Monday, June 2, 2014

Tangled Paths Blog Tour - Interview

I am pleased to have with me today a very talented author – J Leigh. As I have said before, I have YET to read a bad book sent to me by Red Adept Publishing so I already know, when I open the book on my Kindle, that I will enjoy it. Jaimie definitely did not disappoint me and you will be able to read my review of her book here tomorrow, plus she will be on Between the Bindings on Saturday, so make sure you stop on by to see both of those as well.

I love being able to send off the questions for these interviews and then wait, in anticipation, for their answers to come back to me. It's so much fun for me to find out more about them and, since you are reading this interview, I can only assume that you feel the same way. While reading her particular answers, I thought several times, this girl and I would TOTALLY get along haha. Jaime, if you are ever in San Antonio, let me know – I'll take you out for a coffee. J

Why don't we start by you telling us a little bit about yourself.

Well, I've been writing all my life, but my college education was centered on fine art. I still teach and do illustrative work, and will continue to do so for as long as I'm able to. I love sushi, hot chocolate, my cats and my family. Also horror movies.

Tell us 5 random facts very people know about you.

  1. I hate driving. I'd much, much rather be in the passenger seat, so I can listen to music and ponder plot twists.
  2. Sometimes I get too full of energy from formulating action scenes in my head that I am compelled to run around wherever I am, dancing, skipping or swinging imaginary swords. This phenomenon is funniest in grocery stores.
  3. I can't stand pure silence; I need a radio or TV on while I'm sleeping, reading or writing.
  4. I will meow back at my cats, but won't bark at my dogs.
  5. I am actually allergic to alcohol and tobacco. I have concluded this was a choice made by the universe to keep me out of trouble.

What is the first book you remember reading?

Cliché as it is, Green Eggs and Ham. I remember sitting and trying to sound the words out when I was very young and getting very frustrated. It took several years before I was diagnosed as dyslexic.

What book(s) have most influenced you?

Tough one. I'd have to say I've been equally influenced by just about every book I've read. Each one sort of slips into my subconscious and becomes part of my internal monolog. Aside from that, though, I'd have to say the stuff I read in early childhood/middle school probably had the most impact – things like Lord of the Rings, Greek and Roman Mythology, and a lot of Shakespeare.

What made you decide to begin writing in the first place?

I don't think I ever 'decided' to begin writing – I've just always been a writer. Since I learned how to create words, I was fascinated by the process of putting them together in the best possible combinations. Story and plot flowed from therwhich of your e, and I was forever hooked.

What inspires you most?

People. No matter what project I'm working on, it almost always starts with the dialog between characters. This is because people just fascinate me, how we react, how we listen, how our previous interactions affect our current ones. Everyone I meet has a story, and I always wonder about what had to happen to a person in order for them to turn out a certain way.

Which of your characters do you think is the most like you?

Again, tough one. My characters are all a little bit like me, or at least some facet of me, but I don't think I have one that's 'more' me than any other. At least, not in Tangled Paths. I guess if I had to pick, I'd say Jathen, simply because, like me, he had a bit of a rough start in his life, and I spent a good portion of it thinking he was either useless or crazy. He is also very snarky, and this is, admittedly, one of my more obvious traits.

Where is your favorite place to write?

In my leather chair, laptop on my lap and cat on my feet.

Is there anything about writing you find most challenging?

Editing, always. As I said earlier, I'm dyslexic, so it takes a ton more time and energy for me than most – but I've never let it stop me.

What do you think makes a good story?

Surprises. Whether they be unexpected humor in a tense moment, or clever turns of phrase, or some really elaborate plot twist that came from seemingly nowhere but was completely justified, dropping a little bit of the unexpected into the story is what adds to the magic for me. I do my best to bring that into my own stuff whenever possible, my favorite being breaking stereotypes that I've made within my own universe.

What kinds of things do you do when you're not writing?

Reading, though not as much as you would think. I'm actually pretty social, and enjoy spending time with friends and family. I'm also very crafty: I make my own jewelry and some sculpture works. I've also been known to garden, though not always successfully. I'm a bit of a horror movie buff, my favorite being the Hannibal Lector series.

Who are you outside of writing?

Just a normal, everyday person who talks to herself and takes a lot of notes. Seriously, I'm never 'outside of writing.' I'm always at it, even when I'm not clicking away. I am a pretty big 'fan'/'geek' though, and have the shelves full of eclectic memorabilia in my house to prove it.

What can we expect from you in the future?

More books. This first novel is just scratching the surface of Way Walkers, and I'm intending on publishing a lot more. I've been working in the world for a long time, and Tangled Paths is actually the fourth novel I've written in the Walkers universe. Once Jathen's series is done, I do intend to go back to those original books and release them as well.

Thank you so much, Jaime, for stopping by. And I can't wait for those other books to come out. Jathen is my favorite character and … well … you'll just have to wait until you read my review tomorrow. 

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J. Leigh said...

Thanks so much for having me on the blog! the questions were a blast and i'm excited to see the review!

Meghan H said...

You're welcome, Jaime. You're welcome back any time!! :)