Today’s guest is a double threat in the writing world. In addition to crafting books, she composes songs! Pretty neat, eh? Ladies and gentlemen, here’s India R. Adams–author of the Haunted Road series, the Tainted Water books, My Wolf and Me, and the soon-to-be-released novels Rain and Serenity.
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m a mom and wife, who happens to use her crazy in the form of writing books. Hahaha… Just kidding (not really). I’m and author of YA and NA novels in genres of contemporary, paranormal and fantasy. I’ve written music to go along with the Forever series, and have designed jewelry for some of my books.
- Where are you from?
I’m originally from Florida, and have moved all over but now live in Murphy, North Carolina—in the mountains!
- Give us a fun fact about yourself.
2. When did you start writing?
8 years ago after reading a self-help book. The read told me you could relive a memory, give a different outcome to whatever hurt you, and benefit from the sensation of a better ending. I was so intrigued, going back in time (in my mind), that I got caught up in my new memory. Once I had changed the event, my imagination kept inventing. Next thing I knew, I had Serenity, the first novel in the Forever.
3. How different is Serenity from your original vision?
When I was writing the second book in the Forever series, a metaphysical feel kept pushing its way onto pages, so I allowed the growth to take shape in Serenity. I went back to that first book and explored. I’m so glad I did. Now it’s a four book series.
- Did the structure and content of Serenity change with the passage of time?
Oh yes! I’ve learned so much about the craft of writing since the beginning that, when time to get Serenity ready for professional editing, I had to go back in and implement my style that I have created over the years.
4. Tell us a little bit about one of your books’ title.
Serenity is my 6th release but since she’s been the subject, I’ll talk about her. The original title was The Swing. The reason is, Serenity (the lead YA, female character in this book) is looking to survive her mother’s alcoholism and her father’s domestic violence, and remembers the good days when her father would push her on her childhood swing. When a young man, Dereck, enters her life, he brings her back to this swing for talks. Sounds miniscule to some I’m sure but it’s the beginning to Serenity’s life transformation. My betas were not liking the title because the book is about this young woman more than the early parts with the swing. So, we now have Serenity, Destiny, Hope & Faith, and Joy. The Forever series.
5. Does Serenity have a moral?
I think so. So much growth happens in this first novel. The second novel, Destiny, takes place 2 years into college, where so much more growth and hard lessons are learned. I’m getting so excited just talking about it!
- Could you explain what the moral is?
I hate to ruin the journey for any readers but one of the biggest lessons is with learning to love yourself, and trying to cut through the thick ties of codependency. It’s not easy for Serenity to learn to be the child, and let her parents figure out their mistakes on their own.
6. Of the characters you’ve created, which one is your favorite?
In the Forever series I’d have to say Destiny. She’s a wholesome woman who still sees magic and beauty in this world that is overwhelming for most. Another favorite of mine is Sebastian. He’s a character in My Wolf and Me who has recently started shifting into a human from his wolf form. I loved being in his head, seeing everything from his fresh perspective. He’s such a kind, loving soul… There’s a scene where he discusses “buttholes” that cracks everybody up! But, I think I had most fun writing Tucker from Steal Me. He’s flawed, complicated, a thinker, has a dirty mouth, and I loved stepping out of my own bounds and creating this guy. I found freedom through him searching for his.
I think I never mention my lead female characters as being favorites because they all have such events to go through, and I have to experience this pain with them! We have to search deep in our hearts and find strength to survive whatever lesson or conditions these characters are forced to endure. It can be exhausting, daunting, and so hard on me. Readers get to read and take the ride I’ve created for them. I have to stay in those painful moments for months at a time to get that chapter just right.
7. What does a typical writing session look like for you?
When in the mist of creating, I sit at my lap top for 10 to 14 hours a day. I loose myself completely. Time escapes me all together, and my kids give me dirty looks because they want dinner. They stand in front of my desk and wave (because I have earphones on) and point to their wrist watches. I pull myself from whatever zone I was just in and join the real world.
- Do you like to write in public places, or do you seek out isolation?
I’ve trained myself to work in public because of softball practices and stuff like that but I prefer isolation, especially for my deep scenes.
- Do you set daily goals for yourself (in terms of word count)?
I don’t. I was given the advice once that if you want to write, write. That is what I do.
8. How do you feel about outlines? Are you for or against them?
Not against them if it works for you. My brain just doesn’t work that way. The crazy thing in my noggin demands freedom to go as she pleases, lol!
9. What is your favorite book genre?
I used to love YA but now I prefer to read what I write, NA, but love adult also. I have a bad boy motorcycle club addiction that has taken me over!
10. What are you currently reading?
I’m trying to finish the Beast by J. R. Ward. Black Dagger Brotherhood is a favorite of mine.
11. Any project in the works?
Always! I have many new books demanding my time but I’m staying focused with finishing sequels for the series I’ve started releasing. So, to come is, Black Waters, the third novella in the Tainted Water Scar Me, the sequel to Steal me, Haunted Roads series. River, the sequel to Rain of the Stranger in the Woods novels. And Destiny, the sequel of Serenity from the Forever series.
12. How long does it usually take you to write a book?
I usually knock out my first drafts in 30 days but it takes months and years to polish.
13. In your opinion, what makes a story ‘good’?
Connection to the characters. If the reader is not feeling them, it doesn’t matter what your writing about, in my opinion, for the genres I write.
14. What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
The same answer always comes to me with this question… Write because you love it! Do NOT write because you think you will be the next #1 book and be as rich as those authors, because the chances are your wasting your time. Write because you don’t know how not to! Because it’s a part of your soul! That way, when your paychecks suck, you won’t be sad because you are doing what you desire, and THAT makes you one of the lucky ones.
And now for a game of “Which Do/Would You Prefer?”
1. Cake or ice-cream?
2. Car or motorcycle?
Motorcycles are a fetish of mine, hahaha
3. Nights out or nights in?
Are the kids home? lol
4. Being able to travel to the past or being able to travel to the future?
I’d have to say past because then I could CHANGE the future!
5. Staying in a hotel or going camping?
Hotel, unless I’m promised a great camp fire
6. To find true love or to win the lottery?
I’m a romance author! Love of course 😉
7. Being Spiderman for a day or being Batman for a day?
Climbing buildings or driving bad ass cars, hmmm…
8. To speak using ONLY rap lyrics (from songs released in the 21st century) or to speak using ONLY quotes from Austen’s books?
I always make my kids cringe when I try and rap, so rap, for sure.
9. Being drawn into a tornado or being drawn into a whirlpool?
Yuck! Lol. A whirlpool of love maybe?
10. Going without internet access for a week or going without watching any movies/television shows for a week?
Take my internet and I shall die.
11. Having your car break down on an extremely busy expressway or along an abandoned road in the middle of nowhere?
Middle. Of. Nowhere. Chris Hemsworth may find me and rescue me (don’t tell my husband).
12. To never speak again or to never eat solid food again?
I like milkshakes so I pick keeping my voice.
13. Misunderstanding everything that is told to you or being misunderstood every time that you speak?
Torture much? lol
14. Drinking a glass of expired, curdled milk or eating a bowl of cold, slimy worms? (Note: the worms would be dead, though not cooked.)
Gross! I pick worms.
15. Finding yourself trapped in the universe of The Walking Dead or finding yourself trapped in a slasher film?
16. Have every day be Saturday or have every day be [insert your favorite holiday here]?