Who is ready for Spotlight Saturday? Today we have WS Carmichael joining us. She writes contemporary romance. Let’s find out more…
Welcome, WS. So glad to have you on Love Indie Romance. Should I call you WS, or do you have a nickname? Tell us a little about yourself.
First, I’d like to thank you for this opportunity. You can call me Wendy. I use WS for writing purposes as a way to give my writing its own identity. In addition to writing, I am employed full time as a nurse. My husband Doug and I have been married for four years, together for twelve. Between the two of us, we have four children, Dougie -28, Hunter – 17, Haleigh – 15 and Nick – 14.
You just released your first book, At Long Last: A Laurel Creek Romance. Where did the inspiration come from?
That’s hard to pinpoint, exactly. I’ve been considering writing for years, and finally I had an overwhelming desire to try my hand at it. I knew right away I wanted to do a series, so when I began fleshing out the characters, I made sure to allow lots of opportunity for expansion. It sounds crazy, but once the characters came to life, the story almost wrote itself. Anytime I would get stuck, I’d leave it alone for a few days and allow the characters’ personalities to direct the storyline.
How many books will be in the Laurel Creek series? Are any characters based off of you or someone you know?
I originally planned for the Laurel Creek series to be a trilogy, but there could be room for more. There will definitely be at least three. None of the characters are entirely based off of someone I know, but there are elements of my and my family’s personalities in each character. In At Long Last, Jenni Lynn’s son, Jase is loosely based on my son, Nick.
Your publishing company is Queen Of The World Publishing, Inc. What made you decide to name it that?
Ha Ha! Funny you should ask. I have been telling people for as long as I can remember that I wanted to be Queen of the World. It’s actually a running joke with my friends and family, often calling me The Queen. So, when I was trying to think of a name for my company, I knew Queen would be in there somewhere. At first, it was going to be Mountain Queen Publishing. Then, I thought, “Hey! I can name it whatever I want. It’s my company.” And so, Queen Of The World Publishing was born.
You have three teenagers, which you mention in one blog post talking about sharks. How do you juggle writing and family life?
Conversations like that one are a regular occurrence in my house. My family has been very supportive of my writing. I don’t have as much time to write as I would like, but they never complain when I spend the evening locked away in our computer room. I have to admit, since I’ve been writing, there are more than a few chores I’ve been slacking on, but my husband and kids have really pitched in.
What is your favorite part about being an indie author? Any highs? Lows?
I think my favorite part of being an indie author is having complete creative control. I don’t need anyone’s approval for my storylines or characters. I love that the only thing I have to concentrate on is writing a book my fans (when I get some) will love. The best high I’ve had so far was the outpouring of support and encouragement from my friends and family. No one knew I was writing (outside of my immediate family), until I released At Long Last. As far as lows, I can’t say I’ve had any yet. I was mildly unprepared for the promotional work, but I’m learning.
You plan to have book two in the Laurel Creek series out in Fall 2017. How’s it coming along? Are you a plotter or a pantser?
Book two, which has a working title of Never Say Never Again, is coming along very well. I’m only about a week in, but I have three chapters done already. Granted, they are short chapters, like in At Long Last. I have a loose outline in my head for how Emma and Matt’s story will unfold, but I allow the characters’ personalities to direct the flow.
Crazy question time! What’s your dream date? (With four kids, although, one is an adult, I know it might be hard to get that kind of time alone with your husband.)
Aaah, my dream date? I’m pretty easy. If I’m fed and able to wear something other than scrubs, I’m happy. My husband and I do make it a point to spend time alone, much easier now that the kids are older, but we also have a lot of fun with the kids. In the winter, we’ll go skiing, then hang out with our ski friends at least a few times. In the summer, I like to drag the whole family on hikes. We live in upstate NY, and the mountains are beautiful.
Any last thoughts?
I’m loving this crazy ride as an indie author! I knew I would like writing, but I wasn’t expecting to love it as much as I do. I’m so excited to work on my book, my blog, whatever. Eventually, I would love to write full time. For now, though, I’ll have to take it one day at a time.