Today I welcome author Lisa Bilbrey to my blog. She is currently working on the second book in her Awakenings Series.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I’m Lisa, a mom, wife, writer. I have three kids, 17, 15, and 12. My husband and I have been married for 19 years. We were high school sweethearts. I started writing about ten years ago and found myself falling in love with it. I’ve had to learn a lot, but feel that I’m always getting better.
How much of yourself, your personality or your experiences, is in your books?
I put a lot of my feelings into my books. I’m an emotional person, and my characters tend to be, as well. Also, a smart ass. I was raised by smartasses, so it’s only natural that I would be one, too.
Have you started your next project? If so, can you share a little bit about your next book?
I always have multiple projects going on, but the book I am currently focusing my attention on is the second book in my Awakenings Series. The first is Forbidden Awakenings, where my lovely Elle, Sadie, Callum, and Derek are just starting to explore their unique relationship. In book two, Elle struggles with the aftermath of book one, trying to put her life back together. It’s been a long road for this one and I’ve doubted myself too many times to count, but I’m loving the way my characters are being real and honest.
What is the best and worst advice you ever received? (regarding writing or publishing)
Well, the best advice was pretty simple. If I wanted to be a writer, I had to write. Instead of talking about it, wishing it would happen, I needed to do it! And I force myself to sit down every day and write a few words. Most of the time it’s crap, but sometimes, it’s not too bad. Also, that the first draft is just that: a draft. It’s the second and third drafts where we make it perfect, where we iron out the little details.
What is the best thing about being a writer? The worst?
The best are the readers. If you’re lucky enough to get people to read your book, they can be amazingly supportive. The excitement they feel, the way they embrace writers that they love, is incredible. The worst part is the self-doubt. When sales start slowing, the doubt grows and you start asking yourself if you were really good enough to be published in the first place.
What fuels you as an author to continue to write?
My family. Particularly my daughter. She has an amazing imagination and often pushes me to write. She’s even plotted out a book for us to write together, and she’s always asking me how my writing is going. My boys do too, but it’s different for them. I’m lucky to have a supportive family, who understand how important my writing is to me.
How do you conceive your plot ideas?
Different ways for different books. The Angel’s Heart Series was brought forth by a dream I had of a woman standing on the beach with a storm brewing around her. It wasn’t until she turned toward me that I realized her tears were tied to the storm. The Journey Collection was loosely based on a pro-football player from my hometown and my son, who is a senior football player this year.
Do you outline your books or just start writing?
I used to be a pantser, but over the last few books, I’ve realized that I do better with an outline. It’s vague, but it gives me a better idea of where the stories going and helps me stay on track.
What inspired you to write this book?
I can’t say any one person inspired me to write the Awakenings Series. It’s an unconventional series about four people who defy society and live their lives the way they want. With Marriage Equality being such a hot-button topic at the moment, it kind of fits, but it’s more about four people learning who they are and embracing the love of family.
Which of your characters is your favorite? Do you dislike any of them?
I don’t hate any of them, but there are a few that get on my nerves. Sophie from Angel’s Heart is a bit of whiner, but it fits with the storyline. She’s been through hell and back and deserves to be able to whine, though it gets old fast.
Elle Reid and Sadie Williams are best friends, turned lovers. Always considering themselves to be friends with benefits, they opt to let loose and celebrate after landing a high-profile project with the best architecture firm in San Francisco.
Callum Davis and Derek Flores have been best friends since their first year at UCLA. While they’ve admitted their attraction to each other, neither have the courage to act on their feelings, both fearful of losing their friendship. At least, not until they meet Elle and Sadie at Club Venom.
Elle, Sadie, Callum, and Derek embark on a life-changing journey that defies what society tells them is normal. But when you find yourselves in love with multiple partners, how do you choose? And what will happen when their families find out about their unconventional relationship? Is their forbidden awakening worth unraveling the secrets they’ve been keeping?
About the Author
Obsessive, compulsive, slightly crazed, but enough about her personality. First and foremost, Lisa Bilbrey is a mom to three and a wife to one. She loves to write, and spends the majority of everyday writing. It’s who she is, and what she’s meant to be doing. Words are her life, the air she breathes, and the nutrients of her soul. Finding a love in the written word, Lisa Bilbrey started writing as a way to express herself and let her voice be heard. From the first word she wrote, she’d found her heart and soul.
Always willing to learn, she’s spends much of her time trying to improve as a storyteller.
You can find out more about Lisa on her blog.