Meet Deborah Kreiser

It is my pleasure to introduce Deborah Kreiser. She stopped by to tell us about her writing process and her new book, THREE WISHES.
Author Deborah Kreiser

Thanks for stopping by Deborah. Let’s get started with you telling us what inspired you to write your first book?
My first book is called THREE WISHES, and it’s coming out April 15 from Astraea Press–making Tax Day much happier in our household!
So, I’d just finished a marathon reading of the whole Twilight series and then The Hunger Games trilogy (this was early spring of 2011—I know, I was late to the game). When I turned the last few pages, I felt so let down. I realized I was tired of saying goodbye to characters I loved. My way of solving that problem was by sitting down and writing my own book, where I would finish with characters when *I* was done.

Marathon reading is the best, except for the book hangover afterward. Do you have a specific writing style?
I’d love to say yes, but the real answer is, not really! THREE WISHES is the first book I ever attempted to write. I’ve done tons of writing in my life, but it had never before occurred to me I could write a whole novel. So I bored several of my dear friends to tears, talking through the characters and the plot, before I sat down and started writing. I plugged away for quite a while, then finally polished it and got it (I thought) ready for the world. At this point, I’ve written all (or most) of three other manuscripts, so I’m a little more meticulous in how I outline, but not by much.

Your style matches my style! Okay, let’s talk a little bit about your novel. How did you come up with the title?
Well, it’s about a genie granting wishes. I toyed with variations on the theme, but I’m a believer in simplicity, so Three Wishes stuck.

I love, love, love your title. Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Yes! I started off with what I thought was an amusing premise (a girl gets an amazing body in an instant, and, by the way, finds out she’s a genie) and it turned into something a little deeper about self-image and the need to make your own wishes come true.

ThreeWishes200X300

There aren’t enough books out there that discuss self-image. And how about your book cover. OMG, it’s gorgeous. How much of the book is realistic?

Every word. It’s a memoir, actually. (Of course not.) *grin* I will admit that, like my main character, I am tall, and I was a swimmer in high school (with a similar boy crush, as it happens). But I never got the Katy Perry-esque curves, and certainly never granted wishes.

As writers, we pull from what we know, which happens to be ourselves. What books have most influenced your life?
Ooh, this is tough! I am a lifelong bookworm, and there are so many books out there that I love, Love, LOVE! But I’d have to say that the Narnia series by C.S. Lewis was what really started me on the road to bookaholism. If that’s not a word, it should be.

Lifelong bookworms UNITE! Okay, this is a tough question, but if you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
I’m not sure I have an official “mentor”—my critique partners are incredible (hey there, Joan and Anne!). But I will say that I was inspired early in 2013 by my friend E. M. Caines, who took a little National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) project, made an awesome pitch on Twitter, got an agent, and now has a three-book deal.

I heart E. M. Caines so much! She’s such a sweetheart and I look up to her as well. What are you reading now?
Hee hee. I am doing research for my Work In Progress (WIP), so I’ve been reading political memoirs. Right now it’s Dick Cheney’s. That is . . . interesting. I will refrain from further commentary.

Political memoirs, wow! I love how WIP research leads to reading topics maybe we wouldn’t read. Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
See above for my “mentor” answer. I also recently stumbled on (completely by accident) a book called A Brighter Kind of Darkness by P.T. Michelle which is amazing. No one I know had ever read it before, so I like the feeling of a new discovery.

There are so many amazing authors out there. Thanks for passing along more to follow! Speaking of authors, what are your current projects?
I have several that I talk about on my blog, but the one I’m most actively working on is a modern retelling of Romeo and Juliet, set in D.C., and from Paris’ and Rosaline’s point of view.

You had me at Romeo and Juliet. And having it set in DC, makes it even cooler. I definitely want to read that. Authors, both published and unpublished rely on support. Outside of family members, who has supported you? 
I have the bestest friends and critique partners in the world.

I love my CP members so much. Without them, I think I would light my MS on fire at least once a week. With the support system you have, do you see writing as a career?
I love the idea, and I do lots of writing for work, but I don’t want to make my writing into my work—I get so much pleasure in it as an escape that I’d hate to have the pressure of making it a career.

That makes a lot of sense. So many people use writing as an escape. Now that you have a completed novel, if you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Not yet! Ask me again in a year. 🙂

Fair enough. As we all know, once a book is published it no longer belongs to the Okay, time for an you share a little of your current work with us?
This is from the middle of the first chapter:

I was planning my approach when that punk Romero made a beeline over to her, his friends close behind. Whatever he said to Julia was enough to make her stop in her tracks and put her pearly whites on broad display. He took her hand and pulled her onto the dance floor, where a lame slow song from the 1950s was playing. They stood close, too close for people who had just met, and yet she didn’t seem to mind when he cradled her head and rested it on his shoulder. Barely taller than Julia, and maybe only ten pounds heavier, I could not figure out what the scrawny little boy had done to get her interested so fast.

She needed some better options.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

I think it’s every writer’s constant lament: finding enough time.

Thank you for sharing that with us. Can you tell us what strikes you about your favorite author?

There’s been a lot of backlash against Stephenie Meyer and the Twilight “saga.” I agree with a LOT of the criticism. (And my main characters are always less passive than Bella, for the record.) Having said that, there was something about reading those books that drew me in, in a way no series had done before. And I’ve read many, many books in my life. So, I don’t know if I’d say Stephenie Meyer is my favorite author, but I would love to bottle her success and her vision and get a little of it myself.

There are many people out there on the interwebs that can say Stephenie Meyers got them into reading YA and for many, writing it. Do you have any advice for other writers?

My advice is as follows: 1. Get yourself on Twitter. There’s a goldmine of information and advice out there, far more than one writer can tell you. And 2) Don’t give up. Just don’t! Look at publishing as being the icing on top of the wonderful cake that is writing a book.

Mmm. Cake.

I love me some twitter and cake. Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

What? I was still thinking about the cake.

Oh, right. Questions.

This: read my book! Love it! Okay, you don’t have to love it. That’s the magic of having so many books in the world: plenty of choices. But I’d appreciate if you read it. 🙂

After reading this interview, I know I’ll be reading your book. Do you have a favorite line one of your character says in your book?
“It turns out my life is a fairytale, after all.”

Squee!! I love that line. Now how can readers find out more about you? 
Yes, please. Follow me on

Website: deborahkreiser.wordpress.com.

Okay, now that everyone is following you on twitter and your other social media links, here is one of my favorite questions. What’s your editor phone call story?
I participated in a pitching opportunity during the SavvyAuthors Summer Symposium in August 2013. I’d had my eye on Astraea Press for a while as an up-and-coming small press with a great track record and excellent reputation for treating their writers well. So when Stephanie Taylor requested my manuscript based on my pitch, I was crossing my fingers that it would work out. A little back-and-forth later, and we all lived happily ever after, with THREE WISHES set to debut April 15!

If Deborah Kreiser had three wishes, they would include: a lifetime supply of calorie-free chocolate, a self-cleaning house; and the ability to expand time as needed. When not dreaming of her next plot, she teaches nature programs to preschool kids in Massachusetts, where she lives with her husband and two young daughters.

Thank you Deborah for stopping by and I look forward to chatting with you on twitter!

Author Signature

Comments

  1. Thanks, Natasha! This was so much fun. 🙂

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