If you’re ever wondered how you can spend more time writing, read on. Faith Bicknell Brown knows how it’s done. She writes erotica, paranormal romances, was once the editor for Wild Child Publishing and runs a writer’s group on Yahoo called Avoid Writer’s Hell Chatters. www.faithbicknellbrown.com
Susan Palmquist (SP)-You’re a prolific writer also a wife, mother…grandmother. How do you find time to write so much and how long does it take you to write a book from initial idea to finished product?
Faith Bicknell-Brown (FBB)-My normal writing time is early morning to about noon. I often wake up at 4 or 5 AM and can’t go back to sleep so I’ll tiptoe up to my office and snuggle into the writing chair or a mattress I have made up with big pillows in one corner (a place my youngest loves to play cars if he can sneak in with all his Hotwheels, lol) and work on my laptop. Sometimes I’ll write for a couple hours in the afternoon on the side porch when it’s warm, but those days are nearly at an end with cooler weather here.
As for how long it takes me to write something to the end, that depends on how many times I’m interrupted during writing sessions. If I have good writing time, I can finish a novella in a couple weeks, and I’ve been known to write a full 80K novel in a month.
SP-You have an agent. Do you think all writers eventually need one? What made you decide to work with one?
FBB-It depends on what the writer wants for his career. Is he content writing strictly for e-publishers? If so then an agent isn’t necessary. However, if he wants to break into NY print publishers, then an agent is essential since 99% of those particular publishers only consider agented material.
I’ve had two literary agents. The first one and I didn’t click. An agent must share the same vision for the writer’s work. If not, the relationship is doomed, and in my case, I nearly gave up writing altogether. About a year or so later, I found my current agent. I’d sent him a query about two different novels and mentioned I had a print copy of the one if he wanted to read it but also informed him the publisher had gone out of business. A week later he called and offered to represent me and he’d only read half the book! NY publishing is a dog-eat-dog world and my agent has been amazing leading me through it and teaching me about it.
SP-What made you decide to write under so many pen names? Do you think it’s essential for writers to use different names for each genre they work in?
FBB-For me, each pen name has its own personality, but I’m only open about one. I write some pretty intense material and there are those who know me in person who are very opinionated about love and sex. I don’t need that sort of headache, lol. But is it essential for writers to use a pen name for each genre they write? No, it’s not necessary. It’s solely up to the writer.
SP-Seems you want to focus on paranormals now, any particular reason why?
FBB-I’ve always had a fascination with the paranormal and supernatural, so when my agent suggested that I focus on paranormal romances until my print name is established, I felt it was a good idea. I still write other genres, however.
SP-Zinnia Hope was once a pen you used but you retired it. Did it morph into another pen name or did she retire entirely?
FBB-Zinnia was born when I was going through a really nasty divorce and my soon-to-be ex was trying to use my erotic romance writing against me. That problem bled into the Internet where I would blog or post and then my kids would find my posts printed out and put in a file at the old house (aren’t exes wonderful? Not! LOL!), so I took Zinnia’s name and used it to navigate the Web. Later, after the divorce was final and the ex was a part of my past for good, I retired the name and came out of the cyber closet about it. Zinnia is officially gone and since that name is a part of my past that I never want to relive again, the name will never ever be resurrected.
SP-You’re a former editor with Wild Child Publishing, any tips for writers when they submit a manuscript?
FBB-Polish! Polish! Polish! Wild Child is very thorough in edits and demands quality material that is as squeaky clean as possible.
SP-Tell us about Avoid Writer’s Hell and how and why you started it? How can it help writers and how can they sign up?
FBB-I have a series of writer’s handbooks that focus on the main things aspiring writers ask. They’re written with zany humor and put in laymen’s terms, so I decided to launch a group where mini lessons were posted, and where writers, editors, and publishers could schmooze and chill without worrying about being flamed, etc. One thing I insist upon at AWH is respect and consideration for one another.
Although I don’t post lessons nor articles as often now, I do try to help anyone who comes to the group with questions. I’ve gone on a hiatus for a few weeks due to writing deadlines and having to keep up with a couple contracted series that I have going, but there are several moderators at AWH and there are also a handful of people who have been in the business nearly as long as I have who have some good insight; they pop into the group to help out too. Oh, and the group morphed into Avoid Writers Hell Chatters. Anyone can join pending approval http://groups.yahoo.com/group/avoidwritershellchatters
SP-You have lots of new releases; would you like to tell us about them and the ideas behind them?
FBB-My Molly Diamond titles so far are short erotica. They’re screaming hot, but they’re more titillation stories and a base in which to resurrect my old men’s fiction magazine pen name. Readers can visit http://www.mollydiamond.com/ to find out more. Molly also has a full erotic sci-fi novel coming out in March 2011 and then the print version is due sometime around August 2011.
As for F.L. Bicknell titles, I have three new ones that released within a couple months of one another. Those are Feathers of Silver, which is contemporary romance that has an urban fantasy flavor, and then there’s The Darkness of Sable (this one is in print), which was handled by my agent. “SABLE” is erotic paranormal IR romance. It’s bursting with sexual tension, flaming-hot scenes, the paranormal, gods, goddesses, vamps, faeries, and sooooo much more. In a nutshell, Sable has a unique magical gift, and Thomas is a Parnorm Marshall who must protect her as dark magic attempts to woo her to its side, and if she won’t be drawn to them, then it will kill her.
Finally, The Most Intimate Wish, a contemporary erotic fantasy romance, came out in mid-October. Dinah wants a husband, a family and a nice home. However, she’s convinced her live-in lover is cheating on her. A creature born of angel’s tears shows Dinah that she needs to just believe.