Originally posted on Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Today I am going talk about Lisa Wingate again!
This is the first half of my interview with her. And as I am about to finish Word Gets Around and start with Never Say Never, I am still amazed as some of the similarities in our lives. Reading this interview you will really get to know Ms. Lisa better and get some in site into what makes her such a GREAT writter!
~ Do you mom or dad write professionally?
I don’t come from a long line of writers. My mother was an educator and did some professional writing. My father was a computer programmer. My grandmother was a wonderful writer, but even she only wrote stories for practical purposes, usually to convey a lesson. People in my family tended to have more traditional jobs, and no one thought that writing was something you would do for a living. Since my parents insisted that I prepare to actually earn a paycheck and support myself (how heartless of them, right?) I studied Technical Writing at Oklahoma State University and went to work for a software company, writing manuals and training users.
Some years later, after my first son was born, my grandmother came to stay with me. During that visit, she shared some stories from her life, which became the inspiration for Tending Roses. Tending Roses has its 10th year in publication anniversary this summer. It is my sentimental favorite among the books because, even though it is fiction, so much of my grandmother and I are in that book.
~ Were you published in grade/middle school?
I did sell a couple horse stories (my most passionate interest at the time) to small horse magazines when I was younger, but mostly I just wrote because I loved it. Writing was a natural extension of the way we kids played back then. Before Nintendo and video games, we wandered the creek beds and fields around our neighborhood and created fanciful worlds and lives of our own. Writing is still that way for me. Basically, I’m a kid who never grew up.
~ Did you keep notebooks/diaries when you were young?
I always wrote. My closet had stacks of spiral notebooks with books I had started. Earlier on, they were usually stories of girls devoted to their horses and horses devoted to their girls. For years, a friend and I wrote stories together. She would take the “book” and write for a few days and then I’d take a turn writing. We had fun inventing new lives and new settings, and (after horse fantasies were whisked away by teenage crushes on Luke Skywalker) creating our own version of Star Wars. Sometime during that period, I’m sure we earned our nerd cards, but we had great fun and learned to keep a story going.
~ Do your characters come from people you know?
Life is filled with characters. Some characters, like Grandma Rose in Tending Roses, and J. Norman Alvord in my upcoming book, Dandelion Summer, come from people I know and love. Some characters may be inspired by someone I’ve only heard about on the news or brushed by in a store somewhere. The more paths you walk in life, the more you realize that everyone has a story. Part of writing is looking at the people around you and guessing at what that story may be.
~ How do you come up with their names?
Some characters come into my mind fully formed, with names, physical characteristics, histories, and personality quirks. Some require a little more plotting and thinking. Generally, I meet the characters as you would meet any person in life—I get to know them from the outside, in. Sometimes I shop through books of baby names or phone books, looking for names that fit. Sometimes, I borrow names from people I know. J. Norman in this July’s book, Dandelion Summer shares my grandfather’s name, Norman. He is a lot like my grandfather—feisty, intelligent, something of a corker.
*** And please do not forget to come back next week and read the other half of this interview. If you haven’t started reading her books yet, you may want to!! They are such an easy read and so INSPIRATIONAL. I feel very lucky to have been able to find her books and also to find out a little bit more about her. Here is a great way to learn more too – Southern BelleView Blog.
I thought I would share this great – simple headline from on of my favorite bloggers – frugaltractormom. You really should follow this great blogger – if you don’t already – and either way, go check out today’s post –
It will make you smile!!
I promised a listing a day, and here is today’s. What do you think?
Since I haven’t done my numbers lately I thought today would be a great day to do that. Remember that MOST of my growth is due to utilizing Hops. I don’t just ‘post them’ on my blog. I actually work them. I go through the list of other hop’pers and I actually fan/follow them. If I don’t have time, I don’t do them that day.
6/14/11 – 1,036 followers
7/6/11 – 1,072 followers
6/14/11 – 2,101 followers
7/6/11 – 2,185 followers
6/14/11 – 3,653 Fans
7/6/11 – 3,752 Fans
6/14/11 – 6,790
7/6/11 – 7,009
Growth – 219 (18 days time)
And as I close on this WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY I would like to remind everyone that everyday is special – try to take some time for yourself today and think of all the wonderful things in your life. ~KM