Author Interview: Caroline Walken
About the author:
Caroline Waken has several titles in publication currently; Ell’s Double Down, Reggie’s No Limit, Nowhere on the Map and the latest, Behind the fan. The latest novel, Nowhere on the Map was accepted for the 2018 Reader’s Choice Award in the Romance category. Additionally, her entry In Hiding was the winner of the Writer’s Assembled Short Story Competition in 2017. There are plans to expand In Hiding into a full-length novel in the future. This past June, Rejected Manuscripts published her short story, The Rule of Ten, on their site and it has remained in the top ten since publication.
The consensuses by readers are that her writing is gripping and the characters compelling. The women love the female characters; appreciating their spunk as well as their flaws. With a craving for action and adventure, her romance novels are not your typical girl meets boy romances. Often intertwined with mystery and lawbreaking the stories keep the reader engaged.
Look for other novels by Caroline Walken as her imagination continues to run wild!
What inspires you to write romantic fiction?
I am a hopeless romantic, I believe in love at first sight, soul mates and taking chances on another person. This genre is not for the faint of heart; it is very competitive and you go up against industry giants like Nora Roberts on a daily basis. Still, everyone has a unique story to tell, each love story speaks to someone and I hope that mine give others hope.
We were meant to love, designed to have passion and to cherish others in our lives. It is what life is about, we were never meant to live solitary lives.
Tell us about how you write.
I let the story lead me, that path may meander but it helps me stay inspired. I only block out the main events, beginning, design a couple of road blocks and the end. Then with those bones I write, I learn more about my characters and allow their successes and short comings to tell me their story. I will imagine situations in my mind or pluck an event from my own experiences and weave this in. In my last book; Behind the Fan, the main character was a woman I met in a nursing facility years before.
In character development my friends and loved ones will recognize themselves! I love putting in my best friend or sister-in-law into the story, using their personalities to bring the story to life!
Do you listen to or talk to to your characters?
My first reaction is; don't we all do this?
I will talk to my characters, I will repeat their lines to experience the emotion. I will fantasize a scene to perfect the interaction between the characters.
Worse is when they talk back, when the personality is so strong on the pages that they no longer fit a mold. The personality will evolve to the point where the reader might find that action is not logical.
What advice would you give other romance writers?
My advice is to write, read, explore the relations you have in your life and around you. Too often we chase after what is 'vogue', but forget you have to have a basis for that story.
Keep your focus on writing, I know we have all created book covers, edited our own work and built our web pages. No one is a Jack or Jill of it all. I am an artist and struggle creating a cover, so I found a fabulous woman to create my covers now. Editing is a skill of it's own, invest in good editing software and hire an editor to review your work.
Doing these things will free you up to do what you wanted to so; tell your stories.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I am still an indie author, I will query agents and book companies as any writer would. I stayed independent to publish my stories. My goal in the beginning was to share my novel, not to have it stored on a hard drive until an agent or publisher picked it up.
If I were writing War & Peace, I could see waiting it out and chasing down the very best offer. I am not, I am writing stories to inspire and entertain, it is more important that these be enjoyed.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
We are seeing a shift in the traditional publishing world. At first there was the emergence of Vanity Presses where for a fee anyone could be published. Now there has been a new option; Hybrid Presses, they straddle the fence between both worlds. Some established authors and offered contracts, others they will accept for a fee to produce the work.
The positive in all this is that indie authors are being considered authentic writers. We are shucking the veil that we are hacks that lack proper grammar skills that churn out books. We have been aided by the development of solid editing and formatting software as well as companies that allow you the self published option,.
I feel positive about the future for writers.
Which romance sub-genere(s) fit your stories best?
My books are available in the following formats: