Tell us your name and then a bit about yourself.
Raised in the south, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Bestselling Author MariaLisa deMora learned about the magic of books at an early age. Every summer, she would spend hours in the local library, devouring books of every genre. Self-described as a book-a-holic, she says “I’ve always loved to read, but then I discovered writing, and found I adored that, too. For reading…if nothing else is available, I’ve been known to read the back of the cereal box.”
When you are writing a book, which is harder? The first book in the series or the others after it?
The ones that follow are by far the more difficult. While the characters have had a chance to solidify themselves, it’s up to the author to ensure that all future interactions remain true to the developed voices.
When writing a series how do you keep things fresh, for both your readers and also yourself?
Music. Music is my go-to for inspiration. When starting a new story I’ll scroll until I find something that tugs at my brain, then stick with that song until I need something different. One time, I listened to Baby Shark on repeat for nearly a week! Whatever is needed to get the job done.
Writing can be an emotionally draining and stressful pursuit. Any tips for aspiring writers?
Listen to your heart and brain when writing your characters and stories. The more outside voices get involved, the harder it is to remain true to the internal vision. And allow yourself time to process the emotions dug up by the scenes and interactions on the pages as you write. Be true to yourself first. I think Robert Frost encapsulated it best with his statement of “no tears in the writer, no tears in the reader.”
On a typical day, how much time do you spend writing?
Anywhere from 30 minutes to 14 hours, depending on the voices in my head.
Do you have a favorite character that you have written? If so, who? And what makes them so special.
One character comes to mind. Gunny is a biker in one of the MC series I’ve written, and the first time he entered the scene he stole it from the actual main character. Then he hijacked a good part of the rest of the book. By the time I’d spent about 10 weeks writing the book “Jase” (note that’s not Gunny’s name), I realized he really needed to have his own book. So I then spent about 2 weeks doing surgery on the manuscript, carefully culling the things that developed Gunny’s character out and setting it aside. Then, of course, Gunny’s book was the next published. Since then he hasn’t been quiet long. Oh no! Not Gunny! He’ll pop into a book without warning and I know we’re about to be off to the races as I try (emphasis on TRY) to control him. Right now he’s begging for another novella, and I’ll probably give in at some point. Just to shut him up, if for no other reason!
What is your definition of success?
Satisfaction in the end product. It’s not about getting letters, even if I do use the Wall Street Journal and USA Today information on my covers. It’s about turning out a story that speaks to me. I know if I love it, then readers will too.
Do you have anything you want to share that didn’t fit on one of these questions?
For me, the connections made with readers at events are part of the joy of writing. Even though I’m not very outgoing, meeting readers and listening to their take on my stories — what it meant to them — is a very important facet of being an independent author. I have so many fans-to-friends folks that the books brought into my life, giving me a much richer tapestry of support to draw upon, I cannot imagine not going to events.
What are your social links?
What are your buy links? (Provide links to your Amazon/iBook’s/Koko/etc Author Home Page if you have quite a few. Also include audible links if applicable.)
Want tickets to Writers on the River #2024?
They are available starting November 6th at Writersontheriver.com
$75 VIP Plus – 11-12 Lunch with the Authors , 12-1 VIP hour, 1-4 General Admission time. You get a filled VIP bag and admission to the after party is included. *Limited Quantity expected to sell out first day*
$50 VIP -12-1 VIP hour, 1-4 General Admission time. You get a filled VIP bag and admission to the after party is included. *Expected to sell out first day*
$25 Early Access – 12-1 VIP house, 1-4 General Admission time. You also get a filled VIP bag but NO admission to the after party. *Expected to sell out opening day*
$10 General Admission – 1-4 General Admission time. You can purchase a bag but it is not filled with VIP swag. There is no admission to the after party included.
$35 After party – 7-11 After Party with food and cash bar. Dj with a photobooth is also included in the fun.