Today’s author is Ginger Simpson of MuseItUp, whose book, Hurricane Warning, was published with MuseItUp on November First, 2010. This interview was done and put away before the book’s publication.
About the Author: Ginger retired in 2003 to devote more time to her writing but soon discovered there is much more to being an author than just penning a novel; you have to promote and market yourself. Amidst the time spent online, blogging, chatting, and posting excerpts and blurbs, she also enjoys time with her eight-year-old grandson, Spencer. He’s the light of her life, and she’s inspired by the way he’s overcome hurdles that autism has put in his path. Ginger may never be a NY Times best-selling author, but she’ll settle for being Spencer’s “Nee Nee.”
~Can you tell us a bit about your upcoming projects with MuseItUp?
I signed six contracts with Muse It Up Publishing; five short stories and one Young Adult that I hope will go to print when the time comes. I’m very excited to be part of Lea and Litsa’s new venture, and with them at the helm, I see great things happening. In case anyone is interested, I’ve written The Forget-Me-Nots, which was inspired by memories of my mother and father in pictures from WWII, A Wing and a Prayer, which is about a flight attendant on her first day and how first impressions aren’t always what they appear to be, Masked Love–about a middle-aged women who is aghast when she learns from the doctor that she has sleep apnea, Just the Right Fit,a story inspired by a true experience of my highschool chum, Karyl and her shoe-shopping experience, and Hurricane Warning, a little tale about a divorcee who moves to Florida and faces her first hurricane and the growing attraction to a hunky neighbor who comes to her rescue. My young adult, Shortcomings, introduces a high schooler with a birth defect and her lack of ability to deal with the rude stares and comments from her peers.
~How and when did you decide you wanted to be a writer?
I’ve always written in come capacity, but it wasn’t until 2001 that my first “character” spoke to me and urged me to tell her story. I still remember that day I sat down at the laptop I’d borrowed from work and made Cecile Palmer’s acquaintance. That was a life-changing day for me. The end result was my debut western historical romance, Prairie Peace.
~What was the first genre you wrote in?
Not surprising, western historical! I grew up watching all those old TV westerns and read every book Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote.
~Do you find that different skill sets are used for writing in each genre?
Not really. My stories are driven by characters who usually show up already named and armed with a great plot. All I have to do is type. The only way I can explain it is the experience is like telling myself a story, and I can’t wait to see where it’s going and how it ends. The hardest story I’ve written is entitled The Locket, and the “star” is a piece of jewelry. I started this one on a dare from my sister who wanted me to write something more mysterious. I finished it, and I was really proud of myself and loved how the story turned out. I actually wrote this one without the help of a character.
~What suggestions would you give a writer looking to break into a new genre?
I don’t think you “break” into a new genre. I’ve written romantic suspense, contemporary, humor, time-travel, historical, a mystery…and I didn’t do anything different except for the one I mentioned above. That story required me to do some heavy thinking.
~What’s the easiest genre for you to write in and why?
The best way to answer this question is to tell you that historical fiction is the hardest to write. Being a credible historical author requires that you research your era and make sure your historical facts are correct. If you don’t, you won’t be taken seriously. For example, in the old west, “kids” were goats, and “okay” wasn’t even part of the vocabulary then.
~How did you find MuseItUp Publishing?
Lea has been a friend for quite a while now and when she told me she was starting her own publishing company, I new immediately that if I could get contracted, I would be making a great move. Luckily, Lea likes my writing and only rejected one of my short stories until I made some suggested changes. That’s what’s awesome…even if you get a rejection, it isn’t written in stone. She’s always willing to entertain another look.
~What’s your favourite thing about working with MuseItUp Publishing?
I have never been part of a publishing company that includes their authors in the decision making process. Everything Lea does, she runs by “the team” for input. This is exactly how it should be. Rather than employer/employee…we are all on the same team, building a future together. I cannot say enough good things about Lea and her approach to publishing. I’m very fortunate to be contracted there.
~Have you ever participated in the Muse Online Writers’ Conference? If yes, how did you like it?
I was supposed to last year but I got sick. This year, I’m going to present a one-day workshop on The Pitfalls of Publishing. I’ve been doing this for over ten years now and I feel I’ve learned some valuable tips to share with others.
~What are you working on right now?
I recently started another western historical romance set in 1840 Missouri. The name is Hattie’s Hero, and I’m very excited about it. The real reason I started it was that I wanted to get back to my fabulous historical critique group who helped me hone Odessa which will be releasing early next year. Of course, I always have a folder full of stories I’ve started, so when I get bored or Hattie isn’t in a talkative mood, I work on something else for a while…like Joy’s Revelation. She’s really mad at me for letting Hattie take cuts. 🙂
Thanks Dianna for letting me share so much of my self. Your questions were stimulating and fun. I invite people to visit my blog at http://mizging.blogspot.com and my newly created website http://www.gingersimpson.com. All my new covers are up there along with blurbs for some and videos for others.