About the Author
ABOUT THE AUTHOR – ALICE ORR
Alice Orr has spent most of her work life in publishing in one role or another. She’s been a book editor and a literary agent, a leader of workshops on writing and publishing and a published author. She now lives her dream of writing full time – mostly romantic suspense novels. “Because love and murder are my two favorite plot points,” she says.
Alice is the author of thirteen novels, three novellas and a memoir so far. Her fiction has received national awards. Her nonfiction book, No More Rejections: 50 Secrets to Writing a Manuscript That Sells was published by Writers Digest Books. Amazon.com says, “This book has it all.” A revised edition will be published soon.
Her novel A Year of Summer Shadows – Riverton Road Romantic Suspense Series Book 2 – recently published to enthusiastic reviews. Book 1 of the series was A Wrong Way Home and is now a free ebook on all retail sites. Book 3 will be A Villain for Vanessa.
Alice is married and has two grown children and two perfect grandchildren. She lives with her husband Jonathan in New York City. To find out more email Alice at [email protected] Check out her website at www.aliceorrbooks.com and visit her blog there too. She would love to hear from you.
What inspires you to write romance books?
I actually write Romantic Suspense fiction. I’m inspired to write these stories because I love the complications that occur between two people who are forced – at the same time – to do two very difficult things. First they have to figure out how to handle and navigate a conflicted personal relationship where they are falling in love when that’s the last thing they need to have happening in this already twisted situation. Second they have to figure out who has committed the worst of all possible human actions against another human beings – a murder – and prevent further murders from happening as well. These circumstances – and these two people – collide over and over again. The tension that arises is close to unbearable. The pace – with all these things going on – is page turner fast. I enjoy writing these stories – and probably was born to write them – because I love all of that.
Tell us about how you write:
I try to write first thing in the morning. I get a cup of coffee – splash some water on my face – hunker down in the most comfortable place I can find – and get right to it. I’ve been writing long enough – and also reading long enough – that I generally have a feeling in my gut that tells me when a story is or is not working. So I just – as we used to say a couple of decades ago – go with the flow. For example – right now I’m at a point in the story I’m currently writing where all I know is that one character is going to tell another something he does not want to hear. I don’t know how that something will be said. I don;t know how the listener will react. All I know is that I can’t wait for tomorrow morning when I hunker down and find out what happens by having it flow out of my fingers onto the page.
Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
My characters are me, Or – more accurately – they are parts of me. All I have to do is create a situation where those parts will need to speak to each other. Then I simply sit back listen – and record. I try to write regularly – preferably every weekday – so that I am always what I think of as “inside the story.” What is going on among my characters is also going on in my day-to-day life – except that it’s going on inside my head rather than outside of it. That way my characters are always talking to me – telling what they need to do – what I need to be thinking about – what I’m not getting quite right about their story and how I can correct that.
What advice would you give other writers?
Romance writing is all about the heart. If you write romance – you must write it from your own heart as brought to life through the hearts of your characters. But perhaps the most important thing a romance writer must accomplish has to do with our readers and their hearts. We must – first and foremost – pluck the strings of those hearts until they resonate in a way that makes the reader feel what our characters feel. The story becomes an emotional experience for the reader. That is how we hook our readers and also how we grow them into fans who will want to have their heartstrings plucked by our stories again and again.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
After many years as a book editor and a literary agent and a traditionally published writer – I knew I wanted to try another way. Independent publishing came along at the perfect time for me. A couple of years ago I attended a big writers’ conference with lots of classes and panels that were all about independent publishing. Outside those classes and panel rooms all everybody seemed to be talking about was independent publishing. I left that conference with a changed career vision in my head and in my heart. I became an indie author and – so far – I haven’t looked back.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think the future of book publishing is a gift yet to be opened. I believe it will be a very interesting gift. And – when I let the optimist in me speak her mind to me – I have no doubt that our future’s so bright we’re gonna need shades.
What genres do you write:: Romantic Suspense
What formats are your books in: eBook, Print