Three Questions for... Melinda Clayton

My Three Questions series with fellow Vanilla Heart Publishing authors continues with Melinda Clayton, the author of Appalachian Justice and Return to Crutcher Mountain. Find out more about Melinda at this link.

What have you learned from writing your novels?
Aside from the research I’ve done to make sure my novels are accurate, I think the most important thing I’ve learned is that writing a story isn’t easy. It’s one thing to have ideas rattling around in one’s head, but it’s a completely different matter to mold the ideas into a story. In all the years I promised myself I’d write a book, I really had no idea how hard it would be to develop plots and characters, research subject matter, and put it all together in a way that might compel someone to read it.  

Do you have a "day job?" What is it and how do you write around it?
My day job consists of contract work, which, given the current state of the economy, has pretty much dried up at the moment. The biggest “job” I have right now is finishing my doctorate. Five years in, I’m getting close to the finish line as I put together the final manuscript for my dissertation research. Most days, writing for pleasure is a very welcome break, although I’ve been so busy crunching data lately I haven’t even opened my novel-in-progress for days.  

What’s on your writing desk right now?
I love this question! Of course there’s the required computer, monitor, and printer, packed in among a trove of junk. A stapler, calculator, cup of pens and highlight markers, cell phone, mug of (cold) coffee, three York peppermint patties, a huge stack of papers and information on statistical testing, the book Observations of an Earth Mage by Smoky Zeidel, the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, a stray barrette, and a cat toy (the cat seems to have disappeared).


Sun Singer said…
When I find cat toys on my desk, I look on the floor to find out what's been knocked off it.

Anonymous said…
Thanks for such a fun interview, Collin! Malcolm, I'm often afraid to look under my desk....
I just bought 3 Peppermint Patties on sale-ate two on the way home and stuck one in the freezer. Please send me one of your, Melinda, asap. You are a super woman with many hats. I love your first book Appalachian Justice. Never read anything like it. Amazing story.
Thanks Collin, for Modern Confessions.
Anonymous said…
Thanks, Charmaine! As you know, I'm a big fan of yours. And I'd send you a Peppermint Patty...except that I ate them all. :-(

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