Heather: How long have you been writing?
J.M.: I have been writing my entire life. I have written poetry for almost my entire life since I was able to form words with penned ink. Only within the last few years I started pushing myself to write down the stories or plots I so often formed in my mind with no outlet.
Heather: Who is your favorite author?
J.M.: Francis Patton Statham, because she combines history with entertainment creating a phenomenal novel.
Heather: What do you recommend to aspiring authors?
J.M.: Never give up, anything you write is worth finishing, and edit, edit, edit.
Heather: How do you invent your characters?
J.M.: My characters are pieces of me that I bring out and mold into something greater than I could ever imagine.
Heather: Do you have anything in the works?
J.M.: Yes, with MoonZeLent nearing completion, my imagination is turning to the next endeavor – Moon Phases of the Vampire Clan.
Heather: What would you say is the neatest thing you know?
J.M.: Success comes from within. Every single one of us has the innate potential to fulfill our thoughts. Pick a goal, and keep reaching towards it – big or little steps, you are still moving forward.
Heather: What ws your favorite part about writing MoonZeLent?
J.M.: My favorite part about MoonZeLent was the ride and transformation of the scenes and characters. The twists and turns seemed out of my control at times – like a great, thrilling roller coaster ride.
Heather: Has music ever inspired your writing?
J.M.: I would say that music has inspired me. While not directly, music is part of my life, the music I listen to has helped mold who I am – every thing from an Irish limerick or lullaby, to classical or even a rap some to name a few. I like to experience the sounds I can.
Heather: Who is your favorite character in MoonZeLent?
J.M.: I love all of my characters, they are my comrades. Besides the main characters, a few of my favorites would be: Levi, who I find strong, mysterious, and warrior-like, Guillermo, who breathes a fresh, southwestern air into the story, and last, but not least, Sinclair, who represents the dark, worldly, vampire of yesteryear.
Heather: What inspired you to write about vampires?
J.M.: That’s a good question. Everyone seems to be vampire crazy these days, and I have two teenager daughters that are no different. Having purchased every book about vampires they could possibly want, I found the two devoured the pages chanting for more. Faced with the decision of what to write, I chose vampires figuring there are others out there hungering for more blood.
Heather: What was your favorite idea that you put into MoonZeLent?
J.M.: My favorite idea that I put into MoonZeLent would be the use of a blood back for willing donors to feed the vampires in a non-violent manner.
Heather: Tell us a little bit about your journey writing MoonZeLent.
J.M.: MoonZeLent began as a challenge to write a novel in one month. After the light bulb came over my head for the title, the story plot began to fall into place. With each added character came a new adventure, twist, or turn in the story. I had couple days where I felt stagnant and wondered if I would complete my goal, but I hung in there nd soon a new portion of the book would just pour out – many times faster than I could write.
Heather: Keyboard or pen?
J.M.: Both. Keyboard flows if you know what you are writing about. Sometimes pen is more convenient for the times when you have a sudden idea or burst of words you need to get out before you forget.
Heather: What do you think is the hardest part about being an author?
J.M.: I think the hardest part about being an author is gaining respect and getting noticed. Without your book being read and enjoyed, there is no purpose for writing. I also have a fear of typos – I can not stand the thought of my book going out for the world to read with an error.
Heather: What do you usually do while writing?
J.M.: I have four children. Need I say more? I write, I potty train, I write, I tutor algebra, I write, I cook. I juggle a baby bottle in one hand and a notebook in the other.
Heather: What were the circumstances surrounding your decision to become an author?
J.M.: My daughter is a published author – she is my inspiration and my hero. She has always considered herself a writer.
Heather: What was the biggest obstacle you faced while writing MoonZeLent?
J.M.: The biggest obstacle I faced while writing MoonZeLent was the fear that no one would enjoy my words. I often wondered if my book would be good enough to stand with all the others.
Heather: Some people say that you need to live life before you write a book; do you think experience writes a book or imagination?
J.M.: I think that imagination writes a book and experience can be referred to as “know how” and “know how” can be gained in a variety of ways.
1. I like the colors of: Cool, calm, blues.
2. The sky is most beautiful when it’s: setting—the southern sunsets or the sun setting over the ocean.
3. My favorite feature of a computer is: Undo.
4. I think inventors should invent a: program that edits for you.
5. Thing I love most in the world is: My children.
6. Things I hate most in the world are: Judgmental people.
7. My favorite type of electronic device is: laptop—duh!
8. My favorite thing that has been available before the year 1900: Words
9. My favorite thing that has been available since the year 1960: internet/windows.
10. The oddest thing you have ever written on: restaurant napkin.
Thank you for doing this interview J.M., it was a real pleasure. And for all of you readers who are dying to check out more about this new vampire tale, stop by here tomorrow for a real treat - a very special excerpt of MoonZeLent.
Look for MoonZeLent in stores Summer 2011
Can't wait that long? Here's where you can find out more about J.M.Levi and her thrilling new novel:
Follow J.M. on Twitter! http://www.twitter.com/midnightindigo