Cindy Myers is the author of The View From Here. 'Set in a small Colorado mining town, The View From Here, is an uplifting story of love and second chances'. We will be reviewing this book soon, but in the meantime, here are a few questions we recently asked Cindy.
Can you tell us a little about your average writing day?
I start my day off writing, sitting in bed with a cup of tea and a spiral notebook or my laptop. In this time before the rest of the world intrudes, I find I can really focus on my story and characters. And this practice starts me off thinking about them, so I carry them into the day with me.
When you are writing, do you use any celebrities or people you know as inspiration?
Most of the time my characters are products of my own imagination. I ask questions — what if someone was faced with this kind of situation? Or — What experiences would make a person believe or behave this way?
What is your favorite Women’s Fiction book of all time and why?
Wow — tough question! I don't know if I could narrow it down to a single book. Anything by Jane Austen, but beyond that, how about Madame Mirabeau's School of Love, by Barbara Samuel, and Red's Hot Honky Tonk by Pamela Morsi — both for the same reason — the great characters and deep, true-to-life emotion. The characters and their situations were so real and honest and the emotion so true in those books.
What is your writing process? Do you plan first or dive in? How many drafts do you do?
I'm a planner. I do a lot of note-making and outlining before I start to write. Then I write the first draft straight through, with little or no backing up or polishing. Then the process starts to polish the work — putting things in, taking things out, rewriting sections — whatever it takes. At least two passes through after the first draft.
What was journey to being a published author?
I decided when I was 8 or 9 that I wanted to be a writer. I read all of Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House books and thought telling stories for a living would be the greatest job ever. I started writing my own stories and kept at it. I started out as a journalist, writing for newspapers and freelancing for magazines. When I decided I wanted to write novels, I sort of learned by doing. I wrote 10 complete manuscripts before I sold the 11th.
What do you think is the biggest myth about being a novelist?
That we are all rich. If only.
What advice can you give to our readers who want to write a novel of their own?
Give yourself time. We live in a world where everyone wants instant gratification. Good writing — and getting good at writing — does take time. You have to put in the hours in front of the computer, just as a professional pianist puts in hours of practice in front of the keyboard. Read and study and most of all write. Write the stories you want to read, about the characters and situations that interest you.
What are you working on at the moment?
I'm working on a Christmas novella set in and around Eureka, Colorado, for an anthology that will be out next November.
The View From Here is Cindy's debut book for Kensington Books and is out now.
Cindy Myers' Website