About author, Renee Carlino: Renee’s first friends were the imaginary kind and even though her characters haven’t gone away, thankfully the delusions have. She admits she’s a wildly hopeless romantic and she blames 80’s movies staring Molly Ringwald for that. She lives in Southern California with her husband, two sons, and their sweet dog June. When she’s not at the beach with her boys or working on the next book, she likes to spend her time reading, going to concerts, and eating dark chocolate.
Why do you write? I write because then I can decide what happens. I’m a maniac reader when I’m not writing and I like being told a story, but I really, really love telling them; it’s a control thing 😉
Coffee or tea? Both, coffee in the morning, tea in the afternoon. I’m shamelessly addicted.
Walk us through your process of writing, editing, and publishing: Writing stories for me usually starts with a daydream; I imagine a scene, or an exchange between characters. I’m usually driving in my car listening to music at an unreasonably loud volume when this occurs. Once I’m home, I jot those ideas down in some kind of short hand, but I don’t outline until I’m well into the writing process, and I only do that for continuity. For Sweet Thing, I knew what the big ideas were going to be before I started actually writing it, but I left it loose in my mind. Not knowing where the story would go, or how the characters would act, motivated me to sit my butt in the chair and write. The first draft was complete in three months and I was a giggling fool when it was finished, but when the high wore off I knew it needed work. I spent about nine months doing revisions. I took sections of the book to a writing workshop where other writers gave me feedback on how to develop those scenes. I also used a developmental editor who provided me with page and conceptual notes that helped me to flush the story out. I chose to self-publish Sweet Thing right away to see how it would fare with the audience.
If you could say anything to your favorite author what would it be? Hmmm, that’s a tough one, but I would probably say, “I can’t believe more people don’t like The Fourth Hand, I loved it. Oh, and thank you for inspiring me.”
How do you come up with the names of your characters? I pick short names because you have to type them over and over again, seriously. 🙂
What is on your desk? My iMac, a small lamp with a low watt light bulb that gives off this nice warm glow, a printer, some random paper clips and binderclips in a little orange bowl, a variety of pens and scraps of paper strewn about, a cup of Tazo Calm tea, sticky notes, and a half eaten granola bar.
If your book were turned into a movie who would you want to play the parts? I like Victoria Justice or Emma Roberts for Mia and for Will, I’m going to take a poll on that soon.
A writer always needs…: A muse.
Who or what inspires you? Music, love, food, travel, culture, tradition, art, family. . . I could go on and on, but I think above all, I’m inspired by people and relationships.
Facebook or Twitter? Both, there is no avoiding it.
What is the best advice you’ve been given? “Stop thinking about your audience.”
Can you tell us about any upcoming projects? There is a book in the making, but it’s still a bit scrambled. I would like to write a chapter or scene from Sweet Thing in Will’s POV just for fun as a little side project.
**Blurb of “Sweet Thing”: Mia Kelly is a twenty-five-year-old walking Gap ad who thinks she has life figured out when her father’s sudden death uproots her from slow-paced Ann Arbor to New York City’s bustling East Village. There she discovers her father’s spirit for life and the legacy he left behind with the help of an old café, a few eccentric friends, and one charming musician.
Will Ryan is good-looking, poetic, spontaneous, and on the brink of fame when he meets Mia, his new landlord, muse, and personal heartbreaker.
A story of self-discovery and friendship, Sweet Thing shines light on the power of loving and letting go.
**Buy “Sweet Thing” on Amazon!