Amy M. Reade is a new-to-me author and one that I’m really excited about. I’m in the midst of reading her latest release, The House on Candlewick Lane and thoroughly enjoying it. And, bonus…it’s on sale for 99c right now!
It is every parent’s worst nightmare. Greer Dobbins’ daughter has been kidnapped—and spirited across the Atlantic to a hiding place in Scotland. Greer will do anything to find her, but the streets of Edinburgh hide a thousand secrets—including some she’d rather not face.
Art historian Dr. Greer Dobbins thought her ex-husband, Neill, had his gambling addiction under control. But in fact, he was spiraling deeper and deeper into debt. When a group of shady lenders threatens to harm the divorced couple’s five-year-old daughter if he doesn’t pay up, a desperate Neill abducts the girl and flees to his native Scotland. Though the trail seems cold, Greer refuses to give up and embarks on a frantic search through the medieval alleys of Edinburgh—a city as beguiling as it is dangerous. But as the nightmare thickens with cryptic messages and a mysterious attack, Greer herself will become a target, along with everyone she holds dear.
Let’s get to know Amy.
What literary pilgrimages have you gone on?
I went to Edinburgh last year and soo wanted to visit the Writers’ Museum, but we ran out of time. I was near it, though. Does that count? And the granddaughter of Laura Ingalls Wilder visited my hometown when I was young and I went to the talk she gave at our local library. She autographed one of her grandmother’s books for me. What a treat! I still have the book and I treasure it.
Does writing energize or exhaust you?
It depends on what I’ve written. If I’m happy with it, I’m energized. If I’m unhappy with it, I am useless and catatonic until I can edit the offending scene(s).
Does a big ego help or hurt writers?
I think a big ego is unbecoming and I gravitate toward people who have a healthy amount of humility (as I hope I do). That being said, a relatively famous author I’ve met in person has a huge ego. Is that what makes her successful? I don’t know, but it doesn’t seem to hurt. Maybe that’s why I’m not as famous as she is—I’m just too darn nice.
What is your writing Kryptonite?
The greatest time suck in history: Social media.
Did you ever consider writing under a pseudonym?
I have, but there’s really no reason for it at this point. A: I don’t write anything that would embarrass my family or myself; and B: I have a pretty cool last name for a writer.
Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?
I am blessed to have readers who give me feedback about what they love and want to see in my books. I also know from a few early reviews of my first book that there are some things my readers don’t like. But I don’t feel like I’m giving up my originality by writing what people like.
Bottom line: I think it’s possible for a writer to be original while still delivering what readers want.
Do you think someone could be a writer if they don’t feel emotions strongly?
I do think it’s possible. Just because a person doesn’t feel emotions deeply doesn’t mean they aren’t capable of understanding them or having empathy with people who do feel them. In fact, a dispassionate author might actually be better able to cut unnecessary words and scenes from a novel without feeling like they’ve lost a part of himself or herself.
What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?
I am very lucky to be friends with lots of authors. I’ve found authors, as a community, to be some of the most supportive, selfless, and genuine people I’ve ever known. They’re always willing to share their steps to success, as well as their failures, so other authors can learn from their smart moves and their mistakes. They’re also very generous with their help to new writers.
How did publishing your first book change your process of writing?
It made me write faster! I wrote my first book longhand on legal paper, and it became apparent very quickly that I wouldn’t have time for that with future books. Now I write everything directly onto the computer.
What was the best money you ever spent as a writer?
Buying my domain name.
What do you owe the real people upon whom you base your characters?
There’s only one person upon whom a character in my books is loosely based, and I must thank that wretched monster for the miserable experience s/he created for me. Without it, I would not have been able to craft the thoroughly evil villain in the book I’m working on now.
But I’m not bitter or anything.
How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?
I have two half-finished books right now, both of which are (obviously) unpublished. I also have two books in the publication pipeline, both at different points in the editing process.
What’s the best way to market your books?
The best marketing isn’t done by me—it’s done by readers, by word-of-mouth. I think most authors would say the same thing.
Thanks for stopping by and getting to know Amy.
You can catch up with her here:
On her blog: https://amreade.wordpress.com/
On her webpage: http://www.amymreade.com/