Hi there, guys and dolls! Welcome to another fine edition of Take 5. Today I have the honor of sitting down with a fine friend, Julie Seedorf, author of GRANNY HOOKS A CROOK, the first in her Fuschia Minnesota Mysteries. It’s a very exciting day as Julie’s just finished up her second in the series and while she still has to put a few finishing touches on it before we can all get our eyes on her new words, we’ve got a chance to put our feet up and have a good old chinwag. Well, we’ve got the tea poured (and never you mind what else is in those cups — we’ll never tell), so get yourself a cuppa and join us as we get to know Julie and her people a little better.
My Fuchsia, Minnesota Series starts with GRANNY HOOKS A CROOK. Like the title my main character is Granny, whose real name Hermiony Vidalia Criony Fiddlestadt. Granny is ageless. She is stubborn, daring, and adventurous and drives her kids crazy. She lived her life doing what others thought she should do. She raised her family up in the way they should go but now it’s Granny’s time. She eats what she wants, wears risqué nightwear and works undercover for the merchants of Fuchsia under the guidance of the Big Guy who is the chief of police, hooking the crooks that frequent the store. She is afraid her kids want to put her in the wrinkle farm. She meets a handsome man that she drives crazy. She attracts pets and she has a unique way of being sneaky, but she cares about the strange community and residents of Fuchsia. Fuchsia is a fictional town in Minnesota. Fuchsia also doesn’t play by the conformity rules that we live by today in the real world. There will be four perhaps more books in this series. As the series progresses people will learn more about Granny, her family and other residents of Fuchsia. Granny will always be unbelievable but in the coming books readers will learn more of what makes Granny, laugh, cry and do the things she does. The next book should be out in the coming months. I finished it today.
I might say that my mother was a lot like Granny. She was up on her roof at the age of 90. I credit her with giving me my first gray hair. Isn’t it supposed to be the other way around? My mom didn’t have gray hair.
Also Granny on my cover is the spitting image of my grandmother that died when I was six years old. I didn’t draw her, didn’t tell anyone what she looked like and down to the dress and nose she is my grandmother. Is that a sign that she also plays a part in this book?
2. What is your writing process like? Do you thrive on routine or work spontaneously as the whim takes you?
Writing for me is a little strange. I write a column every week for a couple of area newspapers. I have done this for almost 8 years now so I am used to a deadline. However working on a book for me is more spontaneous. I have to admit it was easier writing Granny Hooks A Crook then it was the second one because I wrote GHAC on a lark, never imagining it would get published, so I let my imagination go wild. I also now am writing freelance human interest stories for local newspapers. Between all of them I am always at my computer writing. It feels like I am being lazy when I do this because I was used to a regimented work schedule when I worked for someone else. I love writing. It is breathing for me so it feels strange that I now have the time to do this.
3. What exciting moment or moments that made you realize that you were really an “author?”
I still have a hard time calling myself an author. I am an author. People treat me like I am author. I have a hard time when groups ask me to talk about my writing career because I haven’t quite believed it yet myself. I feel one of my most exciting moments was when my granddaughters took my book, GRANNY HOOKS A CROOK and WHATCHAMACALLIT? THINGAMAJIG? To school and introduced them to their teachers and told their teachers and friends that their Grandma is an author. That is what counts. My granddaughters are proud of me.
4. What do you do to spark up your creativity when you feel the well of inspiration is running dry?
My well of inspiration doesn’t run dry very often. I did have a streak where I was battling an illness for a year. I felt like I was dying, of course I wasn’t but it was hard to write that column every week. And then I feel God intervened and put GRANNY HOOKS A CROOK in my head. Every morning I would wake up with a new chapter in my head. I feel my creativity comes from God and it always seems to be there if I ask for help. I do a lot of reading of inspirational things and I surround myself with inspirational friends. Friends keep you up when you can’t lift yourself up.
5. Who are some of your favorite authors and how do you feel they have influenced your desire to write.
There are so many authors that I love. I don’t know that they have influenced my writing. I admire them but writing is so unique to each individual. My style is so different from the authors that I adore. For instance I love Catherine Coulter and her FBI series. I can’t get rid of her books. I also am a big fan of Debbie McComber and Kristin Hannah, and Patsy Clairmont who is a Christian writer and then on a different scale J.K. Rowling and her Harry Potter Series. I loved the Harry Potter series because I would watch it and be mesmerized the creativity and imagination of the author.
I could say they have all influenced my writing because I look at their talent and I know they have had to write that first book and look at what they have done with their careers.
Of course I can’t forget Cozy reads. I also love the authors from Cozy Cat Press. They are a talented group of people and they all inspire me with their talents. I learn a lot from each of them every day and they influence my writing too with support they give each other.
Thanks for having me visit with you.
And you too, Julie. You are a true inspiration to yours truly and I’m sure your grandmother would be so proud of you and very much lives and breathes in your work.
Fellow book people, be sure to check out her blog at www.sprinklednotes.com, visit her on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/sprinklednotes, and follow her Tweets at julieseedorf@julieseedorf. I know I do! Her books are also available on Amazon in Kindle and print form, as well as Createspace, Barnes and Noble and various independent booksellers.