Friday, July 19, 2013

A day in the life of Revell's Debut Author: Sandra Orchard

Today we welcome to the Alley a dear friend of mine--and the very first writer to reach out to yours truly--the amazingly talented, multi-published suspense author Sandra Orchard!

So since each of us is likely aspiring to make writing a full-time gig, I thought I'd pick Sandra's brain and see what we can look forward to when our dreams sprout wings and our careers take off!

A day in the life of a 
published author. 

ALS: What's yours like?

SO: My Mondays to Friday are pretty routine. I try not to do anything writing-related on Sundays, except read stuff from my critique partners. Saturdays I usually write my blog post for Mondays and might spend a couple of hours writing, more if I’m behind. The rest of my week typically looks like this (with an occasional wild swing in times):

6:30 am rise and stretch and tidy, maybe put in load of laundry

7:00 am walk my dog with my neighbor

7:45 am eat, have quiet time, check/respond to emails, shower etc.

9:00 am write, plot, revise, brainstorm, rewrite, reread, work on edits etc. etc.

Noon  eat lunch with hubby who cooks it! Check and respond to emails, post a FB update at some point in the day, pick vegetables, whatever needs doing

Afternoons vary – I’ll often spend a few hours with my grandchildren, but many days I’ll write, or at least try to write, all afternoon. Oftentimes I’m doing writing-related work, such as updating my website, responding to reader letters, answering blog interviews, preparing speeches or classes for special events, working on Art Fact Sheets for upcoming books or the extras that I include on my website for each book. I’m not able to write nearly as many words a day as it seems like I should be able to given the time I’m at it. 

5:00 pm Make supper, spend time with family

7:30 pm If my family is happily all doing their own thing, I’ll often write in the evening and again respond to any emails, work on critiques for my critique partners that can sometimes take several hours. Some nights, I’m on the computer until midnight, other nights not at all! I’ve tried going to bed thinking about my book, hoping my subconscious will work out what’s not working, but…most of the time, it just keeps me from falling asleep. 

Though, I'll admit, I get my best ideas in the shower. J

ALS: There sure is a lot more to writing these days that just pounding out a story, isn't there! Okay, next question...

What is the craziest thing you’ve done in the name of research?

My husband would say that asking the off-duty pilot sitting next to us on a flight to Alaska how I could take down a plane was the craziest. Guess, I should’ve mentioned that I was an author first. 


 The pilot laughed at my husband’s concern that they’d kick us off the plane, put us on a no-fly list and we’d never make it home, except by Greyhound! In fact, the pilot had tons of great ideas, even pulled out his iPhone and showed me pics of the DC-10 he flies and where it could be sabotaged.

ALS: Ha! Lucky you were sitting next to such a great source of information.

What is your greatest pearl of wisdom for aspiring novelists? In other words, your number one writing tip?

Don’t be in a hurry to get published. Take time to learn the craft and enjoy the journey.

ALS: And what story do you have brewing next?

The finale of Port Aster Secrets. Since the characters developed minds of their own in book 2, and the villain changed, and the story veered in an unexpected direction, let’s just say I may be as surprised as readers at how the series ends!

Thank you so much for being out guest Sandra! Looking forward to the next two books in the Port Aster Series!

Don't forget to check out Sandra's amazing new book, available now!


Sandra Orchard delivers a witty whodunit that will not only keep you guessing but will cast every last character with credible suspicion. Set in a charming town with the beautiful Niagara backdrop, the story follows the feisty and impetuous redheaded researcher with a heart of gold, Kate Adams, out to prove her friend and mentor didn’t take her own life.

But when Kate drags Detective Tom Parker, a somewhat stoic cop looking for a fresh start, into the web of suspicions, delightful chaos ensues. With a finely woven thread of danger, and a sprinkle of romance, you will sip down this story and become infected with Orchard’s addicting fictional “poison.”

A must-read for mystery junkies!


Sandra Orchard said...

Amy, thanks so much for inviting me to be your guest today. I love your review, and am delighted that you enjoyed the story.

Amy Leigh Simpson said...

We are so happy to have you here, Sandra! Congrats on your beautiful book!

Susan Anne Mason said...

Hi Sandra,

Congrats on the success of your latest book! Love the cover so much.

I laughed at you saying that your best ideas come in the shower - that's where I get my best ones as well!

Continued success and congrats on the new grandbaby!


Jill Weatherholt said...

Thanks for sharing a day in your life, Sandra! I loved your craziest research answer...too funny!

Amy Leigh Simpson said...

Ha! Must be a writer thing! One of my brainstorming hotspots is the shower too ;) too funny!!!

Sandra Orchard said...

Thanks so much, Amy and Susan.

You're very welcome, Jill.

I've got to share for anyone who might be reading comments and is interested in my next Love Inspired Suspense, Fatal Inheritance, Today, July 19th, until midnight it can be purchased from the Harlequin site for 30% off using coupon code BRDES30, which is good for all books there today, and if you didn't know they have a lot of trade books like the Love Finds You series that they've added to their site. Here's the link to my particular book :) :

Tracy Krauss said...

I wish I was a morning person Sandra! LOL about asking the pilot

Ashley Clark said...

Love that story about the airplane--how funny!

Angie Dicken said...

Glad to see you on the Alley, Sandra! Great post. :)