Thursday, March 24, 2011

Blog Tour: Elements of the Soul

This week I'm hosting a blog tour by Walker Author Toursfor Elements of the Soul.   Here is a collection of questions/answers by the authors of the various short stories in the collection.

How has having a book published changed your life?

When you tell people you are a writer they always ask if you have anything published. If you don't they give you a skeptical look and patronizing smile. Having a book published adds credibility to my writing. Having a book published means being able to actually hold my dream in my hand. It allows me to hand that dream to those who supported me and tell them, "Look, you helped me create this, this is my dream." It is a wonderful way of saying thank you. – Rissa Watkins

Is there an established writer you admire and emulate in your own writing? Do you have a writing mentor?

While I don’t really emulate his writing, my mentor has been Timothy Westmoreland. I was lucky enough to have him as a professor for a couple of creative writing classes during my undergraduate days, and he did more towards helping polish and refine my writing than I had even guessed was possible. – Thor Gunnin

It's rare today to find an author who does nothing but write for a living. Do you have a 'real' job other than writing, and if so, what is it? What are some other jobs you've had in your life?

I actually do write full time, although I also teach ballroom dancing on the side. I do freelance work through Walker Writing Services, where I write anything people need—press releases, website content, or articles. I just started a new company called Your Document Professionals ( to provide writing services to small and medium businesses. – Jennifer Walker

Have you ever won any writing awards? If so, what?

As a reporter, the writing and reporting are sort of tied together, so the writing awards I have received were all called reporting awards. In 1988, I was named journalist of the year for the Rocky Mountain College Press Association for a combination of feature, editorial and hard news writing. The contest is conducted at the annual conference for the RMCPA. I also won various awards for my content while writing for my college newspaper. – Lucinda Gunnin

How did you feel the day you learned you would be published?

I was on cloud nine! There’s really an amazing feeling to know that your name will be on a book, and that people might buy it and read it. I have received so much support from my friends, family and many strangers who read and loved my stories. It’s a huge amount of satisfaction. – Jennifer Walker

The main characters of your stories - do you find that you put a little of yourself into each of them or do you create them to be completely different from you?

How can you not put some of you into your characters?  I don’t do it consciously, but if there is no deep connection, nothing you can look at and say, “I feel that. I understand,” I’m not sure how you can write believable characters.  M. Lori Motley

What compelled you to start writing?
I have always loved writing. As a child, I would come up with stories and plays and perform them for my family. Of course, I had grandiose ideas of sets, costumes, and charging for tickets to the production, but unfortunately the product wasn't quite worth the price of admission. Books played a large part in influencing my love of writing. I constantly had my nose in a book, and was always fascinated when a book held me so captive that I felt as though I was the main character of the story. – Lindsay Maddox

The main characters of your stories - do you find that you put a little of yourself into each of them or do you create them to be completely different from you?

Yes, I find I put myself and other people into stories but I tweak the characters to better fit the storyline. – George Kramer

Have you always wanted to be a writer?

Since I was old enough to realize that there were people behind the books that I loved to read, that they didn't just appear on shelves, I have wanted to write. That is what I wanted to do. I wanted to create those worlds of words for people to get lost in...if only for a short time. – Susan Weaver Sosbe

Do you have any pets? What are they? Tell us about them.

I have a dog; Mocha is a Chow/Shepherd mix. I adopted him from an animal rescue that I was writing an article about. I saw his face and had to have him. He is my writing companion during the day and follows me everywhere I go. – Rissa Watkins


  1. Thank you for doing this interview. I am so proud to be a part of Elements of the Soul with so many talented authors.

  2. Thank you for posting this interview!

  3. Just stopping by on the book tour.

  4. Thanks for agreeing to be a part of the Elements of the Soul book tour. I'm proud to be a part of this great anthology.