Welcome to Visiting Authors today, Mona!
What do you write?
I started my writing career writing textbooks and journal articles. Now, I write contemporary Romance novels and women’s fiction.
What drew you to writing?
I have always loved to journal and to write short stories. Reading and writing were a wonderful escape when I was a child and I never left that habit behind. While reading or writing, I could sink into a different world and forget all my troubles. While I do a fair amount of public speaking I have always preferred to express myself through the written word.
What was your inspiration for Six Months?
When you've lost everything, it takes courage to forgive, rebuild, and learn to love again.
For twenty years, Mikala Jacobson had it all: loyal friends, a precious little girl, and a man who adores her. Then double tragedy strikes and her perfect world shatters.
Good friends, Rena and Jake are instantly by her side, protecting her from her husband David's sordid secret life and his final drunken confession.
With their help, Mikala finds strength to rebuild and redefine her life. As her spirit and heart heal, she not only finds closure, but the beauty of a new love built upon an old friendship.
Available: Amazon ~ The Wild Rose Press ~ B&N ~ Ibooks
I wish I could tell you what exactly inspired me to write Six Months. As a mother I have always thought that losing a child would be life altering, and I wondered how women survived that tragedy. I did not lose a child in the way described in the book, but I had a very similar experience that changed me as a person and as a mother permanently. It was very hard to learn to live after the fact and to find joy again. I think women are very resilient, and we hold our families together under the worst of circumstances.
Do you find inspiration in your own life for your writing?
Yes, every book and every character I write has a little bit of me or my life in it. I think it is impossible for a writer’s life not to bleed into their work.
Tell us about your experience with the publishing process.
Six Months is published by The Wild Rose Press. I did consider self-publishing, but after much research, I decided that route was not best for me. It took me about eight months to write the book and additional two months to shop for a publishing house and then a year of edits as I moved across the country, quit one job and started another, sold a house and bought a house and became a grandma….busy, busy time. I love working with The Wild Rose Press and learned so much from my editor. It has been a wonderful experience. I don’t think all publishing houses are created equal and believe authors should make decisions carefully.
Any new projects on the horizon?
Currently, I am 2/3 of the way through a new book titled Gravity. It is a contemporary romance about a Middle-Eastern woman who is shunned by her family after she becomes pregnant out of wedlock. She loses everything and everyone she knows and has to start her life, with a child, on her own. She must learn who she is and must learn to forgive herself for her mistakes as well as her family. When she does find forgiveness, she learns what unconditional love is and finds the love of her life. Together, their blended family mirrors many American families and their differences and life experiences make them stronger.
Words of advice for fellow writers in the trenches:
I know writers often hear this, but it is true. Writing is not easy. It is work….every single day! If you really want to be published, then get ready to bleed a bit for your art. Learn to have a thick skin, and never give up. Writing is a muscle that must be exercised, or it atrophies, so commit to it and just do it!
9. What was the hardest part of the story to write/research?
The hardest part of the story that had me in tears was a goodbye letter that the main character had to write to her daughter. I had to imagine the unimaginable–saying good-bye to one of my girls. It was tough! I think it took me three weeks to write that letter alone.
Mona, her writing buddies and sunset in Costa Rica, one of her favorite places.