Author's in The Spotlight
Once again we are joined by a very talented author, Stacy Deanne Interracial Romantic Suspense/Mystery writer has graciously dropped by to chat about her work and life as we continue our authors in the spotlight series.
We have previously reviewed (and loved) one of her books – The Seaon of Sin – you can find the review HERE.
Stacy, can you give us a little background bio about yourself – where you are from, when you became interested in writing and career to date etc?
I was born, raised, and reside in Houston, Texas. I began writing professionally at the age of 19 years old in 1997. I got my first publishing contract in 2005. I write interracial romantic suspense and mysteries. I have always been a mystery buff so that’s where my love of mysteries comes from. Hitchcock is my idol when it comes to suspense. I’m single, don’t have any kids, and I’m a big sports fan which is a requirement here in Texas. LOL! I love basketball and football! I love writing because it completes me and I can’t see myself doing anything else.
A lot of the books you write are very much of the suspense/mystery genre, can you tell us a little bit about some of your recent works and the inspiration behind them?
My latest book is The Wild Life, which is the third book in my current Interracial Romantic Mystery series. Albany Detectives Brianna “Bree” Morris, who is black, and Steven Kemp, who is white, originates from my ’08 novel Melody (published by Simon and Schuster). I fell in love with them instantly and wanted to explore more with these characters so I began the series. The first in the series is Giving up the Ghost and the second is The Season of Sin. All books in the series are from my current publisher, Peace in the Storm Publishing.
I also began the series due to reader feedback. Readers really enjoyed Bree and Steven in Melody and many mentioned their chemistry as the reason.
All authors have their own way of working; could you give our readers a brief outline of a day in the life of Stacy-Deanne, author and any methods you may use for writing?
I don’t put myself under pressure in terms of scheduling specific times to write. I believe in letting my creativity and muse control me. My writing times are unpredictable. I could write for days in a row or I won’t write for days in a row. It just depends. As for process, I like to jump into a story immediately. I don’t plan every little thing like some writers do. I jot down ideas for scenes as I go, but I don’t outline an entire book or anything. To me the fun part about writing is the surprising journey the story and characters take you. I would find writing boring if everything was planned out.
Stacy, how much involvement do you have in your books' creation once you have finished the writing part, such as editing, cover design or publicity?
This is just one of the reasons why I love working with my publisher. We have a lot of freedom when it comes to the way we want our stories to be and our covers. With editing I edit, rewrite, and revise as many times as needed with a book, then once I turn it in the publisher does the final edits, etc. With cover design, my publisher will ask me for ideas, which I appreciate because she likes to stay true to our vision as authors. If the book cover is going to be a completely original design then I work with the publisher and the designer on a cover I’m happy with. If it’s a cover that will consist of stock images, then I pick out the stock images and my publisher gets them to the designer. As for publicity, my publisher promotes through her connections and in places that would be hard for an author to reach on their own, and I do my own personal promotion. So it’s a group effort.
How do you market your books and are some marketing methods better than others?
I use primarily online promotion and free promotion. I don’t believe in paying for promotion and never have. I think there is an abundance of ways to promote freely and creatively. As for what methods work best, that depends on the author and the book. The bottom line is this though; you can’t make someone buy your book no matter what you do. I think too many authors focus on promotion and sales when they need to focus on writing and quality. I think that always having something fresh out there is the best way to build an audience. I published two books with Simon and Schuster back in 2007 and 2008. I did a lot of promotion for those books and I still didn’t see the return or success that I’ve seen now with a smaller publisher. So that goes to show that promotion only does so much no matter how you are published or who you are published with. Authors should stick with promotion they enjoy doing, but beyond that they should focus on the quality of their work and build up an audience by writing good books and not just by hawking them.
Who are some of your favourite writers and any favourite books?
My favorite writers are the classic writers like Edgar Allan Poe, Robert Louis Stevenson, Mark Twain, and Charles Dickens. My favorite books are Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and The Portrait or Dorian Gray.
How do you judge success as a writer? And do you set yourself any goals or achievements?
Success depends on the individual. We all have different ideas of success. I learned a long time ago to only set goals I can control. I don’t set goals based on things I have no control over like sales, etc. You can’t control those things and I think setting goals like that will only set an author up for failure. I set goals based on what type of book I wanna write next or what projects to begin working on. Everything else is out of my control and left up to fate. I’ve been blessed with many different rewards and opportunities in my career, but none were anything I had control over.
Authors like any artist are always trying to produce that masterpiece! What books or projects are you currently working on?
I couldn’t care less about producing a masterpiece. LOL! I just write books I enjoy writing and books that entertain people. There is no grand scheme in mind where I’m concerned. I’ve recently began the first few batches of installments for three short story serials that will be released soon. I have also written down some ideas for some novels, one that will be the debut in a new series starring one of the characters in my current series. I will have two novels released next year and one is wrapped up and ready to go, the other needs a final look over from me then it will be off to the publisher. So right now I’m working back and forth on my serials. I’m very excited about this new venture.
Well Stacy that about wraps it up, it’s been a pleasure getting to chat with you and I do hope you keep us up to date with all your news and events
Thanks and I appreciate the support!
For all our readers and fans wanting to check out some of
Stacy-Deanne books or find out some more about this author please visit the following
The Wild Life is available in print and ebook.
About The Wild Life:
When Albany Detective Brianna “Bree” Morris learns that Cuban crime lord Milan Varela wants her estranged father dead, she heads off to Miami to find out why. With Homicide Detective Jayce Matthews and her ex-lover Detective Steven Kemp she devises a plot to get close to the Varela organization.
Brianna finds herself attracted to the older Milan and falls deep into his web of seduction while fighting to keep her mind on her mission. Milan is equally drawn to Brianna and vows to win her trust and her heart.
Is Milan really the villain when it comes to Brianna’s father? Or is he the victim?
Is Brianna’s father really in danger or is there more to the story than anyone could ever imagine?
Brianna risks her life to save her father’s but will she end up losing her own?
The steamy, explosive, and super-hot new installment in the Bree and Steven Series!
Mailing list: http://www.stacy-deanne.net/newsletter.htm?newsletter=