When did you first consider yourself as a "writer"?
I first considered myself a writer once I finished a story. Lots of people say they want to write a book. Very few of them actually reach the end.
Do you work another job as well as your writing work?
I’m a doctor in real life, so I write on my days off when the kids are in school.
What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarise it in less than 20 words what would you say?
My latest book is A Soul for Chaos, the second book in The Soulbearer Trilogy. Dev thought that by moving Arden to Gravaria so she could learn how to control Loku, the chaos god whose soul inhabits her body, life would be simpler. Wrong.
Who is your publisher? or do you self publish?
I do a mix of both. I love the freedom of self-publishing, but I sometimes like a break from all the work. That’s why I love working with publishers—they take care of the editing, the cover art, the distribution, the reviews, some of the promo, etc.
How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?
It truly depends on the story. I’ve written the rough draft of a novella in a weekend (about 60 pages), and I’ve taken 9 months to write a 300 page book. I’ve also written a 300 page book in 10 weeks while I was on maternity leave and caring for my son. I always have a buffet of ideas simmering in the back of my mind, so as soon as I finish one project, I’m more than ready to jump into the next one.
Which of your books were easier/harder to write than the others?
A Soul for Chaos has actually been the easiest book for me to write so far. The hardest was the sequel to Tangled Web (which still doesn’t have a title)
What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
Right now, I’m wrapping up a sexy contemporary romance before moving on to the final book in the Soulbearer Trilogy. I’m also working on a collection of short stories that are prequels to The Tears of Elios.
What genre would you place your books into?
Most of my books are fantasy and paranormal romances.
What made you decide to write that genre of book?
I like to write what I read.
Do you have a favourite character from your books? and why are they your favourite?
Some of my favorite characters include Ranealya (from The Tears of Elios), Oni (from The Alchemy of Desire), and Azurha (from Tangled Web). They are all tough, independent women who didn’t need to be rescued by the hero. Instead of finding their knights in shining armor, they found men who were truly worthy of them.
Where do you get your book plot ideas from?What/Who is your inspiration?
I almost always begin with a character. Usually, they are caught in a certain situation and they need my help to get out of it. Rarely, they just come to me saying, “Tell my story.” From there, I try to find a plot that fits. Usually, I look at movies or stories and wonder, “What if I changed X, Y, and Z?” From there, I build my story.
Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?
As a working mom, I write wherever and whenever I can. I’ve been known to dictate books in my car, if needed. However, I write best in my office. I have an antique writing desk in front of a window overlooking the Cascades. I usually have a scented candle burning, and I prefer complete silence so I can totally immerse myself in my character’s world.
Do you gift books to readers to do reviews?
Absolutely! One of the hardest problems I’ve faced as an author was getting people to find my books. Once they do, they usually enjoy them. So I have no problems giving books to reviewers in exchange for their honest opinions because at least they’re reading the book and telling others about it.
Would you ever ask a reviewer to change their review if it was not all positive about your book/books?
Absolutely not! A review is an opinion, and every reader is entitled to his or her opinion so long as it’s well thought out. I admit, if someone wrote a review that said, “This book sucks because it has kissing”, I’d be a little miffed, but then, someone else might look at that and get all excited about it being a kissing book. The key is the “because”—without it, another reader may never what worked or didn’t work.
Do you basic plot/plan for your book, before you actually begin writing it out? Or do you let the writing flow and see where it takes the story?
I always plot out a book before writing. I usually start with an outline and go from there. My outlines, though, are very detailed and tend to run about 20-40 pages.
Where can readers follow you?
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Your Goodreads author page? http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3035791.Crista_McHugh
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