The next guest in our Q&A interviews with authors section is Carmen Gross. She is known by her pen name as Carmen Stevens. The American is born in Fargo and is one of the youngest writers around. Her first book “Anne” was published last year.
– What is your book about?
– My book is a historical thriller, titled “Anne”. It involves an egotistical, orphaned girl in eighteenth-century England who longs for true happiness in her life, but it’s not until Anne endures a series of hardships that she realizes what it means to be truly satisfied.
– How you decide to write the story?
– I have always loved to write, and I felt that I needed to write a story that would tell the world of the importance of loving and getting along with one another, not to take anything for granted, be rich in love, and all of the other themes that my story is about.
– What was the biggest challenge during the write up process?
– I didn’t have too much difficulty, except in some punctuation and grammar matters. I have trouble with commas.
– Tell us something more about your main character? Is it close to someone from your real life?
– I think Anne is a very interesting, complex character, and I think I kind of crafted her from the dark side of myself. Anne is fiercely independent, haughty, indifferent, seductive, potentially cruel, and way too prideful for a girl of her circumstances. She’s also incredibly selfish, putting her own well-being before anyone else’s. However, Anne dreams of a better life, a life in which she doesn’t live on the dirty streets of London, England, and in order to find this happiness, she must endure certain sufferings and gradually learn to be a kinder person.
– How much time you need to finish the story and to publish it?
– It actually took me a few years to finish writing “Anne,” but it took less than a day to publish it. This is because I self-published it.
– Who are you?
– I’m Carmen Gross, but my pen name is Carmen Stevens. I’m a 22-year old full-time college student and author. I’m studying law, but for the summer I’m working. I self-published “Anne” in July of 2013.
– What are your writing habits?
– I like to totally flesh out a story before writing it from the beginning. I believe that a person should know where a story is going to go before writing the actual story.
– Are you satisfied by the sales of the book and do you plan another one?
– I read somewhere that if a self-published author makes under 100 sales in his/her first year of having the book published, then that is a good thing. My book has only been out for a year and I’ve about made this goal, so for now, that has me satisfied. I love writing, so I certainly wouldn’t mind writing another book someday, but I think that would depend on what kind of reception my current novel takes and if my readers ever desire for me to write another.
– What are you doing to promote by the best possible way your book?
– I have several things I’m trying to do for promoting my novel. I have a blog that I write in, I ask people to review my story, and I keep my eyes open for any opportunities to expose my book, like author interviews and spots on others’ blogs.
– Who was the first person who took a full look into your book and what he told you?
– I don’t exactly remember who the very first person was who read my book, but one of the first must have been a blogger who I followed. She’s an author herself, and she was very willing and generous to read and review my book and give it a high rating.
– If you may select just one thing to do on Saturday evening, what it will be and why – to write, to go out with friends or to read a book?
– I like having my fun on weekends, so I think I would definitely love to hang out with friends on a Saturday night. If my friends happened to be busy, though, I love the thought of curling up at home with a good book. I love reading, and I love how it can take you away into a whole different, exciting world.