I am not easily impressed these days. Then along comes S.J. Francis and makes me hang on every insightful word she says. Her words of wisdom really touched me. I hope if you are a writer or want to be, you'll read this interview, top to bottom. There are pre-buy links of course, but also a chance to win her new novel, Shattered Lies. So let's get to it.
Do you have any special routines you MUST do as you write?
What moment in your life did you know you wanted to be a writer?
SJ: At 18, I complained to a close friend of mine how many story ideas I had in my head and what I should do with them. Except for book reports and school papers that I loved writing, I had no idea what to do with them. She suggested I begin writing them down and sending them out for publication. At that time I didn’t consider myself a fan of writing, though, I always had a gift for doing so. I thrived on it. After a few seconds, I realized she was right. I had to write. That was when I decided I was a writer.
Where and when do you write?
SJ: I do have a home office my spouse set up for me and I do use it. However, I don’t necessarily need my office to write in. I write everywhere and anywhere every chance I get. Whether I’m in the shower or walking the dogs, I’m always writing something in my head. Later, I write it down in longhand, put it on my word processor or onto my laptop.
Do you have any special routines you MUST do as you write?
SJ: My routine for writing is to force myself to write, which isn’t always easy when life gets in the way. Then, I need some kind of background noise to keep me writing. I watch TV or listen to music, usually music that somehow feels like the piece I am writing about. This might distract other writers, but for me it keeps the ideas flowing. In fact, I don’t think I’d be able to write without this background accompaniment.
Why did you choose this genre to write the stories you tell?
SJ: I didn’t choose the genre. I think the genre chose me. I’ve actually written more than a dozen novels over the last several years, but Shattered Lies, a women’s fiction/mainstream/family saga is the first one I actively sought to publish. All my novels seem to fall into this genre and they all share the same dynamic: Families, families with secrets and lies. Not necessarily conventional families, but all families.
They say to write what you know, or write what you want to know. I write both and what I care about. I care about people, people in families, and families with secrets and lies. Hence, my genre chose me.
Where do you see yourself as a writer in twenty years?
SJ: Um….now I have to think about this one. Your other questions, Tierney, were quite easy. Twenty years from now…I think I’d l like to see myself as a better, more accomplished writer. I’d like to have touched someone and hope that something I wrote somehow made someone think, perhaps act on someone else’s behalf, especially a harmless, innocent animal, or kept a writer writing. My goal is to write twenty novels and donating part of my proceeds from each book to a cause that is close to my heart. That is where I’d like to see myself.
For Shattered Lies, I will donate ten percent of the book’s sales to the Polycystic Kidney Foundation in order to help the fight against this insidious disease that strikes both children and adults. Polycystic Kidney disease causes kidney failure in a great many patients and plays a role in Shattered Lies. For more information about this insidious disease: http://www.pkdcure.org
Movie(s): So many, but just one, I’d have to say The Grapes of Wrath. Yes, a film about a family.
Movie Star: Spencer Tracy.
Author(s): Too many to name, but off the cuff: Jackie Collins and Heather Neff,
Travel Destination: Easy. Europe, especially London. Yes, I’m a born Anglophile.
Famous Historical Person: can I pick two? Julius Caesar and Boadicea. Two strong people that did a great deal for their people.
Restaurant: My favorite restaurant has to be El Pollo Loco. They provide healthy fast food, though I no longer eat meat.
American City: New York City, the Big Apple, of course.
Season: I’d have to say summer. I thrive on the sunshine, warmth, greenery, and abundant wildlife.
What does your family think of your passion for writing?
My family is very supportive. They are my biggest supporters without reservations. As I said, my spouse set up for me a home office. We also have a home library for all the books I read and use for research. My spouse is also my number one fan and Beta reader.
Who has been the biggest influence on your writing?
Every writer I’ve read has had an influence, somehow on my writing, including the guest authors I’ve hosted on my writing blog, but the biggest influences was the late great Jackie Collins, romance author Leigh Michaels, and Multi-Published author Heather Neff. They’re all distinctly different in their writing styles, but all are great writers that inspired me.
If your book was made into a movie who would play the leads?
Very easy question, Tierney and thanks for asking. I’d have to say that Kate Beckinsale would do a great job portraying Doctor Kate Thayer. In the role of her formidable grandmother, Katherine, I see the talented actress, Joan Collins and no one else.
Blurb: Shattered Lies
She wants to know the truth, but some secrets might be better left alone…
Kate Thayer has a good life as a veterinarian, running the family horse farm—until she uncovers an act of unimaginable treachery by those she trusted most and learns that everything she knew about herself was a lie. Her paternal grandmother, the woman who raised her, is behind a number of devastating secrets Kate is compelled to discover. But the deeper she digs, the more betrayal she finds, changing her life in ways she could have never foreseen.
Book Giveaway for Shattered Lies by S.J. Francis
In honor of the launch of Shattered Lies, I’m offering a giveaway for someone to win a printed copy. To all those who leave a comment here today, or those that contact me at my website, you will automatically be entered into a drawing to win a personally autographed copy of my debut novel, Shattered Lies. Two copies are available giving two of you a chance to win.
Just leave a comment here or go to my website and drop me a line with “Giveaway” in subject line at: http://www.sjfranciswriter.com
Good luck and thanks so much for stopping by. It was my pleasure to spend time with you. Thank you so much, Tierney for hosting me. It's always my pleasure to connect with other authors and readers.
FYI: The drawing will take place at the end of my blog tour on Saturday, December 12, 2015. I will contact the winner at that time to request your mailing address to send you the printed copy of Shattered Lies.
Any words of wisdom to your fans?
Though, I’ve been writing since 1983, I’m still learning. Never stop learning. Never stop reading. Never stop writing. If you want to write, just write. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t. As long as you believe you can write, you can. Discouragement hides behind every corner. You are going to want to quit. Don’t. Never give up. Never let fear win. Never. For the day you do, you will give up. There are so many ways to get your work published now. There’s no better time to write than now. As the late, great Jackie Collins once told me when I needed encouragement the most, “Keep your writing passion on fore.”
Of course, these words of wisdom don’t apply to just writing. If you want to do something, just do it. Don’t ever let anyone sway you. Don’t let anyone say you can’t. You’ll only regret it.
Social Media Connections:
Black Opal Books:
Facebook friend page:
Facebook fan page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/SJ-Francis/480058115420325
My twitter page:
My linked in Page:
My Google Plus page is:
My Pinterest page is:
Good Reads: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/33550975-s-j
Watt Pad: http://www.wattpad.com/user/ILiveWriting
Pre-Order Purchase Link for Kindle:
product/B016H9HAXC?keywords= shattered%20lies&qid= 1445043034&ref_=sr_1_2&sr=8-2
Pre-Order Purchase Link for Shattered Lies on Black Opal Books: