It's time for our first Writing Desk Blog interview of 2020, my guest today is best-selling author Becky Moynihan. You can find Becky's bio and links to her platforms in Wednesday's Get to Know the Author post.
Writing Desk Blog: Welcome Becky to the Writing Desk Blog! Thank you for joining me today. Your latest novel Dawn Till Dusk, co-written with author Tyffany Hackett, is due for publication on 26 May 2020. (I've already preordered my copy!) If you had to pick three words to best describe Dawn Till Dusk , what would they be?
Becky Moynihan: Thank you for having me, Courtney! Oh boy, only three words? Okay, I'll try my best here... fast-paced, dark, and real!
WDB: Is this the first time you've co-written a series with another author? How did the experience compare for you to writing solo?
BM: Yes, this is my first time co-writing! It's a very different experience to writing solo because I needed to run each of my ideas by someone else. Compromises have to be made since the book is technically only "half" mine. But co-writing is great if you struggle with writer's block or motivation! You have someone else to bounce ideas off of and help you fix plot holes and such. We decided to write every other chapter, so it's half the writing compared to solo, which can mean you finish writing the book faster. If you like being the sole decision-maker with your books though, co-writing might be challenging for you!
WDB: I know you also design all of your own book covers, including Dawn Till Dusk. They look fantastic! Do you have a background in design, or is this something you've taught yourself as part of building your author platform?
BM: Thank you! I have a bachelor's degree in art where I learned a little design and how to navigate Photoshop, but I mostly taught myself. I really enjoy making them!
WDB: Has your experience primarily been with traditional publishing, indie/self-publishing, or a mix of both? Which route do you prefer and why?
BM: I've only pursued self-publishing so far after doing a lot of research on indie versus traditional. It basically comes down to knowing yourself, your strengths and weaknesses, and what you want out of writing. Since I treat my writing as a business, I knew that I'd need to be marketing savvy and thrive as being my own boss. I have a background in direct sales and learned a lot about social media marketing. From there, I was able to start building an author platform and brand. If you don't want to do these things, then being successful as an indie author might be a challenge. Most successful indies who make full-time income also need to do ads (usually Amazon or Facebook). It's important to learn these things, and thankfully there are many books for indies available, as well as Facebook groups for indie authors. Another reason why I didn't pursue traditional is that I wanted to start my career now, not a year or more down the road. It takes time to acquire an agent and such, and frankly, I'm impatient! I knew what my strengths were and decided to strike out on my own. Do I regret it? Not in the least! It's a ton of work, but I'm building my own business from the ground up, and that feels pretty good.
WDB: These next questions are ones I like to ask in each Writing Desk Blog interview, it’s so interesting to see the range of responses I get!
Are you a plotter or pantser? Do you have a specific planning style you use when writing, or do you prefer to let things flow more naturally?
BM: I like to call myself a plantser, actually! I often dive into writing the first chapter of a new book with only the genre in mind. Then I'll stop and outline as I go along, fleshing out the characters, the conflict, and overarching plot. I oftentimes don't keep the first chapter after more ideas come to me, but sometimes they still work. Once I know the book's ending, it's easier to plow ahead with a goal to reach. I just need a snippet of an idea and then I'm off to writing again!
WDB: What is your favorite method for connecting with readers and other writers? Social media, conferences, meet-ups, or a combination?
BM: Definitely social media! I do enjoy meeting up on occasion, but my introverted nature doesn't allow it very often. These days, you can find me mostly on Instagram, but there are writer groups on Facebook that I enjoy too!
WDB: Where do you typically work from? (Home, office, coffee shop, etc.) Is there any place you find you're more productive than others?
BM: Only at home on my couch, haha. And I need silence so often work at night. I have no plans to change these habits for the foreseeable future. ;)
WDB: If you are able to tell us, what’s next for you? The sequel to Dawn Till Dusk, titled Fall of Night, has already been announced, but are you also working on an individual project?
BM: Besides my co-written series which will include 4 books, I have a little project underway that will remain secret for now. Not for long though. I might announce it in June, so stay tuned! And I've also started drafting an upper YA paranormal romance series that will be a solo project. I probably won't talk about that much though for a couple months!
WDB: Best piece(s) of writing advice from your experience?
BM: There's no right or wrong way to write. Do what feels natural to you! If that means editing as you go, then do it. I certainly do. ;)
WDB: Something about you that people may be surprised to know?
BM: These type of questions always stump me, lol! Okay, let's see... I used to be a top 1% earner (1 out of 200k consultants) in a popular direct sales company for 3 years. I'm pretty proud of that accomplishment! The opportunity gave me the confidence to try something I'd only ever dreamt about: writing books.
A big thank you again to Becky for joining me today!
Don't forget, there's still time to enter our giveaway for a chance to win a signed copy of Reactive, the first novel in Becky's Elite Trials trilogy. Entries will be accepted until Monday, 25 May 2020.
Have a great weekend everyone! Please continue to stay safe and well!