DJ Ashton joins us today to share her experiences with writers groups and to offer advice for other writers in today's installment of the World of Writing interviews. *Find other writer interviews through the archived post index located in the side bar of this blog.
DJ is a fan of paranormal romance genres, but in her personal life she is passionate about the environment, animals and putting an end to domestic violence. During her down time, she enjoys hobbies like "cooking, crocheting, and holding the couch in place". :) She holds an Associate in Science degree in the field of Criminal Justice, and is the proud mother of three. Her writing career began about 20 years ago, and her debut release - Immortal Desires - is now available. Info @: http://djashton.webs.com
Q. Do you belong to a writers’ group?
A. Yes I do. It’s a way for me to get out of the house. I use it to get away from my writing and get new ideas. It’s a way for me to meet other writers and listen to their stories and advice for my own work.
Q. How long have you belonged to this group? (how you found them, why you joined & the process of becoming a member).
A. I’ve belonged to the group now for the last three months. I found them on the B&N summer schedule of activities. I joined them because I thought they would be good for getting advice, ideas and helping me to learn more than I know about the publishing industry. To become a member, one only needs to show up and be willing to talk and share your writing samples, ideas, and information you know that someone else may not know.
Q. Where do you meet? How often? What do you do there?
A. We meet at different B&N stores in the area. We meet every two weeks, the second and fourth Mondays of the month. We read from our work to get input and advice from each other. We listen to others’ work and tell them how we like/dislike their pieces and how we think they could improve their writing.
Q. Where do you see yourself with your writing in five years?
A. In the next five years, I hope to have an agent and be with a “regular” publishing house. By regular, I mean someone like Random House, or Harlequin. I hope to be earning a steady income from my writing. I hope to have my series completed in five years, but sometimes it takes years to write just one book, let alone several.
Q. What advice would you give for aspiring authors?
A. Don’t quit your day job unless you have a means of supporting yourself while you write. Never take a rejection personally because it’s not personal, it’s business. Write every day whether you feel like it or not. Keep paper and pen with you at all times, even when you’re out because you never know when an idea my strike you and it would be a shame to lose it because you forgot to write it down.
Q. Tell us a bit about your passions in life.
A. Writing is obviously one of them. Outside of writing, I love to go on nature walks and attune with nature. I am conscious of the environment in that we must recycle and not use unnecessary energy and even water. And I am totally in love with my children and my dog because they give me the motivation and strength I need to get up every day and do the best I can in whatever I need/want to do.