Updated: Jan 27, 2021
Recently I was approached by a lady named Amrita who has a book blog named Motivational Marvels. I was honored that she asked to interview me for her site. After coming up with all my responses, I thought I might as well share them here as well so that everyone can get to know me as a writer in addition to an amputee.
Are you a full-time Writer/Author?
I am a full-time 9th grade English teacher. I only write in the summers and in my free time.
How did it occur to you to get into writing?
It’s been a dream of mine to become a published author since I was a little girl. But, seeing as I write mostly poetry, I had a hard time landing an agent because poetry doesn’t really sell (unless it’s an anthology). So, I decided that I would venture into writing a memoir since I believe I have a story that needs to be told.
Sneak peek at your book(s) published or Upcoming. (Genre, storyline, etc)
WHOLE: A Leg Up on Life is a memoir. I start off the non-fiction piece by explaining my birth deformity, sharing details about the amputation, and then providing stories that detail my physical and mental struggles. The book ends with highlights from some of my proudest achievements and shows how my mentality has changed over the years to be the capable, confident person I am today.
Do you have a favorite character in your book , if yes who and why?
My book is nonfiction, but I would have to say my mom. She was always a voice of reason and a good moderator for me. She and my dad were my support system and helped me live a normal(ish) life. I undoubtedly would not be the person I am today. I also can't leave out my sister, Rachel. She was the typical big sister who always had my back and stood up for me.
Tell us a little bit about your process of writing.
I have a habit of feverishly writing, like a gun is pointed at my head. I can’t help it. I have so much to say that I don’t want to stop for fear of losing my rhythm. I wrote my book in 7 months, which is faster than most. However, I think memoirs are a little easier because the story has already unfolded. I just had to put my creative spin on it and retell the events.
What is the most ‘gonzo' idea you have adapted to market your book?
I wrote to the Ellen show in hopes of getting exposure and a chance to share my story. Haha Obviously, that never happened…. But, why not shoot for the stars? 😊 When marketing, I try every angle. The worst they can say is no. I've contacted Ossur (a prosthetic company), the Amputee Coalition, other inspiring, well-known amputees., etc... I will stop at nothing to get my book in people's hands because I believe in the message that much.
Fast facts About the Author-
I love: llamas, Italian food, the beach, interior decorating, and intimate connections with people.
I am: extremely competitive and driven, an introvert until I get comfortable with people, and organized.
I have: a terrible memory and a phobia of bugs.
This is constantly changing for a lover of books such as myself. I have a bad habit of loving the last book I read. For this moment, it’s The Glass Castle and Born a Crime. Memoirs are my favorite genre because I enjoy learning about others' experiences. I am a firm believer in obtaining knowledge to reduce fear. We're often scared of the unknown.
One famous fictional character that you like, also one you don’t like
I love Hermione Granger from The Harry Potter Series. She is smart, witty, brave… I love seeing girls and women portrayed this way. I really dislike President Snow in the Hunger Games series because of his abuse of power and manipulative tendencies (can you tell I like reading series 😉).
What do you prefer reading/listening to- Paperback/hardcover or eBook or audiobooks?
I love reading the tangible book. I zone out when listening to audiobooks, and reading on the screen just doesn’t give me that nostalgic feeling I’m looking for. Plus, the smell and crispness of the books is to die for!
Sound of a word that you like, also one word that you don’t like.
Like: Poignant- I like the sound of it and what it means. I think emotion makes everything more real.
Dislike: Invalid… it makes people feel that they are actually invalid, when in actuality, they have so much to offer this world despite their limitations.
“Fake it til ya make it.” This phrase has helped me overcome confidence issues in the past when I was feeling inferior due to my limb difference. If I faked being confident, then people left me alone. Too bad I didn't figure that out in middle school.
Any message for the readers?
People can do a lot more than what their minds think possible. Your body is capable of amazing things. Push yourself out of your comfort zone, and you will see what you’re made of! You were uniquely and purposefully designed; I hope you can find the beauty in that!