August 09, 2017

#AuthorInterview with @vickistiefel #CQWeek2017 #Giveaway @CurosityQuills

Welcome to the first post of day four! We have a wonderful interview with the author of Chest of Bone!  We hope you enjoy it! 

My new paranormal romantic suspense series, The Afterworld Chronicles, launches with Chest of Bone, (Curiosity Quills Press). Chest of Stone will be out in Nov. I just launched Chest of Bone-The Knit Collectionthe first knitting book created in conjunction with a novel. My mystery/thrillers—Body PartsThe Dead StoneThe Bone Man, and The Grief Shop, a Daphne du Maurier winner—feature homicide counselor Tally Whyte and are soon to be ebooks. I co-wrote (with Lisa Souza) 10 Secrets of the LaidBack Knitters. My late husband, William G. Tapply, and I ran The Writers Studio workshops.
I grew up in professional theater—the Ivoryton Playhouse—and planned to become an actress. Instead, I’ve slung hamburgers, managed a scuba shop, and am a professor. I’m a mom to two humans and a furry pack. My passion for scuba diving, fly fishing and knitting pop up in my novels. As do vinho verde and bourbon (not together!) and Maine lobster and chocolate (also not together!). I sing musical comedy scores in the shower, unfortunately not an Equity venue, write daily and teach fiction and modern media writing at Clark University. I'm currently pounding the keys on the series’ second novel, Chest of Stone.

Facebook page: My FB
Author FB: 
Goodreads author page:
Twitter: @vickistiefel and @knittingnews

1. What is your name, where were you born and where do you live now?
Vicki Stiefel. I grew up in New Jersey, Connecticut, and Arizona, and now I live in L.A.
2. Did you always want to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?
From near-infancy, I read voraciously, but as I grew up in professional theater, I always planned on being a musical comedy actor on Broadway. When I discovered writing later in life, I found it wasn’t so different from acting, only I get to play all the roles, instead of just one!

4. Did it take a long time to get your first book published?
It took me twelve years—from my original goal of getting a novel published, to many misfires, to seeing Body Parts, my first Tally Whyte mystery-thriller, in print.

6. What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarize it in less than 20 words what would you say?
Chest of Bone. When a magical empath discovers her dying mentor, she must unite with a deadly hunter to keep malevolent forces from obtaining the Chest of Bone. (sorry - 25 words!)

7. Who is your publisher? or do you self-publish?
My publisher is Curiosity Quills Press. They’re quite marvelous and take great care with their authors.

11. What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
Chest of Bone is the first in a five-book series that details the gathering of the five Chests of Unity in order for the magical and mundane worlds to retwine in harmony. I’m also planning on writing more mystery-thrillers, continuing my Tally Whyte homicide counselor series, and launching another fantasy- suspense series.

13. What genre would you place your books into?
I’d guess you’d call my books a mashup of fantasy, romance, and suspense.

17. If you had to choose to be one of your characters in your book/ books which would you be? and why?
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I’d be Clea Reese, my protagonist, because she’s on both an inner and an outer journey. In each book she gains greater mastery of her powers and a greater understanding of herself and of the two worlds, magical and mundane. She also meets, battles with, and falls in love with a pretty terrific guy, James Larrimer.

20. Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?
I write every day, and I need quiet to write. No distractions, no music. Sometimes I write in bed and other times at my desk.

21. Do you have anybody read your books and give you reviews before you officially release them?ie. Your partner, children, friends, reviewers you know?
My incredibly valuable writing critique partner reads and critiques my first draft. Once I’ve edited - a lot - I send the book out to my amazing beta readers. Then I edit the book again and send it on to my publisher (Curiosity Quills), who, of course, edits it once again.

25. Would you ever ask a reviewer to change their review if it was not all positive about your book/books?
Never. Ever.

26. How do you come up with the Title and Cover Designs for your book/books?Who designed the Cover of your books?
I love the cover of Chest of Bone, designed by Eugene Teplitsky, of Curiosity Quills Press. He put so much care and thought and artistry into the cover. I swooned. I also commission a painting from Helheimen Design to complement my covers. I’ve got a
heavy romance thread running through my series, and I wanted the paintings to not only illuminate the couple, but symbolize their relationship in each novel.

30. Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?
I’m a pantster and my characters emerge during the story. At the same time, I often have a vision of my protagonist’s profession and her appearance before I begin to write.

31. Do you basic plot/plan for your book, before you actually begin writing it out? Or do you let the writing flow and see where it takes the story?
I always have an “inciting incident” before I sit down to write, which I’ve cooked up in my head, one that sets the whole story in motion. Of course, sometimes, that changes, which drives me batty. But my stories evolve, change, and grow, as do my characters. So I go with the flow.

34. Have you ever suffered from a "writer's block"? What did you do to get past the “block"?
Writers block is unacceptable. Writing is my profession. Imagine if I were a doctor or a teacher and said: “Gee, I don’t feel like teaching today, so I’ll stay home.” It’s always hard to write, some days harder than others. I just plunk my butt in the chair and write. And, yes, I might produce a lot of crap on a given day, but I write. The real writing takes place in the editing phase, where I distill my words down to their essence.

43. Do you think ebooks will ever totally replace printed books?
No. I find each delivery method, from print to ebooks to audiobooks, has its own special appeal. For sure, I’m not alone in this feeling.

44. Do you think children at schools these days are encouraged enough to read? and/or do Imaginative, writing?
I would love to see school kids doing more reading and more creative writing. Both reading and imaginative writing release those juices that foster even more creativity, as well as sharpen thinking for a spectrum of people from astronauts to scientists to actors. And writers, of course

47.Do you have a treasured book from your childhood? If yes, what is it?
I have kept many of my book loves from childhood and my youth. Ferdinand the Bull, My Book House (12 vols, fairy tales, etc.), The Diary of Anne Frank, Gone with the Wind, The Odyssey, Dragonflight, The Foundation Trilogy, The Once and Future King.

53. What piece of advice would you give to a new writer?
Have a daily goal. It might be 500 words. Or, perhaps, one hour. Accomplish that goal each and every day. Yes, some of what the writer creates might be garbage, but daily writing works those expressive muscles. Muscle memory is as real for writers as it is for athletes.

55. If you could invite three favorite writers to dinner, who would you invite and enjoy chatting with?
I’d invite Homer, because stories don’t get any better than The Iliad and The Odyssey. Shakespeare because I remain in awe of
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his creativity and skill, and I suspect he might have been either an alien or a magical being. And Grace Draven, a contemporary author of fantasy whose mad skills as a writer instantly transports me to other worlds where I meet utterly fascinating characters.

Strange Questions to have some fun!
Which do you prefer? . . . . .

Paperback/Hardback or E-book? eBook for fiction, paperback for non-fiction, audiobooks for both.

Read a book once/Reread books more than once? If I adore a book, I’ll read it more than once.

Books or Movies? Both!

Action, Drama, Mystery, Romance? All!

Library or New books from a bookstore? Both

Morning or Evening? I stay up way too late reading.

Early Nights or Late Nights? Late nights, which is why I need lots of coffee in the a.m.

Shower or Bath? Both

Optimist or Pessimist? Optimist, mostly

Coffee or Tea? Coffee

Spring, Summer, Autumn or Winter? Spring, when the world is new again

Wine, Beer, Soft Drink? Wine and soft drink. Sadly, I don’t love beer.

Dogs or Cats? Both

Author or Reader? Both. Being an author without being a reader? Impossible. 

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