Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Author Interview Elle Stauss

 Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to Elle Stauss. Elle is an author and well known blogger. Even with self-publishing a YA book in November and a MG last month, she was nice enough to find time to stop by. Thank you Elle for coming by and answering all my crazy questions.

JS: You have self-published two books, can you tell us a little about them?

 ES: Clockwise is a YA time travel rom/com about a teen time traveler who accidentally takes her secret crush back in time. Awkward.

It’s a Little Haywire is a MG story about a rich city kid who forgets about his own problems long enough to helps a poor sleepy town. A supernatural encounter with a fog train gives him inspiration.

JS: You have also published an anthology with some other authors; can you tell us about that one?  

ES: This was really fun. The theme was to write a short story from the point of view of the love interest from one of our books. I told the story from Nate’s point of view in CLOCKWISE when he gets dared by his friends to ask the tall quiet girl to dance. He’s in for the TIME of his life in By the Firelight.

JS: How did you come up with the idea of time traveling?
 ES: That’s a good question. I can’t say exactly. I wrote my first time travel story back in the nineties, long before the recent trends.

JS:  Why did you decide to self publish vs. traditional publishing? (Even with an Agent?)  
ES: Some times things just don’t work out due to timing, trends, subjective opinions. When my former agent first shopped CLOCKWISE, the feeling in trad publishing was that time travel and YA didn’t mix. Now they’ve changed their minds about that, but they want darker/edgier material. Clockwise is light and fun, and I didn’t want to change that.

JS: What book has been your favorite to write?  

ES: Last year I would’ve said Clockwise, but now I’d say It’s a Little Haywire. I drew a lot on my personal childhood experiences with that book and also strong inspiration from certain family members. 

 JS: Who is your favorite character and why?
 ES: I’m assuming you mean from my books? Casey Donovan from Clockwise, hands down.

JS: How did you get your ideas?
ES: Ideas come from everywhere. Books, movies, the news, random conversation, memories, dreams, kids.

JS: What would be your advise to anyone who wants to self-publish? ES: I think I could write a book on that now. J The biggest thing to decide is are you self-publishing just for your inner circle, so that friends and family can read and you have something fun to put on your shelf, or are you starting a small business?

You’re approach will be very different depending on your answer. If you’re starting a small business you need start up finances. You can’t cut corners with covers, editing and marketing.

JS:  What is the hardest part of self-publishing?  

ES: It’s all hard. Ha. Right now, I’d have to say marketing.

JS:  What are you working on now?  
ES: I have the sequel to Clockwise coming out in April and a companion book in June.

JS: How long on average does it take you to write a book?  

ES: It used to take a lot longer, but now because I’m more experienced and I’m making it my full time job, I’d say three to four months.

Random Questions

1. Vanilla or chocolate?
2. Coffee or tea? coffee  
3. Beach or snow? beach  
4. Last book read? I’m currently reading The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson
5. Favorite author? That’s always changing =)  

6. Most played song on iPod? I don’t have an iPod  
7. Favorite movie? Pride & Prejudice  
8. Outliner or panster? outliner  
9. Flats or heels? flats  
10. Lipstick or chapstick? chapstick

Bio: Elle Strauss writes Young Adult and Middle Grade fiction. She's a married mom of four, and lives in the beautiful Okanagan Valley, famous for beaches and vineyards. She's fond of Lindt's sea salt dark chocolate and hiking in good weather. Her Young Adult rom/com time-travel CLOCKWISE and contemporary/otherworldly Middle Grade IT'S A LITTLE HAYWIRE are now available on Amazon.

 Elle's books are avalable at Amazon: Clockwise, It's a Little Haywire, and In His Eyes



Natalie Aguirre said...

Wow Elle, I can't believe you can write a book that fast. I can imagine that marketing is a hard part of self publishing but definitely necessary. I think you've done a good job with that. Thanks for sharing.

Elle Strauss said...

Thanks for having me Jessica!

Elle Strauss said...

It's not always that fast, lol. This last one's been the quickest and that was surprising but nice for me.

Brooke R. Busse said...

Ooh, I like A LITTLE HAYWIRE's cover. And get what you mean about your favorite writing project changing.

DL Hammons said...

I've followed Elle for a long time, but its great to know I can still learn something new about her. Great interview!

Lynda R Young said...

Great interview!
I loved Clockwise and would recommend it to anyone.

Margo Berendsen said...

Such a good point about treating it as a business. Love that we share the same favorite movie and I'm a flats and chapstick gal too. Very interesting what you had to say about publishers wanting dark/edgy YA time-travel.

Jess said...

Awesome interview!! Clockwise was such a fun read! Loved it :)

Btw, I tagged you on my blog, here:

Shannon Lawrence said...

Great interview! Also, really good advice on deciding about self-publishing.

Shannon at The Warrior Muse, co-host of the 2012 #atozchallenge! Twitter: @AprilA2Z

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Quite an interesting interview. And marketing your self-published books is a real challenge, right? Roland