Thursday, March 15, 2012

Interview with Julie Harris

What will readers like about your book?

No Exit is an enjoyable, fast read, especially for people who have interests in psychic phenomena and appreciate an impossible love story. He’s a Navy SEAL and she is a tree hugging clairvoyant/medium.

Why did you self publish?

Even though I’d been published traditionally numerous times in the past, I wanted more ‘control’; the freedom to do it my way. Long before my agent died I was disheartened at receiving copies of my books in a language I didn’t know, most of them with covers that were mystifying. For instance, one book, published in Germany, was about a helicopter pilot in Vietnam. The cover showed the bottom half a lizard. I gave up writing for nearly fifteen years and got a ‘real job’, but I didn’t like it much. Once a writer, always a writer. I’m happiest under my rock in a land of make believe.

· What is your writing process?

I transcribe the 3D Technicolor movies playing in my mind. They usually turn into historical adventures, paranormal thrillers, or a fictional bio or two. Sometimes it’s an idea — for my first book, whilst gold panning in a creek and I had a ‘what if’ moment, which led to an historical romance adventure, Anna’s Gold, set in the lesser known goldfields of SE Queensland. I tend to have a bit of a personality change when I’m writing, or rewriting and editing, and am often caught in the web of the story and its characters. If I have a problem with a story — plot point or characterization issue — I let my subconscious do the work and usually arrive at a solution in that twilight time just before awakening.

How long does it take you to write your first draft?

The first draft stage varies from 8 weeks to 6 months, depending upon how fast or slow the movie is playing. I see my first draft as a wobbly skeleton in a race to the finish mainly because I need to know how the story ends. It’s always a bit of an adventure. If it interests me it tends to glue readers to the pages, too. Well, I hope it does!

What inspired you to write this particular story?

The idea for No Exit came 20 years ago, via a series of mind pictures/images/scenes about the Scottish witch trials — they wouldn’t leave me alone until I wrote them down. These flashbacks appeared in the original story, Encore, a prizewinner. However the backstory was far too complex and the flashbacks have since been deleted to concentrate on the main story of the psychic and the SEAL.

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