I would like to introduce the Captivating Colleen Hoover as our Artist of the Month for the month of January. Here is the personal interview that we were blessed with. Thank you Colleen. :)
Candie and Michelle: Have you always known you wanted to be a writer? Did anything happen to push you in that direction?
Colleen Hoover: Yes, I've always wanted to be a writer, but I decided in my early 20's that it wasn't really an option for me. I had a family to provide for and writers don't usually make very much money. What finally pushed me in the right direction was a lyric in an Avett Brothers song, "Decide what to be and go be it." I decided I was going to write my first full-length novel as a Christmas gift to my mom. I didn't care if anyone else ever read it.
Candie and Michelle: We are so glad that you chose to be a writer so that we could have all of your wonderful books. How has life changed since your career has taken off?
Colleen Hoover: My life has changed drastically in the sense that we aren't living in a single-wide mobile home. My kids have what they need and we actually have money in savings for once. My husband is also a stay-at-home dad now, so we see each other a lot more than we did before. When he was a truck driver, he would be gone for weeks on end. I'm also busy all the time. ALL the time. So sometimes I miss my family even when I'm in the same house as them. But in other ways, things haven't changed. My relationships with those closest to me are the same, and I'm grateful for that.
Candie and Michelle: Is it hard to juggle having a family and being a writer at the same time? How do you do it?
Colleen Hoover: It's definitely hard, but it was harder when my husband was still working. We're fortunate in the sense that we can afford for him to stay home, so he cleans and cooks and takes care of things around the house. Still, when I'm writing, I'll go days in the guest house without seeing my family. I also travel a lot now, making it so that I see them even less. But we manage.
Candie and Michelle: Who has been your biggest supporter in your career so far?
Colleen Hoover: My mother. She still gets just as excited today as she did the day I finished my first book. She cries when I sign deals with my publisher and she drops everything to read my manuscripts when I send them to her. It gets to a point in your career where those kinds of things are just the norm and people stop getting excited about them, by my mom always does.
Candie and Michelle: It's wonderful that your Mom still has love and support for you. What was the hardest part in getting your writing career started?
Colleen Hoover: Well, I honestly wasn't trying to start a writing career when I wrote Slammed. I never thought anybody would actually read it. I got really lucky. The hardest part is probably just the time it takes out of your days. At the time, I was still working full-time, so I wasn't sleeping much.
Candie and Michelle: I completely understand since I've been pursuing a writing career of my own. For those who haven’t read your books yet how would you describe your writing style?
Colleen Hoover: I really don't know. My books are easy to read. I prefer dialogue and nine monologues to description.
Candie and Michelle: That's good. I'm sure that's why readers appreciate your books. Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Colleen Hoover: Sometimes writing sex scenes is particularly challenging for me. I don't like using descriptive sex words, so I try to be a little more creative when describing sex. I also try to only write sex scenes that drive the plot forward in some way. It can be difficult.
Candie and Michelle: I can see how that would be difficult and I appreciate your tact while writing your sex scenes. What is something you do to overcome writer’s block?
Colleen Hoover: Just keep writing. Even if it sucks. Eventually, the writer's block will go away and you may actually find that you wrote some decent material in the mean time.
Candie and Michelle: Thank you for that helpful advice. If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
Colleen Hoover: EL James for how she handles her success, Tammara Webber and Tarryn Fisher for their writing styles, and Tracey Garvis-Graves as a human being.
Candie and Michelle: We will check their books out. If you could have been the original author of any book, what would it have been and why?
Colleen Hoover: Mud Vein by Tarryn Fisher
Candie and Michelle: We will have to add that to our to read list. Out of all the books you have written so far which has been your favorite one to write?
Colleen Hoover: Finding Cinderella. Daniel was just such a fun character to write.
Candie and Michelle: I recently bought that one and can't wait to read it. As a whole which character has been your favorite “good guy” to write about? Who has been your favorite villain?
Colleen Hoover: All my characters are "good guys" in my opinion. I don't think I really have villains. I guess I would pick Miles, because he was complicated and he made me cry.
Candie and Michelle: Out of all your books do you feel like there is a particular character you relate to the most?
Colleen Hoover: Daniel from Finding Cinderella.
Candie and Michelle: Is there anywhere that you have traveled to that has inspired you to use it in one of your upcoming books?
Colleen Hoover: Well, I traveled to Portland, and the main character in Confess is from Portland, but the book takes place in Dallas. So not really.
Candie and Michelle: What book are you reading now?
Colleen Hoover: I have ADD, so I read several books at once.Bright Side by Kim Holden Unlit Star by Lindy Zart Word Play by Amalie Silver 53 Letters for my Lover by Leylah AttarIsla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham
Candie and Michelle: Wow! You are talented. I couldn't read that many books at one time. Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
Colleen Hoover: I recently discovered Amy Harmon and Penny Reid. They're both great.
Candie and Michelle: We will have to check them out as well. What advice would you give to your younger self?
Colleen Hoover: I don't think I would give myself any advice. I wouldn't change a thing.
Candie and Michelle: What advice do you give to other aspiring authors?
Colleen Hoover: Stay true to yourself. Don't try to write what you think people want to read, just write what you want to write. Also, Google is your best friend. If you can't figure it out, Google it. That's what I did.
Candie and Michelle: That such great advice that we can all live by. It sure is. We use Google quite often. Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Colleen Hoover: Thank you. Thank you thank you thank you. I really owe everything to my readers. I wouldn't be where I am today if people didn't read my books.
Candie and Michelle: How can readers discover more about you and your work?
Thank you so much Colleen for taking the time to sit down with us. We both feel blessed to be featuring you this month. :)
-Candie and Michelle