Wednesday Author Interview: Linda Rue Quinn
Today, I’d like to welcome Suspense author Linda Rue Quinn to Bookin’ It. I know you will enjoy meeting Linda, and learning about her books. I sure did!
BI: Hi, Linda. Can you tell us a bit about how you became a writer? When did you decide that’s what you wanted to be, and what steps did you take to prepare for a writing career?
LRQ: I’ve been writing poetry since I was about 8 years old and my initial college aspirations included journalism. The twists and turns of life moved me to different paths, and I got bored easily with many different career choices. I still don’t know what I want to do when I grow up! At age forty, I reflected on my past and asked myself if I would have any regrets if I found out I was dying. The only regret was failing to pursue my first love: writing.
I’m kind of a research junkie, so I researched the heck out of it. I went to several conferences, joined critique groups until I found one that would tell me the truth, read over a dozen books about how to be a successful author, subscribed to Writers Digest, etc. I had nine short stories accepted for publication in a few different genres and mediums, then worked on novels.
BI: I’m very impressed with how thorough you were before starting down the path to a writing career. Were you inspired by any particular authors, past or present, and what is it about their work that impresses you, or moves you?
LRQ: Ann Rule, who writes True Crime. I like to study the kind of people who kill and their backgrounds. Since I prefer to write mysteries, it helps with character development.
Frank Peretti, who writes Christian Fiction. His works make me think about our everyday decisions and how they affect the supernatural, and vice versa.
Gwen Hunter, who was in the critique group that helped me the most. Her writing is tight and page-turning, leading to many late nights.
BI: Such an interesting selection of writers. (I’m a bit fascinated with true crime, myself.) Can you tell us what genres you read most often for pleasure…those books you gravitate toward the minute you walk into a bookstore?
LRQ:True Crime, Biography, and Mystery/Suspense.
BI: Well, that makes sense, given what you’ve already shared with us. Let’s talk about your actual writing habits and surroundings. Do you have a dedicated workspace, and are you consistent with the amount of time you spend writing each day?
LRQ: I have a loft office, but I am now disabled and spend a lot of time in bed. I can no longer be consistent but I write when I have a good day not clouded with the effects of pain medication.
BI: I can certainly understand that your writing habits and time are now impacted by your health issues, and I’m happy to know that you still continue to write when circumstances permit. Do you use visual aids, like Inspiration Boards/Photos or maps of your book’s setting? What reference books or other material do you consult most frequently as you write?
LRQ: I’ve tried to use boards but I do best when my writing is organic. I always keep the internet open on my laptop for quick reference. I have a notebook that I write my ideas in for where to go next if I’m having trouble figuring it out.
BI: When you have an idea for a new book, do you sit down and start typing, or do you start with an outline, and figure out all the major plot points first? In other words, is your working style structured and organized, or more organic and free flowing?
LRQ: Organic and free flowing. However, as with my book I’m writing now, sometimes that means I have to go back and trash a few chapters.
BI: Oh, that’s such a hard decision to make, but I can see where it could be necessary, if you change the direction of a character or plot line. I’m curious about your personal reading choices…do you prefer reading eBooks, or print? Why?
LRQ: I bought a Kindle, which my 5-year old grandson soon took over for games (yes, I spoil him). I downloaded books and read a few on it, but I prefer print. I like the feel of a book, and if I’m writing on a computer, I don’t want to read on one, too. Too much eye strain. The two things I did like on the Kindle was the immediacy of a download, and the price of the books.
BI: Yes, nothing like finishing one book in a series at midnight, and instantly downloading the next, so you can continue straight on! The eyestrain thing could be a real problem if your Kindle is backlit, though. That’s why I prefer the Paperwhite. It feels exactly like reading print, as far as my eyes know. Now it’s time to learn about the books you have published, and where we can buy them.
LRQ: The Cyrano Game is available through Amazon and Createspace as well as several ebook sites. In this Suspense novel, an unstable man stalks Sarah, a newly married woman, while he works on a way to have her to himself. It involves setting up her husband, Matthew, to make her doubt him after he disappears. Meanwhile, the stalker has her husband captive as he forces Matthew to tell him everything he needs to know about how to win Sarah for himself.
The Apple Fell is also a suspense novel, available through Amazon, Createspace, and Kindle. Heather Grace escapes her hellish marriage to go back home to a small town in Florida. She thinks it is a soft place to fall, but after taking her job back at the Sheriff’s Department, the beloved Sheriff is murdered and a deputy she is close to allegedly commits suicide. There is something fishy going on in the department, and she is enlisted by a DEA agent as a snoop to help him find out why drugs are getting into the county so easily after the Sheriff’s son is elected to take his place. Heather suspects he is the apple that fell far from the tree.
BI: Both of those sound very intriguing. (I’ve added them to my TBR list). And I have to say that I especially love the cover for The Apple Fell. A wonderfully graphic image! Are you currently working on a new book? When do you expect it to be available?
LRQ: The working title is The Sharp Knife, and it is the hardest book yet, because I’m not just telling a story, I want a message to come out strong and clear. I want to show God’s wrath, tempered with his mercy. It should be ready for publication in early 2015 at the pace I am going.
I am also compiling my short story collection for a book that should be out this year. Most of the stories are suspense fiction, but some are humor and inspirational.
BI: I’ll be looking for both of these. Tell us what you consider to be the best thing about being a writer? The worst?
LRQ: The best thing is when a reader tells me they could not put the book down, and they enjoyed it. The worst for me is that I find it hard to do book tours because of my health.
BI: I’m sorry you have these physical constraints to deal with, but I’m inspired by the fact that you don’t let them stop you from doing what you want to do…write! And by the way, you live in my very favorite part of the world. I’d be in the mountains tomorrow, if I could get my husband out from under the palms. Good luck to you with all your future endeavors. It’s been great talking to you, Linda!
Linda Rue Quinn
I live near the top of a mountain in Franklin, North Carolina. I love to photograph the Smoky Mountains and the Nantahala Forest. Both book covers were designed by me and I use my photography.
I have two adult children, Paul and Cindy, who gave me some trouble, so I spoil their children as sweet revenge! My granddaughter Danni Marie, grandson Ayden and grandson James are PERFECT, of course.
God blessed me with a husband, Bryan, who is very supportive of my writing and he has the patience of Job. He has put up with me for more than 29 years!
Buy Linda Rue Quinn’s Books Here: