Interview & Giveaway: Michelle Pennington

For today's post I have for you an interview with Michelle Pennington! You will find out more about her, why she went Indie, and her WIP, plus some more random facts :) Don't forget to enter the giveaway and be looking out for my review of Candid coming soon!

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you write.
A little bit about myself? Hmmmm… I have two adorable little girls that I’m dying to go sew sundresses for, but I have to fold my laundry first. *grumble* I’m also the proud mother of a two year old boy that I’ve almost smothered with kisses this morning even though he’s the biggest stinker to ever come into my life – except possibly his father. Being a mother becomes an enormous part of your identity, so it’s not surprising that came out first. There’s a lot to just being me though. I’m creative, but disorganized. I’m often enthusiastic, but even more often a procrastinator. I ruthlessly clean out my fridge, but my garage is likely to be given federal disaster area status any day now. I paint canvases and anything else careless enough to get too close when I have a paint brush in my hand, and I can’t keep a plant alive for love or money. Basically, I’m pretty normal except for the parts of me that are weird. Luckily, I’m really good at figuring out what makes ordinary people extraordinary in ways other people may not see. Combine that with my love for weaving stories, and I am just the right mix to make a good author. Hopefully, time will make allow me to get there. Right now, I’m enjoying the Contemporary YA romances I’ve been writing, but I have so much more I want to write when I can get to it. Paranormal, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Mystery, ect… : You name it and I probably want to write it. If only writing didn’t take so long! I’m afraid one lifetime won’t be enough. 
Why did you decide to go Indie?
So many people assume that I’m an Indie because I couldn’t get accepted by a publisher. The truth is, I’ve never even submitted to one. I like to do things my way, on my schedule, and produce a story that I feel is 100% me. I may submit to a publisher sometime, just for the experience, but the truth is that I would have a hard time sacrificing the things I love about Indie Publishing if I was accepted. I know there are a lot of benefits to traditional publishing too, but so far, I’m perfectly content with following my own road.
What is your inspiration?
People are my inspiration, and my characters are the results of my serious people watching fetish. So many of my story ideas come from dreams I have, but those dreams come from the observations I soak in every day. Beyond that, it might be a song, a movie, a stray thought, a painting… I never know where it will come from.

Are any of your characters modeled after people you know?
Some of my characters are. In Candid, Lee and his mom definitely are. Sienna isn’t, but she’s almost real to me so that’s kind of different. A lot of the minor characters in my stories are flashes of people I’ve known. I never take a person and copy them straight onto my character though. That would be cheating – and dangerous. Instead, I take bits and pieces from people and swirl them around a bit. The more developed and complex a character is, the more people I’ve swirled into them.

Are you an outliner?
When I start something, I take off at a sprint, flushed with inspiration and creativity, with only a vague idea of where I’m going. Eventually I stop to take a breather and realize that it’s time to map things out or I’m going to end up lost. Then I outline the rest of the story, sometimes going back to outline the beginning if I realize it’s causing me problems. It’s a reflection of how I deal with the rest of my life. I should probably start with outlining, but its hard work and a real enthusiasm killer if I don’t already have a good start to keep me motivated.
Where is your favorite place to write?
I write best at my kitchen table, early in the morning. It’s just comfortable enough that I can take it for hours at a time (if I get the chance), but not so comfortable that I get distracted. Plus, it’s harder for my two year old to bang on my keyboard, I have a window to stare out of when I’m thinking, and snacks are just a few steps away. That last one is vital!

Can you tell us about your WIP?
Which one? I have three at the moment, and oh, that drives me crazy! But I just can’t seem to help it. The one that you’d most be interested in is Focused. It’s the next book in the True Images Series, and it picks up only a few hours after Candid ends. I’ve written it in Lee’s perspective, as well as Sienna’s, because Focused is just as much his story as hers. I can’t even tell you how fun it is getting in his head. Because of that, Focused is going to have a more intense pace and a leaner, more masculine flavor to the story to contrast with Sienna’s growing sense artistry and femininity. I love it!
kindle copy of Candid
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