It’s Author Interview Thursday! Woohoo! Today’s special guest interviewed me on her blog a few weeks ago. Well, today she gets to sit on my hot seat and answer all my questions. Muhahaha! Ok, enough of my ‘The Count’ from Sesame Street impersonation and let’s get right to it. Speaking to her over the last few weeks and visiting her blog, it’s clear to see she’s in this for the long haul. Her book covers stand out and you can tell a lot of thought was put into creating them. I got introduced to her by Sharon Ledwith who is a great connector of authors and readers. I’d really like you to connect with her at one of the links she provides in our interview as she’s a wonderful person to know and learn from. With that been said, please join me in welcoming Lisa Orchard.
Can you tell us a little bit about the first time someone complemented you on something you had written?
Sure. One of the first and best compliments I have ever received was from a mother who read “The Super Spies and the Cat Lady Killer” with her daughter. The story sparked a conversation between them about what her daughter would do if she were in the same situation as the main character. I loved that my story helped them bond. It was a wonderful feeling.
What can a reader expect when they pick up a Lisa Orchard book?
Hmmm. Good question. They can expect an entertaining, thought provoking story. Readers have said that I write an unpredictable mystery. I was so excited to hear that because it means I’ve accomplished one of my goals with my stories.
You’ve gone the traditional route and are published by Astraea Press. What would you say are the advantages you’ve experienced compared to a self-publisher?
I would have to say the advantages are the fact that I didn’t have to pay for an editor or cover artist. I received both excellent editing advice and I absolutely love my covers. There’s also an excellent writer community with the Astraea Press authors. This community helps with marketing and social media strategies.
What tips can you give us in terms of working with a publisher to ensure your vision for a story doesn’t get diluted or compromised by the demands of a publisher?
Good question. Keep in mind; I only have my experience with Astraea Press to guide me with this answer. My experience with Astraea has been that they work with the author to make sure there is no dilution or comprising of the story. They’re very attuned to making sure that doesn’t happen.
Know your market. I can’t stress that enough.
You’ve published three books in the Super Spies series. Was it a conscious decision to write a series and what led you to do it?
Yes. It was a conscious decision to write a series and what led me to do it was that I enjoyed reading series when I was younger, so a series was the most natural way for me to go.
What have you found to be a successful way to market your books?
I’ve found the best way to market my books is to get in front of my readers. I do classroom visits that are very effective and writing workshops with various girls’ groups near me.
What were some of your favourite books as a child?
The Laura Ingalls Wilder Series, Nancy Drew, The Boxcar Children, Trixie Belden, and The Bobbsey Twins just to name a few.
Dialogue that doesn’t move the story forward.
What book or film has the best dialogue that inspires you to be a better writer and why?
I would have to say the book “Frozen Fire.” I thought the dialogue was wonderful and it helped me to be less wordy.
What is your definition of success as an author?
Ahhh…good question. I would say success for me as an author would be having a positive impact on my fans. Although, I’d be excited to hit the New York Times Bestsellers list or the USA Today Bestseller’s list as well.
Toy Story or Shrek?
This is a tough one, because I watched both movies with my kids and liked them both. I’m going to have to go with Shrek though. There’s just something about that loveable old ogre.
Check out the Great Lakes. They’re gorgeous and it’s so relaxing by the water. An event that’s worth attending is ArtPrize in Grand Rapids. It’s inspiring to see the creativity of the artists in the area.
What can we expect from Lisa Orchard in the next 12 months?
I’ve just completed a Coming of Age Young Adult Novel titled, “Gideon Lee.” I’m excited about it and I can’t wait until its release date. It’s with an editor now and she’s checking it out. She read the first few pages and didn’t want to put it down. I think that’s a great sign!
Where can readers and fans connect with you?
You can find me at these social media sites:
Any advice for authors out there who are either just starting out or getting frustrated with the industry?
Keep plugging away! You’ll get there. I know it’s frustrating, but keep writing and persevere.
Couldn’t agree more with you Lisa. At the London Book Fair, Jasinda Wilder talked about how her big breakthrough came on book 26! Imagine if she had quit on Book 25? It’s been an absolute pleasure having you today Lisa and your pearls of wisdom were and are appreciated. Lisa and I would love to hear your comments on our interview, so leave a few lines in the comments section below. You can also grab a copy of Lisa’s book at the link below and do remember to share this interview on your social circles.