My name is Amanda Vega. I have e-published one of my young adult novels so far, with more to come. I live in South Carolina. I have two beautiful daughters and an extremely supportive husband. My favorite authors are Stephen King, John Grisham, and James Patterson. My favorite young adult authors are Addison Moore, Amanda Hocking, Stephanie Meyer and J.K. Rowling. I like to listen to music when I write. I like Skylar Grey, The Pretty Reckless, Taylor Swift and all different kinds of music depending on what I am writing.
Bio provided by author’s site
We had the pleasure of getting an opportunity to interview Amanda and learn more about her and a small glimpse into her life. So get comfortable and please give a warm welcome to Amanda!
1. What makes for a good hook in your stories? Where does your inspiration come from?
I usually think of one scene first and then the rest of the story evolves from there. For instance, with Changeling, I was rocking my second daughter who was a few weeks old and I came up with the opening scene. A new mother hears someone singing in the baby monitor and runs in to find no one there but discovers that the window has been opened.
For my next book that I am almost through with, I had a deer run out of the woods in front of me. I came up with a scene where a deer runs in front of the main character’s car because it is being chased by a vampire.
I also use ideas from my dreams.
2. Are you an organized writer? Do you do things like take notes and make lists of characters? Or do you free write and work it out as you go?
I would say that I am an organized writer. I keep ideas written down on large index cards. As I build on the ideas I keep character sketches and a card for each scene that I come up with. I write the stories out long hand in small spiral notebooks. I will sometimes free write scenes that I have not planned out just to see how I can get from the previous scene to the next one.
3. What is your normal writing day like? Do you write when you are inspired or do you have a schedule? I have a full time job, that is not writing, and two small children, so I write whenever I get the chance. I write while I eat lunch, I write while I give the girls a bath, and I write before I go to sleep. I am in the home stretch of the book I am writing now so it is a lot easier to be motivated to write. I have done all the hard work now is the fun stuff. I usually listen to music for inspiration. In Changeling, I found inspiration for the prom scene from B.O.B’s Airplane. I am really liking Adele and The Pretty Reckless for the latest book.
4. Who is your favorite author and how did they inspire you to write? My favorite author is Stephen King. I read It in the 6th grade and couldn’t believe how he could make me feel every emotion along the spectrum in one book. He inspired me to write because he would take the normal everyday stuff and make it so much more. I also liked that he gets his ideas from dreams he has. Granted his dreams are a lot more twisted than mine but I can relate.
5. It’s easy to see that you have a passion for writing but is there any part of it you don’t like?
I wish that I could devote more time to it. I think every author who is not doing it for a living would love to be but it would be a nice luxury to have more time to do what I love. I have 6 ideas started right now that I wish I could get on paper. But, I am working on it as fast as I can.
6. Do you make time to read and if you do what are you reading right now? I love to read. Right now I am trying to focus on writing so I am not reading anything at this moment. But, I did pause to read Addison Moore’s latest, Vex, and I just finished the latest novella in the House of Night series, Lenobia’s Vow. Since I am writing Young Adult novels, I try to read as much as I can in that genre. I really love Amanda Hocking’s books.
7. How did you get started in writing in this action/adventure fiction genre? Is there personal life experience in the writing?
It just seemed the right genre for me to write in because that’s how my stories lend themselves. I grew up with two brothers so I watched a lot of karate and action movies. Also, vampire movies like Lost Boys were popular when I was growing up. The only life experiences that I can see in my writing is the main characters being close to their moms. My mom is definitely my best friend today and my biggest supporter.
8. Your books have been published with Amazon.com, Does this mean you see the publishing industry headed this way?
I’m not sure if this is the way the industry is headed but I am sure glad it’s available to people who just want their stories to be read. Every author works hard on their novels and it’s sure nice to have other people read them. I sent out a few query letters, 8 to be exact, and never got any kind of feedback other than the standard not what we’re looking for right now letter. So after reading one of Amanda Hocking’s novels and going on her website, I learned that e-publishing was an option. I kind of kicked the idea around. Then, I read Addison Moore’s first e-published novel. I reached out to her and received some great advice on how to get started if I decided to e-publish. I was floored with how helpful and encouraging Addison was.
9. Do you have any online sites where others can read more of your writings? I have started a blog, Amandavegaauthor@blogspot.com. I have started putting information about the latest book I am working on.
10. Do you have any more stories in the works? What kinds of stories do you plan to write next? I am working on a book about a girl, Laurel, from a small town who starts to question why her town has a curfew for children and adults. She learns the secret of the town and the fact that she is a Spirit Warrior who has been given the ability to create and control fire. Along with three other warriors, she has to overcome her self doubt to save her town and the people living in it.
11. Who would be your first choice to play Lexi from your book “Changeling”?
A younger version of Blake Lively or Elizabeth Olsen.
12. If you could meet anyone from any time who would it be and what would be your first question? That is a tough question. But I could not pass up the opportunity to meet Jesus. I would probably ask him what comes next for us after this life.