Saturday, October 29, 2011

Interview with Barbara Watkins

Tell us about you.
Well, first and foremost, I'm a wife, a mother to three grown children, a grandmother to ten precious grandchildren - oh, and a writer/author of paranormal thrillers.

Tell us about your book.
Hollowing Screams is my first full length novel. It's a paranormal thriller with a mixed variety of horror, romance, suspense, and a couple of characters that walked right out of the 'Twilight Zone.'

What inspired you to write this particular story?
When I was a teenager, I was introduced to a gypsy of sorts-a psychic, medium, whatever name 'one' feels comfortable using. All I know is, she was the real deal, so to speak. The main character in Hollowing Screams, 'Lola' is based on this mysterious woman that I had the pleasure of meeting so long ago.

What can readers expect when they open your book? Give us something that isn't on the book blurb.
When reading Hollowing Screams, the reader can expect to journey into a time and place where they feel comfortable at first, kinda like remembering that first comfort blanket, but then the tide turns and hysteria, horror and terror rolls in with a vengeance. 

How old were you when you started writing?
I really cannot recall the exact date, but I want to say around nine or ten years of age. I started writing in my diary and it became a book of short stories. I began by documenting my nightmares, and strange phenomena that I was witnessing at the time. 

Do you stick with one genre, or have you branched out to others? Which ones?
I have stuck with the paranormal/thriller genre because it's what I feel most comfortable writing.

Do you think you would ever branch out into another genre? If so which one(s).
I think I would like to try my hand at historical fiction, maybe a romance. The thought of pushing myself into a genre that I'm unfamiliar with is scary. Come to think of it - I just may try my hand at it!

Where do you get your ideas?
Events, people, observing life really, and all its scary moments. Everyday we wake up is really quite eventful - isn't it?

Who is your greatest inspiration?
My family and loved ones - they keep me inspired to be the best that I can be, and support me all the way.

What are you reading right now?
Anything by John Saul, at the moment! He is so talented in his storytelling. The way he draws the reader in, and makes you feel as though you're there on the page with his characters - it's brilliant!

Who are your favorite authors?
Many. John Saul, Stephen King, Anne Rice, Clive Barker.

What is your current project?
Hollowing Screams. I'm busy trying to promote it as much as I can. I signed a contract through Zodiac Entertainment with New Zealand director, Dimi Nakov, to produce and direct several of my works as feature films in the next few years. It's really an exciting time for me now!

What do you feel is your greatest accomplishment as a writer?
To create and entertain with my words, to know that my books will be my legacy after I'm long gone - it's an awesome feeling!

Have you experienced any setbacks for your writing along the way? If so, will you share with us.
There will always be setbacks. I had Hollowing Screams professionally edited five times before satisfied with the results - rejected too many times to count.

How did you overcome these setbacks?
Push through it. Don't give up on your dreams. If you're a writer and it's in your blood, a setback is all it is, it's not the end of the world.

Do you believe in writer's block?
I believe you can get overloaded, tired, and discouraged, all of which will distract your focus. 

What is the best writing advice you've ever received?
A lady said to me at a book reading I was giving, "Don't ever change your style of writing. Always be true to yourself, because your readers deserve that of you."

What is the best advice you have for other writers?
Write about what you know. Research your characters over and over again in your mind. See it as a movie reel in your head. Believe in yourself and your work.

What is more important to you, plot or character?
I believe that they're both equally important to the final product.

Tell us 5 Random Things about you the person, not the author.
1. : I sleep very little, about four hours a night.
2. : I've always wanted to travel to Italy and someday make it my home.
3. : Big fan of salsa dancing.
4. : Hate to workout, but know I need to.
5. : Have ten grandchildren, and would love ten more!

Where to connect with you online.

A collection of thrilling short stories from author Barbara Watkins. Ranging from the psychological to the paranormal, each takes us to a dark, fascinating place. With 5 short stories and 4 poems, there's plenty to choose from. Enjoy, as they take you beyond the boundaries of your imagination. Beware the kindness of others. When an old windup jester is passed from a dying woman, perhaps her warning words should have been heeded. Dark events await those who treat such spirits lightly in 'Spirits of a Jester'. Hell hath no fury like a scorned wife, as she seeks revenge upon her cheating husband, find out his fate in 'Deadly Addictions'. From these, to the young man haunted by a letter from his long lost mother. She tells him about the dark place she ended up in, and the deal she made to spare his life. By giving him up, she may only have delayed the inevitable... These great stories and more lie within this great volume, from the talented Barbara Watkins.

For all of Barbara's titles, visit her Amazon page.

What format does your book(s) come in?
Trade paperback/soon to be Kindle Amazon