By Susanne Marie Poulette
Stephanie Evanovich describes herself a Jersey girl from Asbury Park. She began writing fiction while waiting for her cues during countless community theater projects. She is a full-time writer and author of BIG GIRL PANTIES, THE SWEET SPOT, and soon, THE TOTAL PACKAGE, to be released on March 15th. Stephanie is a mom of two sons, an avid sports fan, and holds a black belt in tae kwon do.
Thank you, Stephanie, for sharing your thoughts on THE TOTAL PACKAGE, for your wisdom for aspiring authors and your lively sense of humor.
Q: Without dropping a spoiler, please tell us what you think readers will like most in THE TOTAL PACKAGE.
SEE: I think they’ll like meeting up with old friends while making new ones.
Q: Again, without spoiling, what message do you want readers to take away from the book?
SEE: That sometimes love really is forever. There really are a lot of definitions to the word “redemption.”
Q: THE TOTAL PACKAGE will be released not long after Super Bowl 2016. Tyson is an NFL player itching for a Super Bowl ring. Is the timing of this launch a coincidence, or is this a very naïve question?
SEE: If I had my way The Total Package would have launched at the Super Bowl. But I know there’s a method to the timing so we can be naïve together.
Q: Do readers ever confuse you with your aunt, author Janet Evanovich? (I admit, when your first book was published, in my confusion I thought for a minute that Stephanie Plum had taken up the proverbial pen!)
SEE: Now that this is my third book it doesn’t happen much anymore. The sweetest surprise has been the occasional message from a reader who picked me up and found a new author to enjoy.
Q: I thoroughly enjoyed your keynote address at the Unicorn Writers Conference last summer. At the time, you addressed your path to publishing success. For my readers, will you tell a little about your experience in getting your first book published by a major press?
SEE: Like any job search it’s a magical mixture of doing the work and making the connections. In my travels I’ve learned that every author’s path to publication is different, but they are all the result of tenacity, a little bit of luck and believing in the story you’re itching to tell.
Q: Do you follow a particular writing routine and/or method of plotting your stories? Do you recommend one routine or method over another?
SEE: I do a lot of plotting while driving. My writing routine starts early in the morning, from 5 -9 AM. And from there I’m flexible. If I’m having a great session I’ll keep going. If it’s not a great session I give myself permission to walk away and do something fun. Knock wood, it hasn’t failed me yet, but every day you’ve got to “BIC” it. (BIC = Butt In Chair)
Q: Here it is. You might be dreading it. I would understand if this question bores you into a coma, but writers really lap up this stuff: What advice do you give to aspiring writers?
SEE: I don’t recommend any routine over another. And the reason why is because there is so much advice out there that if I listen to too much of it, I end up feeling like I’m doing it wrong. The only advice I have is about advice: learn to chew the meat and spit out the bones. And the truth is there is no right way – nothing kills creativity quite like too much advice.
Q: So, Stephanie, what does it mean to be a Jersey Girl? And can you sing “Sherry?”
SEE: To me being a “Jersey Girl” only means you are a girl born in the great state of New Jersey, and there are more types of us than you can count. Yes, I can sing “Sherry” loud and proud – not sure that you’d enjoy it though. My singing could attract Jersey wildlife.
Q: Anything at all, that you would like to add?
SEE: I’ll be on tour – mostly East coast for the month of March. I love meeting readers. Check my website for a town near you — www.stephanieevanovich.com
Again, thank you so very much, Stephanie Evanovich, and I’m sure we would all enjoy your version of SHERRY!
© Susanne Marie Poulette