Today on Make-believe Mondays I'm pleased to introduce Lori Devoti, one of my friends from RWAonline. Lori writes romantic comedy set in the Missouri Ozarks. If you enjoy comedy, you'll enjoy her latest book, Love is All Around.
Lori, first, tell us a little bit about the manuscript you’re working on now.
Lori: Well, I just finished a proposal for a dark paranormal totally different than either of my published books. I also have proposals out for a paranormal mom lit, a hen lit, and a couple romantic comedies. I’m researching a paranormal female adventure type story now.
Debra: Wow! you have been busy.
Mark Twain said, “You cannot depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.” How do you fill your creative well to keep your imagination in focus?
Lori: A friend told me a shoot out ideas like gumballs out of a vending machine. I thought that was funny. And while I prefer it to struggling for ideas, it can be difficult to. You can begin to feel a tad haunted. Usually though, one idea somehow manages to bubble to the top.
Debra: Gumballs out of a vending machine. That's a good one.
Lori: I also have a book I keep working on in downtime. Meaning when I don’t have another driving idea. I go back to it to refill I guess. It’s nice to have something I feel I can just take my time with and enjoy writing or researching. I am very deadline driven so that is a real weakness of mine—feeling I need to be pounding something out all the time.
Is there a point when your characters begin to come alive and you can see and hear them?
Lori: My characters are always alive. What I do find sometimes though is that there are aspects that aren’t as focused as others, especially if it is a growth area for that character. For example in my dark paranormal, my heroine is a strong person, but doesn’t see herself that way. Thus the book starts with her seeing herself weak but will end with her being much stronger. It took a few passes to get that figured out in the beginning chapters.
As a child did any particular book or author pull you into their imaginary world?
Lori: I had a ton of favorite writers/books. I loved Zane Grey, the Anne of Green Gables series, Alexander Dumas, Black Like Me, and A Little Princess. I think I read A Little Princess twenty times. I still remember where it was shelved in our library. The same goes for the Zane Grey books—I went back over and over to get new ones, ordered them direct from the publisher and read old ones my mother had. LOVED them!
Debra: That's the true test of which stories children love. When they return to them again and again.
If there were no categories for books, no reader expectations to meet, and you could create the wildest work of imagination that you could think of what kind of story would that be?
Lori: Books with strong women, that could be funny, but didn’t have to be. So a mix of serious and funny—but definitely strong female characters, and maybe a pet. I have a weakness for pets. ;-)
Debra: Yes, your pet pig toadstool comes to mind. (Readers can see a picture of Lori with her pet pig by visiting her website at www.LoriDevoti.com) She also had a duck named Spud and a pony named Wishbone.
Lori, thanks for visiting here on Make-believe Mondays.