How would you like to win your very own signed ARC copy and matching bookmark of “Whisper”by Stacey R. Campbell? All you gotta do is tweet, facebook or reblog this interview to be entered into the giveaway. A winner will be chosen on Sunday, the 23rd of February. Don’t miss your chance!
*US residents only please
Tell us a little about you and your writing career.
I was told at a very young age I would never be a writer.
I have a learning disability called dyslexia and process things differently then other people do.
Reading was very difficult for me and at first I couldn’t do it. Now you’ll never find me without a book.
Writing was hard too, letters didn’t seem to make sense.
Thirty-five years after I was told I could never write, I took our three daughters to lunch and a street reporter approached us. “What do you want to be when you grow up?” He asked for an article he was writing for our local newspaper.
Our eldest daughter Blakely, who was seven at the time, said “A princess.” Our middle daughter Leigh, age six, answered “A teacher.” Our youngest, Halle age four, blurted out “A monster.”
When the microphone turned to me I declined to answer.
When we went home that afternoon I realized, how can I tell our children they could be whatever they wanted to be if I didn’t do the same.
The next day I started writing.
What inspired you to write your first novel?
Hush, is not the first novel I have written, but it is my first published work. I am a true believer in “when first you do not succeed, try, try again.” With writing, as other things, the more you do it, the better you get.
My first novel took three years to write, Hush took six months.
The idea for Hush came to me one night at the dinner table.
Our middle daughter Leigh asked where her red hair came from.
“Queen Elizabeth,” my husband said.
Our daughter Blakely, twelve at the time, immediately clued into her father’s reference to the British Royal Family and asked, “Does that mean I could be a princess?”
“Only if several hundred people died first,” I laughed.
“But what if that happened? What if there was some sort of big family reunion and everyone else died?”
Years later when Blakely left for boarding school, I started Hush as a way to stay in touch with her. I would write a couple of chapters and email them to her, and then she would tell me what she thought. It was a great way to still be part of her life without actually being there.
Have you found being a published author to be much different than you expected it to be?
Yes. I had no idea how hard it was to be a published author.
You pour yourself onto the page and then go through rounds of rewrites that can last up to a year before you ever get to print.
Then, even when a reputable house publishes you, you have to market your book. I didn’t realize how much non- writing work being published required.
I remember thinking, “Yay, my book is published. Now I can go back to my desk and get back to writing the next novel.”- Nope.
Can you offer a brief description of what your books are about, including genre and age group?
Hush, book one in the Lakeview Academy Series, is the story of an unknown princess who is discovered by an undercover student journalist and hunted down by terrorists on the campus of her elite boarding school.
Whisper, book two in the Lakeview Academy Series, tells the story of enemies who come together to solve a hundred year old mystery after finding a haunted journal that hints at a lost school treasure.
I wrote both books for our eldest daughters, Blakely and Leigh. In each book I used their name for the lead character and let them pick out whom they want their leading man to resemble. If you go to my Pinterest page, www.pinterest.com/srcampbellwrite, you can see the results.
Because our daughters go to a highly competitive school I thought it would be fun to write something for them to read when they weren’t neck deep in class work. Basically a quick, fun, simple, page turner.
I also noticed a huge gap in the YA market for books that weren’t too young or, on the opposite side of the spectrum, too sexually explicit.
Fortunately they are finally beginning to split up the Young Adult genre (technically ages twelve and up) into two different groupings putting the more sexually charged books under the new category of, New Adult.
That being said, I write my Lakeview Books for the thirteen to seventeen year old with hopes of entertaining people of all ages.
If you could meet any famous author that ever lived, who would it be and why?
Off the top of my head I would have to say JK Rowling. I know it’s not very original, but she believed in herself and her story when no one else did which is very hard to do. Plus in my opinion, she has one of the most amazing imaginations out there.
When can we expect your next book and can you tell us anything about your WIP?
Book 3 in the Lakeview Series, Scream, has an estimated release of spring 2015 and stars our youngest daughter Halle. I’ve stepped away from the paranormal and the book time span is over a few months instead of a full school year. It will be the last book in the series set on the Lakeview campus.
A teaser, in the form of the first three chapters, will in the back of Whisper when it comes out on March 15th.
I am happy to announce that there will be a book four, Silence.
Silence, estimated release spring 2016, will be set in Europe and brings back several characters from the first book in the series, Hush.
In addition to the Lakeview books, I have a middle grade pirate yarn called ARRGH, coming out this September and a picture book, Sock Monster, being released shortly after in October.
Where can we find you and your books?
You can find my books in book stores everywhere, if they aren’t on the shelf just ask the clerk to order it.
They are also available online at Amazon, Barns and Noble and through iBook.
If your school, or book club wants to do a Skype event, you can order books directly through my publisher, Kari Hock at Green Darner Press.
What is the best piece of advice you have received about writing?
The best piece of advice I ever received was from my husband who told me to go for it. He’s been my best friend for the last twenty-five years, not a day goes by when I’m not thankful I actually listened to him that day.
My final thoughts return to reading.
I truly believe that one must be a good reader before they can be a good writer.
For kids and adults, like myself, who struggle, I want to say that there is no such thing as a bad reader.
Explore different genres.
There really is something out there for everyone.
Don’t be worried if you are a slow reader or don’t understand certain things, just have fun.
For more information or if you just have a question, visit my website www.staceyrcampbell.com, come visit me on Facebook -authorstaceyrcampbell, or find me on twitter @staceyrcampbell