Saturday, February 4, 2012

Sylvia D. Lucas interview

1: What is the most productive time of the day for you to write?

The first half. After 2pm, I start sliding down in my chair.

2: Do you start your projects writing with paper and pen or is it all on the computer?

My hand is out of pen-and-pencil practice. I’ll use pen and paper for notes (I recently had to run for a pad of paper and pen to transcribe something from the Today Show so I could write a blog post countering their sexist and ageist position), but if I’m going to write at length, it must be on the computer. I can’t write fast enough by hand and start getting frustrated with how long it takes for the words to make it onto paper.

3: What do you draw inspiration from?

Empathy. Or, rather, a lack thereof. While writing something a couple of years ago, it hit me in a very real way how short life is, and how many of us mistreat it even in small ways. We have this chance to walk through it as happily as possible, and too many of us waste our time judging and condemning others, thereby making their one life less happy than it could be. We also waste too much time judging and condemning ourselves. So, the things I write usually try to create understanding toward others and encourage compassion for ourselves.

4: Do you set goals for yourself when you sit down to write such as word count?

Not anymore. Another one of the things I realized when I had this epiphany about how I wanted to spend my life (enjoying it and not taking it so seriously) was that writing is supposed to be fun. I write when I want to for as long as I want to, and not a second more.

5: Are you a published or a self published author and how do you come up with your cover art?

I’m both published and self-published as a writer, but the two books I’ve made available for Kindle are self-published. The cover for No Children, No Guilt was a collaboration with a graphic designer, and the cover for What Every Woman Wishes Modern Men Knew About Women was mine (but a different designer created the spine and back – and brilliantly!).

6: What drives you to choose the career of being a writer?

“Career” isn’t the word I’d use for my choice to write. I’ve been writing (without knowing I was really “writing”) since I was 12. It later became something I studied in school because it was the only thing I really wanted to spend my time doing (I went to grad school and received an MFA in creative writing). I guess the simple answer is, “I like it.”

7: Do you own an ebook reading device?

I do.

8: Who are some of your favorite authors and What are you reading now?

My favorites are the authors who write about the human condition. I like John Steinbeck, Margaret Atwood, Dorothy Parker…

9: What do you think of book trailers and do you have any plans to have any?

I think they’re a lot of fun to make, but I don’t know that the message the author tries to get across is the one the audience necessarily receives. Fun: yes. Effective: No idea. Time consuming: somewhat. But if you feel like making one, why not? No harm done. (Wait – that might not be true. If viewers get the wrong impression of the book, you could lose a sale. This is a tough one.)

10: How did you come up with the title of your latest book?

What Every Woman Wishes Modern Men Knew About Women went through a few title changes. It started out as What Every Man Should Know About Women.  Boring. Then a male friend who has a daughter and is disappointed in men suggested the title, Modern Men are Worthless. I almost went with it, because I thought it was funny, but after some reflection, I decided it was a bad idea. No one could know my feelings about men (love them sincerely and deeply) and might think I was man-bashing, and that was the last thing I wanted anyone to think. And as inflammatory – and therefore, as attention-getting – as the title might be, I couldn’t be the type of person who would be a jerk just to make sales. You know—like Ann Coulter. So, I went with the title that was, yes, significantly longer, but most true to the message. (What isn’t revealed in the title is that this is as much a book for women as it is for men.)

11: What are you working on now that you can talk about?

A recent reviewer, Geek and Jock, gave it 7/10 stars, explaining the scoring like this:
Pros: There is certainly great education for both men and women, of all adult ages
Cons: Lots of subject matter relevant to the topic remains uncovered. Do I smell a sequel?

So…maybe a sequel.

What Every Woman Wishes Modern Men Knew About Women
No Children, No Guilt

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for the interview, Kipp.

    I should clarify that in the last answer, when I say "it," I'm referring to What Every Woman...

    - Sylvia