Today I’m conducting a session with…Paige Tyler!
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Me: Tell me about an experience that had a profound impact on your life.
Paige: This is going to sound absolutely absurd, but I’m not making this up. This event affected me for life. When I was very little, I didn’t want to eat my peas, so my mom told me that the peas would cry if I didn’t eat them. Now I was obviously a little kid at this point, so I never thought to question why the peas wouldn’t cry when I ate them. It had to be painful for them, right? But I digress. Regardless, I went along with her explanation (from this point forward known as “The Big Lie”) and ate my peas. I was a very sensitive kid and didn’t want the peas to be unhappy. I wanted them to like me. So…I ate them.
I came to realize years later that my mom had manipulated my sensitivities. And it wasn’t just about peas. I have come to discover that I’m a “pleaser.” I really want people (and obviously peas) to like me. I never want anyone to get upset at anything I do. Being that sensitive can make it really tough to be a writer. The first time I got a really bad review, it was devastating. Crappy reviews are harder to take than a bowl full of sobbing veggies!
Me: What personality trait of yours helps you most as an author?
Paige: I’m a good multi-tasker. I can jump into the middle of a story early in the morning, stop to do some cover artwork two hours later, do some promo stuff before lunch, jump onto some last minute edits for a completely different story in the afternoon, and be back working on the original book after dinner. I like to keep a lot of plates spinning at one time.
Me: What personality trait of yours hinders you most as an author?
Paige: That sensitivity thing I mentioned before is always going to be there. But in many ways, I’m also a perfectionist, especially when it comes to what words to use. That can really slow me down when I’m trying to make my word count. I’ll sometimes agonize over a word choice for far too long.
Me: What was your high point as a writer?
Paige: When I saw my first traditionally published book HER PERFECT MATE on the bookshelf of a real brick-and-mortar store like Books-a-Million and Barnes and Nobles, I just about freaked out. Yeah, I’d been writing for a long time by then, but it still felt so good to see a book with my name on it sitting on a shelf with other NY published authors. It’s stupid, but I felt like all the work I’d put into this writing thing had finally paid off.
Me: What was your low point as a writer—a time when you questioned your path?
Paige: It was when I was shopping that same book, HER PERFECT MATE, around for an agent. I sent the manuscript to an absolutely insane number of romance agents, everyone I could find on the list maintained at a particular website. Many didn’t respond back at all, others sent form rejection letters, others said things I won’t repeat. Regardless, it was tough for me to handle and I seriously thought about giving up the whole writing thing. Then my husband pointed out that maybe I was looking for the wrong kind of agent. I picked myself up and sent my manuscripts to agents on the thriller/suspense list, and got a reply from my now-agent almost immediately. A little while after that, I had a contract and I never looked back. This whole situation just reinforced the notion that sometimes, if the door in front of you is locked, go find another door. To say that I’m glad I didn’t give up is an understatement.
Me: How many books have you written? How long does it typically take you to write a book? What’s the most painful part of the writing process for you?
Paige: I really don’t know the exact number…seriously. I’ve probably written somewhere around seventy-five stories, but the number always floats a little as I take older books out of circulation for re-edit and update. Besides, I really try to focus on the book I’m involved with at the time, really enjoying the process and making it the best book I’ve ever written. I write with my hubby, and working together, we can knock out a 90k-100k book in about 70 days. We do shorter novellas, 30k-40k, in about 30 days. Truthfully, the hardest part of the writing process is time management. Being hybrid, I’m responsible for a load of stuff besides writing. Cover design, pricing, print formatting, uploading on all the different platforms, promotion, maintaining a newsletter, etc., etc. These are all things that have to be done, and done well. But you can’t kill the goose that lays the golden egg, i.e. writing. If you have no book, none of the other stuff matters.
Me: What’s the worst piece of writing advice you were ever given? How did you get beyond it?
Paige: Worst piece of advice? That’s easy. When someone told me “Paranormal is dead. You should write cowboys. They’re hot right now.” Feel free to replace the subgenres with any almost any combination you choose, I’ve pretty much heard them all at this point. Over the years, I’ve learned the hard way that you can’t chase after the latest trend. If you do that, you’ll be constantly reinventing your voice, that special collection of tone, plotting style, word choice, and sentence structure that defines you as a writer. Every time you move, you’ll leave behind a good portion of your readers because while some people jump from subgenre to subgenre, most don’t. If you find that a certain subgenre is your jam and jelly, then write that. If you want to dabble in other areas, that’s cool, but do it because you’re interested in that area and feel you can bring a unique voice to it. Don’t do it because that’s where the sales seem to be on this particular day.If the door in front of you is locked, go find another door. @PaigeTyler #AmWriting #AOTC Click To Tweet
Me: What’s the secret to your success?
Paige: First, define success in your own terms. If you chase after someone else’s definition of success, you’ll probably find you’re not very happy when you get there. Second, be truthful with yourself. Know what’s going to make you happy, or you’ll never know it when you get there. Third, remember to take a few moments to be happy along the journey. It’s that whole thing about happiness being a journey, not a destination. I have a lot of friends who grind every second of the day writing book after book because they’re chasing a particular sales number or dollar figure. Don’t let yourself fall into that rut. It will burn you out and make you end up hating the industry.Define success in your own terms. @PaigeTyler #AmWriting #AOTC Click To Tweet
Me: Tell me about your paranormal romantic suspense, WOLF HUNT (Special Wolf Alpha Team – SWAT).
A STORM IS BREWING…
Remy Boudreaux is back in his hometown, New Orleans. He’s there with three of his fellow Dallas SWAT officers for a week of training with the NOLA PD.
On the eve of a tropical storm, Remy and his buddies prowl the French Quarter. One tantalizing scent captures Remy’s senses, forcing him to follow until he is face to face with Triana Bellamy—his beautiful high school crush.
After reconnecting, Remy and Triana are close—very. Remy struggles to keep things casual.
Ever since his partner—and first love—was killed on the job, he’s kept women at a distance.
But when a mysterious wolf pendant ropes them both into danger, Remy’s protective instincts kick in. He may have to reveal his true self…and hope Triana accepts him.
Me: Share with us a favorite paragraph or two from your newest release, WOLF HUNT (Special Wolf Alpha Team – SWAT).
I think the part of every book in my Special Wolf Alpha Team (SWAT) Series that I love the most is when the hero learns whether the heroine can accept him for what he is—a werewolf. I can only give you a sneak peek of that part here because any more would be giving you spoilers!
Remy’s mouth curved. “When I saw you on the dance floor that first night here, it was like I found a part of my soul I didn’t even know was missing. I know this is going to sound crazy, but I feel so connected to you that sometimes I experience things you’re feeling, both physical and emotional. When you cut your finger the other night, I felt it. When Quinn knocked you unconscious in the warehouse, I felt it. When you were terrified Lee was going to kill your mother, I felt it. Last night, I felt your confusion and despair when you were upstairs with your mother. When you’re in a room, I can feel you nearby. It’s like you’re a part of me.”
Triana pulse skipped a beat. “I can feel you too.”
He looked at her in surprise. “You can?”
She nodded. “Uh-huh. At Lee’s house, I could feel you in the hallway outside the living room; then later at Mom’s place, I could feel you downstairs. And when you walked into the shop tonight, I knew it was you before I even turned around. This must be what Mom meant when she told me about The One.”
“She told you about that? What did she say?”
“That every werewolf has one soul mate out there who can love and accept them for what they are.”
Remy took her hands in his. “Can you love me…knowing what I am?”
You can find Paige here:
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Abbie Roads writes dark emotional novels featuring damaged characters, but always gives her hero and heroine a happy ending… after torturing them for three hundred pages. RACE THE DARKNESS and HUNT THE DAWN are available now! SAVING MERCY Book 1 in the Fatal Truth Series is now available.