Topic: Author Interview
Janet Elaine Smith the person:
1. What three words do you think describe you as a human being?
Fun, entertaining, friend
2. How do you think others would describe you?
Fun, faithful friend, helpful (I hope)
3. Please tell us what you are most passionate about outside of writing.
My family, my friends, my faith (God)--not necessarily in that order
4. Do you have any pets? If so, introduce us to them.
None now, but we have had numerous dogs. Oh, and our youngest son once had a lizard named "Iggy-Uana."
5. What is your most precious memory?
Oh, my, that's a hard one. I think it was probably the day I left the US for my first "tour of duty" as a missionary in Venezuela. I was only 20 years old, and my mother's biggest argument to try to convince me not to go was that I wasn't even old enough to vote!
6. What is your most embarrassing memory?
You think I'm going to tell? If it was that bad the first time, you'll just have to keep on guessing! I've had many of them.
7. If you weren't a writer, what would you be doing with your life?
Either a missionary (which I have been and still am, in addition to being a writer) or a nurse.
8. In two paragraphs or less write your obituary.
She loved life; she loved people; she loved to serve; she loved to entertain. While she helped thousands of people during her life, the thing that made her the happiest was when she could make someone laugh, often amid their pain.
Janet Elaine Smith the writer:
9. Can you describe the time you realized you were indeed a "real" writer?
I had had many magazine articles published, but I don't think it really sank in until I was in a local bookstore and I saw somebody buying one of my books from the shelf--and I didn't even know them! I felt like I had truly arrived!
10. What is going on with your writing these days?
Not as much as I'd like there to be. I am the Marketing Director for Star Publish, the Program Director for Passionate Internet Voices Radio, write for many magazines, and all of these things take time. My husband and I also run a charitable organization, Mission Socorro (see http://missionsocorro.tripod.com/ ) so we spend several hours every day helping less fortunate and troubled people. My dream anymore is to have three whole days with no interruptions when I could write on my books. That's my fun. I am working on Tuesday Nolan, though, the second book in my Women of the Week series. I'd like to have it out for Valentine's Day.
11. What are your future goals for your writing?
To make people feel good and be able to laugh at life. To complete 4 new books for 2008. Not much, right?
12. Can you describe a typical writing day for you?
Typical? That's like asking me to describe "normal." I wouldn't know normal if it walked up and slapped me in the face! I do try to do some writing every day, but as I mentioned earlier, often that has to take the form of magazine articles. I don't understand why editors keeps wanting more articles for the next issue when I just finished the ones for the last issue! I do work best under pressure, though, I think.
13. Why do you write?
I can't NOT write. I have all of these crazy people running around inside my head, just screaming to get out. I have no choice but to help them tell their tales--spin their yarns. Besides, writing is my release route, my way of escape. After dealing with people with problems all day long, I can create a world where everything ends up with a happily-ever-after scenario. I'm trying to figure out how to make real life do that too.
14. What writer most inspires you? Why?
Many of them. Mary Higgins Clark has been a great inspiration to me, and has taken the time to offer personal encouragement, even before I was published. Also, John Grisham. If I ever doubted that my life was interesting enough to write about, all I would have to do would be to read his books. He has chronicled my life. (See the "John Grisham and Me" page at http://www.janetelainesmith.com/ )
15. How do you define your writing?
I don't. I write in many different genres, sometimes even within one book. That is why POD publishing has been such a blessing to me. It lets me do what I want to do and tell the stories I want to tell the way I want to do them. I think too many people who strive to get published by the big publishers end up destroying their creativity by trying to make things fit in a neat little package. That doesn't work for me.
16. In one sentence-what do you want people to say about your writing in fifty years?
I remember Janet Elaine Smith's books--and I laugh!
Janet Elaine Smith the details:
17. Can you tell us where to find more information on you? Website? Blog?
http://www.janetelainesmith.com/ is my main website. The one that caters only to my books is at http://janetesmithstarbooks.tripod.com/ . I have several others, too, but you'll just have to hunt for them There are links on my main website to all of them. Are you up to a treasure hunt for the day?
I have a blog at http://www.janetelainesmith.blogspot.com/ . Sometimes I even remember to blog on it!
18. Is there a place where readers can reach you?
firstname.lastname@example.org or a Contact place on any of my websites.
19. Can you list all your book titles so people can look for them?
Are you serious? OK, here goes.
Par for the Course
In St. Patrick's Custody
Recipe for Murder
Old Habits Die Hard
Bank Roll: A Max Stryker Mystery
House Call to the Past
My Dear Phebe
And We'll Call Her General Leigh
A Christmas Dream
A Lumberjack Christmas...Revisited
PromoPaks: Nearly Free Marketing Tips for Authors
Flood of the Millennium: The Real Heroes, the People
20. For new readers-what can they expect when they read your book(s)?
To have fun, to realize that true love can conquer all, and there is always a happy ending!
21. Take as much space as necessary to speak to our readers-what would you like them to know about you and your writing?
I write to have fun, both in what I write and what I read. I love it when I go back to one of my older books and I have forgotten certain things in it. When I laugh and when I cry as I read one of my books, I feel like it has worked.
If you are a writer, as well as a reader, the most important thing I can tell you is to never give up. Believe in yourself and what you write, and eventually somebody else will too!