I have always adored the company of other authors. When I am blessed to engage them in dialogue, I am forever enchanted with how they came to writing and what drives their days. Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting the lovely writer, Jo Linsdell. What follows is a glimpse into her fascinating world!
1. How did you come to writing? And what is your writing process? Who are your writing mentors?
I’ve been writing since I can remember. I used to love creative writing classes at school and then got into writing poetry when I was in my teens as a means of venting my feelings. Later on, I had various jobs including working on a publication for the dental industry and writing research articles for the Department of Neurology here in Rome.
In 2006 I sent off my first article to an English-language newspaper in Florence and it was published in the very next issue. Since then I’ve written for websites, magazines, newspapers and published several books.
As for my writing process, I write when I can. As a mum to a 4-year-old and a 9 month old, my days are pretty full. I have to grab time for writing when I get the chance.
I write various genres and so the whole process changes slightly for each one. For my fiction, I normally start by brainstorming my idea to get a rough outline of how the story will unfold. Once I have an outline I then just write. I don’t plan too much and I’m always flexible in case whilst I’m writing the story takes a different direction from the initial outline.
I don’t really have writing mentors as such. I read a lot and in different genres. I prefer the more hands on approach to learning my craft.
2. What inspired the writing of your latest release?
My 4-year-old son. He asked me why I hadn’t written a story for him yet and I figured he made a good point. I wrote ‘Out and About at the Zoo’ after taking him to the zoo for the first time.
3. How do you persevere when life flows in and usurps your writing time?
I love what I do. I’m not sure what I’d do if I wasn’t a writer. It’s a passion I’ve always had. When you really enjoy doing something, you make the time regardless of what life throws at you.
4. How do you motivate Jo Linsdell?
I have goals I want to achieve. To keep me going and make it possible to achieve the big goals, I break them down into smaller bite-size chunks. It’s easier to keep ticking things off the list and stay motivated that way.
5. Name one thing your readers do not know about you.
I’m a huge Winnie the Pooh fan.
6. What, to date, has been your strongest marketing/promoting tool/method?
I think it’s a tie between virtual tours and Promo Day (an annual online event I organize for people in the writing industry). Both are great for creating a domino-marketing effect.
7. What is your next writing project?
I’m currently working on 3 books.
One is another children’s picture book about a young fairy named May who dreams of one day becoming a tooth fairy.
Another is a chick-lit about a young woman called Anna. Anna falls for the wrong men. She always has. The road to finding Mister Right is long and complicated for her. Can she find true love? Can it happen twice?
The other is a non-fiction about social media.
8. Describe the toughest lesson you’ve learned as a writer.
I’m my own biggest critic so I’d have to say to believe in myself.
9. Are writing organizations important to you? What are your thoughts on co-authorship?
Not really writing organizations, more my network of writing industry members. I’m lucky to have some amazing connections in my network and we all rally to help each other when needed. Having a support network is important as we all help each other, learn from each other and keep each other motivated.
I prefer to work on my own pieces as opposed to co-authoring. I’m not against the idea of co-authoring, but I would find it hard to do as I tend to have very clear ideas of what I want from my projects.
10. How do you handle negative reviews?
So far I’ve been lucky enough to not have to experience a negative review. Should the day come when I get one (and it will sooner or later. We can’t please everyone all the time), I hope it will come with constructive criticism so I can use it to improve my writing.
Thank you, Jo, for being beautifully, uniquely you in the world…
Living a Golden Life,