Welcome, welcome, blogging world. Today I’ve got Valerie Steimle, multi-published author and all around great gal. [Whispers over shoulder, “she doesn’t know what’s coming. Moah-ha-ha.”
Tina: Valerie, Val, now that you’re comfortable in the hot seat—you are comfortable, aren’t you?
Valerie: I’m fine. [Perspiration beads on her forehead.]
Tina: Before you melt, tell us your favorite bit of writing advice.
Valerie: Every writer should find time to write every day in some way so you can practice, practice, practice.
Tina: I wrote my grocery list today—does that count?
Valerie: Um? How long is it?
Tina: Never mind, darling. Tell us what you like to do in your spare time.
Valerie: Reading, baking or gardening.
Tina: My, my, precious—you are wordy aren’t you. It’s all good though, because I see the method behind your madness—grow the vegetables, read the recipes, then cook ‘m up. Can I come over for dinner? I hope you’re a good cook. [you guess it, I’m starved]
Tina: What do you do when you’re feeling stumped? (This is my delicate way for asking about writer’s block.)
Valerie: I play with a slinky while I stare at the screen or go for a bike ride.
Tina: What a daredevil! And coordinated! I’m sure I wouldn’t be able to play with a slinky while riding a bike. I need both hands to keep me rolling.
Tina: What do you snack on when you write?
Valerie: Trail mix.
Tina: [makes a face] All I’ve ever found on the trails in AZ is rabbit pellets and Javelina droppings—I’d never mix it together and make a snack out of it. Not even with mesquite beans. I’d never be that hungry. [Whispers into the blackness, “This is going well. Not. She rides a bike while playing with a slinky, and she eats trail mix—ug!] Turns back to Valerie and smiles. So, tell me about your books.
Valerie: I’ve published four.
Tina: Oh, we’ve got a bonafide show off in our midst. [fingers drumming table] Don’t keep it a secret—What is it that you’ve published, then?
Valerie: My first book, Home is Where the Heart Is, is non-fiction.
Tina: whispers, and my head, and my feet, and my stomach. [growl] Oh, was that me? [smiles sheepishly]
Valerie: [scowls] My other books are: Home Is Where The Learning Is: Homeschool Lifestyles from Homeschool Moms; Of One Heart: Being Single In The LDS World; Dog, Blogs and Hobbits: Writings from a Widow’s Perspective—they’re all non-fiction.
Tina: Well, okay. I guess we can go to your blog, or somewhere, to find out what they’re about. [shrugs shoulders] Did you publish traditionally, or did you go Indie?
Valerie: I decided to independently publish my books for several reasons. 1. No publisher would accept what I wrote. It was too cliché, and most publishers thought it would not sell, so I did it myself and have found a very nice market. 2. I do not have to give up the rights of what I write. I have full control.
Tina: [Turns and looks sideways at Valerie] Your favorite flavor of ice cream?
Valerie: [leans over table; stares me in the eye.] Chocolate chip mint
Tina: Your favorite writer’s memory?
Valerie: When readers gush over my books. It’s so much fun.
Tina: I can only imagine. [drums table] No. Really. I can only imagine. So, let’s move on. What’s your favorite way to get the word out about your books?
Valerie: Word of mouth is my personal favorite, but also online in blog events and positive book reviews.
Tina: Do you have another book in your future?
Valerie: I do! I have a WIP, and I’m hoping for a 2012 publication.
Tina: Well, okay. (Showoff.) I guess you write more than grocery lists. What’s the name of this new book?
Valerie: A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Synagogue: A Conversion Story—From Judaism to Mormonism.
I was baptized when I was almost ten, and my parents told us to keep it a secret. We lived a double life for eight years before the rest of the family found out.
Tina: I only need one more thing before heading out the door for a scoop of ice cream—pistachio nut. Creamy green goodness speckled with salty pistachios. [mmmm. Eyes close, and a wistful sigh is heard]
Valerie: Oh, well. To purchase one of my books and to learn more about me, go to my blog or my website: