Welcome Shea MacLeod, award-winning best selling author of the Sunwalker series, a paranormal romance!
Location: Portland, Oregon, USA
Genre: Paranormal and contemporary romance, cozy mysteries
Books: Kissed by Darkness, Kissing Frogs, Dragon Warrior, The Corpse in the Cabana
Awards: Amazon Top 100 multiple times in several countries
How did you feel about writing your first book?
Equal parts nervous and excited. I was also surprised at how hard it was. Fun, but hard work.
What was different between writing your first book and writing now?
I didn’t plot much back then (Okay, not at all). The story ended up all kinds of crazy and I ended up going through multiple massive revisions just so it made sense. LOL. Now I have a system that works for me and I do just enough plotting so that the characters don’t wander off to Mordor in the middle of the plot.
Where is your favorite place to write?
My home office. I prefer the quiet solitude of writing in “MY” space. Although once in a while I like to out for sprinting sessions with fellow authors. The change of place can really jar me out of my own head and give me a fresh perspective.
What author influenced you to become a writer?
Agatha Christie. From the first time I read And Then There Were None, I wanted to be a writer. It just took me another 26 years to get there.
What are your favorite books (that are not your own):
Anything by Agatha Christie, Stephen King’s The Stand, anything by Jayne Castle.
What’s your favorite book that you’ve written?
It’s a tossup between Kissing Frogs and The Stiff in the Study
Biggest challenge when it comes to writing?
The sagging middle. That point in the manuscript when I’m ready to throw it all to the wind and go drink wine on the beach.
Easiest part of writing?
The beginning of a story. I always see it so clearly and it seems to fly onto the screen.
Any causes that you’re passionate about?
I don’t consider it a “cause” such as a way of life. I’m a feminist. I believe strongly in equality. I also believe in doing my part to keep this planet healthy. It’s the only home we’ve got.
What is your process when you plot out a new book?
That’s an evolving thing for me. I’m always learning new tips and ideas. I take what works and toss out the rest. Currently, I loosely plot each book in a journal before hitting the writing. The journal contains character sketches, inspirational pics, and plot ideas, as well.
How long do you spend researching and writing a book?
It depends on the book. Research is an ongoing thing. I’m always researching, never knowing what I might use later. Sometimes there’s something specific and I need to travel to a place. So, research time is very…fluid. Writing the first draft usually takes a month or two, depending on what’s going on (conferences, etc).
Do you ever put yourself or parts of your life in your books?
I think all writers do that. It’s usually entirely unconscious and it tends to happen more in earlier works than in later. But all of my favorite heroines have little bits of me mixed in.
Any fun facts about yourself that you want your readers to know?
I’m absolutely obsessed with Ancient Aliens.
Have you written any books that you never published?
OMG, so many! LOL. That’s part of being a writer. You end up with an entire drawer of stuff that will never see the light of day.
Tell us a little bit about your latest book and why it’s a must read.
Kissed by Blood is the seventh book in the Sunwalker Saga. It’s vampire hunter, Morgan Bailey’s, origin story. Vampires, sword fights, Prague! What more could you want? 😉
Anything that you’re working on right now?
I’m working on my next cozy mystery, The Body in the Bathtub, as well as doing rewrites on a scifi romance mystery.
Advice to budding writers:
Write a lot. Read a lot. Never stop learning. And get that first draft finished. It doesn’t have to be pretty. That’s what rewrites are for.
Check out her books!