Guest Spot – Author, Theresa Stoddard

by sjbgilmour

Author guest spots on blogs.  We’ve all done them, and most of us with blogs like hosting them.  Here’s my version.  I’m starting off with some lovely (though sometimes quite mad) friends I know through social media.

Author Expose with 20 Questions – Hard, fast, random and possibly embarrassing

Hi Theresa.  Great to have you here.  Now, before we get into the meaty stuff, let’s get the formalities out of the way.

 Author name (just in case it’s different from what’s up there in the title of this post):

T.R. Stoddard

Bio: – must include city & country, age, marital status/dependants – after that, it’s up to you:

Am I filling out an interview or my taxes? Orlando, Fl, US, LTR, Harry PAWter (a lovely rescue American Eskimo mix).

Latest release:

Finding Sanity. It just came out in paperback, actually. *wiggles eyebrows*

Synopsis: Waking up in solitary confinement is never fun for anyone, and Randall is no exception. He is subjected to relive crucial moments from his past until he finds himself out on his own, free. Deciphering what is real vs. fantasy is half the fun. He finds new love, but as always an old flame complicates things. His reality and fantasy worlds collide putting him in a very compromising position. Can he make it out with his relationships intact?

Current Work In Progress: (pick just one WIP please!)

The W in WIP clearly stands for WORKS. How can I pick one? Alright, alright. I’ll play nice. Aluria: The Prophecy is the closes to completion.

About ATP: Sixteen year old Skye Daria Stone is on the run from her problems when falls down the proverbial rabbit hole. Through an impromptu boat ride on a magical river, she finds herself transported to an unfamiliar land. The Alurian people are forced to live in hiding underground and need her help to save their world. Skye is the one from their prophecies, and she is the only hope to defeat Lord Furgsion.

Lord Furgison, a ruthless dictator set on destroying the Utopian Alurians, controls a physical representation of the seven deadly sins. Greed, Anger, Pride, Sloth, Gluttony, Envy and Lust aren’t all that answer to his malevolent call. At every turn, a creature influenced by his evil tries to cut the journey short.

Pizza – with or without anchovies?

Without. Let’s just stick to the cheese, please. If I’m feeling adventurous, throw me the Hawaiian!

And now the 20 questions…

1  Let’s start off with your writing style.  Plotter or Pantser?

I’m a pantser. I write and my characters take the reins. They tend not to get cocky, because they know I’ll kill them if they lead me astray.

2  And just how disciplined are you when it comes to your writing.  Do you set yourself goals for word-count or pages, that sort of thing?

I am rebellious. Thus I rebel against anything set. No, myself, I won’t write so many words. I tend to write and if I am in a good spot, I can write indefinitely.

3  Who does your cover art?

Karabeth, my publisher has taken care of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell covers, and Catherine Stovall created a lovely stand-in cover for Dark Hearts for which I am currently seeking representation.

4  In twenty words or fewer, what do you think the future looks like for traditional publishers?

Traditional publishing will hold true. Indies will grow, but won’t kill the big six.

5  Now I know we all put a lot of ourselves into our novels, but I’m also curious about what we leave out.  Are there any aspects of yourself that you’d like to work into a character that you haven’t already?

I find fiction is more interesting than anything I could lace into my characters. They tend to not believe in god, they get that from me.

6  What about the reverse?  Are there any experiences you give your characters that you’d love to try but haven’t yet?  Be honest – a “No comment” will result in me making something up, probably sexual.

My characters are pretty bad people, so I might be better off with a crazy scenario. One of my characters finds out she’s a witch, that’d be cool.

7  I’m sick of reading about which authors writers admire.  What was the last book you just couldn’t finish & why?

Are we getting down to the nitty-gritty and naming names? Good. The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling. I wanted to love it. I tried to read it, I was bored to death!

8  Who is your celebrity crush right now?

Zooey Deschanel and Alexander Skarsgard. The former is only in a universe where I’m a lesbian. If I were, she’s my total first pick followed by Lily Allen.

9  Sorry about that.  Told you there’d be random questions in this thing.  Let’s get back to the types of books you read.  It’s pretty safe to say most writers read – either willingly or they force themselves – a variety of genres.  What about the styles in those genres?  I always have trouble reading first person, present tense.  Are there any styles you like more than others?

As long as a story hooks me in the first few pages, they’ve got me. I don’t care if it’s a 73 year old transvestite bodybuilder, actually that sounds pretty interesting. You get the gist, interest me and that is the best style.

Okay here are a few hot-topic questions.

10  Censorship.  Where do you stand?

Don’t fucking censor me, bitch. Unless it’s a word I don’t like…then I’ll censor the f*ck out of you.

11  Some writers make their work DRM free so the files can be copied, traded, shared etc.  Some go bananas at the very idea.  How do you feel about it with relation to your own work?

It’s my precioussssssssss. But in all seriousness, pay for it or ask me for a review copy. I don’t like this free love stuff when I get none of it.

12  Are there any trends in the lit/publishing world you hope will end soon?  If so, what are they?

50 shades of etc. Get over it. Mom porn is sooooo trendy. This is worse than sparkly vamps.

Let’s get back to some other random pieces and bits.

13  Have you ever read a book and wanted to slap the writer?  If so, what book, which writer, and why?

I would slap J.K. for The Causal Vacancy and ask her how she could create such a captivating series and then write such a droll piece. Seriously. I forced myself to the four chapter mark kicking and screaming.

14  When I’ve finished a draft and have it ready for beta readers, I set them a set of parameters within which to work – find errors, point out bits they find repetitive or annoying, and most importantly of all, watch for breaks in characters (Sarah wouldn’t say that!).  And, I want it done within three weeks.  What sort of demands do you place on your betas?

It is different for the individual betas. If I told you, I’d have to kill you…or make you a beta.

15  Have there been any scenes you’ve edited out because of a negative reaction from a beta, only to regret it once you released the work and got feedback from the public?

No. If I really want something,screw everyone else. Betas are suggestions, not rules.

16  We all joke about it, even though we could probably get in serious trouble if a real person thought we were basing a character on them, but have you ever given a character in your work traits from someone you know in real life?

I don’t have a living character that is based off of someone, but I do have one in mind.

17  Don’t name the real-life person, but which character in, in which book are you referring to?

You’ll know when the character comes to life, but of course you won’t know who. Or you’ll know who it’s based on, but won’t know the character.

18  What’s your most annoying habit?

When I write and I think it’s something very interesting, I will keep sending you snippets whether or not you ask me to. You literally have to say “Theresa stop sending me that.” And even then I’ll probably send a couple other segments assuring that they’re “really good!”

19  We’re all selling ebooks, but as a reader, how do you feel about them compared to paper?

I do love the convenience of ebooks, but often times I feel the longing for a good paperback. Sometimes I put off reading anything because I don’t have a nice “real” book to pick up.

20  Once I start a book, I usually know within the first few pages if I’m going to keep reading.  If I do decide to stick with it, I’ll often stay up late or ignore all manner of pressing tasks, just to finish the book.

What’s the worst thing you’ve put off because you were too busy reading? The normal things: sleep, eating, cleaning, spending time with loved ones, writing, I’ll pretty much put anything off for an amazing book.

There.  All done now.  Have a lollypop.  Now, before you go, where can we find you and your books?






FREE Finding Sanity Paperback Giveaway:

Thanks Theresa.  Now go get back to work!


 PS:  I read Finding Sanity and it rocked my socks.  Go get it.  Read it.  It’ll give you chills so you’ll be able to justify tucking in to a bigass bowl of mac ‘n cheese afterwards.