Anna Small

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I wrote my first romance novel when I was 16 and living in England with my family, thanks to the U.S. Air Force! I'd always loved romances and historical fiction and decided to write my own book once I'd read everything my mom had in the house. Even then, I was writing up to 20 pages a day. Writing has always been a natural thing for me and I type about as fast as ideas come to me. I've lived in northern California, New Jersey, England, and now Florida. I love reading, scrapbooking, travel, and spending time with my family. I've been married to Walter, an alpha hero if ever there was one, going on 14 years. We have two great kids and live on the beautiful Gulf Coast of Florida. I'm very excited to be a new author with Siren-BookStrand!

Q: From where do you get your ideas?

A: They come from something as simple as a line from a song or a picture of a castle or some other historical object, and then go from there. Sometimes my mind will circle around an idea. For example, I might think of a Scottish laird and then imagine what he looks like, what his conflict is, etc. I might want the heroine to be a gypsy, and then think of a story to put them together. Maybe the laird's old grandmother thinks she has a curse on her and needs a gypsy to remove it? Maybe the gypsy isn't what she seems to be and has a dark secret? Everything kind of whirls around in my head. This usually happens when I am nowhere near a computer or pad of paper!

Q: What do you do when you can't think of anything to write?

A: Fortunately, I have never had writer's block. I think I've solved that issue by always having 2 or 3 works in progress! This allows me to write a scene or chapter I am confident about in one story if I'm stuck on something in another. Fortunately, my brain is able to keep track of multiple characters, names, settings, research facts, etc. It helps if everything is in the same setting, but it usually isn't! I like a variety, and that keeps my brain always going forward. Right now, I'm writing a Scottish historical, a Regency, a western/werewolf story, an erotica novella with a very naughty phantom, and a time travel story with a snarky heroine from New Jersey! Oh, and did I mention my Viking tale? Who has time to have writer's block with all that going on?

Q: What sets your books apart from others on the shelf?

A: I am a hopeless romantic who truly believes in love at first sight, so it's not difficult to write about love. My books are filled with sexual and romantic tension, with a constant yearning for the other present. I love love scenes! So my books probably have more than the typical romances. At least 3 or 4. I get very annoyed when I buy a "steamy" historical from a New York Times bestselling author that has barely 1 and a half love scenes! It's not about the love scenes, though - I want my reader to feel that she knows these characters inside and out and is cheering for and crying with them. I love exploring all aspects of humans in love, including the jealousy, passion, doubt, and fears that we all feel.

Q: What is your writing time like?

A: I always have one or two of my works in progress "opened" on my desktop. BTW, I cannot write on a laptop for the life of me! They're okay for traveling, but I prefer a desktop for some strange reason. I usually open up a document and start writing where I left off. It might be the middle of a scene, but generally, I stop writing when my brain is depleted of any more ideas for that particular moment. I write in the complete novel - that is, not individual chapters. I used to do it that way when I first started writing, but I find it easier to revise an entire document instead of wondering about a certain chapter. Besides, it makes it hard to submit or print out if you have all these chapters by themselves. I write about 2,000 words at one sitting on one book, and if it's still early enough (maybe around 9:30 pm or 10) I might skip over to the other novel that is currently intriguing me and write a little on that one. The next time I sit down, I might start with the opposite one, or randomly look at my files of a work in progress and write a little on that. Sometimes if I fear I might be stuck, I will open up a nearly completed novel and just start reading for the sheer pleasure of it! I only write what I love to read myself.

Q: What writing advice helped you the most?

A: Write what you enjoy reading. I started that way and will continue!

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