Carrie Lowrance is an Eastern transplant to the Midwest, living in Illinois for 18 years. She has always dreamed of writing and being published since childhood. She has a freelance writing certificate from Penn Foster Career School. During her school years she wrote for both her high school and college newspaper as well as the local paper. Her first book of poetry, Lithium Dreams And Melancholy Sunrise was published last year. She followed it up with her second book, The Safety Of Objects. In November she published her first children’s book, Don’t Eat Your Boogers (You’ll Turn Green). She hopes her stories will teach her young readers a lesson while having a lot of fun along the way. When she isn’t writing she enjoys spending time with her husband, friends and pets. She also enjoys cooking, baking, reading and a good cup of coffee.
What inspires you to write?
Lots of things inspire me to write. People I know or have known. Experiences I have had. Music also plays a big role in my writing. It gets me in the zone and keeps me there until I’m done. I listen to everything from Tony Bennett and Sarah Vaughn to Duncan Sheik and Adele to Sarah McLachlan and Sheryl Crow to Theory Of A Deadman, Bullet For My Valentine and Five Finger Death Punch. It just depends on what mood I’m in and what kind of music is connecting with me as I type.
Tell us about your writing process.
I’m pretty much a fly by the seat of my pants writer. Sometimes I will outline a few chapters or flesh out a character sketch, but very rarely. I usually put fingers to keyboard and let it fly. This has it’s pro’s and it’s con’s. The pro’s are I can get my ideas out and go with the flow until my prologue, chapter, etc is tapped out. The con’s are I have no structure. I have to go back and break down paragraphs and align dialogue and correct punctuation. (Sort of.) My limited outlining and character sketches usually go in a notebook. One of my biggest flaws as a writer is I can tell a story but when it comes to format, grammar and punctuation-forget about it. I’m always in desperate need of an editor.
However, if I’m doing a children’s book then I do have to sit down and figure out what I want my characters to look like. I need to figure out what I want my sketches to look like and how many to have. The first time around, this was very difficult. I think it will be a little easier next time around. However, what my illustrator comes up with is one thousand times better than what’s in my head. She is amazing.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I normally do not interact with my characters. However, the project I’m currently working on has me crying over my characters. I’m very emotionally invested in them and am trying to listen closely to where they are going in the story. I know how it will all end up but I can’t wait to see how we actually get there. (If you are a writer, you know exactly what I mean.) 🙂
Who are your favorite authors?
My favorite authors. Oh goodness, too many to count. I am a huge Debbie Macomber fan. I also love Nicholas Sparks and Nora Roberts. As far as suspense I like John Grisham and James Patterson. Humor/Fantasy: A. Lee Martinez.
Finance/Business: Dave Ramsey, Michael Hyatt, Timothy Ferris. Work: Jon Acuff, Dan Miller. Other miscellaneous authors I like are Terri Blackstock, Janice Thompson, Lucy Kevin, Karen Kingsbury, Stephen King and the list goes on and on.
Books that have made me stay up all night?
The Blossom Street series by Debbie Macomber
Stronger by Lexie Ray
Along Came A Spider by James Patterson
The Client by John Grisham
Do Over by Jon Acuff
She Belongs To Me by Carmen DeSousa
Of course there are many others, but these are the first to come to mind.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I saw a segment on CBS News about author Jasinda Wilder and how she self-published with Smashwords. It was a very informative segment and I figured if she could do it, I could too. I liked the idea of being in control and being able to write the best book possible without deadlines. I liked the idea of hiring my own people to do cover art and formatting and editing. I liked the idea of my book being distributed to outlets I could never get into if I were distributing on my own. (Barnes&Noble, ibooks, Kobo and internationally.) My print books are distributed through Createspace which I love also. It is all a learning process constantly, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I worry about traditional bookstores going under. I still like to hold a book in my hands and smell the paper. The day I can’t walk into a Barnes & Noble would be a tragedy. But on the flip side, I like having lots of books on my NOOK and not having to carry two books at one time in case I finish one. I think Indie authors will eventually make up a big part of the industry. Big time indies like Bella Andre and Jasinda Wilder have paved the way for the rest of us. If they can make six figure incomes, so can we. As long as we put out great content and constantly learn about marketing and promotion. I think we can all establish a great career as long as we are mindful and persistent. But more than anything, write because we love it.
What genres do you write?
What formats are your books in?