Today at Author Stalker we have Amy Harmon. She is a Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and New York Times Bestselling author. I love her writing so much. She does not just gives readers books, but a unique reading experience.
Me: Hi, Amy! Thank you for taking the time to answer a few questions.
Amy: I am happy to be here.
Me: How long have you been writing?
Amy: I’ve been writing all my life, but didn’t write my first full-length novel until about ten years ago.
Me: What inspires you when you’re writing? What authors inspire you?
Amy: I’m inspired by lots of things. Music, conversation, real-life news stories, ideas triggered by the books I read and the movies I watch. Inspiration is everywhere. I’m inspired by authors who take the time to write well–to work on the phrasing and the tempo, the words and the ideas. I can tell within a paragraph if the author has real writing chops or not, and I care much more about that than I do plot or originality. If I’m going to read, I want to read a well-written book. There are so many great writers out there–Tarryn Fisher, Penny Reid, Jewel E. Ann, JM Darhower, Colleen Hoover, Mariana Zapata, Tiffany Reiz, Grace Draven . . . I can go on and on. And I like them all for different reasons. But the one thing they have in common is their writing skill.
Me: What was the first book that you published and how did you feel when you published it? Were you excited or scared?
Amy: I didn’t know what I was getting into, otherwise I would have been more terrified than I was. I just had the blind faith that I could write as well or better than anyone out there, and of course I could publish! It’s funny now to think of my quiet confidence, but that confidence has served me well my whole life.
Me: What’s the most important part of a well-written novel for you? (Storyline, character development/layers)?
Amy: Characters are always the most important part of any story–are they believable, are they real, are they compelling, are they fleshed out –and I work very hard on my characters.
Me: Who has been your favorite character to write?
Amy: I can’t choose a favorite because they are like real people to me, and it feels wrong to compare them.
Me: What has been the most challenging thing for you writing-wise?
Amy: The hardest book to write was From Sand and Ash, my first historical, because the subject matter was so vast and heavy, and I had to do so much research for every detail.
Me: How do you deal with writer’s block?
Amy: I don’t struggle with writer’s block as much as I struggle with writer’s dread. Making myself sit down and start is a battle every day. Self-doubt and fatigue sap me creatively, and with every book the pressure worsens. The only thing that combats writer’s block is writing, just like the only thing to curb hunger is eating. The inspiration comes in the doing.
Me: What can you tell us about your latest book, The Smallest Part?
Amy: The Smallest Part is a character spin-off from The Law of Moses. It is about the young psychologist from that novel, who has a very small role in The Law of Moses. It isn’t necessary to read Moses first, although I think those readers that knew Moses going into The Smallest Part were excited to see him again, albeit briefly. The Smallest Part is about three friends and the complicated childhood that binds them together. It is a story about second chances and how love grows from loss and sometimes our soul mates are standing right in front of us.
Me: Any new projects you have been working on?
Amy: I have another historical–WHAT THE WIND KNOWS–coming out in January of 2019, and I am just starting work on a new fantasy series.
Me: What is your advice to newbie writers?
Amy: Don’t write with thoughts of riches or renown. Write the best story you can, word by word, paragraph by paragraph, page by page, and when you’re done, then you can think about sharing it with the world. Finish your novel. Then worry about the rest.
Me: Thank you so much for answering my questions. I hope you come back.
You can find out more about Amy Harmon on the following: