Today I’m excited to present my first industry professional interview. Erin R. Howard is a Developmental Editor, Fantasy/Speculative Author and has earned a Bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing/English from Southern New Hampshire University.
When she’s not writing, Erin enjoys spending time with her family, being a youth leader, and teaching crochet and cake decorating classes. Erin resides in Western Kentucky with her husband, three children, and a cantankerous tabby cat named Jack-Jack.
Erin is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and the KenTen Writers Group.
Thanks Erin, for agreeing to this interview.
Serious interview questions:
- I’ve started reading The Seer and it’s great. For those who haven’t yet purchased their copy, tell us a little about your book? Thank you, Diane! I love characters that give you a reason to root for them. I like characters that are messy, (because life IS MESSY) have problems, and obstacles. I love characters that are real. The Seer is a story that started with a series of questions. What if I wrote it from a villain’s POV? However, instead of strictly a villain, what if he’s got this desire to change but doesn’t know how? What if he couldn’t fully be redeemed? I mean, he is a demon after all. From these questions, I jumped straight into this story about two brothers: one who was a demon, and one that was an angel, and how they were fighting over this teenage girl who could see into the spiritual realm.
- I know The Seer is the first in your series, The Kalila Chronicles. How many books do you plan to write for the series? As of now, I would love to see three books and a prequel for the series. I would also like for my future series to have ties to The Kalila Chronicles, even if they don’t carry the same characters throughout.
- Your publisher is Mantle Rock and I understand you have another job with them. Can you tell us about it? I am the Developmental Editor (or content editor) for MRP. After a book proposal goes through our selection committee and if it is accepted, the manuscript will come to me. I look at the big picture of the book and then narrow in on the structure of that book. I look at the plot, themes, characterization, POV/voice, pacing/flow, dialogue, landscapes, and style. Not only do I look at the manuscript through an editor’s eyes, but I also get to look at it through a reader’s eyes. No matter what stage you are in your writing career, everyone needs and can benefit from developmental editing.
- If someone asked your number one piece of advice about how to write a book, what answer would you give them? Learn the writing craft. Writing is just like any other profession. You have to learn and you have to practice. Study all the things that I mentioned in question three and how they are all woven together. Don’t forget the power of emotion. Emotionally connecting with readers is so important. If they have an emotional connection to the characters, they will keep reading. You can’t expect them to take a journey that you’ve never been on first.
Wacky interview questions:
One of the easiest ways to get insight is to ask some less serious questions during an interview. So let’s find out a little bit more about you, Erin:
- Clowns. Funny or freaky? Definitely freaky.
- If you had a debut music CD what would be its title? Be Still; Ex. 4:14 has been our theme throughout my son’s Leukemia diagnoses.
- What advice from your parents has helped you the most? That family is everything. They are your lifelines and continuous fountain of love and support. To always go after my dreams.
- Cake or pie? (Be specific. Make our mouths water.) Pie. Fresh out of the oven, melt in your mouth flaky crust, and warm sugary cinnamon filling. Homemade apple pie is the best!
- If you won a lottery what would be the first thing you bought and why? I would build my dream house with enough room for family, friends, and a huge craft/library/writing room.
- If you were stranded on a desert island what person outside of your family would you want with you and why? I would want someone like Cody Lundin (Dual Survivor) who is trained to survive in situations like this and be able to keep me alive and get me home.
Thanks again, Erin. It’s been fun to feature you and your debut novel for my first interview.
Here are ways to connect with Erin:
Next month my interview will be with the great and wise Randy Ingermanson. Until then remember you are Born 2 Be More.