven't thought too far beyond that.
Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
I admire so many authors it's difficult to pick just one. I love Bella Andre, Barbara Delinksy, and Susan Mallery though. They all make you care so much about their characters, which is the most important part of being a good story teller. If readers don't connect with a character right away they'll never become 'hooked' on that book.
Do you have any advice for other writers?
Don't fixate on sales. If you focus on craft, the sales will come in time. Be patient. Focus on making every book the best it can be and then let it go so you can begin working on the next one.
What are your current projects?
I am currently working on book #4 in the Texas Titans series, Cheap Shot.
Thank you so much for taking the time to feature me, Myra. It's been a pleasure!
Website of Cheryl Douglas
I want to thank Cheryl Douglas for the interview!
Happy reading everyone :)