Adelle Laudan writes romantic suspense and biker fiction as well as books for readers in the age-group between childhood and young adulthood.
Her published works include Juliana (Forbidden Publications, 2006) and Destination Unknown (Forbidden Publications (Feb 2007), which are available as e-books. She is also the author of Iron Horse Rider (Wild Child Publishing, 2007) and Dee Days (MardiGras Publishing, 2007), which are available as both e-books and trade paperbacks.
In a recent interview, she spoke about her writing.
Do you write everyday?
I usually write every day, some days more than others.
As a rule I write when the kids are off to school and in the evenings when everyone is doing their own thing. Research takes quite a bit of time before I even begin the first chapter. If I haven’t experienced a certain aspect of my book, I research in order to bring a certain degree of believability to my writing. I then do a chapter outline. I don’t always follow the outline but it does help keep me moving in the right direction. I never know the ending until my muse shows me it.
How did your latest novel come about?
Iron Horse Rider is biker fiction with elements of romance. It started out as my NaNoWriMo project in 2006 and Wild Child Publishing contracted it before it was finished. I completed the 50,000-word Na No in the month allotted. After that, it took approximately four months to revise and edit before coming out as an e-book in April 2007.
When you were working on the book, what did you find most difficult?
This was my first attempt at writing a novel in one month’s time. Prior to this I’d never written an outline and always let my muse take the driver's seat. Na No taught me how to outline a story and become more focused. It was also very difficult not to get caught up in the research that went into this book because I find anything having to do with native beliefs and customs, fascinating.
What did you enjoy most?
The biggest challenge was setting an almost unrealistic goal and reaching it. Who knew you could write something in such a short period of time? It was a truly rewarding experience.
What sets the book apart from the others you've written?
Iron Horse Rider is the first full-length Biker Fiction book I’ve written. In fact, Wild Child Publishing has even added Biker Fiction as an official genre. As you can well imagine, this pleases me to no end, taking me one step closer to changing the image of bikers, one book at a time.
When did you decide you wanted to be a writer?
Writing has always been a release of sorts for me... As a child I lived with very strict rules and did not enjoy the same freedom other kids my age were privy to. When I brought pen to paper, I could be the person I wanted to be and do the things I only dreamed of doing. At age 10, I started writing short stories that never saw the light of day and made sure to dispose of these stories for fear my parents would not approve.
I left home at 15 and didn’t write anything, other than the odd poem, for many years. It wasn’t until after I had my first child at 22 that I began writing again. I shared my stories with one special friend who always encouraged my writing.
At 35, I had my fourth and last child and shortly after underwent major back surgery. I've since been disabled with chronic pain due to extensive nerve damage and once again writing has become a great release. I wrote the story Juliana at the end of 2005 and my friend insisted, relentlessly, that I submit it for publication. I really didn’t think I had any hope but I needed some way to feel like I was making a contribution to society since I couldn’t be in the workforce. In January 2006, I committed to giving myself one year to see if I had what it took to be a published author.
How would you describe the genre in which you do most of your writing?
That’s a loaded question... This past year, I have dabbled in more than one genre -- romance, contemporary, mainstream, erotica, romantic suspense and young adult fiction.
I also tried writing erotica and my hat is off to those who do so well. It’s not as easy as one might think. Personally, I just don’t feel comfortable writing in this genre, I think, mainly because my girls are in their tender Tween years and I’d hate for them to suffer the repercussions of anyone finding out their mother writes erotica. (Again, I'm not bashing erotica; it’s just not for me).
I discovered in the past year that I am a very emotional writer and seem to have found my niche in romantic suspense, biker fiction and Tween mystery.
Another thing I've learned over the past year is to be true to myself. Forcing myself to write in a genre I’m not entirely comfortable with, such as erotica, can never be a good thing. The end result is something forced and stilted and so unlike the way in which I write best.
You give "biker fiction" and "Tween fiction" as genres. How do you define these? What are they?
Biker fiction is mainstream fiction where the main character rides a motorcycle and lives the lifestyle. In my books, I present bikers in a positive light because I've experienced the lifestyle. Within this genre, as in life, there'll always be a touch of romance.
Tween fiction, on the other hand, is the New Age spin on middle grade fiction. It is fiction which is aimed at readers in that age between being a child and being a young adult where so many things can determine the course lives take. I created TweenTime to keep my Tween fiction separate from my adult work and also as a way of trying to encourage artistic Tween minds to develop their talents and to believe in their dreams.
What else would you say motivated you to start writing in these genres?
My children are the motivation behind my Tween Mystery Series. My writing will hopefully be my legacy to them and their children to enjoy for years to come.
My motivation for biker fiction comes from writing what I know. I’ve loved motorcycles since I was old enough to hop on the back of one and I've lived the lifestyle for most of my adult life.
I use many of my own personal experiences to bring emotion to my writing. I think if I can evoke emotion of any kind in my readers, it's a job well done. In "Feel the Rhythm", for example, which you can download free on my website, Rosa is deaf. This story represents the first time I’ve had a character who is deaf like me. I wrote this story as part of the Romance Divas Valentine Challenge. It was also my first attempt at a full-blown romance and I chose to make the main character deaf because I thought I could add an extra element of believability since it's something I live each day. It just seemed the right thing to do.
Did I succeed?
I’m not sure. I know I enjoyed writing this story.
I believe that I write with such depth of emotion because I'm severely deaf and it isn’t always easy to convey my feelings using the spoken word. The written word holds no barriers for the deaf.
Which writers would you say have influenced you the most?
I've been an avid reader for most of my life, so the list of authors would be extensive. Each one of them has added a dimension to my own writing. I have to say, though, that the author who stands out the most from my younger years is V. C. Andrews... Flowers in the Attic; Petals on the Wind and If There Be Thorns, which was the first series-type book that I enjoyed. After that, when I found an author I liked, I’d read every book on the library shelf from him/her before moving on to the next.
What are your main concerns as a writer?
One of my main concerns as a writer is knowing if people will enjoy what I write. Also, trying to find the elusive balance between my family life and my writing career.
Writing is my passion and I really work hard at not letting it interfere with my family time. It's so easy to become all consumed in writing to the extent everything else is put on the back burner. I have to structure my writing time so it doesn’t take away from the amazing relationships I have with my children. It’s not an easy thing to do but anything is possible when you believe in your dreams.
My biggest challenge so far is being in the spotlight. A big part of writing and being published is the promotional side of things. I've never enjoyed being in the spotlight and usually go out of my way to make sure I’m not. Now, I must face my fears and put myself out there for all to see. It's a constant struggle for me but I'm hoping that over time I'll be more comfortable taking center stage.
How do you deal with these challenges?
I fake it ‘til I feel it. I make sure I do things like this interview, giving it 100%. I attend chats and watch more seasoned authors and how they handle themselves in the public eye. I accepted the position of organizing chats for the Sweeter Romantic Notions Authors. In doing so, I put myself out there on a regular basis, surrounded by others who write on the sweeter, more sensual side of romance and other genres.
Also, on July 13, I'll be doing my very first book signing. I'm excited and more than a little nervous about this. My biggest fear is that my hearing disability will be a source of frustration for me and my readers but I'll be bringing someone with me whose voice I know to help me when need be.
What would you say has been your most significant achievement as a writer?
In general, how well my first book, Juliana was received. Not only are there numerous heart-warming reviews, the book was also placed in the top ten of the P&E readers’ poll. This had me on cloud nine.
I'm not sure who first nominated me for this award but an award won as a result of reader response is just a little more special than others.
What will your next book be about?
I'm in the middle of edits for my Freya Bower Anniversary winner, Smiling Eyes.
I'm also working on Dee Nights, the second book in the Dee Day Mystery Series. The book is set to come out as an e-book with MardiGras Publishing in October 2007. It will also be released as a trade paperback in November.
This article was first published by OhmyNews International.