There are 14 authors who wrote the stories of the Fairy Tale Confessions collection. This post will focus on Wendy Owens, author of Uncloaked.
When she’s not writing, this dog lover can be found spending time with her tech geek husband, their three amazing kids, and two pups. She loves to cook and is a film fanatic.
Wendy, thanks for taking the time to answer some questions for us…
Q: Why are so drawn to write stories about contemporary topics such as teen depression, learning to be your own hero, learning to trust again, and experiencing romance?
A lot of what I write about I draw from real life experiences. I’ve been through a divorce and was a single mother before I found the love of my life. That entire experience helped me to believe in second chances. A few years ago my family was brought to its knees when my brother-in-law, age 40, passed away. It was one of the most painful times of our lives and watching what my sister went through as well as my children made me want to put that pain on paper. We’ve had friends lose a child to suicide as well and with all of these tragedies it showed me one important truth in life. Sometimes all we can rely on is the hope for a better tomorrow and the people around us. If I went through these things I assumed other people were as well and I wanted to reach out and connect with that audience in the best way I knew how, through written word.
Q: Did your young adult paranormal stories create a desire in you to participate in this twisted fairy tales anthology?
I consider my contemporary romance my therapy where I work through the things life throws at me. That being said, paranormal is where a big part of my heart rests. I will write more paranormal in the future, it’s a passion. That being said, as soon as I was approached about twisted fairy tales it was a no brainer.
Q: Did you find it difficult to ‘twist’ a well-known fairy tale?
Not at all! I loved it. I knew the moment I heard that I wanted Little Red Riding Hood. I have a novella urban paranormal series that I put episodes out in my spare time and I knew I would be able to tie that story in perfectly with this story. When you read the story and meet Tynder Crown, just know there is so much more to her story. Plus, come on, Little Red Riding Hood was begging for a vampire/werewolf twist.
Q: Your author information from Amazon mentions that you are an artist, a cook, and a film fanatic. Have you always been drawn to the arts, or is it something that developed as you have grown older?
Always. In college I took every art and creative writing elective I could cram into my schedule. Even in high school I blazed through all the art classes and then started having independent studies in studio art. I feel like the thing that truly sets us apart from animals is our ability and need to create. Prior to writing full time I balanced my time as a photographer and painter. It was a tough career that didn’t have the flexibility I wanted as a mother. I never thought writing would be a viable career option until my husband sent me an article about self publishing. The rest was history.
Q: Is there a character from one of your stories that has surprised you in some way?
My characters love to keep me on my toes. The one that comes to mind is Paige from Only In Dreams. She had a decision to make at the end of the story and she actually chose the opposite of what I had originally outlined. I’m glad she did make the choice though. I think in the end it felt more real.
Q: Where (or when) do you get the most story inspiration?
When I listen to music. In fact the Stubborn Love Series are all song Titles.
Q: What are you working on currently?
I have a couple projects I am working on at the same time. A contemporary romance entitled, It Matters to Me, which is the follow up to Do Anything. And I have started work on a YA Paranormal Dystopian called the Vale Saga (LOVING THIS PROJECT). At some point I would also like to do a follow-up to Wash Me Away if the book finds enough readers who want it. I think there could be a lot more to Julia’s story.
Q: Do you see yourself participating in more anthologies?
Absolutely. This was a great experience and I think it is a wonderful way for readers to get to try out a lot of new authors for one low price. A win win in my book.
Q: What does your writing process look like?
I am a cross between a planner and pantser. I start out with an idea. I then create a time line and fill in major plot points. From there I do chapter summaries for the entire book. Once all that “planning” is done, the pantsing part comes in. I sit down and start writing each chapter. Almost every book drastically changed from my original outline, but I just go with it. The books are better for it. The point of the chapter summaries are more to prevent writers block and allow me to jump around. On It Matters to Me the entire plot changed from my original outline once I hit chapter 5 and I had to redo my chapter summaries. I know it sounds crazy, but it works for me. The lost time of one afternoon is better than weeks staring at a blank page.
Q: How important are the character names you choose? How do you choose them?
I put WAY more thought into the names of my paranormal characters. They relate to their personality and role in a much deeper way. In my romances, its more whatever I am feeling in the moment.
Q: What are your 10 favorite books and why?
This is so stinking hard! This is not in any particular order. Just a random listing of top.
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – by JK Rowling – It’s hard to say book 7 was my favorite because I would never have loved these characters so deeply without books 1-6. That being said, the love, the loss, the tenacity, the hope, literary perfection.
- The Five Stages of Falling in Love – by Rachel Higginson – it wrecked me. I love when people can do that to me.
- Under Different Stars – by Amy Bartol – world building and strong character development got me vested in this series.
- Hopeless – by Colleen Hoover – she delves into the grit and I love that.
- Hidden Wings – by Cameo Renae – I love this series. Obviously I have an angel thing, I wrote my first series about them.
- Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins – the entire series really pulls back the curtain about what it wrong with so much of our actual society, while also entertaining us with a make believe world.
- Destroy Me – by Tahereh Mafi – Honestly the entire Shatter Me series. It was a fresh approach and anyone who can twist up my feelings about Warner like she did, I bow to you!
- The Maze Runner – by James Dashner – love a book that makes my heart beat a little quicker.
- The Law of Moses – Amy Harmon – All the feels!
- The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath – If you haven’t read this book, please do yourself a favor and read it soon. It stands the test of time. It’s real and raw and the most honest look at mental illness I’ve ever read.