Monday, July 5, 2021

Author Interview with Andrea Clark

 



Alright y'all, this is another author I was able to connect with thanks to the FB group Dystopian Ink. I must admit that she was kind enough to send me a copy of her book, The Waves of Dissonance, but the crazy end of school year schedule got the better of me! I'm so sorry Andrea! I will be getting to it ASAP. I am super grateful that she agreed to do this intervew as well as have me as her reader. Let's dive into her answers shall we??


Q: What is your name and where do you live?
A: My name is Andrea Clark. I live in the South Carolina low country. 

Q: Are you an Indie Author or do you work with a publishing company? 
A: Indie.

Q: What genre(s) do you write?
A: Dystopian sci-fi techno thriller… if there is such a thing. I used to say feminist sci-fi, but that’s not exactly right. It’s just a sci-fi story about feminists.

Q: What made you want to become a writer in the first place?
A: Have always loved to write. I got this idea in my head for a novel decades ago and it has been firing in me inside and out ever since. 

Q: Do you work a regular job in between books?
A: I am a registered architect and I manage construction projects full time. I’ve always worked full time except for a short burst while I was recovering from medical problems. That’s when I hunkered down and wrote the 1st draft, while I was convalescing. 

Q: How many books have you published?
A: One

Q: How many books do you have in the works right now?
A: Two. A prequel and a sequel to the Dissonance trilogy. 

Q: What was your hardest scene to write so far?
A: In the 1st draft, and in many drafts afterward, I had a scene I thought was integral to the plot, but it was a sexual assault scene. Not only was it too graphic in my mind, I didn’t want it to happen and I didn’t want to read about it, myself, for numerous reasons. It hurt me every time I read it while editing, and I didn’t want others to hurt when they read it, too, but it was really integral to the story line and I couldn’t cut it. It was so disturbing to me that I wouldn’t allow my then-16 year old stepdaughter to read it, and she was at the age where she actually WANTED to read what I wrote! Finally, I found a way to handle the scene to the point I could sleep at night, and that’s the moment I decided to publish.

Q: How many books do you have that are not being currently worked on, but are half-written or complete but unpublished?
A: None. I’m working on the ones unfinished/unpublished. 

Q: Do you have a series developing?
A: Yes. Sorry, I think I skipped ahead and answered that earlier.

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: Each one can stand alone, but they are connected. The first one and second one are a generation apart, but in the 2nd one, the main character mentions her grandmother so much I wanted to go back and write the grandmother’s story. I knew all about her anyway, because in order to create the world in Waves, I had to map out how it came about.  

Q: What is your next book that is set to be published and when is the release day?
A: The Pearls of Dissonance will hopefully come out in late 2021 or early 2022. Not done writing it yet.

Q: How long did it take you to write it?
A: Still writing the 2nd book. The first book took me 6 months to write and 22 years to stew and edit. The next one won’t take so long. 

Q: What did you do when your characters stop talking (writer’s block) to you during the process?
A: I’d go for a power walk. During the walk they would talk and come back to life, and I’d have to race back home to capture it all on paper.

Q: What routine do you have when you sit down to write a book?
A: I outline, spread out index cards all around me with the plot points, and then I figure out who does what and in what order to show it. Then it all goes down on a spreadsheet for further massaging. 

Q: Do you write it all out in long sittings or short ones (sprints)?
A: I wrote the first novel in long sittings and devoted routinely 8 hrs a day to writing. The prequel is more short bursts, fit in early mornings before my day job.

Q: Do you get exhausted or energized during writing sessions?
A: Energized !! It’s such a rush to write. I feel like I’m just trying to catch up with the characters as they run amok doing cool things I need to document!

Q: Where do you get your ideas for your books?
A: I dreamed the idea kernel, and then infilled with some life experiences and stories my dad used to tell me.

Q: Is there another author you look up to or strive to be as successful as?
A: If I were ever lucky enough to ever be mentioned (positively!) in the same breath as Margaret Atwood or Ursula Le Guin I would feel that all the hard work and fear was worth it. 

Q: Are you a reader yourself? 
A: Yes

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: Not at this time. With my full-time job in addition to writing and promoting, there’s no energy left to give enough energy to doing that.

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

Q: Do you have a favorite book or a book that stands out the most?
A: The Handmaid’s Tale. Hands down the most frightening book I ever read as it is merely a Supreme Court decision away from being real. 

Q: Have you ever cried, laughed, or had a real emotional response to a book?
A: All the time. I read slowly and tend to internalize and to “feel” what’s happening in a novel, so I get worked up while reading. 

Q:What kind of social media do you have? 
A: Twitter @ClarkNovels, Facebook is @AndClark01, LinkedIn is Andrea Clark. And a website, www.notionwaves.com 

Q: Do you like to connect with your readers using your chosen platforms?
A: I love it when readers reach out. I’d love to attend book clubs every day if I could, to hear their thoughts and answer questions. 

Q: Do you have any author friends that have helped you with your writing process or just been there for support?
A: Yes. Both men and women. Some I’ve never even met, but who have given me support I dearly needed. 

Q: What was the best money ever spent as a writer?
A: Paying for a stand-up desk, and for a graphic artist for my cover design. 

Q: How does your family feel about your writing?
A: My husband is my greatest advocate. He challenges me when I get jittery over things that don’t go the way I think they should, and he gets thrilled when I’m excited. Making him proud of me is one of the biggest kicks I get out of writing, and frankly it’s what keeps me going. He’s definitely the reason I am so happy. A couple of other family members have also shown a surprising amount of support, which I appreciate way more than they probably know.

Q: Is there anything about you that your readers don’t know that you would like them to know?
A: My father was the Kindest and most gentle man I ever knew. He was a wonderful preacher and counseled many people who loved him. He and my mom had one of the strongest love stories I’d ever witnessed until I met my husband. Some of my religious characters are based on him in some way or another, but only the good attributes. Before my dad got ill, he read an early draft and didn’t like it. It hurt my feelings. I was so surprised, because he and I thought so much alike about certain things, such as women’s rights and making all choices with deliberateness. Then I realized he probably thought some of the characters were about him (they aren’t!) Or were about me. (Also aren’t. ) We never got a chance to talk about it, and I always feel badly about that, but I like to think he understands now and approves.


Twitter:
https://twitter.com/ClarkNovels

Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/AndClark01/

Website:
https://www.notionwaves.com/

LinkedIn:
https://www.linkedin.com/in/andrea-clark-a17a2512



Alright folks there you have it! She is hard at work getting her series out to the world while also being a boss in the construction world. I have her book on my TBR, and will have it reviewed ASAP. I appreciate her taking the time to do this interview! I hope you guys will go check out her social media pages and her books!

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