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Eliza March

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While interning as a search and recovery specialist in my college library, I discovered I could merge my love of reading with my secret ‘Nancy Drew’ persona and a book a day habit forced me to turn to writing for satisfaction. One day when I discovered the adventures and characters in my head wanted out, I became the conduit for their stories, switching from non-fiction writing to romantic fiction. The gypsy in my blood kept me moving until my roots sank deep into the hot white sands of South Florida, but traveling still influences many of the stories I need to tell and romance is fuel for my soul.

The fantasy and paranormal aspects of my stories switch up the rules of the game, and you’ll be left wondering what is possible when reality merges with the fanciful. My stories each have an unexpected twist because my characters write their own stories. I merely produce—they direct and act.

My husband has been my true-life fantasy man and one of the best realities in my world forever.

Q.  What is your creative process like? What happens before sitting down to write?

I wake up in the morning or during the night with the stories running around in my head. I can't wait to put them down on paper...then the process begins!

Q.  What type of reading inspires you to write?

There isn't much that doesn't motivate me. My favorite authors inspire my work. History is also a great motivator. It gets your imagination visualizing what life was like during the specific time period you're studying, who's living and what's happening to them...then anything goes from there.

Q.  What do you think are the basic ingredients of a story?

1. Character. Character drives the plot in my opinion. If I'm interested in characters, I'll stick with a slow paced plot, just because I want to see what happens to them. I hate books that have great plots and during the conflict I don't care if the hero dies. It makes me feel harsh, very harsh. 
2. Plot. I like a well developed plot even in short stories. Weave a good tale with twists and turns and I'll follow you anywhere. 
3. Conflict. There's no story without one. The bigger the conflict the more there is to the story. It's the meat and potatoes in the story stew. 
4. Voice. The author's voice makes the story personal. Don't you think somewhere deep down, there's a part of Charlaine Harris who really is Sooky Stackhouse or one of her southern Louisiana characters? I'm sure of it! Voice -- You either love it or hate it! It becomes your 'comfort zone' once you enter the author's world.

Q. What voice do you find most to your liking: first person or third person?

Third, but I'd prefer to be omniscient since I want to know everything. Who wouldn’t?

Q. What well known writers do you admire most?

Nora Roberts. How fast do you think she types? Unfortunately I never took typing, so I'm so jealous of anyone who can use more than a couple of fingers on a keyboard or a piano.

Q. What is required for a character to be believable? How do you create yours?

The character has to act in a believable manner. Put them in a situation and let them react realistically. My characters act out. I'm just the conduit to the paper or screen if you are an eBook reader. J

Q. Are you equally good at telling stories orally?

No, I don't have an internal editor in my mouth.

Q. Deep down inside, who do you write for?

Me. The process of writing the tale is as good as reading it. It takes longer, requires more blood, sweat, and tears, but that’s the challenge. Nothing worth anything comes without hard labor.

Why do I write for me? Because I'm an avid reader. If I like the subject, the plot, and most of all the characters, I hope others will too.

Q. Is writing a form of personal therapy? Are internal conflicts a creative force?

Nope. Well, if you don't count schizophrenia

Q. Do you participate in competitions? Have you received any awards?

Rarely, I finished one place out of the running recently for a book I'm crazy about writing. I'll send it out there again and see how it does. Contests, like taste, are very subjective. I don't write cookie-cutter romance. I break rules, so I don’t fit into a comfortable niche and neither do my stories.

Q. Do you believe you have already found "your voice" or are you still searching for one?

I definitely have a voice, sometimes too many, and I have to add more characters to satisfy my urge to sound different. That works in dialogue. My true voice is emerging and strengthening with each book I write. Frightening, isn’t it?

Q.  What do you surround yourself with in your work area in order to help you concentrate?

Cork board and white boards, sticky notes, tacks and dry erase markers. Crystals and stars, pixies and angels. They work very hard to keep me focused. Prayer most of all.

Q.  Do you write on a computer? Do you print frequently? Do you correct on paper? What is your process?

I write on a computer, infrequently print and correct. Tantrums and sticky notes play an important role in my revisions.

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