Jen: Today we welcome Amy Stearman to Romancing the Book. Amy, will you share a short bio with us?
Amy: Amy Stearman is an avid reader and writer of stories, hailing from the Midwest. She lives in the liberal mecca of Kansas with her husband, young son, and ornery Sheltie.
Amy holds her bachelors degrees in Human Services and Victim Studies, and a Masters degree in Social Work. That might sound pretty cool, but she accidentally ended up in marketing.
When she’s not chasing her four year old or attempting DIY home improvement, she’s jotting down story ideas and dreaming big.
Jen: Tell us about your newest release.
Amy: Altered is a paranormal romance novel set in a small town in Kansas. The idea came to me when I was working for the District Attorney’s office advocating for victims of violent crimes. My overactive imagination made me start to wonder what it would be like for someone to be a victim of a supernatural crime. In this case, the heroine Sadie crosses paths with a vampire who turns her against her will.
“Give me your vow, Sadie, or I’ll take it.”
She swallowed her tears and drew in a ragged breath. Meeting his steady gaze, she unknowingly repeated the same promise her great-grandmother had given him one hundred years before. “Never.”
That broke him. Eyes frantic and body a tight coil of rage, he fisted her hair and held her face a breath away from his, then screamed one crucial word.
Hair still caught in his painful grasp, Vince violently wrenched her head to the side and struck down like a viper.
Sadie had never known such pain or such fear. She screamed out in agony, unable to move under the weight of his heavy body. Vince’s form was bent over her, his head in the juncture of her neck and shoulder, groaning obscenely. Searing pain shot through her body at lightning speed and exploded through the tips of every nerve ending. Her muscles contracted painfully, knees drawing up, hands balled into fists. Screams fought their way through clenched teeth as a fiery poison blazed through her veins and ate its way outward, breaking through in a sheen of sweat all over her heated skin. She did not know what was happening; only that she would not survive it.
Jen: How do you remember ideas that come to you at odd times?
Amy: I swear, my brain only works correctly when it isn’t supposed to – like in the middle of the night. I have a notebook I keep in my nightstand to jot down scenes and ideas. To anyone else it would read as jibberish, but it’s just enough to jar my memory.
Jen: What’s the most challenging aspect of writing?
Amy: Finding the time to write when I’m also in the mood. I work full time, I have a husband that travels a lot, I have a VERY busy four year old, and we have two dogs that want constant attention. I love keeping busy, but it’s impossible to stop in the middle of my day to write if the mood or an idea strikes. I usually have to wait until after the little one goes to bed. Sometimes, by then, the creative juices just will not flow. Pushing through and liking the result seems to be the hardest thing for me!
Jen: How do you come up with characters names?
Amy: I ask them. Isn’t that weird? I usually have a good idea of who they are before I begin writing so I consider what they look like, their mannerisms, where they’re from, how old they are. I think a name can tell you a lot about a person, so I try to get it right. I’ve also been known to sneak in the surnames of some of my favorite people.
Jen: What’s next for you?
Amy: I have two things: the second book in the Chronicles of The Creed series, and a romantic suspense with paranormal elements in which the heroine is able to read the history of items she encounters, and gets caught up in a whirlwind of violent crimes associated with an old pocket watch.