Women in Horror Month – Linda D. Addison

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 BIO:

Linda D. Addison, award-winning author of four collections, including How To Recognize A Demon Has Become Your Friend, and recipient of the 2018 HWA Lifetime Achievement Award.


 AUTHOR Q&A: 

  1. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

LDA: When I first held a book in elementary school and realized it was a story I knew I wanted to make things like that, even though I had no idea what that meant. There weren’t a lot of books in my house but I remember my mother making up fables which made it feel very natural to let my imagination play.

  1. How long does it take to write your book(s)?

LDA: I can’t give you a specific amount of time. It depends on the book. I can tell the shortest time I’ve taken so far is for my collection of 100 poems, Being Full of Light, Insubstantial, which I received my second HWA Bram Stoker award® for in 2007. It was a reaction to reviews of my previous collection, which had 31 poems, and the want for more poems in a book.

            I decided to challenge myself to write 100 poems. I started writing January 2007, by mid-March 2007 I had finished the 100th poem! I amazed myself. Mind you I was writing after working a full-time job Monday through Friday. I had a piece of paper on the bulletin board over my desk at home to track the number of poems written. I still have that last piece of paper somewhere. The 100 poems that ended up in the book aren’t all the originals I wrote, some were taken out, new ones put in, like that.

  1. What is your work schedule like when writing a book?

LDA: I don’t have a set schedule. I try to write in one hour sessions (with breaks in between for my eyes) as much as I can during the day. Even though I’m retired from the day job, I rarely have the whole day to work on just my own writing because of other projects, but I’m planning to change that this year and do less other work.

  1. Where do you get your ideas or information for your book?

LDA: I’ve been journaling since the 1960’s, writing down everything that I hear, ideas, bits of poems/stories/character descriptions. For poetry collections I go to the first journal after the last book and start pulling bits out to build into poems. I don’t have a basic concept for the book, this develops as the poems are written. Often the title comes from the first poem finished.

            For the linked SF story novel I’m working on, I sat down and created thirty story ideas over 3 months in the future Earth I had created in a story, When We Dream Together, published in a 2010 anthology called Genesis: An Anthology of Black Science Fiction. Many of the ideas were prompted by articles I read in several magazines; I tore the articles out and kept them for continuing inspiration.

  1. When did you write your first book?

LDA: My first book was, Animated Objects, a collection of sf, fantasy, horror poetry & short stories published by Space & Time Books in 1997. I had approached Gordon Linzner (publisher of Space & Time Books at the time) a couple of years before at a convention about publishing a collection. He suggested that I get work published in magazines first and then come back to talk to him. After I had sixteen poems and stories accepted (and my first Honorable Mention for the Tenth Annual Year’s Best Fantasy & Horror) I talked to Gordon and he agreed! I got some good reviews. It was an excellent first step.

  1. What do you do when you’re not writing?

LDA: When I’m not actually writing my own work I work with other authors and their work, travel to conventions (much less this year as I have some big writing of my own to do). I love to read, watch movies, do tai chi, and scrapbooking,

  1. What does your family think of your writing?

LDA: They’ve always been very supportive of my writing. When my mother and father were alive I’d always send them a copy of my books and magazines I’m in. I went to a family reunion in 2018 (my father’s side of the family) and they surprised me with a plaque celebrating my receiving four HWA Bram Stokers and the HWA Lifetime Achievement Award; it was wonderful and humbling.

  1. What was the most surprising thing you learned in creating your books?

LDA: Each book teaches me something different. I’m always looking for growth. Over the years I’ve increased my ability to write dialogue, come up with interesting titles, allow the poetic voice into my fiction, etc. The most important thing I’ve learned is that ideas will come so I don’t much worry about writing blocks. Life can distract and throw me off, but I know the ideas will come.

  1. How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?

LDA: I’ve written four books by myself (“Animated Objects”, “Consumed, Reduced to Beautiful Grey Ashes”, “Being Full of Light, Insubstantial”, “How To Recognize A Demon Has Become Your Friend”) and two with others (“Dark Duet” music inspired poetry written with Stephen M. Wilson & “Four Elements” with Charlee Jacob, Marge Simon & Rain Graves). I can’t really pick a favorite, they all hold a special place in my heart. The one that takes up most of my mind and heart is the newest one I’m writing.

            When people ask which one to start with I usually suggest How To Recognize A Demon Has Become Your Friend, since it’s a mix of poetry and fiction crossing all genres, not to mention a fantastic cover by Jill Bauman.

  1. Any tips/suggestions on getting started?

LDA:  Step One: finish what you start writing. Then rewriting is essential, unless you’re lucky enough to be one of those unicorns that write a great first draft. It helps tremendously to get someone else’s feedback. Once it’s a good as you can make it, create a list of three markets and start sending it out, then go back to Step One. If a piece is rejected, send it to the next market. Don’t work on it unless you can make it better. That’s the short list of suggestions.

  1. What do you think makes a good story?

LDA: That’s a hard question to answer. What makes a story good is different for different people. Some love action stories, other character-based stories, and so on. For the writer, create the story that haunts you, that wakes you up, distracts you and you can’t let go. Then learn the craft of writing/rewriting to tell that story in the best way.

            I’ve been in a writer’s group since 1990 and the some of the things we look at are based on the Critiquers Checklist by Grace Ackerman: Story Line, Characters, Setting, Dialogue, and Details & Mechanics.

  1. As a child, What did you want to do when you grew up?

LDA: As I mentioned, I wanted to make books from my early years, but I grew up knowing that being an artist wasn’t a great way to make a living. I was good at math and science so I ended up getting a B.S. in Mathematics from Carnegie-Mellon University and working in computer software development, while writing weird stuff in the evening and weekends.


LINKS:

-my site: lindaaddisonpoet.com

-“How To Recognize A Demon Has Become Your Friend” cover artist, Jill Bauman: http://www.jillbauman.com/

 

Published Works: beingfulloflightinsubstantialcover2mbhowtorecognizeademonhasbecomeyourfriendcover2mbconsumedreducedtobeautifulgreyashescover2mbanimatedobjectscover2mb

Women in Horror Month – Cristina Isabel

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BIO:

Cristina Isabel was born in Miami, Florida and is very proud of her Hispanic heritage. She enjoys expressing herself through the written word, and from the age of 11, has been passionate about writing. Her favorite genres are horror and dark fantasy, however, she also likes comics, graphic novels, science fiction, young adult and poetry. Cristina is author to the poetry collections, Break the Chains, Be Freed Within and Love and All Its Condiments & the horror novelette series, A Sudden Terror (Volume One) while pursuing a degree in Early Childhood Education at Broward College. She is also a beta reader, book reviewer and a member of the Horror Writer’s Association. Cristina’s other interests are attending writing conferences, going to the movies and playing Sudoku. Visit her at cristinaisabelauthor.com. 


AUTHOR Q&A:

  1. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

CI: When I was little, around maybe 11ish.  I would verbally tell stories to family members, but then the story would go on and on, and after awhile they didn’t want to hear anymore (Lol).  My mom had suggested I write them down instead.

  1. How long does it take to write your book(s)?

CI: Depends on what I’m working on at the moment.  Poetry, for example, I might know what poems I want to incorporate into the collection, but there’s also an order I’d like for them to be read.  But, other works, for me, probably about a few weeks.  Longer novels would be months, on and off, because I might need a break in between.

  1. What is your work schedule like when writing a book?

CI: It can become challenging because I’m trying to find the right balance between everything.  But, most of the time, I can balance pretty well, unless I’m exhausted.  I can go days without really writing, but as soon as I pick it back up, I make up for it.

  1. Where do you get your ideas or information for your book?

CI: A lot of times they come from movies in the horror realm.  I observe the style and then try to come up with ones completely different.  I can also be on the street and start conjuring up ideas about what I see and it always tilts to the horror side (Lol).

  1. When did you write your first book?

CI: In 2014, officially, was when I wrote my first book.  But, off the record, I’ve written quite a few before 2014.  I’ve worked on them, but a lot of them have been shelved.

  1. What do you do when you’re not writing?

CI: Catching up on shows I’ve missed, doing arts n’ crafts, reading, walks in the parks.

  1. What does your family think of your writing?

CI: They support me through the entire process.  My mom is always suggesting submitting some samples to ongoing contests to have the rest of the world read them too.  And while my mom won’t read my horror writing, she still supports me in writing it.  Sometimes I ask my fiance or my sister to read my work as well because it’s someone, other than me, proofreading it.

  1. What was the most surprising thing you learned in creating your books?

CI: That my imagination can stretch a lot farther than I thought it could.  And if I can conjure it, then I can write it and stick with it.

  1. How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?

CI: 3. So far. With the goal to write so much more!  My favorite? Hmmm…that’s tough! I love everything I’ve published, but, I’d have to say my love poetry collection, Love and All Its Condiments because it was written in honor of my fiancé, Hector Rivera.  To write about Love, I feel, is a very inspiring thing in and of itself.

  1. Any tips/suggestions on getting started?

CI: Probably the most obvious answer, START NOW! I’ve known friends that say they are “stuck” on writing something, especially a novel.  I say, just start writing small and work your way up.  Trust me, you will be able to build a story from the simplest piece of work.  Create your own writing prompts or simply write about how you felt when you woke up or how your day has been.  Like I said, start small and then work your way up.  Allow your imagination to spark a little at a time.  Once, it is unleashed, you won’t be able to stop when ideas start pouring out and you’re running out of paper to write it on. 😉

  1. What do you think makes a good story?

CI: A good beginning because that is the forefront of your novel and if you want someone to read what you’ve spent time writing, hook’em within the first line, if possible.  First page works too!  This is how I like to read a story, being “hooked” from the very beginning.  The synopsis in the back is also quite important, because, people do tend to go to the back to read what they’re getting into, but, don’t give too much away, just enough to get someone to say, “hmmmm…I’d like to know more…”

  1. As a child, What did you want to do when you grew up?

CI: A profession that worked with kids.  I would pretend my stuffed animals were kids, and I would put a piece of paper with a math problem in front of them, explaining how to do it.  Or, I was in a doctor’s office and pretended to be a nurse taking care of them.  I had a doctor’s toy kit, so I would pretend to check temperature, heartbeat, give them a shot if needed, etc.  Sometimes, I would also lay with them on the bed and read to them or pretend we were in a spaceship that was really my playskool easel that was a chalkboard on one side, and the other side was for drawing.


LINKS:

Website: www.cristinaisabelauthor.com

Facebook Page: Cristina Isabel – Facebook Author Page

Twitter: www.twitter.com/PoetryTwist

Email: authorcristinaisabel@gmail.com

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/CristinaIsabelAuthor

Goodreads Book Link: Break the Chains, Be Freed Within

Goodreads Book Link: A Sudden Terror (Volume One)

Goodreads Book Link: Love and All its Condiments

Amazon Link: Break the Chains, Be Freed Within

Amazon Link: A Sudden Terror (Volume One)

Amazon Link: Love and All its Condiments

Published Works:BreakthechainsbefreedwithinIMAGE (2)a-sudden-terror

Dr. Angela Butts Chester (Guest Author)

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About Dr. Angela Butts Chester:

Dr. Angela Butts Chester, is a Pastoral Counselor, Motivational Speaker, Author, Ordained Minister, Wife & Mother, and Breast Cancer Survivor. She has devoted her life to empowering others; teaching individuals and groups how to overcome negative circumstances, and discover God’s unique plan for their lives.

Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/DrAngelaChester

Twitter: twitter.com/DrAngelaChester

Email: drangelachester@gmail.com

Blog: http://angelachester.blogspot.com/

Amazon: Before you Tie the Knot