What has been the most rewarding thing to come out of your work on Bookworm Blues?
Like I mentioned in part 1, I really do struggle with being so passionate about SF and not knowing a SOUL who cares about it as much as I do. Bookworm Blues has carved out a little niche and through it I’ve found a vibrant community of fellow fans who are just as excited about the genre and books as I am. That’s been so incredibly rewarding and fulfilling. It’s beyond what I ever hoped to find when I started my website.
I’m also really excited about all the opportunities that have come my way. Two years ago, I’d never have dreamed of helping edit two anthologies and being a regular reviewer in a magazine, or interviewing authors, like Tad Williams, who I admire so much. It’s incredible, and the possibilities are limitless.
You’re a published author, where can we find your work?
Heh. I have never written under my own name. My first published bit was when I was sixteen. After that I had a lull for a while until I hit college and a few professors in various classes asked to submit some of my papers to various magazines. I always gave them permission, but I never let them use my name. The problem isn’t really the subjects I wrote about, but rather the material. I didn’t want people who were looking to hire me for a job to Google my name and find that I wrote an article that was published in an academic magazine that upset half of the people who read the article.
I’ve always dabbled in novel writing, though I’ve never had one published. It’s a long shot, but I’ve occasionally wondered if I’d publish a novel under my own name and I’m still not sure if I would. I kind of enjoy the secrecy. My experience from the various essays I had published showed me how nice it can be when people don’t know who you are when they are upset or incredibly negative. It was a lot easier to divorce myself from my work, and all the emotions than it would have been if people had known how to contact me or tell me in person how upset my piece made them.
You’ve got a pretty busy life outside of your blog, how in the world did you find time to read 100 books this year, post about all of them, handle editing duties on multiple projects? Clearly, you don’t sleep.
I don’t have a clue. A lot of the editing happens in doctor’s offices. I am currently fighting cancer and a serious back problem. Medical problems bring a lot of waiting with them. My in-laws babysit my one-year-old and I take my laptop to the doctor and get as much done as I can. I also usually edit when Fiona (my daughter) is napping, or I use that time to read. When I’m not working late (Yeah, I have a part-time job, too), I will edit and read after she sleeps. I’m usually up until at least two in the morning working on blog stuff, author stuff, interview stuff, guest post stuff, editing stuff, and etc. Then I wake up around seven or eight the next morning and do it all over again.
If I didn’t love doing it, and filling my life with it, I wouldn’t do it. Yeah, it takes a lot of time, effort and determination, but I’ve never once regretted all the hours I’ve poured into my passion.
Outside of SFF/Speculative Fiction and perhaps even in direct contrast to SFF, what are some hobbies?
I am an amateur photographer. I’ve actually won a few international contests with some of my photography. Currently I’m trying to start an independent photography business, so I not only spend all my free time with books, but also photo shoots. I have a B.S. in health promotion and nutrition. The field has really infused me with a love of cooking. I can 100% promise you, if I’m not doing photography or book stuff, I’m cooking. I’m also addicted to tea. We just bought our first house and I started an herbal tea garden in the summer. I spent a lot of hours loving all my plants and brewing fresh hot and iced teas.
What was your favorite read of 2012 and to what book do you look most forward to reading?
I’d have to say; so far my favorite book of 2012 was Range of Ghosts by Elizabeth Bear. That book blew my mind. Then again, most of her stuff blows my mind. There were a lot of good books this year, though. The Troupe by Robert Jackson Bennett, and Of Blood and Honey by Stina Leicht also come to mind. As for what I’m looking forward to most?
Right now I have three books I’m looking forward to most: Cold Iron by Stina Leicht, The Garden by Teresa Frohock and the second book in Bear’s series.