Joey Paul is an indie author, exploring the young adult crime genre. She has released nine books in total so far, with two more due out in the summer of 2017. Her current works include the "Dying Thoughts" series, and she is planning to start writing the last book. She usually writes crime and mystery fiction, with a paranormal twist, but she has been known to dabble in contemporary romance and general fiction. She is writing her fifteenth and sixteenth books at the moment, having recently finished her last two.
Joey is disabled and a recent graduate from The Open University with a BA (Hons) in Health & Social Care. When not reading medical textbooks, she enjoys reading crime novels, medical dramas and young adult novels. When she's out and about, she likes looking for Tupperware in the woods with GPS satellites, otherwise known as geocaching. And when she's not doing THAT, she's sleeping! She's 35 and has been writing since she was retired from her job on medical grounds at the age of 19. She plans to write for as long as she has ideas or until someone tells her to stop!
Joey has written a number of books, but here are three she is especially proud of. Destination: Unknown, Dying Thoughts - First Touch, and Lynne & Hope.
Destination: Unknown - Synopsis
Harriet has a complicated life. She cares for her chronically ill Mum, while trying to juggle school and a social life. She’s tired, overworked and underpaid.
Yet, one day she sees what she thinks is a ghost, but ghosts don’t exist do they? And they especially don’t help you travel in time, right?
Now Harriet has a murder to solve, all the while trying to make sure no one finds out about the secret behind that stone in her back garden.
So, we asked Joey some questions recently, and here's what she had to say:
Does writing energize or exhaust you?
I've found that it does both depending on the type of day I'm having. I have several chronic conditions and they obviously have an effect on my life and writing. However there are some days when all I want to do is write and I find on those days, it energizes me, on others it can be exhausting as I muddle through and try to get some words on the page. The majority of the time though it's a lift in my day and it's the one thing I love most about my job.
Have you ever gotten reader’s block?
Actually no. I went through a stage of not reading much, and then I got back into it but that was more because I was studying for my degree and just didn't have the spare time. Now that I've graduated, and am doing my writing full time I find that reading is a lovely way to spend an evening after work.
How have other authors helped you become a better writer?
They've supported me, pointed me in the right direction, and given me advice that has helped me find my way. On top of that, they've been my cheerleaders when I've been struggling and have been some of the reasons that I have kept going. I am very lucky to have some very good friends who are also authors. They have been the ones I go to when I get stuck on a scene and have been a massive help to me throughout my writing journey. I'm proud to call them friends.
How has your writing progressed or changed as you write more books?
I like to think my writing has gotten better. I'm better at managing my time and better at working out which scenes to cut when it comes to the editing process. I'm more descriptive, but not to the point where I spend a whole page describing it. While that works for some writers, it's never been something I do. However, I have gotten better at giving the reader some idea of where the characters are and what lies around them. I've also grown in my ideas. While I used to wait until I had a whole idea before planning, now it just takes a snippet of one and I'm off to the planning stage. I also plan more than I did before which means that I have a better idea of exactly where I'm going with things.
How do you select the names of your characters?
In the early days it would be a baby naming book, or something that happened to be lying around. Now it's more researching into names, what they mean, whether they fit the character. The majority of the time the main character's name is already in my head when I have the idea. Any characters I have to name on the way usually get the first name I think of that I've not used either at all or too much!
Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
I do, and I find they help me work out where I went wrong, or where I need to improve. I love the good ones, who doesn't? But advice given to me early one was to never engage, so I don't comment or anything else like that. As far as bad reviews go, publicly I'm pretty much okay with it. I know that I won't please everyone and I know that it's impossible to achieve that. I might mention it to a friend and discuss the reasoning behind the bad review, but again I don't engage. The reviews are for the readers, not for me. Some authors say don't even read them, but I like to and I don't see the harm.
How long on average does it take you to write a book?
That depends really on the book. In the past it's taken me as little as ten days, as long as ten years. Nowadays because I'm writing full time, it will usually be eight to twelve months from start to finish. I'm pretty happy with that, and it gives me a chance to let the book breathe before I go back and start the editing process. At the moment I have two books coming out in 2017, but I have another four that are already finished and are sitting for a while before I red pen them to death!
We want to thank Joey Paul for speaking with us. You can find out more about Joey and her books at the following links.