My name is Tory Richards, and I’m a proud grandmother who likes to read and write smut, otherwise known as erotic romance. Born in Maine, I’ve spent most my life in Florida. For many years my passion of writing stories remained a secret between me and my manual typewriter, electric typewriter, and finally my first computer. Once my family found out what I’d been doing all those years they encouraged me to submit to a publisher, and the rest, as they say, is history.
I’m proud to say my first book, under my real name Debbie Wallace, was on the publisher’s bestsellers list for two consecutive months!
A couple years ago I retired from Disney, and now spend my time between family, friends, cats, and writing. I have the perfect life.
What inspires you to write?
Many things can inspire me. The rain, a good storm, the ocean, the mountains, dreams, an incident. I can just be sitting in my chair when something will pop into my head and somehow it becomes a story. Inspiration might come from something I see on TV, or read in a book. One book I wrote, It’s All in the Jeans, came from real life events that happened when my hubby and I moved to a retirement park for the first time. Because I was so much younger than the people who lived there, some of the things that went on amused me.
Tell us about your writing process.
I usually write the whole book from beginning to end, which I guess you can say is a rough draft. Then I go through it and add what I call the meat, or fillers. One sentence might turn into a whole paragraph. Once I do that then I’ll do spell & grammar checks. Revise, revise, and revise. If I self publish at that point I’ll send it to my editor. When it comes back I’ll go in and make the changes. Then I put out a call for readers who would like to go over it for anything that might have been missed. Usually find about five BETA. I make the changes each time it comes back to me. I’ll do spell and grammar checks one last time. Once it’s as good as it can be I’ll format it for Smashwords, and Amazon.
Each story gets what I call a cheat sheet. I’ll list all the characters names, ages, and descriptions. I’ll also make notes on names of places, and anything else significant to that story. The reason I do this is because I have a habit of working on more than one project at a time. Or if I get writer’s block I’ll move on to something else. It might be months before I make it back to the other story, and that’s where the cheat sheet comes in handy. Also, reading the story from the beginning to where I left off helps get the flow back to continue.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Sometimes. Especially when I feel a particular scene isn’t working out, or I don’t like something, I’ll sit back and listen to them. Many times when I’m writing a scene I’ll close my eyes and picture my characters in my head, and work the scene out before I write it.
What advice would you give other writers?
Never give up. You have to believe in yourself if you want someone else to, too. Expect rejections and bad reviews, and try not to take them personal. Not everyone is going to like what you write. If they’re good reviewers they’ll leave you constructive criticism that hopefully you can learn from.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I was doing some research on the computer when I came across Whiskey Creek Press, an online publishing site. I didn’t really know anything about it as I’d never heard of ebooks before. So I did some reading up on them, checked out some other sites, and decided, what did I have to lose? I submitted Cupid’s Arrow to Whiskey Creek Press and within a month I was offered a contract. That book was on their best sellers list for two consecutive months! It was a fluke really, because I honestly didn’t think anything would come of my submission. If I had I probably would have given the book a different title.
It’s so much easier going the epublisher route, too. Everything is done online and the process moves along faster. Plus epubs aren’t as strict with their guidelines with regard to content, word count, etc. They offer a broader platform for the author who writes the unusual. And the best part is that once your book is published it’s out there forever!
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I believe we’re going to see more online publishing of ebooks, and less print copies. Even big name publishers like Harlequin have gotten on board and now offer ebooks. There are just too many different reading devices out there, and new ones are coming out every day. We live in a fast paced world where people are multi-tasking while on the go. A reading device offers them the opportunity to download hundreds of books where they can pick and choose depending on the time they have for reading, or maybe their mood. It’s much easier pulling out a Kindle than carrying around a print book, and think of the resources we’ll save in the end! Ebooks are here to stay. I’m published with some companies that have been around since the beginning of epublishing, and they’re flourishing.
What do you use?
Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?
erotic, contemporary, suspense, romance
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print