1. Are you a panster or a plotter or perhaps a bit of both?
I have had 7 books published, so far, one stand-alone, and six with
my hometown, as the locale. To do this, I read old newspapers. In the case of
fiction, I try to decide how I can work my characters into what happened during
the appropriate time period. I call this Forest Gumping. The book I’m currently
editing has street brawls, buggy accidents, the attempted kidnapping of a
Chinese woman’s and many other things that the Tacoma Daily Ledger covered in the early 1880s. I can create a
dialogue by having people talk about what they saw. However, right now, I need
to give fiction a rest, so I’m working on a proposal for a third local history
book. For this, I subscribe to Genealogybank which gives me access to a number
of newspapers for research. The company wants the book to feature Tacoma, Washington ’s crooks, crime,
and general mayhem. So, in answer to the question, I guess I’m a bit of both. Tacoma
2. Which comes first - characters or plot for you?
In fiction, the character. One reason I stopped (at least, for now) my mystery series is that I didn’t think readers liked the heroine. I want my protagonists to be as sweet and loveable as Anne (of Green Gables) Shirley or Betsy (Betsy, Tacy and Tib) Ray but I didn’t think that was happening.
3. What are you working on now? Is this a book in a current series or something totally new?
The book I’ve been editing is a sequel to A Feather for a Fan, (and tomorrow I will provide a sample of my favorite chapter in that book.) It was set in
circa 1878. Now,
though, all the characters are older and so are interested in other things—more
adult things, because back then, the concept of teenagers wasn’t recognized,
per se. It was childhood and then adulthood. My fictional characters are
supported by the people who actually settled, lived, and worked in Tacoma . I consider them
friends and they think I’m wonderful and never argue with me. Tacoma
4. Do you have some kind of object or place that figures in most of your books? I use gems a lot, hospitals and caves.
Until the Klondike Gold rush in the 1890s, when
Seattle over took us, Tacoma, known as The City of Destiny, was THE city to be
reckoned with on Puget Sound. That means,
everything on is grist for my
writing mill. The book I’m editing (and struggling to find a title for)
Bay Steilacoom, Washington,
a potlatch on the Puyallup Reservation, and a neighborhood currently called
or Old Tacoma. Back then, there were three separate communities here, Old
Tacoma, New Tacoma and the Wharf. And yes, I know, I did end a sentence with a
preposition. My bad. Old Town
4. Do you write everyday or just when the spirit hits?
Pretty much every day but not always on my things. I write for my garden club, too.
5. Where can we find you?
Just deleting unwanted emails takes way too long, so, Facebook is best, or at bwlauthors.blogspot.com. Having a lot of social media sites to check takes me away from writing, not to mention cleaning, cooking, gardening, and hiking—life in general. Today, for example, I discovered the reason my dog hasn’t been eating his own food is because he’s been eating the cats’ kibbles. Also, I have a cat who throws herself at me if she wants something, and then we play a game I call “Guess What Sally Wants?”