Let's give a warm welcome to Judy Serrano, author of Easter's Lily. Please check out her website, and let me know what you think of it when you are done.
1. Please tell readers about your current book.
My first novel, Easter’s Lilly, is a story about a young innocent girl who gets herself mixed up inadvertently with the Mexican Mafia. She gets pregnant by a low ranking drug dealer who abandons her and finds herself married to the king pin of the Montiago organization. Easter Sunday is the day her life begins to spiral out of control.
Lilly tells the story of her life -- and the lives of her children -- with childlike innocence, yet she's desperate for security and companionship. The hint of forbidden love and betrayal that ultimately puts brother against brother adds to the suspense and intrigue. The syndicate engulfs the Montiago family as they turn each other inside out over the love of a woman. Easter's Lilly is an inspired journey from the idyllic to the darker side of self-discovery. Read as the over-privileged brothers embark on their journey that twists and turns down the road of unbridled passion in the first book of the series.
2. Who or what inspires your writing?
I get most of my ideas from my own life. My husband has been a huge inspiration as well as my children. Most of the time when I start a book, I think about things I’ve done and places I’ve been and I incorporate them into my story. The plot eventually takes on a fictional life of its own. All my characters that I end up using in my stories are purely fictional.
3. When did you know you would be a writer?
I’ve been writing since I was a little girl. I wrote songs, poetry and even novels since I was 12 years old. My mother recently showed me a book I wrote when I was 12 called “I Am an Author.” We were both laughing at the irony. The book had pictures and colors and silly stories about some of my long lost friends as super heroes and dragons. If I do say so myself, I was pretty good with a crayon back then.
4. How long did it take you to write your first novel?
I was going to school full time and raising my family during the first book. I would say it took me about a year to complete it. After I graduated, it took me only a couple of months to complete the next one. If I am not distracted by another one of life’s challenges, I don’t expect it to take more than that. Of course there is no way to predict what is coming down the road.
5. What is the hardest part of writing for you?
The hardest part about writing for me is finding the time to actually write. I have four children and a full time job. I carry my flash drive with me wherever I go, for the possibility of a little alone time with a computer. Don’t tell my husband.
6. Do you have any writing rituals?
Every morning before I write, I turn on my computer, check the traffic on my web page, check my social pages including my blog and then I shut it all off and reach for my flash drive. Before I actually write new material, I read the previous chapter to get back inside the minds of my characters.
7. Have you written any thing else?
My second novel is scheduled for release on June 16th. It is called Brother Number Three and is the second book of the series. The third book will be released shortly after. I have five all together so far but they are not completed as of yet. I am also in the middle of a young adult spin off that features one of Lilly’s children. There is a new idea brewing in the distance, but that one, I will be keeping a secret…for now.
8. Any advice to aspiring writers?
Do not give up. It is a very hard business to break into but if you love it, it will be so worth it in the end. Write a little every day, even if you don’t feel like writing. Practice, working your creative muscles, will make you a better writer. And finally, don’t take criticism too much to heart. Of course it is important to learn from what others say about your work, but if you try to please everyone, you will end up pleasing no one. So, write from the heart and love your characters as though they were real. My characters are very personal to me. Sometimes I think my husband gets a little jealous over my attachment to Hector. You’ll have to read the book to find out why.
9. Who is your favorite Author?
My favorite author is Nora Roberts. I love the classy way she portrays the romance in her novels. I also enjoy the strong male characters she creates. The dynamics and balance in her novels create unforgettable story lines.
10. What is your favorite book?
I have to say that my favorite series is The MacKade Brothers by Nora Roberts. There are four in the series. I’m afraid I can’t pick one of the four that I loved more. They were all quite riveting.
11. What are you currently reading?
I just picked up The MacGregors by Nora but with all the work that goes into getting my latest book released, I have not had a chance to dive into it just yet.
12. How do readers find out more about you?
Readers can find out more about me at http://www.EastersLilly.com. There is personal information about me, reviews on Easter’s Lilly, where to purchase the book, and upcoming events. There is also a first chapter printed for people to get a feel of the book.
On a personal note, I graduated from Texas A&M University, Commerce with a BA in English. I am a member of The Writer’s Guild of Texas and The Writer’s Market. I have four children (all boys) and have been married for 15 years. I spend my days http://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifwriting on my laptop and living in my imagination, while the house is empty. I carry around my flash drive in case I find myself alone with a computer, for any opportunity to plug it in and steal a moment with my series. I play guitar and sing and have been known to write a country tune from time to time. I am very active in my social networks. Please follow me on any of these links:
It was Easter Sunday; the day Lilly's life went from safe and comfortable to dangerously unfamiliar. Her transformation takes her from a small town girl having an affair with a low ranked gangster in the Montiago crime syndicate, to a woman of grace and fortitude married to the head of the organization. Easter's Lilly is an inspired journey from the idyllic to the darker side of self-discovery. Read as the over-privileged brothers embark on their journey that twists and turns down the road of unbridled passion in this first book of the series.
Paperback: 296 pages
Publisher: Black Rose Writing
Purchase at Amazon