Friday, April 15, 2016

Interview with Faleena Hopkins, YOU DON'T KNOW ME

Can you give us a brief overview of your latest book? Is it part of a series?
Rue is a sweetheart with a temper. Don’t’ mess with her. She discovers her mother was a nanny to one of the wealthiest men in LA and he is her real father. She learns this after his passing, and when she turns 21 inherits 55 million dollars, and two brothers who aren’t happy to meet her. She’s got the world watching her to see what she’ll do since those brothers also happen to be very famous for being…hot and rich. That’s all. They’re both searching for meaning, and in her they may have found it.

Do you have a favorite character?
Jack is definitely my favorite character. He’s a spoiled jerk who is just searching for the love of a father who is no longer there to give him it. And here’s this illegitimate daughter – his sister he never knew about – and he can take out all his childhood anger on her. And boy does he!

Have you ever had a minor character evolve into a major one? Did that change the direction of the novel at all?
I’ve just completed Werewolves of Chicago: Howard. Just the name says he was never meant to be a main character, but there this wolf was in Curragh’s book (book one) acting all brave and trying to prove himself. Well, he proved himself into his own book! Never saw that coming – I don’t plan plot lines, they appear as I write.

Did you try the traditional route to publishing, i.e. querying agents/publishers?
Never. Not once. I have a problem with authority and asking permission.

What factors influenced your decision to self-publish your book(s)?
Oddly, I heard Hannah, Lena Dunham’s character on Girls talk about writing an eBook and I’d never heard of them. I was like, what is that? So I checked it out. I had an almost finished novel, and I researched successful self-pub authors, and was sold within two hours.

If you used a graphic designer/publisher’s designer, how involved were you during the creative process for your cover?
I design all my cover. I was a professional photographer for a decade and know Photoshop like the back of my hand, so I studied what I liked and then created covers with the images I licensed from And when a cover isn’t doing its job, I can change it, and have many times.

Do you belong to a critique group? Have they helped improve your writing?
My critique group is my fans. I have a read and review pack and they tell me when something didn’t sound like me. I remember one told me the epilogue was lacking. I re-read it and re-wrote it and was SO HAPPY she told me that because it was the springboard for a major improvement. She’s my harshest critic. Thank God.

What is your writing process? Do you listen to music or do you like silence?
Depends. Right now there is Eddie Vedder singing the Into The Wild Soundtrack in the background. Sometimes I write at coffee shops with tons of noise. But editing I always in silence. 

Do you outline your story or just go where your muse takes you?
The Muse is my only master. ;) My A.D.D. would never let me outline without slitting my wrists before I got halfway done.

What have you’ve learned during your self-publishing journey?
To learn only from the best. There’s a message board on where self-pub authors share tips and there are a ton of people with an opinion, but really the only people to listen to in the end, are the ones who are making it big. Learn from the best, they are kind enough to leave clues. It’s too easy and too destructive to get into a gripe session with authors who are as frustrated as I am over some such thing that can be changed if we only take action.

Besides Amazon, are there any other sites where your books are for sale?
I have Paperbacks on all channels, and have some eBooks on iTunes, Nook, and Google Play, but about to put them back on Amazon only because its reach is greater.

What kinds of marketing [twitter, facebook, blog, forums] are you involved with for promoting your book(s)?
I have an active group of FB peeps. Love seeing the familiar faces on their profile pics when they comment on the sexy pics I post of hot men, and on the new release announcements. It makes it more personal. I use my blog, too, but I can never see them.

Do you find it difficult to juggle your time between marketing your current book and writing your next book?
God yes!!!!!! Please someone help me. hahahaah

What advice would you give a new author just entering into the self-publishing arena?
DO EEEEEEEET. Have fun. Learn from the best. Check out the blogs of Hugh Howey, JK Konrath and Nick Stephenson. These guys share the goods. Also, get on Kboards, the Writer’s Café. You will learn all you need to know in time.

Besides writing, do you have any other passions?
Men. The Walking Dead. Dogs. Girls – the show, not the gender. Supernatural anything, especially the show. ;) Jensen Ackles…sigh.

Some fun facts about you, which do you prefer – dogs or cats? Chocolate or vanilla? Coffee or Tea? Talk or Text? Day or Night?
Dogs!!! But cats are pretty. But…DOGS!!!
Coffee, black with cinnamon. As many of my characters have had it in my books. Heheh
Night – never fall asleep before midnight. I’m nocturnal, like my wolves.
What’s next for you? I’m an actress and filmmaker so I’ve written a screenplay I’m in pre-production on to make here in Atlanta. Wish me luck!

Book & Author Details:

You Don’t Know Me by Faleena Hopkins
Publication date: August 17th 2015
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

Fame isn't a blessing when it comes with the sudden knowledge that your life has been a lie. Rue's mother lied about who her father was. Big time. And now that they're both gone, and Rue's turned 21, a knock at her door turns into a whole new life for this supermarket check-out girl. The famous Stone brothers are instantly everywhere she looks. They didn't know about their unwanted secret sister. Neither did their hot-as-hell rockstar best friend Alec Gabriel. With the whole world watching, what will Rue Calliwell (not, Rue Stone, thank you very much!) do with 50 million dollars she's not allowed to turn down?


“I’ve written books since age five or six when I first sold a crayon-illustrated short story to my parents for a dollar.”
Faleena Hopkins is drawn to telling stories of love or redemption, and often both. Hiding behind the pen name “Sabrina Lacey” when she began writing, Faleena now publishes only under her own name. She’s an actress and director, too, and currently lives in Atlanta, GA, with her crazy-cute dog, Pippin. Learn more about her filmmaking career at

Author links:

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