When did you first realize you wanted to become a Writer/author?
I started in Grade 1 when I wrote little stories starring my classmates, one by one! As an adult, I gradually made the shift from writing non-fiction travel guides to fiction. That might explain why my stories all have such a strong sense of place, from moonlit Pacific waters surrounding Maui to the harsh beauty of the Arizona desert.
Where do you get your ideas for your book?
Funny you should ask! I just made a video on this very subject! You can find it on my YouTube channel. Here’s the link: https://youtu.be/8FmXvqHJG8s.
In short, some stories draw heavily from real-life inspiration, often a tall-tale version of something that happened to me or someone I know or have heard about. Other times, I have to work really hard to puzzle a plot out. The characters usually come easily to me but it often takes longer to work out a plot. Other times, an entire story grows out of a tiny side mention that takes on a life of its own.
If you’re interested in hearing more, check out the “Bonus Materials” section of my website where I go into detail on the “making of” every book I write. (http://www.annalowebooks.com/bonus-material)
What kind of things do you enjoy when not writing?
I enjoy sports, travel, hiking, and ingesting any form of dark chocolate!
How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?
I have 7 books in my Twin Moon series (wolf shifters). 5 in my Blue Moon Series (wolf/bear shifters). 5 in my Serendipity Action-Adventure Romance series, 3 in my Shifters in Vegas series (dragons, wolves, and bears), and I’m currently working on Book 3 of 5 in my brand-new ALOHA SHIFTERS series (Magnum, PI with a shifter twist!).
Do you have any suggestions to help others who have a passion for writing?
Keep a notebook handy for ideas that strike you out of the blue and discipline yourself to write a certain amount each day. Successful writing is a combination of creative inspiration and knuckling down to hard work.
What do you think makes a great story?
Tension, tension, and more tension. In my new book, LURE OF THE DRAGON, the heroine is a human who is on the run from a marauding dragon shifter. She seeks shelter with a band of battle-hardened Special Forces vets. Before she knows it, she’s falling in love with one - but he’s a dragon, too, and she can’t quite bring herself to trust him - yet!
The second ingredient that makes a great story is a sit-back-and-sigh happy ending. I’m a sucker for happily-ever-after, and each of my stories ends on an emotional high.
Which Writer/Authors inspire you?
There are lots, but I was particularly inspired by Wayne Stinnet, who writes sea adventure stories. He used to be a truck driver and he made himself write 500 words a day - or night, even when he was hunkered down at a truck stop for the night! Eventually, he wrote enough books and found enough success that he was able to become a full-time writer! I love that story - from humble roots to still-humble but very accomplished writer.
What are you working on at the moment?(optional)
I’m currently working on a whole new series of suspenseful paranormal romances: ALOHA SHIFTERS - JEWELS OF THE HEART, that kicks off with Book 1, “Lure of the Dragon.” Think of Magnum, P.I. with a shifter twist! In a nutshell... What do dragon, wolf, bear, and tiger shifters do after a decade of honorable service in an elite Special Forces unit? Transitioning back to civilian life isn't as easy as it sounds - not even in sunny Hawaii, where they land a sweet gig as caretakers of a luxurious seaside estate. But fate still has a host of challenges in store for this band of brothers, including the temptation of lasting love, the constant threat of enemy shifters, and the mysterious powers of a long-lost horde of jewels.
What genre are your books?
Mostly paranormal (shifter) romance but also the really fun Serendipity Action-Adventure romance series that’s written in the spirit of “Romancing the Stone.”
What drew you to the genre you write?
I picked up a wolf shifter book at random and was instantly drawn to the fantasy element and powerful alpha hero.
Which Actor/Actress would you like to see portraying the lead character from your most recent book?(any book you like)
Chris Hemsworth could play Boone (the wolf shifter of the Aloha Shifters series) any time he’s ready!
Do you write full-time or part-time?
It feels like full time and I make a solid income but I do have another job with great benefits so I feel I have the best of both worlds.
What is the hardest thing about writing?
Never really being sure if a story or character will go over well - although when a book releases, it’s usually to rave reviews which is a great feeling.
Any tips on how to get through the dreaded Writer’s block?
Keep writing, even if it means skipping ahead to a different scene. That often helps.
How can Readers discovery more about you and your work?
The best place to learn more is at my website, http://www.annalowebooks.com. You’ll find all my books there as well as loads of fun and interesting bonus material, not to mention links to freebies, ebooks, paperbacks, and audiobooks.
Thank you very much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to take part in this interview 😊
Thanks so much for the chance to connect!