And without further ado...
What’s your writing process?
Hmm – there really is no process. I’ve often referred to my writing style as “verbal vomit” (sorry for the gross analogy)! When the story hits and takes hold, there’s almost nothing I can do to stop it. I have to capture all the words as they spill out. I’ve learned the hard way to capture the story when it hits – and have been known to jump out of bed in the middle of the night and jot down those flashes of insite – or risk losing the thought.
When and where do you write?
Hah! Good question. I have an office at home and I usually climb into it after work each night and most of the weekends. I refer to it as “the cave,” though it’s quite nice and sunny. Finding time is hard. I have a (more than) full time job, try to hit the gym 4 or 5 days a week, and am clinging desperately to what social life I had! Family always comes first, of course, but I will admit there are times I resent not curling up with my characters. My poor husband caters to my idiosyncrasies and never complains when I neglect him – though he has a right to!
Speaking of your husband, you’ve said he’s the inspiration for all your heroes. How and why?
Well, besides the fact that they are all tall, dark-haired, and incredibly handsome – all of my heroes are strong, gentle, and affectionate. They don’t super-impose their needs and wants on the main characters – instead they support and encourage the independence of the women they love. That’s my husband – and that inspires me. I don’t think it would have been possible for me to accomplish all that I have – personally, professionally, and as an author – if it were not for him. I’m one lucky gal!
Where do you get your stories and characters?
Oh, geez – stories and characters are all around us! Sometimes it’s something that’s happening right in front of me, sometimes it’s just an interesting person or conversation. I try and take ordinary events and people and place them in unusual circumstances, which means I spend a lot of time asking myself “what if?” and then following where it leads. I’m frequently surprised where the story does go, being a complete Pantser!
Even as a Pantser, you must have some idea where a story is going in order to write a complete trilogy. How do you do it?
I do have the story arc laid out in my head and I’ll usually scribble some general notes for specific scenes I want to include, but those are very rough and often won’t make it into the final version. I like to let my characters drive the story, and I like to put them in predicaments they have to find their own way out of. Book 2 of the Phasms trilogy (coming Fall 2014) was the perfect example of what happens when your characters come to life: Kelsi and Bryn ended up hijacking everything I thought was going to happen. The last scene in book 2 remains the same as I’d originally envisioned it, but everything between the beginning and ending was a complete surprise.
Infinite Potential by Barbara GarrenKelsi always Knows when bad things are coming, but even she never thought she’d lose her husband at only twenty-three. Since he died, she’s been living her worst nightmare.
Her nights are filled with dreams of a Dark Haired Man, but her days are full of guilt, because the Man fills her with longing and confusion, promising to give her all she needs, all she wants, all she feared she’d never have again.
If only the dreams would stay in her head where they belong.
Kelsi starts seeing the Dark Haired Man in her waking life, shadowing her wherever she goes. And when her mysterious new neighbor, Aiden Hardt, knows about the Man in her dreams, Kelsi worries she can’t trust her own mind.
He’s not what he seems.
But even Aiden’s cryptic words don’t frighten her as much as the way she feels around him. Kelsi must sort through her emotions and figure out what’s real before she can ever hope to have a normal life again.
About the AuthorBarbara was born and raised in Southern California, but left to explore the world courtesy of the U.S. Navy. After traveling the world, she forced herself to live a humble life in in San Francisco, New York and Norfolk, Virginia. She now calls San Diego home and you won’t pry her out with a crowbar.
She would be the first to tell you her husband, Henry, is the inspiration for all the romance, and the real Charlie - who is as cute as he sounds in her books - is a terrorist. When not working for the U.S. Navy, she can be found running, reading or writing. She firmly believes a well rounded diet consists of coffee, scotch, chocolate, popcorn and Luna Bars. In that order.
She's a graduate of CUNY and Penn State - and manages to write a decent line here and there despite those burdens.
I hope you guys enjoy her book as much as I did. We're finishing up edits on book 2 right now and she's writing book 3, and let me tell you, this trilogy is like nothing you've seen before. I'm super excited to release it into the the wild over the next year!