Monday, September 10, 2012

Author Q&A: Veronica Blade

Veronica Blade, author of the YA romance From Fame to Shame (you can find my review here), very kindly allowed me to ask her some questions about her writing and herself. From Fame to Shame is a short and sweet romance with just the right amount of steaminess. She also writes paranormal romances which are, in her words, "always light on the paranormal, heavy on the romance."

{ About From Fame to Shame... }

How did the idea for From Fame to Shame come to you?
I haven’t met a writer yet who can explain where they get their ideas. In the real world, problems pop up and we have to solve them. In fiction, the author is creating the problems on purpose and then solving them. But these conflicts and solutions don’t just come to me in a dream. I work for them. Yeah, some ideas do come easily, but it’s because I’ve rolled up my sleeves and dived in. I can get pretty obsessive when I’m doing a first draft. I’ll think about it ALL the time until I have everything ironed out.

I usually begin with the main elements, then I get busy with the little details and work out all the story bugs. In From Fame to Shame, I started with twins, then upped the stakes by throwing shy, good-girl Maddie in the public eye — Hollywood. She’s the kind of girl who can’t go against her own morals, so of course, I tossed some delicious fruit her way — the forbidden kind — in the form of Dallas, the hot movie star who’s already dated Maddie’s sister. It’s all about creating vivid characters who are forced out of their comfort zone, then you add in more conflict.

If you had a twin ( you have a twin?), would you switch places with her?
I don’t have a twin. But, hell yeah, I’d switch places in a heartbeat.

Between Dallas and Luke, who is your favorite hottie?
Dallas all the way!

How long did it take you to finish From Fame to Shame, from idea to finished work?
It’s been a while since I finished From Fame to Shame, but I think the first draft took me about a week (it’s short). That’s the fun part. Then the real work, the revisions, took six to eight weeks.

Can you describe your writing process?
I’m a spewer. I vomit out the first draft at record speed just to get the story down, so by the time I reach The End, it’s usually unreadable. Then I’ll go back through it a couple times to clean up the mess and fill in the plot holes before sending it to my sister-in-law Sara to weed out the worst junk. Once I’ve taken out the trash, I’ll pass it by another reader before sending it to a writer buddy. I keep sending it out and revising until the story comes back clean. Just when I’m sick to death of the damn thing, my excitement is renewed because I see the gem it’s become.

Where do you find you do the best work?
I like to be comfortable, which is semi-reclined in bed.

Do you have any words of advice for hopeful future authors?
Yes. It’s easy to type The End and think you’ve got a masterpiece. Trust me, your first draft (or even second) probably isn’t that great… yet. But it can be. We don’t see our own mistakes, but others do. Surround yourself with people who know the craft of writing and then you should pay attention to their feedback. That said, it takes a village to write a book, but it’s your book, so don’t try to please everyone or you might end up losing your story in the process. It’s a slippery slope. Most of all, remember that if writing a fantastic book were that easy, everyone would be best-selling authors. It’s hard work, but it’s an amazing ride!

Any projects in the works you’d like to share?
I’m working on revisions for My Wolf’s Bane, book one in the Shapes of Autumn series, releasing in January 2013. Here’s the short blurb:
Caught in a centuries old battle between her kind and werewolves, a teenage shifter risks revealing herself when she chooses to fight for the boy she loves — her only ally but natural enemy, a werewolf.

{ About everything else... }

Do you prefer coffee or tea?
Both! I do decaf in the morning, then lemonade iced tea later in the day. If I’m feeling naughty, it’s Dr. Pepper.

What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?
Chocolate. Always chocolate.

If you could travel through time, what time period would you choose to go to?
I’d take my chances in the future, rather than revisit the past.

What is the one place in the world you are dying to visit?
Hawaii, because the weather is always perfect. But I haven’t been there yet, because those giant, flying roaches scare me. I prefer spiders and snakes!

What is your favorite quote?
Right now, this one by Dr. Seuss is a fave: “Unless someone like you cares a whole lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”

All of us are good at complaining about what’s happening around the world. But how many of us are actually doing something about it? It’s not someone else’s job to fix things. It’s everyone’s job.

Thank you, Veronica! :)
That was fun! Thanks so much for having me, Jillian!

Learn more about Veronica Blade and her books at,
and follow her on Goodreads, Twitter, and Facebook!

Find From Fame to Shame on Goodreads and Amazon!