MY INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR ASHLEY MUNOZ
What’s your name and what genre would you consider your books to be?
I’m Ashley Munoz and I write contemporary-romance
Tell me about your book. How did you come up with that (story, angle, idea)?
My book Glimmer is a slow burn romance about a single father and reformed motorcycle club member who’s avoiding his past and the brokenness that lurks there. As well as a potential soccer pro, turned total nerd-tax accountant who’s avoiding the inevitable pain of her future. The two of them push and pull when they meet, both realizing they don’t have much to gamble with but still can’t help going all in. Problem is once they do, all of his demons come demanding blood that isn’t owed and a debt that can’t be paid. The stress of the demands weigh on the two as the past nearly ruins any possibility of a future.
I came up with this idea, very strangely from a road trip. My husband was driving, I was riding shotgun and noticed a motorcyclists behind us, swerving from side to side. His feet were lowered from the footbar as we neared eighty mph, and he didn’t wear a helmet. We weren’t in the fast lane and there was plenty room for him to go around us but he didn’t, he just toyed with us. I was so irritated that I pulled out my phone and began writing what it would be like to follow him and give him a piece of my mind. Thus the first interaction between my main characters, Jimmy and Ramsey was born.
How did you get interested in writing this particular genre (historical novels, mysteries, sci-fi, children’s books, etc.)?
Reading. I love the saying, “write the book that you want to read.” I love reading contemporary romance but I wasn’t getting enough of a the swoony, slow burn MC genre that I love so much.
What kind of research did you do for this book?
Tons and tons. I researched medical terms, diagnosis and balled my eyes out reading forum after forum about patients with liver cancer who get denied chemo treatments because they’re liver isn’t a good candidate. Some of the medical terms and info provided came from my own experiences, dealing with my brother in law getting shot, staying up all night in the icu waiting for good news. Rushing to the hospital when my father was in a car accident, again waiting up all night in the icu. Most of my research revolved around medical info, but I also poured a good deal of research into business ownership and tax laws.
Can you tell me about your Series?
The first book, Glimmer features Ramsey and Jimmy but you meet the best friends, Laney and Jackson in it too. The second book, Fade will follow their story. It comes out Spring of 2019Do you have a favorite book out of this series?
So far, Fade is my favorite but that’s tough because I really loved Glimmer
Where did you get the inspiration/idea for your series?
No idea, beyond what I already mentioned, everything else just came out of thin air.
Was it always meant to become a series?
Not at all, I wasn’t going to pursue Laney and Jackson’s story at all until I decided I owed the readers all the omitted details from Laney and Jackson’s interactions in Glimmer.
What’s a typical working day like for you? When and where do you write? Do you set a daily writing goal?
I have four kids, one is nearly two, so I stay very busy. No day looks the same, it all depends on what i have going on. I typically try to write while my son is sleeping, so I at least get a good two hours in, but that doesn’t always go as planned. When I do get to write, I’m either on the couch, at my desk, or on my bed.
Do you have a new book in the making and if so, what’s the name of your upcoming book?
I have two new books in the making, my second book in this series; Fade and a third that will be a standalone. That book, doesn’t have a title yet but it’s one that means a lot to me. My father died at 55 leaving behind my step mom and three younger brothers. Her healing process and my young siblings process moved me so much that I wrote a story about a widowed mother with four young children. It’s going to be an amazing book once it completely comes together.
How important are character names to you in your books? Is there a special meaning to any of the names?
Sometimes- Ramsey I liked but only for a girl. Jimmy just sounded good. I don’t really have too much tied to their names usually, just a fondness of sound.
Where do your ideas come from?
Life experience usually, or songs. If I’m driving and an idea hits, then I pull over to jot it down.
Is there a genre that you’ve been wanting to experiment with?
Fantasy- I have half an entire book written in that genre but I can’t bring myself to finish it.
What is the hardest part of writing for you?
The editing. Oh my word, the editing. The fun part is creating the story, the hard part is having it torn apart and slowly brought together again.
What do you think of book trailers? Do you have a trailer or do you intend to create one for your own book?
I like them, wanted one, just never actually went through with making one.
What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?
My four kids and not ending up with the abusive asshole from my early twenties.
What’s the best thing about being an author?
I think getting to create. I’ve never been an artist or any type of creative person, so getting to take words and build a world, people, scenarios, it’s the best feeling in the world.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Hopefully not as a grandma, knock on wood …but I’d love to see myself featured as a best seller of some kind. I’d love for my books to reach people and encourage them. I love encouraging people, it’s one of my favorite things to do in life. So, having a group of authors who support me, who I support, with some books out, that would be nice.
Have you always liked to write?
Yes, I wrote an entire book in fifth grade on a very old computer. Lost it when I moved. In highschool my paper was submitted without my permission to a college magazine and because I was too embarrassed to speak and claim it once it was read out loud in front of the class, my teacher didn’t return my paper and I never backed it up.
What writing advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Get feedback and grow thick skin. Let your ideas marinate, and don’t rush ANYTHING!!! Always give yourself extra time, extra days, extra feedback. Nothing is set in stone until you hit publish, even then some things can be changed.
If you didn’t like writing books, or weren’t any good at it, what would you like to do for a living?
Preaching or working at a non-profit organization that provides young women with smart, educated info regarding safe sex and free pregnancy tests.
Do you read reviews of your book(s)? Do you respond to them, good or bad? How do you deal with the bad?
I do read every review. I want to respond but I have heard that it can come across as pushy, even if my intentions are pure. So, I try to resist. I love every review even if its bad, I find every critique is a learning experience. That doesn’t mean seeing a two star isn’t bad, even some four star’s have some harsh words in them, I find shutting the laptop, turning off my phone and spending time with my family helps. There’s nothing you can do but let it go and take it as constructive feedback.
What is your least favourite part of the writing / publishing process?
Editing! It takes so long and it’s so much work and it’s like having your soul opened and stomped on. Even if the edits are kind and nice, it’s still hard to have something you created inspected on such an intricate level.
What are you working on now?
My second book: Fade the companion novel to Glimmer
Can you give us a few tasty morsels from your work-in-progress?
I can give you a quote- Jackson: “ Her lips were red, her eyes green and her hair was a curled, glossy mass of red. She was fucking gorgeous and my stomach did all sorts of somersault, gymnastic shit at the sight of her. This pull in my gut was a problem. I’d never been drawn to women that I worked with. I did not mix business and pleasure. Ever”
Why did you choose to write in your genre? If you write in more than one, how do you balance them?
So far I haven’t figured out how to balance my contemporary romance and the one fantasy book I’m writing on. I chose romance because I love a good love story. I love swoony, melty, slow burns.
Where did your love of books come from?
I’ve always loved books, ever since I could properly put sentences together. But after my dad died, my sister got me into reading more so than ever before. I just needed out of my word and into a different one.
Do you have any favorite authors or favorite books?
Mariana Zapata is a HUGE influence in my life. I love every single book that she’s written. So all of her books are my favorites. I love LJ Shen, but Vicious is one that branded my soul and ruined me for any other enemies to lovers books ever again. I also love Penny Reid and Dannika Dark, Devney Perry and Kennedy Ryan.
Of all the characters you have created, which is your favourite and why?
I think Theo, the dad is Glimmer. He’s tough as nails, sweet as sugar and loyal to a fault.
Does writing energize or exhaust you?
Both, depends on the day and what’s going on.
What is your writing Kryptonite?
I’m not sure what this means lol — things that kill it? Usually my almost two year old, he gets into EVERYTHING and its hard to focus on writing when he’s awake.
Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?
I try to be original which proves to be a blend of good and bad, but I’d rather be true to the stories I want to read.
What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?
I’ve collected quite a few friends. Hazel Grace was one of my first author friends, we stay in touch via Messenger on facebook. Danielle Leggasse, another great one, same with facebook. Brittany Taylor, Michelle Heron, pretty much all my author friends are on facebook. They help me just by writing, by creating and stepping out, like me. Being brave and kind, indie authors are some of the kindest people I have ever encountered.
If you were writing a book about your life, what would the title be?
”Usable but not Loveable” – One of the biggest reasons I am not preaching or working in the ministry world is because someone I looked up to since I was eleven told me at thirty that I wasn’t easy to love. I was hard to do life with. It crushed me and ultimately moved me from ever wanting to work in “church” ever again.
Where can your fans find you and follow??
Thank you for taking your time to do this interview ❤️
My Pleasure 🙂