Monday, June 14, 2021

Author Interview with A. Smith


Alright y'all, I met this lovely thanks to the FB Group Dystopian Ink. I am so grateful that she agreed to do this interview, especially since she is getting ready to celebrate pub day with her co-author Lauren Sevier. (I was also blessed with Lauren's interview which is next week). I have already started the ARC of their upcoming book Guns & Smoke and will have that review up in just a couple days. Let's dive into the sneak peek of Abbie's brain shall we?

Q: What is your name and where do you live?
A: My name is Abbie Smith, and I am a lifelong resident of southern Louisiana. I am publishing Guns & Smoke under the pseudonym A. Smith. 

Q: Are you an Indie Author or do you work with a publishing company? 
A: I am currently an Indie Author, with plans of going hybrid. My co-authored work with Lauren Sevier will be self-published. 

Q: What genre(s) do you write?
A: I write in a wide array of genres. Mostly, I write romance in paranormal or fantasy worlds. Guns & Smoke is a dystopian romance with heavy western influences. 

Q: What made you want to become a writer in the first place?
A: I loved storytelling from the time I was very young. I enjoyed taking stories and writing myself into them. By the time I was in high school, I participated in text-based roleplays in the days of AOL chatrooms and forums. Eventually, I figured out that I could create my own worlds instead of sticking to others. 

Q: Do you work a regular job in between books?
A: Yes, I work for the Louisiana Department of Insurance. I regulate insurance companies. It’s a great job with lots of good perks. Even if I became mildly successful, I don’t think I would ever be able to give it up. 

Q: How many books have you published?
A: Guns & Smoke is my debut novel. 

Q: How many books do you have in the works right now?
A: I am currently working on five projects. Guns & Smoke is in the editing phase. The sequel novel is in the planning phase. My other co-authored series with Lauren Sevier, which is a dark fantasy romance, is in the planning phase. My two personal works are in various stages of drafting. I intend on querying one of them later this year to acquire an agent. 

Q:  What was your hardest scene to write so far?
A: In Guns & Smoke, my character, Jesse, is really stubborn. He likes to avoid talking about what’s actually bothering him. He prefers to dance around it. When we were working on rewrites for Guns & Smoke, I had to really delve in deep on what he was talking around. I’ve never had a piece of my own work hit me so deeply. 

Q: How many books do you have that are not being currently worked on, but are half-written or complete but unpublished?
A: Honestly, there are too many to count. All of my novel ideas typically come from a single scene or idea, so I’ll write those out even if they never become anything. 

Q: Do you have a series developing?
A: Guns & Smoke is the first in a quartet, lovingly called The Fools Adventure series. My co-authored Dark Fantasy Romance novel may potentially be a duology or a trilogy. My personal Paranormal Romance series, Witches in New Orleans, is going to be a quintet. My Fantasy Romance series is going to be a trilogy. I have plenty of things to keep me busy. 

Q: Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?
A: I think I would like to have a little bit of both. Obviously, a lot of my co-authored work is set in the same worlds. I enjoy writing in different worlds, so I don’t think I’d be happy if I stuck with a single world with connections amongst all of the stories. 

Q: What is your next book that is set to be published and when is the release day?
A: Guns & Smoke is set to release on July 10, 2021!

Q: How long did it take you to write it?
A: Overall? About eight years. Our initial work on the project started back in 2012. We did take a large break between drafts. We started back up on the project last August, and it will be published this summer!

Q: What did you do when your characters stop talking (writer’s block) to you during the process?
A: Before I started therapy, when my characters wouldn’t cooperate, I would shut down. Now, after therapy, I have learned that even if I’m not specifically writing, I can still be doing the work that supports a novel—marketing, website prepping, planning, reading craft books. There is always something to do. 

Q: What routine do you have when you sit down to write a book?
A: I don’t have a routine. Usually, I have a to-do list of things to accomplish for the day, so I’ll tackle the easiest one and work my way up. 

Q: Do you write it all out in long sittings or short ones (sprints)?
A: It really depends. When I’m feeling particularly inspired, I can write for hours. On the struggle days, I’ll write more in sprint fashion and take lots of breaks. 

Q: Do you get exhausted or energized during writing sessions?
A: If I am writing a fast paced scene that hypes me up, I get really energized during writing sessions. If I’m having to delve more deeply into the emotions of a scene, it’ll usually leave me exhausted after. 

Q: Where do you get your ideas for your books?
A: Most of the time, small scenes pop into my head and bug me until I figure out a way to craft a character from that scene. With one of my personal projects, I had a single image in my head—a mourning daughter placing a red rose on a headstone. That scene didn’t even make it into the draft of the novel, but it gave me a great starting point for my novel. 

Q: Is there another author you look up to or strive to be as successful as?
A: Look, if I can get a single person who compares me to Sarah J Maas once, I’d be happy. 

Q: Are you a reader yourself? 
A: Yes, I read almost obsessively. Reading is one of the things I absolutely have to do for myself and my mental health. The best part of my day is getting up first thing and drinking my coffee while I read. I usually read about 50 books a year. 

Q: If so, are you a beta or ARC reader for anyone else? (You don’t have to name for who if you do not wish to.)
A: I alpha/beta read for my co-author, but I don’t have enough time in the day to offer it to anyone else, unfortunately. 

Q: Do you like to read the same genre(s) you write?
A: Yes, absolutely. 

Q: Do you have a favorite book or a book that stands out the most?
A: For the longest time, it was Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. It’s been really difficult for me to reconcile my love of the book with my distaste for the author. PoA was a really important book to me at the time that I read it. I’m a millenial, so I grew up with new HP books coming out every two years. Between releases, I would reread the series over and over. As I’ve grown older, I can acknowledge problematic authors and acknowledge when they’re wrong. Currently, I’m loving the ACOTAR series. A Court of Silver Flames was amazing. 

Q: Have you ever cried, laughed, or had a real emotional response to a book?
A: Oh, all the time. It was more when I was younger. I’m really looking for a book that can make me cry now. A couple have come close, but few have actually gotten me there. If anyone has suggestions, please let me know!

Q: What kind of social media do you have? 
A: I’m on Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok. All @abbiewritesx

Q: Do you like to connect with your readers using your chosen platforms?
A: Yes, absolutely!

Q: Do you have any author friends that have helped you with your writing process or just been there for support?
A: Lauren is an amazing friend. Not only when we write together, but in my personal works. I lean on her for so much, and I don’t know that I’ve really been able to express how much that means to me. She’s my biggest cheerleader. Our friendship is definitely rare. 

Q: What was the best money ever spent as a writer?
A: Craft books! Save the Cat! And all of the craft books by Sacha Black have been amazing!

Q: How does your family feel about your writing?
A: I’m not sure, to be honest. Writing is something I’ve always wanted to do, and I’d like to think they think it’s cool.

Q: Is there anything about you that your readers don’t know that you would like them to know?
A: I have a degree in theatre! I was a techie for all of high school and college!




Alright folks, there you have it! Abbie Lynn Smith has been hard at work getting Guns & Smoke ready for the world while also working a full time job. I am so thankful that she agreed to do this interview along with her co-author in the midst of it all. I am also thankful that they asked me to be an ARC reader for their book. I hope that you guys check out her social media pages as the countdown for her debut novel continues!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for having me!! Please let me know if anyone has any questions!


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