This week I have Rose Castro with me on the blog. She writes contemporary inspirational romance & young adult fantasy. I met Rose on the Facebook group Clean Indie Reads, a group of lovely authors who write ‘clean’ fiction, meaning without explicit sex, violence and crass language.
Hi Rose, thanks for joining me on my blog. First of all, please tell us about your latest book?
I just wrapped up Elemental Linx, book one in The Tetrad Prophecy series. It’s my Young Adult Fantasy book, available on Amazon now for just 99c. It’s the first book I started writing when I set on this path to becoming an author. I’m also soon to wrap up my other Contemporary Inspirational Romance Novella, Anika’s Way.
Tell us a bit about yourself and why you write?
I’m a wife of 22 years, a mother of two amazing boys, currently 17 & 10 years of age. I struggle every day with health issues, but I do my best to stay as focused as possible, reminding myself that every day truly is a new day. About the time I started to fall ill, my eyesight also started deteriorating. I’m legally blind in my left eye, and although I can still see out of my right eye with my glasses on, I work in close cooperation with my neuro-ophthalmologist to protect this. Recognizing there is currently no treatment plan for my condition, as it stems from the central nervous system, I knew it was time to realize my dream of becoming a writer.
What is important to you as an author?
So many things are important. But if I’m honest, I would have to say, writing my stories, so they connect with readers. I received a few messages shortly after releasing my first Novella, A Shining Star, about how deeply touched the persons felt by the story. These words mean a lot.
There are a lot of people writing books these days, what makes your writing different to all the rest? What aspects of your personality and interests come through in your books?
WOW! The first part of this question is a bit overwhelming. LOL! But in all seriousness. I would say that what makes my writing different to the rest is that my writing is my own. Sure, there are most likely many variations of the same overall plot of a story, but I bring my voice to this, my emotions. No one else can replicate this because we are all unique in this way. I write from my heart.
Regarding personality and interests, readers can expect stories with real life triumphs and struggles. I’m very passionate about child advocacy, and this is a resounding theme in my Contemporary Inspirational Romance books, along with personal testimonies of faith. As far as my YA Fantasy, I dive into the shallow end of the pool with faith. The protagonist’s world turns upside down and everything she’s ever believed in draws into question. By the end of the series, a huge revelation is made that brings the story back full circle, cementing her beliefs where they’ve always mattered most, in her faith.
I like the sound of that.
Where do your ideas come from?
I love meeting new people and listening to their stories. I sincerely believe we all have a story to tell. People inspire me.
What kind of person would like your books best?
Someone like myself who enjoys reading; doesn’t mind shedding a tear or two and wants to continue following the work of a new author as it makes them feel connected and part of the author’s success. Kind of like, “Hey, I read your very first book when it came out. I’m happy you continued writing and never gave up.”
Why did you choose the indie route to publication? Did you ever try the traditional route?
The choice was simple and for very practical reasons. My health doesn’t always allow me to be the most disciplined of writers. Therefore, having to be on someone else’s schedule isn’t something I can do. Also, my eldest son helps me quite a bit with my research. As you can imagine, I have bad days with blurred vision; this can go on for hours or even a couple of days at a time. I’m not very reliable in this sense.
I did query a couple of literary agents. I feel very fortunate to have received responses from two, with one being more interested than the other. After a few email exchanges and a phone call, I decided it wasn’t the route for me, at least not at that time. I admire those who are successful going the traditional route, and I don’t know if it is something I’ll ever explore, again.
What’s the hardest part of being an author?
Personally, is finding the balance. Setting time aside and writing my daily word count. It isn’t much, 1k-1500k words per day.
What do you like most about being an author?
So far it’s been seeing my finished work. When I held A Shining Star in my hands for the first time, I cried. I couldn’t believe that was something I’d created. And now Elemental Linx is finished too.
If you could have one wish granted what would it be?
Of course my health! Seriously, though, as cliché as this sounds, and because of our current social climate, I’d wish for World Peace.
What is the most unusual object you possess?
It’s not unusual, as it is more nostalgic. I still possess my Happy Apple toy from when I was a baby.
If you could give aspiring writers one piece of advice, what would it be?
Write. Don’t sit on the fence. Just start writing. Write till your heart’s content, and if it’s not content, write some more. You don’t need to stress about the publishing part, because when that bug bites you; you’ll know your ready.
Thanks for the chat Rose, it’s been nice to get to know you a little.
Thank you, so much Tahlia for the opportunity to share a little about me and my writing. I’m looking forward to both of our future writing endeavors.
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