Sassy writer of sexy and funny fiction, Vicki Batman talks to us about her writing and lets us read an excerpt from her newest novel, Store Wars.
Did you always want to be a writer? When I read Dick Francis mysteries over twenty years ago, I finally confessed to Handsome how I wished I could write like him.
What part of writing do you find the most fun? the most difficult? I love letting the imagination soar. The most difficult part is marketing.
How much of your personal life do you incorporate in your writing? My heroine usually loves handbags and drives Jeeps. LOL. And sometimes, I’ve created stories from real life incidents.
Tell us a little about what you’re working on right now. I’m working on an unnamed holiday story. I really need to get it finished and move on to something else.
Is there anything surprising you’ve learned about the publishing industry that you’d like to share with us? Not all writers know everything.
There are lots of rules out there, like “show, don’t tell” and “don’t use adverbs”. Are there any rules that you break and why? I’ve been known to use an adverb or two, probably because I couldn’t find anything better to use.
What’s the most rewarding aspect about writing? A sale and a compliment from someone whose writing I respect.
What is the best piece of writing advice you’ve learned so far? Persevere. Which holds true to most things in life.
Do you feel you chase the market or do you write from the heart, knowing you’re writing the best you can and someone will eventually publish your work? I do not chase the market. I write the story that comes to me.
How would you describe your writing style and genre? I would describe my writing like my tagline: sassy writer of sexy and funny fiction. Mostly, I write contemporary romance. I’ve dabbled in a romantic mystery (not sold) and sold an erotic novella.
I love character-driven novels myself. Can you tell me where you got the ideas for some of your characters and describe a few of them? Ideas are found in a lot of places. One poignant incident came from a trip with Handsome and I’d forgotten my little black dress. I turned that into a story and it is out on submission right now!
Do you create challenges for your characters to overcome and why? Characters have to have challenges to overcome or there would be no story.
What challenges you personally in your writing? Marketing! Marketing! Sigh. Marketing!
Do you work on paper or a computer? At home or in an office? What time of day do you write and why? How much do you write a day? I write on my desktop every day in an office. I begin about ten in the morning and promote some; then move on to writing.
The inevitable: are you a plotter or a pantser? My friend invented Plot+ster= Plotster. We know where a story begins, have stuff in the middle to get them in trouble, have a black moment which drives the couple apart, then a happily ever after.
Tell us three quirky facts about yourself that we wouldn’t normally find out. Oh dear, the real confessions. I was once Ms. Oak Lawn Moped (wrote a story about that). Asked seven guys to a dance and was turned down seven times. And was in a music video.
Do you have any favorite websites and/or blogs that you avidly follow? I avidly follow eBay and ETSY to look for vintage handbags. And the Plotting Princesses.
Who is your favorite author in the whole world and why. My fav was Dick Francis. He could put together a fantastic mystery around the horse racing business in England.
And, lastly, who has impacted your writing the most? I’m not sure. I have a friend who turned me on to short stories and have sold twenty-one in the last three years. Or the woman who critiqued me with “Why are you writing?” After two days of moping, I decided no one would determine my future. And Susan who told me to keep on writing.
Here’s Vicki’s Bio:
Like some of her characters, Vicki has worked a wide variety of jobs including lifeguard, ride attendant at an amusement park; a hardware store, department store, book store, antique store clerk; administrative assistant in an international real estate firm; and a general “do anything gal” at a financial services firm. The list is…endless.
Born in Dallas, a graduate of Texas Tech, she is married to Handsome, has two big boys, an attention-demanding cat, and two adorable poopies.
She has completed three manuscripts, written essays, and sold many short stories. She is a member of RWA, and the DARA, Elements, and RWA-WF chapters. In 2004, she joined DARA and has served in many capacities, including 2009 President. DARA awarded her the Robin Teer Memorial Service Award in 2010.
Most days begin with her hands set to the keyboard and thinking “What if??”
EXCERPT FROM STORE WARS
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Date: Sun, 26 Aug 20