Thursday, March 3, 2011

Aspiring Author Thursday: Introducing Renee Collins

I love getting to know other aspiring authors like me, so I thought I'd start a feature on my blog just for that reason. There are so many amazing writers out there in the blogging world, so lets get to know some! My first interview is with Renee Collins. Her and her twin sister run the blog Midnight Meditations. They are hilarious. You must check them out.

Thanks for doing this Renee! I'm excited to have you!

When did you first know you wanted to be a writer?
I've been writing for as long as I can remember. It wasn't until the summer of 2004, however, that I decided to seriously pursue publication.

Do you have a writing schedule, or do you just sit down whenever you get a spare moment? No schedule. I wish! I take any moment I can grab, and I do a lot of writing at night, after the kids go to bed. It's very normal for me to stay up past midnight writing.

You sound a lot like me! I'm a midnight writer too.

Could you tell us a little about getting your agent? I think your story is so inspiring. :) Thanks! It's definitely a long journey. I wrote Searcher in the year between 2008-2009, which was basically an insane year for my family. We moved five times. (Long story.) It was a stressful time, and I almost shelved Searcher before I'd even queried it. Thank goodness for writer friends and sisters. :) I finally got the story in querying shape. I sent out some queries (far too few,) got some requests, and then burned out. I considered it a failure. I wrote another book, and started querying that one. And then, after far too few queries, I was ready to give up AGAIN. And in this darkest moment, I did a lot of soul searching. Basically, I realized I had given up too soon every time. So with a revived belief in my work, I started querying both stories. Within weeks, I had an offer on each book. I signed with Molly, and couldn't be happier!

So awesome. Congratulations again!! I can't wait to read your books! :)

If you were stranded on a desert island, what is one thing you couldn't live without? (Besides your family and a laptop of course.) Hmm, with my family AND my laptop I'm pretty much set. I guess I'd say . . . Dr. Pepper?

Personally that would be my last choice. No, actually I'd rather die of thirst. He he. So many people love Dr. Pepper. My sister says it's her drug of choice. :)

What is one book you could read over and over and over? The Great Gatsby

Would you believe I've never read that book? **Hides**

What book are you dying to read this year? Divergent by Veronica Roth. It doesn't come out until May, but I've entered every ARC contest I could find. I want that book!

That book looks so good! I agree!

What genre do you write and why? I write YA because I love the intensity of emotions. Everything is big and new and vital. And I love fantasy and sci fi because of the limitless possibilities. I love being able to go where ever my imagination takes me.

Do you have any writing rituals? Music, silence, eating, etc. I like to have music, usually film scores. The Lord of the Rings soundtrack is amazing. I also love anything by James Horner, John Williams, or Hans Zimmer. And I always have a snack. (see my answer to the next question.)

Do you prefer salty snacks or sugary ones? Both! My favorite treat is Dr. Pepper, and the best compliment to that is air-popped popcorn. That's my daily writing fuel. :)

Popcorn all the way! :D

If you had all the money in the world, where would you go and why? I've always wanted to go to China. I studied History in college, and Chinese history was one of my favorite classes. It would be amazing to visit there.

Any advice for aspiring authors? Don't believe that negative voice in your head. It's not the "deep down voice of reason." Or you "being realistic." It's negativity.

Such amazing advice. Thank you SO much Renee! It was so much fun getting to know you better! I'm excited to read your work when you get published!! :D


Kerri Cuev said...

Great interview and congrats Renee!

Lisa said...

Love popcorn! I like mine served with a strawberry smoothie.

Thanks for introducing me to another author.

Michelle Merrill said...

Great interview, it's so fun to learn about other writer's!

Jordan McCollum said...

Oh, man, I love her advice! I've been driving myself crazy with NEGATIVITY lately. It's good to reminded not to listen!

Renee Collins said...

Thanks for interviewing me, Chantele! It was a lot of fun. :)

Also, I'll bring you over to the Dr Pepper Dark Side one of these days. You can't escape it. *evil laugh*

Kasie West said...

I love Renee. She's awesome! Fun interview.

Anonymous said...

What a neat focus to have on your blog. I wish I had time to do something like that. I may have to make time. *nod*

Chantele Sedgwick said...


Lisa- Strawberry smoothies huh? My hubby LOVES those! :)

Michelle- It really is fun. :)

Jordan- No negativity around here! You are a great writer. Don't listen to those negative voices in your head. Tell them to take a hike!

Renee- Never! I'll never go to the Dark Side! ;)

Kasie- You're next! :)

tangynt- I try to make time. Sometimes it's hard, but I love making new friends this way. :)

Do you think I use too many smiley faces? :) :) :)

Donea Lee said...

Great interview, ladies! :) New follower and fellow crusader here just (finally) making the rounds. And nice to see a fellow UT gal on the blogosphere. Happy Thursday!

Devin Bond said...

I love reading these interviews :)

ali said...

I have never met Renee, so thank you for this introduction Chantele! And congratulations Renee!

Alison Miller said...

What a neat feature and great interview! I could totally read Gatsby over and over again - I actually read it once a year when the spring English classes at my school do. :)