Topic: Author Interview
C. Hope Clark the person:
1. What three words do you think describe you as a human being?
Passionate - Loyal - Intellectual
2. How do you think others would describe you?
Direct - Intellectual - Honest
3. Please tell us what you are most passionate about outside of writing.
Honesty and being true to myself - true to others - on any realm
4. Do you have any pets? If so, introduce us to them.
Dixie - the mini-dachshund - 11 years old - she is my shadow and has been provided a window seat in my study to watch the birds and nap in the sunshine
Cookie - the spaniel mix - 15 years old - found her in the country under an abandoned car at 3 months old - broken hip and unable to move to eat - she ate sand and motor oil, and the first thing we could force her to eat after trying liver, hamburger, eggs and bacon was a cookie, thus the name.
Hugo - the white cat with dark spots - born 6 weeks before Hurricane Hugo hit Charleston where we lived at the time - he's 18 years old
Shego - the dark cat with white spots - Hugo's sister - same age - much spryer
My birds - I love bird feeders and living on the lake, I have ample opportunity to study them and keep them fat and happy.
5. What is your most precious memory?
The birth of my son. Marrying my husband (the second one - LOL). I never knew true love until I allowed myself to accept love. He showed me what unconditional means.
6. What is your most embarrassing memory?
Providing a last minute dinner speech to a writers' group then them lowering the lights so I couldn't read my notes. I have night blindness. I kept losing my place and had to horribly adlib.
7. If you weren't a writer, what would you be doing with your life?
Probably still be with the government as an administrative director. I was a good manager with the federal government. I enjoyed helping people be good at their job. I was director of budget, IT, and human resources for ten years. I adored working hard so that the employees could be successful.
8. In two paragraphs or less write your obituary.
Cynthia Hope Clark devoted her energies to learning, excelling and making her talents available for others to grasp and use to excel - in hopes that such effort would be a perpetual continuum. She adored nature, never breathing enough air, touching enough plants, or admiring enough wildlife. She cherished honesty, abhorred façade and hated falsehood. Once hurt, she struggled to trust, yet she trusted way too much. She loved the moments of her life, both the good and the bad, knowing they were gifts easily spent, never to relive again. She knew life was but a spark, quickly gone in a flash. She loved living.
C. Hope Clark the writer:
9. Can you describe the time you realized you were indeed a "real" writer?
No. I didn't have that revelation. I decided to be a writer and moved in that direction. Of course each byline was fun and validated the "writer" title, but I didn't have a pivotal moment where I became a writer.
10. What is going on with your writing these days?
Writing the second novel. Rewriting the first novel after glowing comments from several agents - one requesting the rewrite as soon as I was through with it. Always seeking that next fun magazine assignment. Enjoying the editorials in FundsforWriters. Knowing in my heart that publishing my mysteries will happen in a matter of time.
11. What are your future goals for your writing?
Publishing my agricultural mystery series. Hopes of changing FundsforWriters to one newsletter and raising that membership to 50,000 members - one day.
12. Can you describe a typical writing day for you?
Sleep until 10 a.m. when I have breakfast and read the paper or read writing material. Chores around the house and talking/working with family until noon. Research and emails for FundsforWriters and freelance material until around two or three. Go to the gym or work in the yard for one or two hours. Write freelance material for a couple hours. Dinner - maybe a television show but always with a writing assignment in my lap for the commercials or down times during the show. Then I write from 9 or 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. on either freelance deadlines, FundsforWriters deadlines or the novel. I usually put in an eight-hour day for at least six days a week. If I'm smoking on a deadline or the iron is hot, I write for ten hours a day. If I can excuse myself from leaving the house (I adore being reclusive), or the weather is bad, I can fit twelve or fourteen hours in one day. I make excuses to get to my computer and work. I've been known to slide to the computer to take notes during commercials or get up in the middle of the night to jot down some thoughts. What I like best about writing fulltime is the fact I don't have typical days. Each one is what I feel like.
13. Why do you write?
To feel inspired. To feel smart. To use a raw talent found in few occupations. How many careers can you name that let you use your brain in such a mainstream manner - without tools? I adore the challenge to continually improve. To feel the ripple of delight when words fall into place so perfectly like understanding the answer to a prayer. It's amazing. But the best empowerment is writing something someone else finds empowering. That's a miraculous sensation that can't be matched in too many circles.
14. What writer most inspires you? Why?
The writer I'm reading at the moment inspires me. I do not get hung up on famous people. I love to read. I respect all writers who've carved a career with their words.
15. How do you define your writing?
Fiction - heavy dialog, slightly humorous, involving people finding right in all the wrongs of the world
Nonfiction - inspiring, motivational, personal - even when writing freelance material for magazines, I splash humor and motivation in it. I hate dry material in a magazine. I want to see the person behind the story - sense her personality.
16. In one sentence-what do you want people to say about your writing in fifty years?
She used her words to spark life in other people.
C. Hope Clark the details:
17. Can you tell us where to find more information on you? Website? Blog?
18. Is there a place where readers can reach you?
19. Can you list all your book titles so people can look for them?
Numerous ebooks about writing markets for writers at http://www.fundsforwriters.com/ . They perpetually change.
20. For new readers-what can they expect when they read your book(s)?
To learn how to feel good in their own skin. That is the message I deliver in most everything I write - fiction, nonfiction, freelance or editorial. Took me years to reach that point in life, and I want others to learn it sooner. It's so liberating to learn something new, apply it to your life and grow from it. I want people to love themselves.
21. Take as much space as necessary to speak to our readers-what would you like them to know about you and your writing?
My work is genuine; my feelings sincere. I love writing and find great satisfaction in editing work to make it shine. In my FundsforWriters and Shy Writer worlds, I want readers to feel good as writers, but I also want them to give it the respect it needs. Publishing fast and quickly, without deep study and many months of practice, is like picking up a scalpel and deciding to be a surgeon. The truth will come out. I want writers to find as much satisfaction in grooming their writing as publishing their writing. The living is in the journey.