Monday, December 02, 2013

Indie Author Interview: Virginia Fox


Indie Author Interview with Virginia Fox - Author of the Contemporary Fantasy The Dragon Sisters.

From an early age, Virginia Fox has been fascinated with written texts in any shape or form. After soaking up countless books and writing various essays and short stories, she has now embarked on her biggest project yet: The Dragon Sisters Trilogy, a set of real life stories from Switzerland (with the addition of some not-so-real characters).

Interview with Virginia Fox

Author Virginia Fox
Author Virginia Fox
Alan Kealey (Indie Author News): What is your (writing) background?
Virginia Fox: Letters. Reading. Writing. At the age of four I started to get on everybody's nerves with the question "what does that say" whenever a word came within my field of vision. Within a remarkably short time I was reading all by myself. From this moment, I read everything I could get my hands on. I didn't care if it was a shopping list, a book or the advertising on the Cheerios package. I turned into a bookworm. My parents anxiously noted the amount of books I read and tried to ration my access to books. This only turned me into a bloodhound who specialized on the scent of books. Eventually they gave up. From there it was only a small step from reading to writing. I had a lively imagination after all; I only had to put it on paper. I started out simple: Good night stories for my stuffed animals, school essays but pretty soon articles for horse journals and the school magazine followed.

Who are your favorite writers, your favorite books, and who or what are your writing influences?
Elizabeth George and the Series about Inspecor Lynley and his Friends, almost everything from Nora Roberts, the espionage thrillers by John Le Carré, Harper Lee's to kill a mockingbird, Lee Child and the Jack Reacher Series, new books and old book, fantasy and historical fiction, indie books and traditional published books. In fact everything that is well written. I read in German and English.

When did you first know that you wanted to be a writer?
I wanted to be a writer from a very early age. But everybody told me, I couldn't make a living with writing. l think this has changed a little bit with the possibility of self-publishing.

Tell us about your writing process. Do you have a writing routine?
First there is the idea. From that I draft an outline (very loosely). Everyday I start writing, I open the text document and look it through to make sure I don't forget a vital part in the next pages. I need at least 2 hours of free time to write. That's why I usually write after 10p.m. - nobody is bothering me at this time of the day and it is my most creative time. To make up for the lack of sleep during the night (I often stay up and write until after 2a.m.) I sometimes nap during the day.

"Easiest are the ideas to come by. I almost have too many of them."

What do you find easiest about writing? What the hardest?

Easiest are the ideas to come by. I almost have too many of them. The hardest part is making time for writing between promoting the already written books and everyday life.

Virginia, please tell us a little about your Fantasy Novel 'The Dragon Sisters.'
"The Dragon Sisters Trilogy". A story about three different women. Each of them at a cross road, in need of new friends and a little bit of magic in their everyday lives. I could help with that and connected them through a grumpy know-it-all dragon! A touching story about mastering the challenges of life with courage, lots of humor and the support of two and four legged friends, including a magical dragon.

The story takes place in Switzerland and in the South of France. Well, I'm from Switzerland, that explains the Swiss part. And I absolutely love being in the South of France, where I have spent many holidays during my childhood and teen years.

The Dragon Sisters (Virginia Fox)
Click to Read an Excerpt

What inspired you to write the book?
Doesn't everybody sometimes wish for a little bit of magic in their life?
One day I fell in love. A wedding followed, but not the happy ever after ending. That's why a couple of years ago I ended up single, pregnant, jobless and without any money for anything. Not even for books. And this at a time when I needed to escape into another universe very badly. The only thing that I suddenly did have in abundance was time. So I decided to put this time to good use and started writing "The Dragon Sisters Trilogy".

Who do you see as your target audience and where can we buy the book?
My target audience I had in mind when writing the book: female, between 25 and 65 y.
My actual audience: 75% women, 25% men, age varies in between 16 and 96 so... I don't know what to tell you.

You can get the ebook and the paperback edition of the dragon sisters trilogy through Amazon.com. (see Links below)

How would you describe the success of your book so far? 
I will give you some background to the German edition "Die Drachenschwestern": It sold surprisingly well and has now an 4* average from 189 reviews on Amazon.de (see Links below). The second book "Das Drachenkind" (Title of the English edition will be "The Dragon Child", coming April 2014) is out since October 22 and has already 29 Reviews with an 4.5* average.
[The Original German Edition is a Bestseller on Amazon (Germany) and at this time in the TOP 500 paid eBooks] 

How long did it take it to write the book?
It takes me about a half a year to write a book of this size, editing included (assuming I have enough time to write.)

Please, tell us where you self-published the book.
I self-published the book with Amazon KDP and CreateSpace.

"It was learning by doing, step by step."

How smooth went the self-publishing process? Any issues?
It was learning by doing, step by step. It was actually surprisingly easy, at least for the ebook part. There are many useful guidelines online. By following them I didn't have any major problems. The paperbacks were harder because of the layouting process.

What are things to look for when self-publishing a book?
There are different providers where you can self-publish your book. You need to look at the royalties options and the different conditions of each one and consider what is the best fit for you and your book.

Did you hire an editor and/or Cover Designer for your book?
Yes, I did. I'm not a photoshop wizard and I wanted my book to have a professional look. I also hired an editor.

"You have to remember that as a self-publisher you have to do the work of an entire publishing team."

Can you give some tips for other Indie Authors regarding the writing and self-publishing process?
You have to remember that as a self-publisher you have to do the work of a whole publishing team. It is essential to have experienced people for editing, correcting, layouting, cover designing, etc. Of course, if you are a talented artist, you might be able to do the cover design by yourself or even the layouting, but I really don't think you should skip the editor.

Are you working on another book project? Can you tell us a little about it?
The book The Dragon Sisters is the first book of The Dragon Sisters Trilogy. Book 2 is called The Dragon Child and is currently being professionally translated by my translator Holger Laux. I'm currently working on the German edition of book 3 The Dragon Horse.

"I really like being able to plan and decide every single step by myself."

Are you planning to move forward as an Indie author or are you looking forward to have one of your next books to be traditionally published?
Currently I'm planning to go ahead as an Indie author. I really like being able to plan and decide every single step by myself. But one should never say never.

Where do you see the book market in 5 or 10 years? Will there be only eBooks and will book stores disappear like record stores disappeared?
I really hope not - personally I'm a big fan of paper. I can't and don't want to imagine a world without books.

Do you write full-time or do you have a day job?
I train horses and teach classical riding and horsemanship.

How can readers connect with you?
I'm looking forward to connect with my readers, this is my motivation and also inspiration!
You can reach me here:

www.facebook.com/authorvirginiafox
www.goodreads.com/fox_virginia
Twitter: @fox_virginia
email: info@dragonbooks.ch
www.dragonbooks.ch

Thank you very much for the Interview, Virginia.



About the Book The Dragon Sisters

The Dragon Sisters (Virginia Fox)
Click to Read an Excerpt
Kaja doesn't like change in her life. And why should she? Everything seems to be quite nice and settled: she is living in a cosy flat in the centre of Zurich, together with her faithful dog Zorro. She has a successful career as a computer programmer and a casual relationship with a charming work colleague. Surely, it couldn't get any better.

- But then her whole life comes crashing down: her lover turns out to be a cheat, her professional reputation is in tatters and to cap it all, she starts seeing a shiny blue creature called Lance who does his very best to get on her nerves.

Has it all been too much for her recently? Is she hallucinating? Or is she the only girl in the world with a personal dragon at her service?





Link to the Book

Link to the German eBook Die Drachenschwestern with Excerpt on Amazon.de (Germany)

Link to the Paperback The Dragon Sisters with Excerpt on Amazon

Link to the eBook The Dragon Sisters with Excerpt on Amazon


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