Monday, October 6, 2014

Meet The Author [1]

I am so excited to announce a new feature on my blog, Meet The Author! I will be interviewing some authors every now and then and be featuring them here on the blog!
Now let's get to the first Author!

Meet Olivia Samms!

She wrote these awesome book below!
Sketchy_hires cvr_RGBSnitch_SITB_front-cvr-copy

Can you tell a little about yourself and your background? 

I grew up in a small town in southern Michigan. I, along with my active 
imagination, was allowed to run amok in the Michigan woods and 
muddy lakes. My location has changed, but not my imagination. I now 
live in Los Angeles with my husband and a crazy Rhodesian Ridgeback 
puppy - both of my kids are grown and in college.

Did you always want to be an author? If so, what made you want to become 
one? If not, what did you want to be instead?

I grew up wanting to be a singer/actress and extensively trained, 
eventually getting my M.F.A from Cornell University. I then played 
the starving actress role in NYC for years performing on stage and 
soaps, but I believe I was a closet-writer the whole time. I would write 
imagined back-stories for the characters I was portraying. After 
having kids, I gave up pursuing acting gigs and my creative outlet 
naturally morphed into extensive journal writing, and then found the 
nerve to sit down and write a novel. But I still act, everyday ... I write 
out loud, acting out every piece of dialogue - every character. My dog 
and husband think I'm nuts :)

What were some of your favorite novels when you were a teen?

It was all about acting and singing when I was in high school, so my 
time was spent reading plays and musicals, memorizing the lines and 
performing. My favorite play and character I performed was Beatrice 
in Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing. (My naming of Bea had 
nothing to do with that ... at least not consciously. The coincidence just 
occurred to me a few months ago!) I had the pleasure of playing Emily 
in Thornton Wilder's, Our Town; Curley's Wife in Steinbeck's, Of Mice 
and Men; Arlie in Marsha Norman's, Getting Out ... all great literature!

What was the last book that you read?

Donna Tartt's, The Goldfinch. Oh my. Genius, pure genius.

When reading, do you prefer eBooks or traditional paper/hard back books?

I much prefer hard back books, but find myself reading more on my 
Kindle ... instant gratification, right?

Where is your favorite writing spot? 

I have a little office - it's actually a converted closet (I like the 
intimacy of the small space). Three of the walls are floor to ceiling 
bookshelves filled with yes, books and plays - most (I can't say all) 
that I've read. I don't use a desk ... I have a daybed, a lap desk and tons 
of pillows. 

Describe a typical day of writing.

My most productive writing day, not always typical, but definitely
favorite day, starts with a cup of coffee, solving the newspaper’s 
crossword (I feel finding the correct answers screws my head on tight) 
and then I read what I wrote the day before, edit, write more. The next 
thing I know it’s late afternoon, and I'm still sitting in my pajamas ... 
did I mention my dog and husband think I'm nuts?

Do you ever get writers block. If so, how do you deal with it?

I hike the Santa Monica foothills when I’m stuck or confused about 
something. Invariably, into my second mile, an idea, or a solution will 
pop in my head. I use the recording app on my phone, and will record 
my thoughts, ideas. Again, I get so lost in my head, the time and miles 
fly by, and I normally come home with something new to add, and the 
puzzle is solved.

What is the hardest thing about writing? The easiest?

For me, starting is the hardest. Starting the day - worrying if I'll get in 
the zone, or just end up writing pure drek. Also, I'm very impatient, so 
when I start a novel, the thought of finishing seems so daunting ... the 
finish line so far away, as does climbing the hills. So, I try hard to stay 
in the moment, just put one foot in front of the other, taking it step by 
step, word by word.

The easiest, or actually, the most fun for me, is the editing process –
after I know I have the story down on paper. Finding the write word, 
playing with alliteration, rearranging scenes, moments ... even an 
ellipse can bring me great joy :) I think it brings out the crossword 
puzzle nerd in me.

When you write, do you have an outline or plot or do you like to just see 
where an idea takes you?

I envy writers who can write from their outline! I try, I really do, but 
invariably my characters, especially Bea, take me on their ride. But I 
always have the beginning of the story, and the end in my head, and 
pretty much stick to it. That was the best advise I ever got from 
another writer. Writing the middle is the fun, gooey stuff to work out, 
to wallow in.

Can you give a brief summary of your book(s)?

The Bea Catcher Chronicles, (Sketchy and Snitch) features an edgy, 
mixed-race, artistic teen protagonist who has the uncanny ability to 
draw the truth out of people ... literally. She forms a relationship with 
a local cop, Sergeant Daniels, and with this bizarre (sometimes 
frightening) skill becomes his secret weapon – a paranormal forensic 
artist, helping him solve local crimes.

What type of research is involved when you are writing?

I love research! If I may quote myself in my acknowledgements in the 
book, Snitch: “They say write what you know. I say write what you 
don’t know, use your imagination, research, pry, and then stalk people. 
Eventually someone caves and shares their expertise, a glimpse 
through a cracked door into their world.”

I’ve interviewed ex-gang members, former cops, and an arson 
detective. And the geography, the history of a place, a town, can be so 
utterly inspiring that it itself becomes a character. Depot Town in 
Ypsilanti, Michigan was one of those places for me. As soon as I visited 
the area, I knew it would play a main character in my book.

Are you currently working on anything new?

Yes, thank you for asking! I'm adapting my novel, Sketchy, into a 
television pilot, and am having a blast. I believe the story and 
characters will translate well on the small screen, and it’s super fun to 
write in a different genre . . . I love mixing it up.

I’ve also written a draft of a novella, Snap (a continuation of The Bea 
Catcher Chronicles) and have outlined the third book, Smolder (but of 
course won’t keep to the outline☺)

Beatrice Washington has a lot to say, and a lot of work to do. I feel I’ll 
being hanging with her for a while yet.

How can readers discover more about you and your work?

All my information can be found on my website:


  1. This is such a cool feature, Devin! I love seeing author interviews because it really helps me get to know them better.

    I loved Sketchy, and I'm so glad that I won in through the Goodreads Giveaway program. It was a nice and refreshing change of pace from the YA stuff that is being released right now. I still have to read Snitch though.

    Erin @ The Hardcover Lover

    1. Thank you! I am really excited to start doing these posts!

      I also enjoyed Sketchy a lot!



Blog Template by