Welcome! Pull up a seat and enjoy a chat with Today’s Tease Laurie Boris
Your Name or Pen Name you use: Laurie Boris
Publisher you work for: My first novel, The Joke’s on Me, was published through 4RV Publishing; the rest are self-published.
Title or Position: I have no title, and my most frequent position is sitting upright in front of the computer.
Title of the book you are promoting: Don’t Tell Anyone
Link to purchase your Book:
Amazon author’s page: http://www.amazon.com/author/laurieboris
Don’t Tell Anyone (US): http://www.amazon.com/Dont-Tell-Anyone-ebook/dp/B00AGPB3KA
Don’t Tell Anyone (UK): http://www.amazon.co.uk/Dont-Tell-Anyone-ebook/dp/B00AGPB3KA
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Other Special Talents we should know about: I can juggle. I’m also an editor and proofreader.
Welcome LB…I, LH have some questions for you 😉
LH: I wanted to be a ballerina, race car driver and a private detective when I was little. What did you want to be when you grew up?
LB: I wanted to play second base for the New York Mets. Then I wanted to be a marine biologist, until I saw Jaws. Then I wanted to be Lois Lane, until I heard how bad the pay was.
LH: A little birdie told me you do more than write…it says you are actually involved in the editing end of things. Can you tell us about that?
LB: Yes! I love editing and proofreading. My mother, who’d gone back to get her degree when my brothers and I began school, first identified this ability when I started correcting her term papers. I like the puzzle of it and enjoy helping other indie authors put their best manuscripts forward.
LH: I didn’t really have a literary influence, I just decided one day to start writing. Who influenced you in your writing career?
LB: I could write a whole blog post about that. A high school English teacher whom I especially admired gave me an assignment to keep a journal. I thought I’d be mortified, because he intended on reading it, but I enjoyed his positive comments in the margins. He encouraged me to keep writing. I did it in fits and starts, but I never really took it seriously until I was between gigs as a freelance graphic artist. My boyfriend at the time gave my short stories to a novelist friend. She thought I had potential. The short stories led to a novel, which lead to another novel, and so on, and so on.
LH: I self published all of my books and was then “discovered” by a publisher. Are you an Indie or published author?
LB: I went the other way. My first novel was published by a small traditional press. They are lovely, but most small presses have little in the marketing budget. So I was responsible for much of the marketing and promotion. When my second book was market-ready, I figured that I knew so much already, why not try to self-publish? I’ve been working on my own ever since.
LH: As an Indie Author, I was hesitant about being with a publishing company. If you are an Indie author, would you like to be published by a traditional publisher and if so, why or why not?
LB: No, I don’t think so. I like the freedom I enjoy to set my own publishing schedule, work with my own editors, run my own promotions, and hire my cover designer of choice: my husband.
LH: This is easy for me…I’d invite Johnny Depp and I would not discuss movies! Who would you invite to dinner, living or dead, and what one topic would you NOT discuss with them?
LB: I’d love to invite Tom Robbins. He’s one of my favorite writers and seems like he’d be an interesting guy to shoot the breeze with. I would NOT bring up the awful movie that was made from Even Cowgirls Get the Blues.
LH: I personally think that there is way too much sex and violence everywhere in society these days and that Hollywood is one of the biggest contributors. It’s kind of ironic that we’re in the business of selling sex and violence. Ever feel conflicted and if so, why?
LB: I’m not big on violence in films. Gory scenes give me nightmares. So I shy away from violence in my books. Sex is a part of life, and a good sex scene can illuminate character and advance the plot. But if sex and violence fit the book and the characters, why not use them? If these scenes are added on because you think they should be there, or if you think the audience expects them, the scenes will feel tacked on and wrong.
LH: I’m a huge softy and by no means a beauty queen…but, I truly would want world peace in the blink of an eye if I could make it happen…If you could change one thing in the world, in the blink of an eye, what would it be?
LB: I would make it so gray-haired ladies are revered as goddesses. Then we’d get on that world peace thing.
LH: This was a secret…but I didn’t finish high school and got married at 17 therefore, my manuscripts are a nightmare for my editor. What is the worst part of editing for you? What makes you cringe? What punishment would you hand out for that offense?
LB: I’m probably strange, I know, but I love the editing process. I’ve always loved puzzles and challenges. When I edit my own work, what makes me cringe is my frequent use of pet phrases and gestures. What makes me cringe in client manuscripts? Not much. I know we’re all learning, and authors have hired me to help. But some days I would like to outlaw the ellipsis.
LH: I spend ¾ of my typical day marketing and promoting. The other ¼ of my time is writing. How do you split up a typical day?
LB: It depends what I have on my schedule. So I tend to mark up blocks of time throughout the week rather than by day. I’d say a quarter of the time goes to writing. A quarter goes to marketing and promotion. The rest I reserve for clients.
LH: I can remember wanting to write as a kid. I got a really late start! Have you always wanted to be in this business and when did you start?
LB: Although I wrote fiction since high school or so, I never saw myself as a novelist until I turned thirty. Then that was all I wanted to do. I joined a critique group, took classes, and attended workshops to improve my craft.
LH: I love to see if I can see myself in a character. What interests you most about a story?
LB: The characters are the beating heart of the story to me. If they don’t feel real, I lose interest.
LH: For me, I just get hit with this whole movie in my head and start writing. How do you come up with your stories?
LB: A character drops in and tells me a story. I “hear” it all first. I hear the dialogue. My first drafts often read like screenplays. I flesh them out with visuals in subsequent drafts.
LH: I can’t tell you or I’d have to…lol Are you working on anything now?
LB: Yes! My writing landscape is moving from New York’s Hudson Valley, where I live and where I’ve set my first three novels, to Boston. I used to live there and miss it terribly. I have a new novel, Sliding Past Vertical, coming out in September. And I’m in the first draft of what I hope will be a trio of novels with interlocking characters.
LH: I write for fun I don’t even dream of riches…What are you in this for?
LB: Because I can’t seem to stop! I love to lose myself in writing about other peoples’ lives. I’ve held many other jobs, mostly in graphic design and marketing, but writing fulfills me like nothing else. I write to learn, I write to find out what happens next, I write for the fun of it. Sometimes I forget that part, though.
LH: I began my writing career in 2012. When did you get into the publishing industry and why? When did you start writing and editing?
LB: I wrote my first novel in the early 1990s. That was when you had two fairly good options for publishing (large press or small press) and one not-so-great one (self-publishing, often denigrated as “vanity publishing” back then). So I started hunting for a literary agent and received enough rejections to wallpaper a room. I critiqued, edited, and proofread informally for friends through that time, to get more experience on that end. At a certain point, I tired of knocking my head against the wall and wrote manuscript after manuscript without trying to sell them. The editing came along formally around 2006, when I left a full-time job and pursued a freelance career.
LH: Some of my family members had a bit of a problem with me writing my first book “A Beautiful Liar” because the character Maggie West is basically me…to a point 😉 They had a problem with the genre and me “putting it all out there” so to speak so I took a pen name. They eventually came around as I have never cared who knows who I am what I’ve done or what they think of me. I’ve never wanted to be famous, just infamous! What has been your biggest problem when it comes to family or friends when writing?
LB: My biggest problem with family and friends is getting to see them enough because I spend nearly all of my non-working time writing or marketing. But my mother-in-law saw herself in every character who smoked and was quite vocal about it to anyone who would listen.
LH: When I get to the part of “writers I don’t want to” I work on my blog and one of the other million projects I have going on or watch Grey’s Anatomy reruns. Do you ever suffer from “editors don’t want to” and if so, what do you do about it as I’m sure you “have” to as you have deadlines whereas, I don’t?
LB: It’s not as much suffering from “writers don’t want to” or “editors don’t want to” but that I need to take breaks and recharge. There’s only so much book I can fit into my head at one time before the words start swirling together. I don’t want to rush my clients’ work or come to their manuscripts at less than full capacity. To me, that’s not fair. I’ve been freelancing for a long time so I like to think I’m pretty good at budgeting out the time it will take to complete a project. That way, I can build in the breaks. I’ll take a walk, go for a swim, or watch The Big Bang Theory reruns.
LH: I’ve had many, many jobs over the years. I honestly don’t know what I’d be doing at this stage of my life if I weren’t writing. What would you be doing now if you weren’t in this industry?
LB: I probably would have jumped off a bridge long ago or joined the circus. At one point I had an application for clown college (yes, there is one), but I talked myself out of it.
LH: I get asked all the time “Do you have any advice for new writers?”… Do you?
LB: Know that everyone starts at square one. Stephen King, TC Boyle, Joyce Carol Oates…they were all new writers once, too. You might have natural storytelling chops, but it could take a while to build your craft. Be patient with yourself and do the work. Get the critiques and learn from them. That will build your confidence and you’ll learn to trust your own voice.
LH: I would not change one thing in my life as I would not be me if I did… If you could go back in time and change one thing in your life, what would it be?
LB: Maybe I’d reconsider a few awful hairstyles, especially that Bo Derek thing back in 1980. Or that decision to sell my Apple stock.
LH: If I could go back in time and tell someone something, I’d go back and tell the founding fathers they were doing a few things wrong…If you could go back in time and tell someone something, who would you tell and what would you tell them?
LB: I don’t think I’d mess with politics or history. I would like to go back and tell a few loved ones how much I admired them and how much they meant to me. I didn’t get to do it when they were alive. Although I might go back to my younger self and tell her to lighten up a little and have more fun.
LH: I would freak out if someone contacted me and said they wanted to make one of my books or my series of book into a movie as I am really very shy in person and I’d probably go into hiding. I don’t think I could handle it. How would you handle it? Who would be the first person you told?
LB: I’d tell my husband; I’d call my parents. I’d probably do a bit of Snoopy-dancing. And then the panic would set in. What if they totally messed it up? I guess if the check were big enough, I wouldn’t care. I met a local author whose book, a rather nice love story, was made into one of Hollywood’s cheesiest and most maligned projects of all time. When asked about it, he shrugged and said, “It paid for my house.”
LH: You have to be totally honest here…As evidenced in my first book “A Beautiful Liar” Book One of the Maggie West Series…I can smell a lie a mile away. How badly did you want to correct my interview? Or did you?
LB: Um. Guilty. Formatting. I can’t help myself.
Thank you for that fun and honest interview LB…Now… for the fun stuff!
Favorite Beverage? Coconut milk. Or anything with a Sam Adams label.
Exercise or Bubble Bath? Exercise. I’m not much good at sitting around.
Favorite Color? Purple.
Take out or Dine in? Take out. I love to cook, but I don’t have much time for it these days.
Camping or Hotel? Hotel. Definitely. I hate bugs. I hate getting dirty. But I wish hotels had more comfortable beds.
Sports or Chocolate? You’re making me choose? Oh, mean! Okay, can I keep the chocolate if I cut the sports down to baseball?
Dogs or Cats? Both, but I grew up as a cat person.
Favorite Food? Anything Thai. Or cookies.
Favorite Song? Varies by the hour. Right it’s REM’s “Man On the Moon.” Tomorrow it could be something else.
Favorite Movie? Classic: Casablanca. Modern: When Harry Met Sally
Favorite Car? The cherry-red Corvette convertible Frankie owned in The Joke’s on Me.
Sex or Chocolate? (The answer “Both” is totally acceptable 😉 Okay, then. Both. But not together.
And now for the essay part of the interview 😉
If you could go anywhere for a week, with anyone you wanted and no one would ever find out about it…where would you go, what would you do and who would you take?
LB: Yummy question! Sorry, guys, but I don’t get enough alone time, so I’m heading off solo to an island resort. When I’m not walking on the beach, hiking a volcano, lounging in the hot tub, or getting a massage, I’ll be drinking beer, eating gourmet meals, and writing in my room. Other people will be cleaning up after me. And that bed had better be comfortable.
Thank you for spending this time with us. Make sure to pick up your copy of Laurie Boris’s
Don’t Tell Anyone