I am a mother of three, wife to a sane person and Ring Master at the Lindsey Circus. Most days you’ll find me online, amped up on caffeine & wielding a book.
You have a BA in psychology, so how did you discover writing? I got the psych degree because I loved people and wanted to inspire young girls to reach for the stars. So many teens turn to drugs or have babies and I wanted to counsel them to keep going. Whatever you’ve done is not the end of the world. Bad choices are certainly a setback, but they don’t define us. I think that’s a tough concept, especially for young women, so I wanted to help.
Staying home with my kids kept me from finishing my masters degree so I could counsel. (Though I do plan to go back to it when the kids are older). Meanwhile, I figured I could write and reach people this way. Not through self-help but through providing an escape. Reading is brain food and an amazing way to recharge or be inspired.
How long did it take you to write your first book? What were your emotions during that period? I wrote my first book in about 4 months. It sucked, but I didn’t know it. I plowed right through it and sent out those horrific queries then waited for all the agents to call me up. *shakes head in shame* I had no clue what I was in for. Silly Julie.
How did you celebrate your first publication? I haven’t celebrated. I have only child/over achiever syndrome, and I never really feel it’s time to celebrate. There’s always a higher goal to strive for, something bigger to achieve and it makes it hard for me to feel accomplished. So, I keep going forward. I worry that if I ever stop to celebrate and say “This is it, Julie. You did it!” I might lose my drive to reach higher. I blame my parents (which is silly because being an only child, they celebrated my every breath).
I see that you’re writing series of books (Honey Creek Books and Killer Confessions Saga). How do they differ? These series are night and day. My Seeds of love series are a set of sweet romance novellas situated in a small fictitious town in rural Ohio. These stories are dear to my heart because I live in a similar town and I see the joys and troubles that come with small town life. Romance makes my world go around, so writing tales of how characters fall in love made perfect sense. They make my heart swoon!
The Killer Confections saga are full length novels of silliness and instability. The stories follow two nutty girlfriends working to get away with murder. They were spawned from the sweetest lady I know, who bakes for our church and looks like June Cleaver. She got me thinking about how much damage she could do with her sweet treats and never be suspected. Everyone loves here, but what if she wasn’t what she seems? This series is devoid of romance and filled with crazy. Oh, but what we won’t do to help our girlfriends!
Where do you write? Our little princess came along three years ago and my office became her castle. These days I write on my couch, laptop on lap and kids everywhere. It’s a crazy situation, but what can I say, I love writing almost as much as I love my little ones, so I write with them all around, and often stand up to find myself covered in My Little Ponies or Army Men action figures. It’s the insane little experiences that fuel my stories and inspire my characters. I wouldn’t trade it for anything. It will be past too soon.
Where do you get your ideas? I’m a people addict. So all my stories start by me being a creeper. I watch and something catches my eye or initiates the “what if” scenarios in my brain. Like with Death by Chocolate, I wondered what if she wasn’t what she seems. With my sweet romances, I wonder, what if she had a secret? What would keep me from accepting love or seeking it? Guilt? What kind? Hmm do tell! And then I’m off and running with a new idea.
What do you love and hate about the writing process? I love the outlet writing offers me. I tend to have extra energy and writing gives me a funnel for that. I also like my kids seeing how hard I work at something I really want. Plus, writing gives me new excuses to meet people – online and at the grocery, anywhere. I love people.
The down side is the waiting and the rejection. No matter how perfect I think my manuscripts are, even after a half dozen betas and a handful of crit girls work them with me, I get rejected. Not everyone sees the same things, and there will always be those who don’t connect and don’t love your work. It’s hard to get rejected when you’ve put your heart into something.
Also the waiting stinks. Every writer is waiting for something at this very moment. EVERY ONE OF THEM. Waiting on submissions, or edits, or cover art or release dates or contracts, or reviews or ARCS. Signing the contract doesn’t end your waiting, it only adds new things to wait for LOL
What’s it like in a day of Julie Anne Lindsey? Crazy. I get up at 6am and make a pot of coffee and write. I include all social media when I say write because it’s all part of the job. Then I get the kids up at 7. We do the morning shuffle, no one wants the kinds of cereal I have, they can’t agree on what cartoon to watch and what they want to wear is never clean. I shove them out the door and onto a bus at 8:30 then some days I drive Little Miss to preschool and run errands for two hours till I need to pick her up, come home, unload the van, make lunch, play some games and back to work for a couple hours till bus brings the boys home. I make dinner, serve it clean it, start baths, check homework, hit the treadmill, kids in bed and from 9-11pm I have time with my husband. He goes to bed and I go back to writing. I don’t sleep a lot and now you see why the kids clothes aren’t always clean when they want them. Laundry falls behind – A lot.
What would your perfect day consist of? Quiet. I love those kids, but I’d kill for a day off completely. I could get mad amounts of writing done if there were no interruptions. But, I also crave more time with Hubsy, so maybe a trip to a spa resort where I can have it alllll. LOL. Ahhhh to be pampered to instead of running the mommy track. *Imagine*
Do you have any dreams or goals for your books? (Ex: Having them turned into movies?) Not really. LOL. I mean, I want people to read them and like them. I want to make people smile and give them the escape so many authors give me every year. Beyond that, I’d love to be a YA author. I read YA almost exclusively, but so far my YA is on the back burner. I guess my biggest goal is to brighten someone’s day with my words. More than one book has changed the course of my day and I am indebted to the authors who help me get back to smiling.
Are you an ebook or paperback kind of girl? I think there’s a tool for every situation. Before my sweet husband bought me my first ereader at Christmas, I would bring – I am not kidding you – a box of books on vacation. It took up much needed space in a van full of five people and luggage and toys and, well, you get it. But I needed them. How was I to know what I might be in the mood to read? Now, I can toss my entire library in my purse and go. Love love love the Kindle for this reason. BUT nothing beats holding a book and curing up in a bath or on the porch swing, so I will continue to buy print books as long as they’re available. My super favorites I buy both copies of LOL
What has helped you the most in your writing career? Do you have any advice for up and coming writers? For me, developing a web presence has made so much difference. There is an incredible community of writers out there and they are kind and helpful and supportive. Taking the time to meet other writers has kept me going when I wanted to quit and I love them so much for that. Writers are writers’ greatest resources!
Bloom by Julie Anne Lindsey
In a town filled with her past, she never expected to find her future…
Seven years ago Cynthia left Honey Creek with a broken heart. Three years ago Mitchell arrived with one. Now Cynthia’s come home, and these two hardened hearts can’t stop arguing. If they’d only take a break long enough to find some common ground, they might be surprised to find love can grow anywhere.
If they’ll let it, love will find a way to Bloom.
*Bloom is book one in my new Seeds of Love series. I’ll be planting those seeds all year.
**For more information on Julie Anne Lindsey here’s her contact information:
You can find her blogging about the writer life at Musings from the Slush Pile
Tweeting my crazy @JulieALindsey
Reading to sooth my obsession on GoodReads
And other books by me on Amazon