Friday, March 24, 2017

Fantasy Writers Cris and Clare Meyers!

My Interview with CRIS & CLARE MEYERS!

I enjoy interviewing different personalities from the literary world, but I find partnerships most intriguing because of the various dynamics between co-authors.  That being said, I want to welcome you and get started!
1.     I always kick off my interviews with the same question.  Therefore, please tell us how you’d describe yourselves?
o Describing ourselves isn’t something we usually do—it just isn’t something we think about. We’re us. And we’re not complicated. A little weird at times, but we are who we are—and we like it that way.
2.     I’d like to focus this section of questions on your journey into the publishing world.
·        I read you both wrote independently before you debuted with your adult urban fantasy series, CRIMINAL ELEMENTS.  However, these pieces weren’t published.  What lead you to publishing, and why did you start with this particular series?
o We have always wanted to publish, but we also wanted to put out the best quality product we could. The first book of Criminal Elements, Playing with Fire, was the first book we felt was truly ready for publication, and since that was always envisioned as part of a larger series, our path was set.
·        I know you are self-published.  Why did you choice this route?  Had you tried to go traditional; why or why not?
o We had originally submitted Playing with Fire through traditional avenues, but after a few months, we decided that self-publishing was better suited for what we wanted. We didn’t want our work to end up sitting on a shelf (or a thumb drive) somewhere forever, waiting for that lightning strike where luck, the right publisher, and the right moment all aligned.
·        I know you are both avid readers and you’ve been college educated in English.  How do you think this has affected you as writers?
o As English majors, we probably read quite a few things we never would have picked up otherwise. When paired with a love of reading (and all the books we’ve read both in and out of academia), it's really helped us identify what we do and don’t like in a story. And four years studying structure, flow, and writing (even academically) left its mark.
o A minor in professional writing also allowed us a better understanding of the editing side as well.
·        How has being not only writers but published authors affected you as readers?
o It's actually led us to branch out a bit more in our reading. Before indie publishing, we picked up books based on what looked interesting on the bookstore shelf or through recommendations. As we've become friends with more indie authors and explored more of the indie community, we've read more books that might've escaped our notice before.
3.     Let’s talk about you as writers and how your styles play into your partnership.
·        What lead you to your partnership?  I mean, what specifically made you decide to co-author books together?
o Our writing partnership spawned from a pair of characters that we conceptualized over dinner one night. What began as a theoretical discussion over the idea of an invisible thief and mercenary who could make a gun misfire expanded from there, and since the characters were a joint creation, it only felt right that the story should be as well.
o We started small—just a few chapters to see if we could make such a venture work—and here we are: two books in the series complete and the third underway.
·        What does your own writing style look like?  How do you process through a story from concept to paper?
o We start with a unified but broad concept—an end game to aim for—and a few plot points we need to hit. But perhaps because there are two of us (and therefore things will change as we go), and perhaps because we've always hated in depth outlines where everything is planned out in great detail, it tends to be a bit more freeform from there.
·        What changes in your writing process when you co-author something?
o There's a lot more give and take, a lot more compromising involved in co-writing. Because each of us can have different ideas on how the same scene will progress, there have been times where we've had to stop and talk things through before we could continue. But the flip side of that is that if one of us gets stuck, we can hand it off to the other to see if they can break the stalemate.
·        Do you have equal say in the project or do you designate a lead author?
ü  We are equal partners.
·        Do you have an outline you work from, do you write together based on discussions, do you assign a particular character or POV to each writer, or do you pass the manuscript back and forth?
ü  Our usual method is to take turns at the keyboard—one of us writing a section before handing it off to the other. Then that newest section is edited before the scene is continued.
ü  But we’ve also been known to sit next to each other writing lines as they come to us and editing on the spot where something doesn't feel right.
ü  We've found that either method helps keep the voice and writing consistent, regardless of narrator. It has given us equal understanding of each character’s unique voice—a necessity considering how we’ve chosen to narrate the series.
·        How do you handle research?
ü  We typically research as we go. Because we are writing about criminals, there have definitely been holes we’ve needed to fill in order to create realistic characters.
ü  Our book purchase and internet search histories have looked pretty interesting since we started this project.
·        What do you think is the most challenging part of writing together, and does that answer change when you consider your co-author is also your spouse?
o Working with a partner is the most challenging aspect of co-writing. But being married to your co-author probably helps because we know each other that well. We know where each other might have trouble or are probably a bit more understanding of each other’s foibles.
·        What is the most beneficial aspect of writing together?
o Working with a partner is also the best part of co-writing. It helps having someone who knows the story and the characters every bit as well as you do. And while not a guarantee, it can certainly help with writer’s block—if one of us gets stuck, the other might have just the answer.
4.     Can you tell us about your book services?  I mean, how do you deal with covers and editing?  Do you handle them yourself or out-source them?
We were lucky enough to know a great graphic artist who agreed to do our covers (and banner image) for us. Her work is amazing, and she’s been great at taking a vague concept in our heads and translating it to covers that many readers have said are awesome.
On the writing side, though we have a trusted circle of beta readers, we don’t have an editor per se. But we do have third parties who suggest content changes for us to incorporate (or not, as the case may be) and do a final proofread.
5.     I want to discuss the marketing, promotions, and advertising I know you have to do as a writer, especially since you are self-published. 
·        Do you participate equally in these areas of the business or do you designate one person to handle specific things?
o Clare tends to take on more of the social media and marketing side of things, though we both participated in a holiday takeover event and we will both be participating in C.L. Schneider’s upcoming FB release party as well as the Brain2Books Cyber Con in April.
o But we are still figuring out what works and what doesn’t for us. In this respect, other indies have been wonderfully helpful with their advice and support.
·        What do you feel is the most beneficial tool for reaching your readers?  How does your blog and social media presence affect your sale goals?
o We aren’t exceptionally good at blogging to be honest. But on Twitter and Facebook, we’re getting there, especially considering we weren’t on either before we started this co-authoring thing. And there’s something pretty cool about having a reader connect with you and tell you they thought your book was awesome.
·        How do you educate yourself about the marketing opportunities and trends in the publishing world?
ü  Reading, for starters. There’s a lot of information out there. But our best source of information has been other indie authors. You can learn a lot just by listening to advice from others who have been in your shoes and are also in the indie market right alongside you.
·        What type of promotions do you prefer, and why?  Are you KDP exclusive and do you use the Kindle Countdown Deals?  Why or why not?
ü  Our promotion efforts are mostly on social media and some book promotion sites—and we’ve had some success.
ü  We have always figured it was better to have a wider reach to catch anyone that might be interested rather than put all our books in the Amazon basket. But wanting to publish on more than just Amazon meant we couldn’t do Kindle Unlimited, which prevents us from using the countdown deals.
·        What advertising tools do you feel are the most effective?  I have seen your book video.  Does this help to draw traffic to your work?
ü  Thus far, we’ve found promoting on social media and connecting directly with readers to be the most effective.
ü  While we were very pleased with the book trailer, and it was great to work with Kylie Jude on its creation, we haven’t had it long enough and haven’t shared it enough to truly gauge its effectiveness. We do believe that it has engaged some readers that we might not have reached otherwise.
·        Do you maintain an annual calendar for events and promotions you want to participate in?  If so, how does it work?
o Not at the moment. We don’t have that many events on our schedule, so keeping track of them has been pretty straightforward. So far anyway. Maybe when we have more than a handful of upcoming events, we will.
·        Do you partake in Facebook Events; why or why not?
o We have participated in one takeover event so far, but have another one coming up. It’s an experience, and it’s a good way to connect with authors and readers.
o As for whether or not we’ll host one of our own, the answer is perhaps. We’d definitely like to have more connections and more of a reader base before we try to host an eight to ten hour event.
6.     What can we expect to see from you over the coming year?
We are releasing Fly by Night, book 2 in our series, on March 30th. And we’re already working on book 3. Whether or not Shifting Identities is ready for release by the end of the year is a little more up in the air, but that’s the goal.
·        What is your current WIP?
o We should probably stop considering Fly by Night a WIP. After all, it’ll be officially released in around two weeks. So with that in mind, our current WIP is Shifting Identities, book 3 in the Criminal Elements urban fantasy series. We switch narrators again, so there’s something new and exciting to look forward to.

Thank you for allowing me to introduce you to my readers.  I wish you all success!

Who's In My Office Today? Author C.L. SCHNEIDER!

My Interview with C.L. Schneider!

Thank you for joining me today.  I am excited to introduce you to my readers, particularly those who enjoy the sci-fi and fantasy genres!
1.     How a person sees themselves is quite revealing, not to mention interesting, so I always start with the same question: please tell us how you’d describe yourself?
·             Wow. You start out with the hard question first!
·             I would say that I’m a really patient person (just not with technology!). I love the weird and the strange. I’m definitely a fangirl of way too many TV shows, and I love Netflix.
·             I have a tendency to be sarcastic and irreverent, and moody. I try not to let my moodiness show, though. Instead, I channel those emotions into my writing.  Speaking of which… I have tunnel-vision when it comes to writing. I’m perfectly happy to be alone with a notebook, even in a crowded room. It’s not that I’m unsociable. It’s just that I have a whole world in that notebook that needs my attention. 
2.     I know you have been heavily influenced by your love of reading.  In particular, you were always drawn to sci-fi and supernatural, but you have said you were drawn to fantasy by your interest in The Middle Ages.  Ultimately, this is what shaped your writing, so let’s focus the first set of questions on this.
·        Firstly, what about The Middle Ages was particularly fascinating to you?
·        I can’t really put my finger on one particular aspect that fascinated me, but ever since I was a little girl, I was drawn to that time period. Even though it was dangerous and less than sanitary, I always found it to be romantic and adventurous. There was so much yet to discover and learn. So much mystery left in the world.  
o   Did you discover your love for this era because of school, literature, or cinema?
§  I would say literature and cinema.
o   Was there something or someone that influences you the most from this time period?
§  When I was young, I was fascinated by the legends of Robin Hood and King Arthur in literature and movies.
§  I loved to read about King Henry the 8th and his many wives. It was a fascination that led me to read a large amount of historical fiction set in that time period.
§  The Renaissance Faire also played a big part. I went every year, starting when I was in elementary school and continuing well into adulthood. I always went in costume, of course. I felt so at home there. I never wanted to leave.  If I could dress like that every day, I would! Once I had my own children, my attendance dropped off. I don’t get there near as often as I would like anymore. It’s still one of my favorite places to go.
·        How did this lead you to fantasy?
·        As much as I enjoyed historical fiction, I didn’t read my first true epic fantasy novel until the end of high school.
·        My brother was always into comic books and scifi, which eventually grew to include fantasy. He kept telling me about all these great fantasy books that he was reading, but I just had not gotten around to it yet.
·        So many books, so little time J
·        Then he bought me a copy of The Mists of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradley. And I fell in love. I read it cover to cover, back to back. I had already been writing for years, but that book spoke to me. It cemented my desire to write fantasy.
o   What parallels do you associate between The Middle Ages and Fantasy?
§  I think both have an aura of mystery and adventure surrounding them, a sense of possibility and wonder, where humanity is on the cusp of so many things. It’s a romanticized notion.
§  The Middle Ages was dangerous and unsanitary. There were many hardships, especially for women. But I think that’s where fantasy comes in. It can take those base elements and plop them into a story, allowing you to experience them in a much safer environment.
·        What do you think most influences your reading and writing tastes?  Why, and what authors did/do you prefer, if any?
·        My tastes in reading and writing are similar. I most enjoy a character-driven story full of flawed characters. I love to read first person and that is also my favorite to write in. I find it easier to dive into the character’s head and become them when I’m writing first person.  My style is a blend of epic fantasy with a modern, contemporary voice. That comes directly from my favorite authors and their influence.
·        On the top of the list would be fantasy author, C. J. Cherryh. She had a huge influence on my writing, especially in developing flawed characters.
·        Other authors that influenced me are Marion Zimmer Bradley and Jennifer Roberson. I learned so much from all of them.
·        Later on, I fell in love with Jim Butcher’s writing as well as Simon R. Green. Devouring their books taught me how to write first person.
·        You love fantasy, but you say you primarily write in urban fantasy.  What is the difference between these two genres, in your opinion?
·        The fantasy genre usually involves magic or magical creatures of some kind, set in an imaginary world.
·        Urban fantasy takes some of those elements and drops them in the modern age. Most are set in a city/urban environment that can be real or fictional. The technology and advancements are what we are used to today, or close to it. It usually involves mythical, legendary, or magical creature(s). Sometimes the human characters are aware of what is in their midst. Sometimes they’re not.
o   Why do you prefer to write primarily in Urban Fantasy?
§  Actually, I don’t write primarily in urban fantasy. I would say I’m pretty evenly split between epic and urban.
o   What about Urban Fantasy draws you to it specifically?
§  I love creatures and urban legends. Being able to explore some of those legends, to bring those creatures to life, and play with the fabric of reality is really appealing to me.
·        You also write in Adult Epic.  Would you please describe what this is for readers who are unfamiliar with the genre?
·        Epic fantasy is often a journey or quest story. Many times it involves long travels across multiple lands with fantastical creatures. The people and societies are medieval in nature.
·        War and great battles are a common theme, as well as magic. The protagonist’s decisions and choices have far reaching effects that influence the outcome of things on a grand scale.
·        Adult epic is just how it sounds: epic fantasy with mature themes and situations. Think of it as an MVLSV rating on your TV J I don’t write gratuitous violence or sex, but I don’t shy away from whatever the scene requires.
3.     You debuted as a published author with your trilogy, The Crown of Stones.  I would like to focus the next set of questions on this series.
·        I read this series was born from your desire to create a character whom you could get lost in.  You said your protagonist, Ian Troy fulfilled that aspiration.  What makes him so special to you?
·        I had been writing my whole life, but as soon as I created Ian, I knew he was special. Not only would he be my first published main character, but I constructed him to be so flawed, he felt real. It was incredibly easy to fall into his head and write from his prospective. I never had to wonder for an instant what he might say, or how he might react to a situation. I knew him so well. I could see the story unfolding through his eyes.
o   Where did you find the inspiration for this character?  Was he based on a real person or a beloved fictional personality you enjoyed?
§  My father loved westerns. My mother read a lot of mysteries, historical fiction, and biographies. My sister enjoyed horror and crime novels. And as I mentioned, my brother read a lot of comics and scifi. I was the baby of the family. By the time I was old enough to read, our bookshelves were filled with many different genres, including the classics. It gave me a wide reading base to grow up with, and so many wonderful characters to fall in love with. 
§  When I sat down to write Ian, I wanted to pay homage to some of those beloved characters that had sparked my imagination (and my love for books) so many years before. To do this, I knew I had to incorporate a bit of those characters into Ian’s personality. So I made him part cowboy and part outlaw. I wanted him to be a good guy, but a rogue, a detective when he needed to be and a monster even when he tried not to be.  I needed him to be flawed and suffering, yet bold and strong, valiant yet broken.  Drawing from those favorite characters of my youth allowed me to add those complexities into his personality.
o   How did you develop this character and the world in which he lives?
§  There was one simple key to developing Ian. I made his greatest strength his greatest flaw: magic.
§  From there, I needed to determine what he wanted most, what he feared, what he liked and disliked, his other strengths and weaknesses.
§  A character’s childhood plays an important role for me. Much is engrained in us during that time in our lives. One tragic event can change us forever. One harsh comment can fester inside us. But I didn’t want Ian totally wrecked from it, so I created enough hardships to leave him conflicted, but not completely broken by his youth. That way he still had a ways to fall in the books.
§  I know some authors do a character interview, but mine is more like pages and pages of barely legible scribbles in a notebook as I’m trying to dissect this person and decide what makes them tick.
§  From the start, I wanted Ian to stand out.  So I looked for how best to accomplish that. By making his entire race appear physically different from the rest, it added to the Shinree being ostracized and suppressed as a people. It gave more fodder to the other of the races to use against them. It also fed into Ian’s loner mentality. The other races were crafted around the Shinree’s plight and history, based on their attitude toward the Shinree and their level of involvement in their suppression/slavery. 
§  The world itself had to be dark but with just enough beauty to add in a sliver of hope.
o   What do you hope to convey to readers through Ian Troy, if anything?  Is there a message in his struggles or tale?  If so, what is it and why is it important?
§  I didn’t start out trying to convey anything. I was simply telling Ian’s story. But as it unfolded, I began to realize the messages were there, whether I intended them or not.
§  The story deals a great deal with addiction. Not only living with it and fighting it, but how it affects the people around you. 
§  There are many instances of judgements and misconceptions based on race, so the story dives deep into prejudice and oppression, and the consequences of the choices we make. I think facing real world issues in the context of a novel provides a safe environment to consider the subject matter, which can potentially alter views and shine new light on old problems.
o   Do you think the world you crafted around Ian Troy changed your initial view of the character you had intended him to be?  Why or why not, and how do you think it affected your trilogy, if at all?
§  I imagine it did somewhat. The Ian that was published was not exactly the same Ian as I created in the beginning.  Most of those changes were due to my determination to grow as a writer.
§  Those that were attributed to the world-building would be mostly his views of the other races and his behavior toward them. With crafting such extreme prejudices between the realms, I created a major divide between the races. Ian was not immune to that divide. If anything, due to his upbringing and his forced battle training at a young age, his opinions were more skewed. It was something he had to learn to work through as the trilogy progressed.
·        Did you begin with the intension of writing a trilogy or did it just grow into one through the writing progression?
·        I had always intended to write a trilogy. I wanted the first book to introduce the characters and the world and to hopefully draw my readers into the pain the land of Mirra’kelan and its people has been feeling for so long.
·        I wanted the second book to take the readers deeper into the mystery. My aim was to explore the world and its history, while also intensifying the personal struggle of not only my protagonist, but the other characters as well. Book 2 gave me the perfect opportunity for Ian Troy to spiral even further down than he already had. He wasn’t the only one, either. Many characters suffered and the world they live had become even more dangerous.
·        The third book was to slowly raise Ian and the gang, and their world back up. It uncovered all the remaining mysteries and tied everything together.
·        Ultimately, Ian had to learn to embrace who and what he was. The three books allowed him to complete that journey.
·        Does one of the novels in the series speak to you more than any of the others?  If so, which book is it and why does it stand out to you? 
·        Book 1 is my baby. There is no denying that. I cried the first time I held it in my hands. It was my childhood dream-come-true.  It was where I fell in love with these characters.
·        I adore book 3 and how it all came together. It was amazing to write.
·        But there was something about book 2. I really dug deep with that one. I tore into Ian’s soul, and put a few other characters through hell, as well. In doing so, I connected with them in an even deeper way. I think the greatest improvements in my writing came during the writing of book 2.
·        Without consideration of your own taste or preference, is there a particular book in the trilogy that you feel will resonate with readers more the rest?  Why, or why not?
·        Most people have said that they’ve loved each book more than the last. So I suppose, by that logic, it would be book 3.
·        I think that’s because the trilogy was such an emotionally intense journey, for not only the characters, but the reader. That was how I designed it. And finally seeing how all their arcs played out, who lived and died, how all the conflicts were resolved; there’s a kind of relief in that.   
4.     In the next set of questions, I would like to cover an array of topics.  Knowing you are a blogger, as I am, I find myself wanting to pick your brain regarding this aspect of our literary world.  There are so many variations to blogging, but as an author, I personally focus on books.
·        What can readers expect to find on your blog?
·             Mostly they can expect to find book reviews and guest posts.
·             I don’t blog original content as much as I should. After I published the first book in the trilogy, I tried writing an original post every month, but forcing myself to come up with something to write about, just wasn’t working. I wrote and rewrote. I stressed about it like crazy and wasted far too much time. Eventually, I decided it was something I had to let go.
·             So, for now, I write a blog post when I’m moved to write one. They come out so much better that way.
·        What’s your view on reviews?
·             I believe reviews can be helpful to an author, but they can also be a hindrance. It can be hard to read them objectively, when you want everyone to love what you’ve created. Yet, focusing too much on bad reviews can diminish your confidence and breed an excess of self-doubt. Reading too much into gushing reviews can do just as much harm.
o   Do reviews influence you as a reader?  Why, or why not, and how?
§  They influence me somewhat, but I don’t base my decision solely on reviews.
§  As a writer, I know that a story is experienced by everyone differently.
§  Now, if a book has twenty one star reviews and nothing else, then maybe I’ll pass. But if there is a healthy mix, and the cover and premise interest me, I won’t even look twice at the negative ones.
o   What do you look for in a book as a reader, and how do you view yourself as a reviewer?  I mean, what makes a good book, in your opinion, and what turns you off to a story?
§  Normally it’s a cover that catches my eye first. I have a thing for covers and can fall instantly in love with a book if the cover is striking enough.
§  After that, I read the blurb. Character names are important to me. In fantasy, there are a lot of unique names for characters and places. If I pick up a book and I can’t pronounce any of the names because they are so outlandish, I’ve immediately lost interest. Just because the book is fantasy, doesn’t mean it has to be so out there that you can’t make it through a sentence without struggling.
§  I’m turned off by stories where the characters are flat. I’m a character person. If I can’t connect to a character or be made to care about them, I lose interest.  I’m that way with TV shows as well. I watch a show for the characters more than the plot. I can forgive a lot in the plot if I love the characters.
§  If the pacing is too slow or the scenes are repetitive, I find myself wanting to skip ahead. I love a good fight scene. But if you have a fight scene every chapter and it goes on for half the chapter, that’s too much.
§  To me, a good story is one that you can’t stop thinking about. It leaps into your thoughts when you’re making dinner or driving. A good story should make you feel what the characters feel. It should play out like a movie in your head, and leave you sad when it’s over.
o   Do you read reviews of your work?  If so, do they affect how you direct your current or future writing?
§  I do read reviews.
§  My first reviews were so wonderful, I was shocked. I published the first book because it was my dream. I never really thought about anyone actually reading it, let alone loving it!
§  But those first reviews didn’t at all prepare me for receiving my first bad one. Once I did, I cried. I remember being amazed at how one person could say it’s action-packed and then the next review would say it was slow. But I developed a thick skin pretty quickly, and thankfully, those reviews have been in the minority!
§  I don’t write based on reviews, or on what I think will be popular. I write the story as it needs to be written, and I stay true to my characters. That being said, if I were to consistently receive reviews pointing out the same issue, I would certainly take another look at it. It would be stupid of me to ignore a negative pattern.
o   What do you want readers to know about reviews in general?
§  I love to hear how my books make people feel. I’m so grateful for that and for all my readers. My only thing is: don’t put spoilers in your reviews! Personally, I hate spoilers, so that’s a huge pet peeve of mine.
§  The Crown of Stones is full of twists and turns. There are so many reveals. All it takes is a word or two, and something I spent the whole book building up to, is spoiled for someone. 
·        What is your writing process like?  Do you set aside an allotted amount of time each day or week to focus on writing, or do you create as inspiration strikes?
·             My stories usually sprout from the creation of a character. After I have a clear understanding of who will tell the story, I craft a few other characters.
·             I do a rough outline, and then start writing. I start every story in a notebook first.  I call it my skeleton. Once I have a few chapters down that way, I transfer it to my laptop and put the meat on the bones.  Sometimes, if I’m not clear on the next chapter, I go back to the notebook for a couple of chapters.
·             Very often I don’t write linearly. I write whichever chapters or scenes stand out the most in my mind. Then later I go back and marry them all together.
·             Once the draft is done, I put the story through multiple rewrites before it goes to my editor.
·             I don’t wait for inspiration. When I’m writing a draft, I try to do something to move my story along every day. If it isn’t writing, it’s plotting, brainstorming, or research.  I do my best writing in the morning after the kids get on the bus.
·             Life happens, of course, and at least one day a week my writing time seems to get eaten up with grocery shopping, errands, and the like. When that happens for too many days in a row, though, I get grumpy.
·             The weekends are much harder to carve out time.  I’m often up ridiculously late, then, trying to do something so I don’t feel guilty about doing nothing. 
·        How does being an author affect your approach to blogging and vice versa?
·             If I’m inspired, I write a blog post. If I have to scrounge for something to write and force myself simply because I feel like I should—I hate that. If it doesn’t come natural to me, it doesn’t get written.
o   Did you begin blogging because you were a published author?  What encouraged you to not only write, but to publish?
§  I had never blogged a day in my life until I published Magic-Price. After, everyone said: you have to blog. So I did. I tried, anyway (see answer above!).
§  I started writing when I was a child. I was a huge reader. I was the kid who would leave the library with a stack of books so large, I could barely see over the top. Writing was simply an extension of my love for books.
§  When I was 16, I wrote my first full length novel. That’s when I started dreaming of being a published author. Life got in the way, but the dream never left me. Every time I would go in a bookstore, I would envision seeing my book on the shelf. After a while, as the years dragged on, it used to depress me. I grew to have a very love-hate relationship with Barnes & Noble!
§  Once my kids were in school full time, I knew this was my chance. I devoted to myself to writing, and Magic-Price was born.
·        What is your opinion of the Indie vs Traditional debate?
·             There are pros and cons on each side. I don’t think one path is right over the other. Rather it’s a matter of what’s right for each individual.
·        Are you self-published, signed with a small press, or are you a traditional author with a literary agent/publishing house?
·             I am a self-published author.
o   What was your road to being published like?  Did anything surprise you?  After going through your experiences, is there anything you wish you’d have known or done differently?
§  I had planned to go the traditional route. Once Magic-Price was completed, I started looking for an agent. I did all the research, sent out my query letters, and waited. I had a few nice bites, but no takers. One rejection letter had a more personal, positive message that inspired me. After that, I read everything I could get my hands on to improve my craft.
§  Then I sat down and completely rewrote Magic-Price. My intention was to start the agent hunt again when it was done. Then I discovered CreateSpace. I decided to self-publish instead of spending months or even years hunting for an agent and publisher. I still believe it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.
§  I think what surprised me the most is the community. I had no idea other authors would be so welcoming and supportive.
§  One thing I wish I had known was to start building up my online presence before I published.  I rarely used Facebook and didn’t know the first thing about Twitter. Now I practically live there!
5.     What can we expect to see from you over the coming year?
·        The first book in my new urban fantasy series, NITE FIRE: Flash Point is available now.
·        I am aiming to have the second book out in the fall.
·        I am also currently working on an Ian Troy short story for that will be a part of an anthology to be released later this year.
·        Want to learn more about C.L. Schneider’s current WIP or upcoming New Release?

I appreciate you taking the time out of your busy schedule.  I look forward to discovering the world of The Crown of Stones, as well as, your new urban fantasy series!