Today on the blog we have Alexandrea Weis, author of The Ghost of Rue Dumaine for an interview. Sit back and let’s find out more about this fabulous author.
Did you always wanted to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?
No, I pretty much knew from the age of eight that I liked working with words. But I never really envisioned being a fiction writer until I was older. I am able to do what I always dreamed of, so in many ways I am very, very lucky.
When did you first consider yourself a “writer”?
That is a moniker that it took me a while to comprehend. I was a nurse, still am, and being part of a scientific filed makes you tend to see things as black and white, and anyone outside of that field
How long did it take to get your first book published?
It seems like forever, but I self-published my first book, To My Senses, almost six years after writing it. I had a few agents interested, but nothing ever worked out. So, I decided to go it alone in 2007, way before self-publishing got big. I learned a lot about the business, and I am grateful for the experience.
Do you do another job except for writing and can you tell us more about it?
I am a clinical specialist in gerontological nursing. I have a PhD in nursing and do patient consults for orthopedic and neurologically injured patients. In addition, I am permitted wildlife rehabber with the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries. I take in orphaned and injured wildlife to rehabbed back into the wild.
What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarize it in less than 20 words what would you say?
A love story about a woman coming to terms with her painful past and the ghost who helps her.
What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
My next book is a contemporary romance coming 2/1/14 called Cover to Covers. It is a sexy tale about a romance writer who uses an old flame as inspiration for her heroes. Then, one day, that man walks back into her life and the sparks fly.
What genre would you place your books into?
Romance, wither contemporary, suspense or paranormal.
Do you have a favorite character from your books? And why are they your favorite?
I really like Gaston from The Ghosts of Rue Dumaine. He was a unique character to tackle with his blend of the past and the modern rolled together. I kept trying to think if I were a ghosts and still part of this world today, how it would change me. I figured a ghost is just as susceptible to the influences of media as we are, and I wrote him as if that were the case.
How long have you been writing?, and who or what inspired you to write?
I have been writing since I was eight. What inspired me to write? I have no idea. It just started as an assignment in the third grade and I discovered the emotion I was feeling I could impart into the words on the page. It was always the one thing I felt comfortable doing, and driven to do, if that makes sense. All I know is that I need to write. It makes me feel whole.
Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?
No routine. I have a place in my bedroom where I write, but when I am into a book, all that matters is that I sit and write. I usually drown out the rest of the world. I have written in hurricanes and when I am so sick I can barely sit upright, but I kept on writing.
Do you read all the reviews of your book/books?
I try to read a few. I appreciate reviews and reviewers a great deal, and respect all opinions. I realize this is a very subjective business, but I try not to let what I read influence how I write. I know a lot of authors will change how they write because a reviewer said there was something about their style they hated. That is one person’s opinion, and I feel it should not alter your creative voice.
Do you choose a title first, or write the book then choose the title?
I always just start writing. The title comes later, usually after a lot of debate.
How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?
Names I draw from people I know and names I like. The places are from my experiences. Places where I have been or like places with similar features so I can add the descriptions of how they feel, look, and smell.
Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?
Characters come as I write the book. I never have the figured out ahead of time. After I am finished I always go back and add more to give the characters dimension.
Are there any hidden messages or morals contained in your books? (Morals as in like Aesops Fables type of "The moral of this story is..")
All I try to instill into a story is the sense of appreciate what you have at the moment, because you never know how long it will last. I think that applies to all avenues of one’s life; people, careers, relationships, everything.
Which format of book do you prefer, eBook, hardback, or paperback?
I am old-fashioned, and I still love the smell of opening a new book. Reading should always be a multi-sensual experience, and I believe paperback and hardbacks add to the pleasure of a story.