Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Author Interview with Lisa Rusczyk - General Fiction

      Thank you for joining us for Lisa's visit to my blog. She's on a virtual book tour promoting her current release, Unloved but also has a future release coming out titled Chasing the Dark for which there is a contest at the end. Lisa Rusczyk is the author of The Blue Pen, Sam the Night Person, Full Moon in December and A Dream of the Past. She lives in North Alabama with her husband and six beloved cats.

About Unloved:

      Bullying was once considered a harmless rite of passage. Some were either bullied in school or they were the bully. What was once considered an acceptable practice has now been drawn into the limelight by the national attention of highly publicized suicides due to bullying.

                                                  Bullying can take on different forms. Bullying is not just a physical act but can also be an emotional, written, or verbal act as well. Bullying can take place in the workplace, school, online, and even while we are traveling in our vehicles on the road. Bullying is a form of abuse that has reached epidemic proportions in the United States and civilized nations across the globe.

When bullying goes too far, the end result is sometimes suicide. Suicide should never become an option. One life lost to this senseless way, is one too many!

      Seven authors (Jo Davis, HD Hatcher, Omegia Keeys, Autumn Prince, Lisa Rusczyk, KJ Thompson, and Vogue) have joined forces to send one message. That message is, “You are not Unloved!” Unloved is an anthology dedicated to those who have been the victim of bullying, or know someone who has been bullied.

      All proceeds from Unloved will go to charities in support of Bully Prevention and/or Suicide Prevention.

About Chasing the Dark:

      Melanie’s a budding artist always looking for the next high. She finds it one night when Sora and Josh take her on an ambulance-chasing ride. They watch a gruesome scene as the bodies are removed from the wreckage. Melanie doesn’t know why, but she is both attracted to this new pursuit and afraid of where it will take her.

      The chasing brings Melanie closer to the mysterious Sora, his secret past, and the darker things that happen in the city at night. Along the way Melanie must face her own demons while escaping the drug dealing business.

      Join Melanie and her friends Shara, Manny, Max, Sora and Josh as they confront and chase away their own personal demons.  Visit Passionate Writer Publishing for more info.

Deanna:  Grab your favorite drink, a mug of coffee or a tall cold one and join me while I talk with Lisa. I've brought along Sinbad and Zoie, our two cats above because our guest is a cat lover herself. Lisa, thanks so much being here so my viewers can learn a bit about you and your books. Tell us a bit about you that our readers might not know.

Lisa:  I am a cat freak. I have six fuzzy ones, and one of them might be pregnant. I’ve been hoping she would get pregnant with our unneutered boy and I think it’s happened. I can’t wait to be a proud kitten petter. Spooky, the female, miscarried her last litter, so I’m hoping this one goes better. She’s the sweetest cat I’ve ever known, which is why I didn’t have her spayed. Need to carry on that gene pool. But after one litter, I’m taking her to the vet. Him too, the little rascal.

Deanna:  Kittens are so adorable and cuddly! What made you want to become a writer?

Lisa:  I always loved writing, but when I was 24, I sat down and wrote my first book. It got me out of a deep depression. Since then, I’ve found writing to help every aspect of my real life. Also, I love to read, so it seemed natural to try to write a book.

Deanna:  Do you write under a pen name?

Lisa:  I write under my maiden name. My married name is Lisa Rusczyk Hazard.

Deanna:  As authors, we love all of our characters. Is there a certain type of character that is easier to write than another?

Lisa:  I find it easier to write about the nutjobs. They’re really fun to write.

Deanna:  Sometimes I read outside my genres. Do you read in the same genre that you write in?

Lisa:  I read and write in a variety of genres. I don’t have a favorite. Lately, I’ve enjoyed reading thrillers, so I’m trying to write one. I also enjoy reading urban fantasy, and several years ago I wrote a couple of those.

Deanna:  That's why I write in more than one genre, too. Tell us about a typical day in your life as a writer.

Lisa:  I get up too late – feel guilty that I’m not off to an early start. Make coffee, talk to cats, watch Judge TV for about 30 minutes to wake up. Then I do all my emails and blog posts for the day. For money, I write content and am a freelance editor. I’ll do that all day, taking breaks so my eyes don’t pop out of my head. I chat with my husband online a couple times. When he gets home, we make dinner and watch movies or TV shows with cats on our laps. It’s a peaceful life and I love it.
      If I’m working on a book of my own, then that’s the first thing I do when I wake up. I’ll write about 2000 words before going about the rest of my day.

Deanna:  Most of us have pretty vivid imaginations when it comes to story lines. Where do your story ideas come from?

Lisa:  I get a lot of ideas from daydreaming. Chronic daydreamer. I also find inspiration from the Science Channel and Discovery Channel and History Channel. I love scifi – it’s my first literature love – and one of the books I’m halfway through writing came from a show I saw on the Science Channel.

Deanna:  I’ve come to love cats and we have two, but living with six? What is it like living with six cats?

Lisa:  It’s great. Now that I have a new house, they have a lot more room so there’s not as much cat drama. All my cats are friendly and social. I love seeing how the cat dynamic changes when a new cat comes along. I don’t plan on keeping any of the litter kitties, but you never know. Their company is comforting and beautiful, unless bird guts are involved. Then I wonder what they’d do to me if I were four inches tall…

Deanna:  Why do you write in so many genres?

Lisa:  Most writers are given the advice to stick with one genre. I think I probably would write in one genre if I mainly read one genre. I get bored easily, so I try to change things up with each book I write. Chasing the Dark was very experimental for me. Completely different than what I usually write. Sometimes I think it works, sometimes, not so much. But I feel that way with all the books I’ve written. Never quite sure if my experiments worked.

Deanna:  That’s exactly why I write in different genres. Tell us about the editing process for Chasing the Dark like?

Lisa:  I loved it. My editor did a great job cleaning up my usual suspects of sloppy voice. I never had an editing process like that, and it was enlightening. It also made me realize how much I wanted to be an editor.

Deanna:  Do you like writing or editing better?

Lisa:  I like them both, but right now editing has my heart. I tend to want to write when I’m unhappy, and I’ve been so happy the last couple of years that I haven’t written much other than short stories for Raven and the Writing Desk (http://aubcherlis.blogspot.com/). However, if I could make a living writing, that’s probably what I’d do.

Deanna:  I enjoy being out in my garden when I need time alone. Do you have any hobbies?

Lisa: I play guitar and keys and started painting last year. I paint…wait for it…cats! I’ve tried painting other things, but I really love painting cats. I use acrylics on canvas or wood. I still have a long way to go until I can paint a realistic cat.

Deanna:  This has been fun! I hope our readers have thought of some questions to ask you, Lisa. Again, thank you for being here.
CONTEST:  Readers, Lisa is offering to give away TWO copies of her upcoming release, Chasing The Dark. She will pick two commenters from those who leave a comment or question and the winner will be drawn on Thursday morning! Good luck to all. Above is the blurb for Chasing The Dark if you need to hop back up and read what it's about.