Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Interview - Angel Brown Kemph

I'm excited to present the first victim, *coughs* guest interview of 2012. Please welcome, Angel Brown Kemph. 

Please tell us about yourself?
I am a stay a home mom. My daughter who is 9 lives with me and my husband. I am an author when there's time outside of the husband and daughter. I go to college online at IADT Tampa currently for my Associates Degree in Web Design and Development. I am a newly hired cover artist and editor for Keith Publications. Although new at both, I'm trying to do the best I can. Learning is the hard part.

Tell us your latest news?
My latest news? Where do I begin? Lol Well, after 4 short stories being self published, I've decided to take my novellas back to the publishers. One of which is newly written called Harmony's Prophesy. It's about the apocalypse and two receptors that have dreams of what's going to happen before it happens. I've done the cover art for it myself.

When and why did you begin writing?
I started writing when I was a teenager, but couldn't concentrate back then, got frustrated and threw it in the garbage, lol. But when I first started back was about 10 years ago. I was published through a publisher who had the worst reputation in the business. But found my way with a better one through Sugar and Spice Press. One of my longest time friends, Stacey Thompson Geer started a publishing company and helped to put me on the map so to speak. The woman had way more faith in me than I've ever had in myself. I had other friends help me along the way in my journey as an author. Faith Bicknell Brown, Trinity Blacio, Marci Baun. Although I can say Marci was more ready to string me up than anything. I wasn’t published through her, but I started out as an acquisitions editor (submissions) for her. I just took on way too much when I tried being an editor. That's a tough job and I'll leave it at that.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I considered it so when I got my first book published. I'll admit, I had no idea what I was up against in the publishing world. Passive tense, telling, etc. It can be and is harder on the Indie author than with a publisher.

How can we find you?

Seems like you're a very busy lady. You ready for round 2? Here we go.

Tell me a little about your book.
Well, there's several to talk about, lol. Desires and Wanting are trucking short stories. Falling In, I have to say is my favorite out of all my short stories. It's about a woman who falls in love with her best friend. He's having trouble finding the right woman. The leading lady is also new at discovering her path of faith, but that isn't the main part of the storyline. Her professing her love and trying to show the lead man how much she loves him is the main.

It's very clean on the sex, sorry ladies!. Falling In was an experiment around the sexual thing. I wanted something to focus on the people and how to build a relationship, not about getting each other in the sack.

The Curse is my first werewolf tale. It does have a sequel coming at some point. The muse has refused to co-operate on that, lol. My latest going to a publisher is Harmony's Prophesy. It is about the end of the world. Only for the world itself there is no Happily Ever After. But the receptors do get together and the female does get pregnant. So, for the couple it is HEA, but not for the world.

What gave you the idea for this particular story?
For Desires and Wanting, again experiments based around the trucking industry. I used to be an over the road truck driver. I wanted to see what kind of stories could be written around them. Of course I found out that the characters in those two didn't lack for imagination or experimenting. Falling In was actually based around when my husband and I become friends, then lovers. Although the story is altered for imagination purposes, the whole theme of the relationship and him inspired me.

The Curse was a Christmas themed book through the publisher I was with at the time and thought it would be cool to try at least one werewolf/shifter kind of book. I do prefer vampires most of all, lol, but that's a whole new topic, lol.

Are you a full-time writer or part-time, and how do you organize your writing time?
I am a full time author when I have time to write. I am an editor and cover artist too. I try to balance my time. The rest of the time I'm a mom and wife.

What is the toughest part about being a writer and how do you get past it?
The toughest part for me? Well, to be totally honest here, I have to say that in being an editor, my ability to apply the knowledge in my own writing is a big problem. Just because you know a few of the rules, doesn't always mean that you apply them in full when you write. Smacking your hands at every typo, can be a bit crazy at times or trying to make sure you do incorporate what you're really supposed to have. Sometimes I feel like I have to ask a certain friend to grab her virtual newspaper and whack me one good time.

The editing process in general after you've written the book(s), is tedious and hard work. You have to draw from knowledge you have.

Any tips for new writers hoping to write in the genre of your book?
I can't stress enough to edit, edit, and more edit. Get with critique groups. Download the different style manuals available to you. Put the work away after each edit for a few days and come back to it. Ask questions to critique partners or even editors that will take the time to answer you honestly. Search on the internet for information on writing styles, comma usage, colon and semi colon usage. Anything that will improve your manuscript before it is submitted will do wonders for your relationship with your new editor once it has been accepted and contracted. One thing to add in here, when you are ready for the edits on your work read through it out loud. Read it to a friend, family member, your husband/wife, anyone that will listen to you. You'd be amazed at how well you'll catch mistakes when reading it outloud.

Editors don't mind answering questions. But, they don't have time to stop, do the searching for you and hold your hand. It takes way too much time away from work they could be doing on your manuscript or another author's they are working with. Editors can be your friends, good friends at that. The relationship you develop with your publisher or editor can hurt you or help you. I could go on all day about the editor/author relationships, but there's not enough room here, lol. If you're going to self publish. My main advice is to make sure you have the guts to really put yourself out there. Without the back up of a publisher, or even the right publisher, you're vulnerable to no exposure. You have to do what it takes to give the right exposure to your book. Which means heavier and more professional editing services. If you think your work is good enough without editing at all, you're lucky you're that good, or you're setting yourself up for some major heartbreak. It only takes one person talking to someone else about how bad your book was to kill you in this business.

What book are you reading now? What do you like, or not, about it?
I'm currently reading Ruby, The White King, and Marilyn Monroe by F.L. Bicknell.

So far I like it. I like the visions and how real it is to the character. This is my first Urban Fantasy so I haven't found anything bad about it. I know the author and she's a good story teller too.

What are your current projects?
Current projects are cover art for my books, editing through them again, and starting the editing process of Harmony's Prophesy. I'm looking to add in my editor/critique partner as my co-writer so we can lengthen the word count. I know she'll find places that I could have added more information or left some out.

If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Maybe added Lori in sooner as a co-writer, lol.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Keeping my research, if there was any, as factual as possible so it makes the scene I'm working on more likely to happen.

Do you ever have problems with writers block? If so how do you get through it?
I know some people who say writer's block doesn't exist. And they'll tell you until they're blue in the face that they're right. Pish Tosh! Reality has a way of seeping in and taking dominance over our muses. Whether we like it or not, whether we want it happening or not, it doesn't matter. There's always going to be something that is going to happen to interrupt your train of thought. Work, school, etc. If you have to, save your work, close it out and leave it alone for awhile. Try searching through topics on the internet, or even at the library that has to do with what you're writing about. Give it a little while to sink in by doing other things. The muse does have a tendency to wander and does get worn out. Writer's Block does exist. You never want to force the story because honestly, if you force your story, it's going to come across forced to your readers and give off the wrong impression.

What do you do when you’re not writing/editing or thinking about writing/editing?
Okay, bad question to pick being an editor, lol. When am I not writing or editing or even thinking about editing? I like to talk to people on Facebook. I love playing the games on FB. I love to read. Now being an editor has a downfall, as much as I love to read, my eye has gotten where I can't enjoy much anymore without seeing things that got missed, lol. You can be the best in the world and still miss things, lol. I love to watch movies, spend time with my husband and my daughter. It makes me feel good when she's got writing questions since she's learning how to write creatively. She's 9, and man they teach these kids to write with passive voice, telling and all the things creative writing in fiction tells you to leave out. I do attend college, so there's schoolwork to do. As of right now and this interview, I'm currently in College Algebra. We can say YUCK, lol.

What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Research, research, and heaven only knows more research. Hours and hours of research, lol.

Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
Actually, I learned more about the world's geographic stability that I didn't know.

Do you have any advice for other writers?
Get, if you don't have it a critique partner. Read out loud to whoever will listen. Edit until you're sick of your own manuscript, put it away and then edit some more; especially if you plan on self publishing. Your manuscript can never be too clean. One thing to remember, any editor out there, is never there to be your friend. As a matter of fact, it's their job to critic your manuscript and find everything in the world wrong with it. You have to be tough, take yourself outside of the box. Think outside of the box. Critique yourself like you're a total stranger not there to be a fan. The harder you can be on yourself, really it is the better. I've learned this the hard way. I've had my feelings hurt more times since I started writing than I've had in my entire life. Take rejections with a grain of salt. Take bad reviews as learning lessons. Never burn your bridges. Reviewers are there to let readers know what they liked and didn't like. They're there to give their opinions of your work. That's all they do, give opinions. Not many reviewers are going to just give you a good review, you have to earn it. You earn it by learning.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
THANK YOU!!! Those are the two most important words in my vocabulary to you. Without you, I would be nothing more than a woman with a lot of imagination saved on my hard drive. I can never fully thank you enough or be able to tell you how much I appreciate you. You're all my heart and soul and give me the inspiration I need to keep writing. Don't be afraid to friend me on FB or like me on my author's page. I do welcome your comments, good or bad. I want to get to know you. I welcome ideas of things you'd like to see a story about. I can't always promise that I'll be able to give you stories like you want, but I can say that I will try. Hugs to you all!

Angel, thanks for being a good sport and tolerating the indie hot chair. Please be sure to come back and let us know about more releases.


Post a Comment