Sixty Seconds II with: Tamara Shoemaker

Ten answers to ten questions in 20 words or fewer. That’s less time than it takes to burn a match*.

(*Depending on the length of the match and your tolerance for burned fingers, obviously)


Our newest Flash! Friday winner is Tamara Shoemaker.  Read her winning story here. Note that this is her second win — read her first #SixtySeconds interview (from Sept 2014) here. Then take another minute to get to know her better below.

1) What about the prompt inspired your winning piece? I loved how the curve of the goblet distorted that perfect sunset. Beauty often “tilts” in more than just pictures.

2) Do you outline, or are you more of a discovery writer? I “pantsed” my first two novels. My third pantsed novel failed miserably, so I plotted the next six books. Loads better.

3) How would you describe your writing style? I’m a bit of a poet, but my plot/dialogue-based novels don’t show that. Need to make the imagery/plot meet in the middle.

4) When did you begin writing fiction? As a child, I “fixed” book endings. Poor Gone with the Wind. Margaret Mitchell would turn in her grave.

5) Introduce us to a favorite character in one of your stories. Marysa Blakely from my Guardian of the Vale fantasy series (coming soon!). The girl never shuts up. Consequently, I love her.

6) What books have influenced your life the most? Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, the Bible, Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre. I have wide and varied taste.

7) What are you currently reading? North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell. A necessary read after I watched the BBC movie with (the drool-worthy) Richard Armitage. [Editor’s Note: Hail, King Under the Mountain!]

8) How do you combat writer’s block? I have a minimum-per-day goal of 2k words. The writing may be garbage, but it’s out, and I can move on.

9) What’s the best writing advice you’ve ever been given? To not compare my writing with another’s. I will never be as good as Rowling/King/Grisham, but I’ll be the best Shoemaker ever. 😉

10) What do you admire most about dragons?  Their keen ability to mastermind successful weekly flash fiction contests without roasting their dragonlings to charred bits. [Editor’s Note: That you know of.] 


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