02 February 2015

Beyond: SVC Ricketts

SVC Ricketts is a Contemporary Romance author and professional smart alec (self-professed). Her work has been recognized by the Pacific Northwest Writers Association and was selected as a finalist for the 2013 PNWA Literary Competition in the Romance category.

Raised between Southern California and Oahu, she moved to the Pacific Northwest in 1993 and although she loves it here, her heart belongs to the Islands - it always will. When she’s not in, what she loving calls “book-mode,” she multitasks her life between her hilarious adult special needs daughter, super smexy husband of 11 years, two dogs, and sweating out her stress in a hot yoga studio. She’s also an avid Twitter (@SVC_Ricketts) and Facebook (SVC Ricketts) addict (again, self-professed). If you want to check out her other ramblings, you can visit her at www.SmexyIndieAuthor.com.


What was your inspiration for this book and the main characters?
People ask me why I don’t drink anymore. My response is always the same, “When I drank, I let the bitch loose. I don’t ever want to be that stupid again.” 
Everyone (men and women) have different facets of themselves they show to different people. Some masks evolve over time, some do not. I thought of my youth and the person I am now. For better or worse, that young, wild version of me is still in there, I just have adult responsibilities that are more important than her. When I talk about my past, I speak as if it is a separate person. That was my inspiration for Pieces of One.
I thought of the line from The Breakfast Club, “…each one of us is a brain...
Andrew Clark: ...and an athlete...
Allison Reynolds: ...and a basket case...
Claire Standish: ...a princess...
John Bender: ...and a criminal...
Brian Johnson: Does that answer your question? Sincerely yours, the Breakfast Club.”
                I think that is true for all of us.

What was your best/worst memory at a signing or the most meaningful message you have received from a reader?
                I don’t really have one. The response to my novella, My Last Season With You, does its job and is exactly what I wanted; to emotionally touch people as it did me. I hold that book reverently in my heart and will forever.
                This also scares the ever living poo out of me because Pieces of One is very different. The entire Dark Life Collection is. It’s suspenseful and romantic; violent, gritty and sexy. Again, the initial response from a few beta readers is exactly what I wanted, but I worry that MLSWY readers will get whiplash.

Is there a book or book character that you have written that most symbolizes you or something you have struggled with?
All my main characters are strong women. I identify with each of them and have personality traits I foster. By the time you’re done with The Dark Life Collection, you will know me intimately.

Beta readers, do you use them? Absolutely! How do you pick? I have already chosen my Betas for Pieces of One and will send out as soon as I am done with rewrites. Their personalities and tastes are different when it comes to reads. I look for that diversity for a sharper perspective. Otherwise I would get the same feedback. I chose these ladies based on their honesty with me during our common interactions. A “yes” reader is pointless. I need a “WTF?” reader if there is a scene that needs work. Do you change up each book? I won’t for the collection. Each book is a stand-alone, but will have cross-over characters. I’m all about consistency. How much weight do they carry in actually structuring the story? The feedback you get from readers is instrumental at crafting a good story. However in Pieces of One, the structure is already set and taking anything out would degrade the integrity of the story. Quite a dilemma so I guess I need to get it right the first time. :)

Do you ever feel during the writing process that your characters start to take on a life of their own to the point that they're directing the storyline?  
No, I don’t. My writing process is organic and the story plays out like a movie in my head. With the exception of My Last Season With You, I never know where the story is going or how it will end. I don’t even know how Pieces of One is going to end and I wrote it three years ago. Thus the rewrites to make it a stand-alone.

How much sex is too much?
Yes. When there is no story, just sex all the time, that’s called porn. People will buy it, but a true lover of romance and bibliophile, will hate it. I can only speak for myself, but I want to be taken into the story, breath the characters, feel the emotions, and experience the scenes. If all you have is sex, give me a little blue pill and be done with it. As a society we are morally desensitized, so as a reader, I want to feel more, be outraged, throw my Kindle at the stupidity, or shit my pants scared. 

When you write, how much of yourself do you put into your books? Does it show up in content? Characters? Situations?  
Again, going back to a previously asked question, all my books are blurred reflections of my life, past and present. What the reader chooses to believe as truth is up to them, but they will know parts of me that not even family or IRL friends know unless they’ve read my work.

Coming Soon from SVC Ricketts:
The Dark Life Collection - Pieces of One


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