MY INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR S M SPENCER
What’s your name and what genre would you consider your books to be?
S M Spencer – the Copperhead Creek Australian Romance series is clean, contemporary romance, set in a small/rural town and the Absent Shadows Trilogy is YA paranormal romance.
Tell me about your book. How did you come up with that (story, angle, idea)?
At present, I have two series. One is a YA paranormal, with vampires and ghosts and the other is a small-town or rural romance, with lots of horses!
I love reading romance, but I prefer the books to have sex “behind closed doors” and I also prefer profanity to be at a minimum – so that’s what I’ve written. Books that you can read in front of your children without being embarrassed!
How did you get interested in writing this particular genre (historical novels, mysteries, sci-fi, children’s books, etc.)?
With the vampires/ghosts series, I was working in the city, near what used to be Burial Hill and also very close to the Queen Victoria Market, whose carpark was built over a graveyard without the bodies beig relocated. This led me to writing the Absent Shadows series.
With the rural stories, I suppose the heroines in my stories are getting to do things I’d have liked to do myself when I was younger. I was ALWAYS mad keen on animals, with horses at the top of the list. I’ve eventually landed in an idyllic location, but my heroines get to find theirs at much younger ages!
What kind of research did you do for this book?
Although I was brought up in California, I’ve lived in Australia for the past 33 years so I have a fair understanding of the culture and I have lived and worked in the locations where my stories are set.
As for my fictional town of Willows, I have spent a great deal of time in some of the small towns throughout western Victoria, and have ridden horses on the tracks through old mining areas (with great caution, mind you!).
Can you tell me about your Copperhead Creek Series?
Each story has a strong woman as the main character—one who has either recently moved to the small town of Willows, or one who has found herself at a turning point in life.
The men in these stories are not your bare-chested, chest-thumping alpha males—they are strong but they also show a great deal of respect for the women in their lives.
Do you have a favorite book out of this series?
Oh, that’s hard! But I think I had the most fun writing my latest book, Murder at the Creek. I really enjoyed writing a mystery and feeding the clues in along the way.
What’s a typical working day like for you? When and where do you write? Do you set a daily writing goal?
I don’t set daily targets because I tend to work in spurts. I might write all day for several days in a row, then not write again for a week or longer. Depends on what else is happening at the time.
Do you have a new book in the making and if so, what’s the name of your upcoming book?
I’m currently working on a new series, with this one being set in the California gold country. I’ve completed the first draft of the first book, but it will be a few months before it’s ready to publish.
Is there a genre that you’ve been wanting to experiment with?
I really enjoyed writing the murder mystery, and suspect I’ll return to that genre in due course. And I LOVE reading thrillers. Might be a thriller in me … the psychological kind, not the chop-up-the-teenager variety, mind you.
What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?
I’ve been gradually obtaining indieBRAG medallions for my books. It takes time as they only accept submissions twice a year for a short time. But I’m very proud of the ones I’ve got. If you don’t know about indieBRAG you should check them out. ( indie Book Readers Appreciation Group) https://www.bragmedallion.com/award-winning-books/
What’s the best thing about being an author?
I had a long career in accounting and marketing, where it was all teamwork and team decisions. Being a self-published author is just so awesome because while you can take advice and suggestions from people, the ultimate decisions are YOURS. I love being responsible for every aspect of my books.
What writing advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Read. And then read some more. You’ll learn what you like and what you don’t like. Read books you enjoy. Read books in the genre you hope to write. Read books outside your comfort zone.
Read craft books (such as Stephen King’s On Writing). And ignore the naysayers. If you have a story that you are passionate to tell, do it. And by all means, do it the best that you can.
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 them–absolutely. There is something to be learned from most reviews, although some just say ‘didn’t like it’ so you don’t know if it was the story, the writing style, the lack of steamy sex, or some other factor, but yes, I do read them. And I accept that not everyone will like every book. Just like not everyone likes the same music.
I always respond if someone has contacted me on social media (twitter, Facebook or my website).
Where did your love of books come from?
I owe my love of books to my mother who had us reading from a very young age. As a teen I discovered romantic suspense in authors such as Daphne du Maurier and Mary Stewart, as well as the fabulous fantasy of the likes of Tolkien and Ray Bradbury
Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?
I try to be original and authentic. I know there are trends that come and go, and some people enjoy “writing to market” to catch those trends. But for me, I think writing what I love is more meaningful. I’ll never make millions from my books, but that’s not why I’m in the game anyway.
Where can your fans find you and follow??
My website: https://smspencer.online/
Thank you for taking your time to do this interview ❤️
Thank YOU for having me!