Thursday, 9 March 2017

Chatting with Marianne Spitzer

Welcome to the blogsite, Marianne. Thank you for joining us.

Q. Can you tell us a little about yourself?
A. I was born in Wisconsin and lived there until I was eighteen. Then I spent eight years in Washington state and California before returning to Wisconsin. I love eerie places and books. I began with a love of Nancy Drew books and as I grew I found H.P Lovecraft, Poe, Agatha Christie, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle among others. When I am not writing, I am reading or watching sunsets. I enjoy making up stories about people I meet or see on the street. I can see a story in a picture, especially if the picture is eerie. My imagination runs wild and free

Q. Where do you live and do you have a day job?
A. I live in SE Wisconsin and I’m retired. I write full time now.

Q. When you’re not writing, what leisure time activities or hobbies do you enjoy?
A. Reading is my favorite leisure time activity. I enjoy spending time with family and friends especially my two grandchildren. Walks on the beach and watching sunsets make my favorites list.

Q. Do you like to read or do you prefer to listen to audio books?
A. I prefer reading. I enjoy reading from my Kindle or printed books; however, it is easier to carry my Kindle with me wherever I go.

Q. Which ‘genres’ do you prefer to read – and write? Is there a difference?
A. Not really. I love paranormal mysteries, cozy mysteries, and Historical Western romance.

Q. What drove you to begin a writing career?
A. I have been writing since the sixth grade. I have dozens of journals full of writings and story ideas. Finding the information on self-publishing led me to write my first full-length novel.

Q. What do you feel are the greatest challenges facing any writer at the present time?
A. Promotion. For most authors starting out, finding good platforms to promote your work is essential.

Q. Do you have an office or ‘space’ where you write from and is it at home, or elsewhere?
A. No, I use my living room.

Q. Do you write to a target – word count – every day, or do you have another writing discipline that you could share with us?
A. No, I usually write each day but I don’t like to push my word count. I write as the words flow.

Q. Which of the books that you have written so far is your favourite and what can you tell us about it without giving the game away?
A. Kathryn’s Justice. It began as a serial killer book but quickly turned into a vigilante justice story about a woman hoping to end child abuse in her town.

Q. Do you have a current ‘work in progress’? Can you tell us anything about it?
A. My third Annie Ryan cozy mystery, Bones, booze & Bouquets. It follows Annie and her BFF Georgie through another mystery. I am also working on Adam’s Heart. It is the fourth book in the Mail-Order Brides of Gentle Falls series.

Q. When you have finished writing the book – what do you do next? By that I mean, do you edit the book yourself? Do you design your own book cover? Do you prepare a project plan to market your book?
A. I do the best editing job I can before sending it to my editor for her valuable suggestions and have my covers professionally done. I market each new book the way I have the previous. If I find a new source for promotions, I use it for all my books.

Q. What methods have you used to engage with your readership? Social media, press announcements, or book signings? What works for you that you might recommend for others?
A. I use Facebook, Twitter, a blog and web site, posting my books on sites such as Goodreads. I recommend using all of them. The bigger your audience, the more likely it is that you will connect with a new reader. 

Q. Where do you see your primary market? The USA, UK, Europe, or elsewhere?
A. USA, Canada, and UK.

Q. What is the best piece of advice you could give to someone starting out on a writing career?
A. Don’t give up. Keep working and writing. Above all, once you are published, don’t take the negative reviews to heart. There may be one person who doesn’t like your work and feels that it is necessary to attack you personally.

Q. If you won a million pounds / dollars tomorrow, what would you do with the proceeds?
A. Help house and feed homeless children.

Q. If you were gifted an air ticket to ‘anywhere’, which destination would you choose above all others and why?

A. Fiji. I’d love to walk in the crystal clear blue water. 

Thank you. Marianne has published over a dozen books on amazon. A random selection follows. But do follow Marianne's link to her amazon page to view the entire collection.

Marianne's links are