When not pecking away at the keyboard, Meredith loves spending time with her husband and daughter exploring the English country side and attempting to cook. While she may not be very good at it, that doesn't stop her from trying.
Recently I got to read A. Meredith Walters' book Find You In The Dark. I really liked it and I knew I couldn't wait to interview her! I love getting to know new authors!
Little did I know that not only did Ms. Walters previously worked in the same field as me, but she shares my passion for all things paranormal, lives in England (my mom was born there and I can't wait for the chance to visit some day) AND has my dream job of being a full time writer. I think I've decided we need to be friends. ;)
Without further ado, please welcome A. Meredith Walters to A Dash of YA!
1) What inspired you to write Find You In The Dark?
I spent the last ten years as a counselor for children and teens with emotional and mental health issues. Every day I saw their struggles and it was difficult to see. I came up with the idea after a particularly great day with one of my clients. This was a child who at one time was headed for an institution, their issues were so severe. But after years of therapy and support, they are now an amazing, functional individual. I realized that hope was always there, even for people who others think don't have a chance. I wanted to write about a couple, trying to find that hope, even when it all seems...well, hopeless.
2) When will the sequel be released and are there plans for more books about Maggie and Clay?
I plan to release the sequel, Light in the Shadows in February or March. I also plan to release a novella, entitled Cloud Walking, about Rachel and Daniel in January. This will be a sort of companion piece and takes place during the events of Find You in the Dark. I plan to wrap up Clay and Maggie's story in Light in the Shadows. I want to conclude things realistically but make people happy.
Well, finding an agent who will take the time to look at your work is difficult. After numerous rejection letters I was feeling pretty low. But then the Kindle happened. And I saw how many people were doing the whole "indie" thing. And I'm so glad that's how it worked out. It's wonderful to have total control over your work like that. Yeah, you have to do everything yourself, but I feel a sense of accomplishment that can only come from that control over it all. And it's worked out really well for me so far.
4) What genre is your favorite to read?
Paranormal romance definitely. I grew up devouring L.J. Smith's The Vampire Diaries and The Secret Circle. I LOVE authors like Kelley Armstrong and Maggie Stiefvater. Romance with that dash of darkness is my absolute favorite.
5) Do you have a favorite author?
Hmm, well I have a bunch actually. I have a big love affair with Indie writers like Jessica Sorenson, Abbi Glines and Jamie McGuire. But I also love authors like Anne Rice, Kim Harrison, Charlaine Harris.
6) What is your favorite book?
My favorite book ever is Wuthering Heights. I read it hundreds of times when I was a teenager. There's something about that Heathcliff that really gets to me.
7) When is your next book due to release and can you tell us a little about it?
My next book comes out this month actually, December 21st. It's called Bad Rep and is a New Adult Contemporary Romance. It's about a college aged girl who meets this hot drum player and there's this instant connection...until she finds out he's dating one of her sorority sisters. There's a lot of angst as she struggles to resist the temptation and the fall out when that doesn't go so well. It's a romance but also a story about accepting yourself and learning to do what you want and not to worry about what other people think about you. It's definitely a story about a girl trying to find herself.
8) Do you outline before you write or do you just let the story develop as you write?
A little bit of both. With Find You in the Dark, I just wrote it. There wasn't an outline. But with the sequel, I had things I definitely wanted to cover, so I've outlined it. I think it really depends on where my mind is at as to whether I outline or not.
9) How many hours a day do you spend writing?
That changes from day to day. I'm a feast or famine sort of writer. When I'm in the zone, I will write ten hours a day. But then I can go days without writing anything.
10) Do you have an office or do you write wherever you can?
I have a designated office in my house. When we moved to England and I gave up counseling to become a full time writer, that was one of my necessities. A place to write, where I can separate "home" from "working." I need to be able to close the door and get away from it all.
And just for fun:
Apples or Pears? Apples all the wayLipgloss or Chapstick? Chapstick
Sunset or Sunrise? Sunset
Early bird or Night owl? Night owl