How long did it take you to write your first book?
My first novel began the night I recognized that somewhere along the way, I had lost the part of myself that lived without fear. I got up off the couch, fired up my computer and opened myself up to the possibilities. My first heroine stepped forward and said, “I have a story to tell.” Two weeks later I submitted that story for publication. Within two months, I saw my first novel appear for sale on Amazon.
What inspired you to start writing?
The recognition that as a younger woman I had adopted the creed that fortune favors the bold, but that somewhere along the way, fear had dulled that edge. I made a decision to banish fear-based decisions from my life. That thought was almost immediately followed by the abandoned dream of becoming an author. I let go of the fear and embraced the possibility of living a dream.
How many drafts did you do before you felt it was ready to publish?
One of the ways I’m kind of an odd-ball is that I edit as I write. Each day when I begin to start to write, I re-read at least the previous chapter and edit. Once I have completed the first full manuscript, I re-read the entire thing and send it to my beta reader who sends me suggested edits. I make those and then re-read it before sending it to an editor. I get those edits back, make them, re-read the entire manuscript and then return to the editor who either has additional suggestions or forwards to the line-editor. Once the line-editor is done, I re-send to my beta reader and then I will re-read a final time once she is through. A long-winded way of saying five to eight times … and still once it’s published you find things!
How did publishing for the first time ever make you feel?
My first book went live about 11:30 PM the night before it was scheduled to be released. Seeing it appear on Amazon was a thrill. I squealed loud enough to wake up my three basset girls who were napping in the office. I was beside myself … they just thought if I was going to be excited and wake them up, I needed to get them a cookie!
How different would you say the writing and publishing process is for you now than it was then?
The writing process is about the same, although I believe I’m a better writer. The publishing process is far different. I changed publishers. The second/current publisher has a far more extensive and involved editing process, which I just love. That’s another odd-ball thing about me – I love the editing process. I always learn things and new skills to improve my writing and my process.
How many books have you published since then?
This Friday, August 2nd, I will release Warlord: A Dark Shifter Romance, which will be my twenty-first novel (under two pen names) since my debut novel in January 2018. I published six novels under the pen name Willa Bradley with Blushing Books. In July 2018, I published my first novel (Brought to Heel) under the pen name Delta James (which I now use exclusively) with Stormy Night Publications.