Did anyone ever tell you that you were too old to start writing? Have you ever felt that maybe you were out of your league and should just forget about the idea of being a writer?
No one ever told me I was "too old" but I didn't receive a lot of encouragement. I took a writing course that helped guide me in the right direction. I've never considered not writing since I started, even when I sometime want to throw the computer out the window. The next day will usually be better.
You write for beginning readers, tweens and YA. Which is more challenging? Which genre do you feel more comfortable writing?
I think writing for young children is harder. Every word has to count. I'm more comfortable writing YA.
I love everything Christmas and I see you have a new book out called Tumbleweed Christmas. How did this story evolve? I understand it is nominated for the Cybils Award. Can you explain to my readers what that means?
How long did it take for you to get your first book published? How many publishers did you contact? What do you know now about publishing that you wished you had learned earlier?
My first book took about two years to be published. I'd say most of the "big" publishers had a chance. I thought the only way to go was with N Y houses. I went with an ePublisher finally. Now, I love Indie publishers.
Can you think of any special event that happened when you were doing either a book signing, reading or other promotion that touched you and made you think – that’s the reason I write? At my recent signing for Tumbleweed, a 1st grade girl told me she wanted to be an artist. She loved looking at the illustrations in the book. When I showed her the picture of the artist she was so excited. Children (or teens) are the reason I write. If I can help them love books, I've done my job.
What words of advice do you have for starting out writers regardless of their age for encouragement?
Write for yourself, no matter your age. I seldom think about being a grandma when I'm writing. I'm me, a writer. Also, write what you enjoy reading. Never give up, no matter how many times your manuscript is returned with a "no thanks." Keep looking for the right publisher. Study how to write good query letters. Join a critique group to help you make your story the best it can be. And read, read, read.
Thank you for the great interview, Beverly. If you would like to learn more about her and her writing go to http://beverlystowemcclure.blogspot.com, or http://beverlystowemcclure.wordpress.com...
Her books are also available at Amazon, B&N, BAM,and Powell's (one of my favorite bookstores to visit when I'm in the area)