FAQ



Over the years, I have received many of the same questions over and over again. People are naturally curious about what it's like to be a writer. I started working when I was quite young, so I now have years of experience working in publishing. This page covers some of the most frequently asked questions that I get as the years go by. 

The first is: What is Writing Belle? My answer is that Writing Belle is an online magazine dedicated to exploring the art of storytelling. I interview and feature authors, editors, literary agents, and artists from around the world every week, every year. 

Maybe the rest of these questions will help us to get to know each other a little more! 


FAQs

Reading with my cat Luke. He was a good reading buddy. :)
Why writing? 

I've always enjoyed reading and writing, so it was only natural that I jump into a career as a full-time writer. I wrote my first novel when I was 13, and at that point in time I didn't have a computer, so I merely scribbled everything down on about a thousand pages of notebook paper. Needless to say, I was very happy when I discovered the joys of using a keyboard. Since then I've written many novels, short stories and essays. 

About 12 or 13. Writing my first novel.
So...you're a full-time writer now. What was your very first job? 
Remarkably, I have been fortunate enough to only ever have jobs that have been in the field I love: writing. My first job was working as a content creator for a UK-based company that specialized in Search Engine Optimization when I was in high school. I learned to write very quickly, efficiently, and concisely. After that I worked as a freelance writer for newspapers, magazines, websites, blogs, travelogs, you name it. I wrote thousands of articles. I ghost co-wrote an ebook. I've worked as a professional publicist, social media manager and consultant. I'm a creative writing teacher - I've taught kids from kindergarten to high school. My primary job is storytelling, which of course means I get to call myself a novelist. The great thing about being a writer is that you can do so many different things! 

Why Writing Belle? 
I created Writing Belle because I wanted to have a place where people could go to explore the art of storytelling. I'm fascinated with the publishing industry and the way authors and editors work together to create exciting adventures for readers. Anything that has to do with stories - whether it's a book or a movie - has a place here!


The original 2013 cover for SOE.
Why did you decide to publish State of Emergency, the first installment in The Collapse Series? 
Being a writer is not easy. The work is difficult and requires a lot of self-discpline. Creating a novel is like the ultimate test of being a writer. I wrote State of Emergency in 2012, in 22 days exactly. I was taking the semester off from college, and I was busy working. I wanted to do something to keep my skills as a writer sharpened, so I decided to challenge myself and write a story about one girl surviving in a world thrown into chaos after an electromagnetic pulse disables the technological infrastructure of the country. It was such a fun, fast-moving story, I figured it would have mass appeal. 
I guess I was right! 
The book was re-written and re-released in 2016 to keep up with the times. 


Playing survival with my friends. I'm in the center.
Your books are Romantic Adventures. Explain, please.
What's there to explain? It's an adventure novel with some romance thrown in. I love action movies. Die Hard, Air Force One, Iron Man, The Avengers. Typically anything that's exciting is what I enjoy watching or reading. So writing an adventure novel was only natural. When I was growing up, I read survival novels. Robinson Crusoe was one of my all-time favorites. And of course, a little bit of romance doesn't hurt anything, either. I've always enjoyed romantic elements in stories. The Collapse Series has given me a chance to explore characters and emotions in a unique way. The situations in which they find themselves make the romantic elements a bit different than other novels - and that is perhaps the most entertaining part of writing this story. 


The Zero Trilogy. The Bravo Saga. The Illustrated Guide. How many books and series are going on here? 
A lot! The Zero Trilogy was a pet project of mine. I'd always wanted to write this story about a spunky, badass teenage girl who kicks the apocalypse's butt. Her companion, a dog named Bravo, is my favorite character to date. Which brings us to the Bravo Saga. The adventure series chronicles the journey of Bravo the bomb dog and his survival in the ashes of civilization. I loved writing it. 

Running with Wolves. Prolific: Writing a Hit Novel. Resurrection: Shadows of Omega...how many books are you currently working on? 
So many! Running with Wolves is my very first historical fiction. Prolific: Writing a Hit Novel, is my first non-fiction. Resurrection: Shadows of Omega, is my first major departure from Cassidy Hart's familiar apocalyptic story line. The plot is more intense, more diverse, more romantic, more hard-hitting, I think. It's going to be an adventure. 


What do you like to do when you're not working? 
I love to travel. Seeing new places and experiencing new things fuels my passion to write. I have never visited anywhere or done anything that hasn't somehow ended up in my writing. I think of life as a massive research trip. There is always more to discover. 

I spend a lot of time with my German Shepherd, Kona. She's currently in training and as soon as she achieves her advanced education diploma, my husband and I are going to adopt another puppy; probably a Dutch Shepherd. I love to read, obviously, and I enjoy cooking. At the end of a long, busy day of work, making something in the kitchen is very relaxing (to me, at least!). 

I also enjoy learning, so I am always taking some kind of class - be it a college class, a dog training class or something else. Learning is one of those things in life I never get tired of. 

What authors inspire you? 
I grew up reading anything I could get my hands on. Our home library (also known as our converted garage) housed roughly 4,000 books, and I pretty much read all of them. I was inspired as a kid by Robert Louis Stevenson, Carolyn Keene, and Charlotte Bronte. Today, my favorite writers are, without a doubt, Jack London, James P. White, Anne Sewell, John Muir, Charlotte Bronte (some loves never fade!), Gary Paulsen, Ransom Riggs, Stephen King...the list goes on, but those authors are definitely at the top of my list. 

If I was on a deserted island and could choose only one book to read, it would be The Call of the Wild. It's my all-time favorite book. I never get tired of reading it. I collect every edition I find. I currently have at least 12 copies of it in my office, and I have the last lines of the book framed on my wall. 


Have a question for me? Send me an email! 

summerlane101@gmail.com 




Professional publicity photos provided by Jen Eileen Photography.





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