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  • What was your journey like writing books?
    I fell in love with reading as soon as I learned to read. My early grade years were filled with Grimms Fairy Tales, Francine Pascal, Ann M. Martin, Beverly Cleary & Judy Blume. In the 6th and 7th grade, I was competing in the spelling bee because I loved words. As I grew older, so did my taste in books, but my happiest place has always been inside the halls of a library. I knew when I was drafting stories on my Brother word processor during my first year of college that my greatest dream was to be a published author. At the time, I was too scared to really try and instead pursued a career as a military officer and later as a business professional. After earning my Doctorate in Business Administration and still dreaming of writing books, I knew I needed to take a chance and go for it. This led me to January 2022 when I walked away from everything and committed all of my efforts to learning the craft and writing two books.
  • If you could give your fellow writer 3 pieces of advice, what would they be?
    1. Writing is a craft. If you want to hedge your bets for success: Study the craft. Desire alone doesn’t cut it. 2. Write a book with an obsessive focus on your reader. It’s not about you and all the things you want to say, it’s about what your reader wants to read and their experience in your story. 3. Join a team of at least 3 strong writers and work together with implicit trust. You have to get past hurt feelings and be true and transparent with your writing partners and encourage them to do the same. So often I hear about writers who refuse to take the advice of others—to their detriment.
  • Plot it out? Or seat of your pants?
    Both. I’m still trying to figure out what works best. (Smiling). Full transparency, my undergraduate degree was a BS in Accounting. I like structure. I like things to fit together nicely. However, I wrote Isla Magic from the top of my head with a candle lit and music on, no outline. A book I’m working on now in 2023 is nearly completely plotted out and I can’t wait to start writing..
  • Who are some of your favorite authors?
    Soooo many! On the scholarly side: Ernest Hemingway & Gabriel Garcia Marquez. On the commercial side: Elizabeth Gilbert, Jodi Picoult, Nora Roberts, David Baldacci, Diana Gabaldon, Lisa Gardner, Isabel Allende, and Taylor Jenkins Reid
  • Where do your ideas come from?
    At risk of being a bit cliché, I tend to begin with a “What if…” Isla Magic was sprung from my time as an Army Officer during OIF/OEF as I began to think: What if a young mother was forced to kill a child who reminded her of her own son? Everything else happened from there. When I wrote my story Must Be Time I thought, “What if I wrote a love story like Forrest Gump, that took place over the late 90’s to mid 2017, but my main character was a tough guy on a motorcycle?” Everything else sprung from that.
  • Your home page says “Where Storytelling Makes an Impact.” What does that mean?
    My life choices have always been centered on serving a greater purpose. This was my driving force when I joined the Army in 2005, when I began leading manufacturing teams and building medical devices in 2008, and when I led a law firm championing veterans’ disability benefits. As a writer, I want my stories to carry specific common threads: positive promotion of Latino character(s), real-life struggles that deeply affect our society, and representation of people of color or with disabilities. My stories are designed to entertain AND educate. It’s important for me that a reader closes the book, or swipes to the last page and say/thinks, “Wow, I had no idea…” or “I’ve never known about these struggles…” while still being entertained.
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