Tell us a bit about yourself and what you’re currently working on or promoting.
Hey! I’m Samantha Chase and I am an indie author of contemporary romances. I just released my twelfth book, The Snowflake Inn. It just came out on November 18th.
What genre is your book? Do you write in other genres as well?
The Snowflake Inn is a contemporary holiday romance and that’s the genre that I stick with. I love to read all things contemporary romance and it’s the genre that I enjoy writing in the most.
Do you have an agent and/or publisher or are you self-published? If self-published, do you use a professional editor? If traditionally published, who is your publisher?After trying to for many, many years to go the traditional route, it never happened for me so I turned to self-publishing. I do use an editing service and even doing that, nothing is fool-proof. I still get readers who point out the mistakes.
What advice do you have for writer’s just starting out?
Write in the genre that you enjoy and are comfortable with. Don’t try and go with the latest trends or what you think is hot. If you’re not passionate about what you’re writing, it comes through in your work. Right now, contemporary romance isn’t the trend, but I am not comfortable writing erotica or paranormal romances. Clearly there’s still an audience for contemporary and I’m happy that I have readers!
Do you outline your stories or just go with the flow?
A little of both. I start out with a very basic outline in my head (sometimes I actually write it down!) but more often than not, I stray from that and go with the flow.
What does your writing space look like?
I have a very tiny writing space. I have a desk in the corner of my dining room and that’s where I work. If the family is home when I’m writing, I have to plug in my headphones and pop in my sounds of the ocean CD and go from there.
Is being an author your dream job? If so, how long have you been chasing the dream? If not, what would be your dream job?
Absolutely! I have dreamed of being an author since I was in the third grade and wrote my first short story. I didn’t get serious about sitting down and actually putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) until I was in my thirties and after my first rejection letter I stopped writing again for years! Years later I was teaching creative writing to homeschoolers and found that I was encouraging them to chase after their writing dream but I wasn’t doing the same for myself. They encouraged me to try again and even though I still got rejections and ended up going the indie route, it was the best decision I ever made.
What book are you currently reading?
The Perfect Match by Kristan Higgins
What has been your best moment as a writer?
Last year when I released The Christmas Cottage, I didn’t have any real expectations. I was just happy to have a book released. It was out for a week and I woke up on my birthday and found that it was #86 on one of Amazon’s bestseller lists. I cried! I never thought that I’d have a book on ANY bestseller list and it was the greatest feeling ever.
What challenges have you faced in your writing career?
I know it sounds crazy but I have a hard time dealing with other people’s perceptions of my work. Not like whether they think it’s good or not but there is still a bit of a stigma when you say ‘I write romance novels’. People kind of smirk and think that you’re writing porn. It makes me cringe every time I see that look.
Do you see yourself in any of your characters?
All too often! Lol! I put a bit of my personality in all of my heroine’s just because it seems natural. I love to cook and so you’ll see that a lot in my characters and I tend to be a bit snarky at times and that trait comes through in my writing more times than I can count. My mom says that she hears my voice when she reads my books.
Do you base your characters on people you know?
No. It’s funny because when people I know read my books that is the first thing that they ask or they try to figure out who I am describing. I try to stay away from doing it because I wouldn’t want to offend anyone.
How much time a day do you spend on social media?
Way too much. It’s my primary way of advertising because it’s free. Plus, I can play games while I’m on there!
Do you read your reviews and if so, how do you cope with a bad one?
I had to stop reading them because people are really, really mean. I’ve read bad books and I’ve left reviews stating that but without personally attacking the author. I am shocked by the amount of hateful reviewers out there who make it a personal thing. I had received two scathing reviews for The Christmas Cottage and it devastated me. It didn’t matter that I had eighty great ones, those two really hurt. I don’t expect everyone to love my work but I just wish that people didn’t feel the need to go for the jugular.
I, Blakely, have found the writer’s community to be very supportive and welcoming. Samantha, please share three writers that you recommend.