Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Interview with Missy Johnson


Can you give us a brief overview of your latest book? Is it part of a series?
Beautiful Rose follows the story of two broken people trying to find their place in the world. Rose has been through a lot in her short life, never feeling like she quite belonged anywhere. Jack has been hurt, and struggles to open himself up to love again.

Beautiful Rose can be read as a standalone, but the prequel, Seduce, should be read first to get the most out of the story.

Do you have a favorite character?
Jack Falcon. I’ve seen him develop so much through the prequel and into this book, that I can’t help but want the best for him. He went through so much in Seduce that regardless of whether you liked him as a character or not, you couldn’t help but want a happy ending for him.

Have you ever had a minor character evolve into a major one? Did that change the direction of the novel at all?
I’ve had characters stand out so much that they pretty much demand I write their own story. The next book in this series will be the story of Alex, Jack’s brother.

Did you try the traditional route to publishing, i.e. querying agents/publishers?
I did query my first novel and got two offers from small publishers, but I decided to try self publishing.

Are you currently under a traditional publishing contract for future books or do you have manuscripts that you will self-publish? Are you doing both?
Self publishing. I am open to traditional publishing, but only if I feel it will further my audience.

What factors influenced your decision to self-publish your book(s)?
Much of it had to do with me being impatient and just wanting to get my work out there. I didn’t care if I sold 10 or 100 books, if just one person enjoyed my work, then for me that was a success. Now, I’m so glad I did it.

If you used a graphic designer/publisher’s designer, how involved were you during the creative process for your cover?
For all my books I was very involved in the cover production. I would scroll through pic after pic, looking for the perfect one to represent my book. I’m very particular about my covers because that is the first thing the reader will see. I’ve worked with the same cover designer for all my books, and I just love her to bits!

Do you belong to a critique group? Have they helped improve your writing?
I belong to a few author groups, and having them to bounce ideas off is fantastic. Sometimes you can’t see what’s missing until someone else points it out to you. Having the support of other writers has been a huge part of my journey.

What is your writing process? Do you listen to music or do you like silence?
I prefer silence, or something boring on the TV, like the cricket. Anything distracting will stop me from getting completely into my story. It’s the same for me with reading.

Do you outline your story or just go where your muse takes you?
I write my synopsis, pick my cover and then I’m good to go J I don’t plot, I like the characters to drive the story, and as long as they stick to my synopsis, I’m happy.

Did you hire an editor to review your manuscript before publishing?
Yes. I use an editor and a proofreader. Being an Aussie, my proofreader is American so she can catch the majority of my aussie slang, haha

Besides Amazon, are there any other sites where your books are for sale?
Kobo and Barnes & Noble. I also sell signed paperbacks through myself.

What’s next for you?
Up next for me is Always You, a student/teacher romance that will be out at the end of December.