Guest Author: Michelle Graves

Please welcome Michelle Graves, author of the Chronicles of Izzy series, to the blog today! Michelle is spending the day over at the Dauntless Indies Facebook page, so stop by there and check out all she has going on.

If you are interested in being a Guest Author, please check out this page.

Michelle Graves

mg31. Tell us your name, and a link to where we can find you (blog, Facebook, etc).

Michelle Graves

2. How many books have you written? This can include both published and unpublished works. Describe each of them in 1-2 sentences apiece (if published, feel free to include the links as well).

I have written two books thus far.

See How She Runs is the first in the Chronicles of Izzy series.  It follows Izzy as she is thrust into the world of Seers and Guardians all while running from the Corporation.

See How She Fights is the second in the Chronicles of Izzy series.  It catches up with Izzy when she thinks everything is going fine.  Unfortunately, Seers are being sacrificed and it is up to Izzy to put an end to it before she herself perishes.


3. Tell me a little bit about your current WIP.

I am currently working on the third installment of the Chronicles of Izzy (See How She Falls).  I don’t want to give any spoilers away though!


4. What does writing preparation look like for you? Do you do full outlines and character profiles, or do you just start with a general idea and write?

I am a total pantser.  I have the overall story ARC in mind, but as far as the minute details, they all happen as I write.  I am so not a planner.

5. Editing is a challenge for many writers. Give us some of your tips for mg2editing efficiently and well.

This is something I am still struggling with.  I have a terrible habit of writing the way I think, so things come out a bit muddled from time to time.  My biggest problem right now, is that I can only afford an copy editor and what I really need is a content editor.  Maybe when I make my millions ;).

6. Research is another challenge writers face, but is an important part of the writing process. What are some of your research tips?

If I am writing about a place, I have to of been there at some point in my life.  If I am writing about a ceremony, or a specific group of people, I always make sure I understand everything I can about them/it before I ever put it into writing.  The chances are, someone out there that reads my book will have knowledge of what I am writing about.  I don’t ever want someone to read something I have written and think, “That is totally bogus.”  Even when writing fantasy, it has to be based on some sort of facts.  Whether they are created by the author, or based on something from the real world.


7. if you have been published (self or traditionally), what type of marketing did you find worked the best for you? What was the least helpful?

I am a self-published author.  I have found that Facebook is a huge tool for success.  The amount of word of mouth that can be generated just through that alone is astounding.  I have also participated in a blog tour that showed a mark increase in my sales.  The least helpful for me would probably be Twitter.  I still have no clue what I am doing over there!


8. What genre do you write in? What are some of the challenges to writing this particular genre well?

Urban Fantasy/Paranormal is my realm of comfort.  I think the biggest challenge is not writing the same story that has been written a thousand times.  I want to write something fresh that no one has read, with a plot line that is unpredictable.


mg19. What advice would you give to a writer who is starting out?

Prepare yourself for anything.  I was not mentally prepared for the response my debut novel was given.  Both in reviews and personal emails.  I had a really hard time distinguishing between people not liking my book and not liking me.  I constantly have to remind myself that my book is not me, and it is all opinion based.  Not everyone will ever like everything.


10. What are your writing, editing, marketing, and research goals for 2013?

I would really like to refine my writing to a point that is liquid in its fluidity.  I am still working out the bumps, and I know that I will be going back time and again and revising my early stuff as I move forward.  I am just at the beginning of this insane journey, and I have no idea what to expect in the days to come.  I hope that word of mouth continues to spread, and more and more people fall in love with Izzy the way that I have.  Overall, I think my goals really are to just write the best stories for Izzy that I can.  She has a lot to say, and I am willing to say it for her.


11. Pretend I am from a publishing house and you are looking for me to take on one of your books. Pitch it to me in 1-2 paragraphs.

Hmmm, this one is a bit hard for me to answer.  Right now I have no interest in pitching my books to a publishing house.  Self-publishing really fits all of my needs right now, and I think that for the foreseeable future I will be sticking with self-publishing.

Finally, is there anything else you would like your readers to know?

I think the most important thing I would like them to know is how much they mean to me.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I know it sounds like I am pandering to the crowd, but in all seriousness…. I love you people.  It amazes me that some many people have read a story that I sat down and wrote.  I can’t even begin to explain it.  It amazes me even more so when my characters resound with a reader.  Waking up to reviews, messages, or just comments like “my friend loved your book,” make my life AMAZING.  I am just so thrilled that anyone would take their time to read something that I have written.  It boggles my mind.  So a big fat THANK YOU to everyone that takes the time to read Izzy’s journey, sends me a message, or leaves a review…. Y’all have no idea how much your encouragement means to me!


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