Today’s feature is author Mindy Hayes!
Mindy was born and raised in San Diego, CA and was pretty distraught when her parents moved her to Salt Lake City, UT right before my junior year in high school. She met her husband in college and they were married in 2007. ‘He’s pretty funny, so I decided to keep him around,’ she says. They now live in Summerville, SC because she loves the green.
1) How long have you been writing for?
I first started writing in 2009. I wrote several books that will never see the light of day! Or maybe I’ll just rewrite them some day and turn then into completely different stories.
2) What inspired you to write Faylinn?
The funny thing is, back in 2009, I said to myself I would never write about fairies, and of course that’s the first book I published! Calliope sort of appeared in my head one day. I’d finished reading a fae series a several months prior that I DID NOT enjoy (one that will remain nameless). I wasn’t a fan of how the author depicted the faeries, so I decided to write faeries how I imagine them. And that’s the beauty of writing. It’s up to you to create a world you believe in.
3) What’s the best thing about the series you wrote? If you could change one thing about it, what would that be?
The best thing about Faylinn? Oh gosh. Haha. In my opinion, I would have to say Kai. I just love him. The one thing I would change I can’t say because it would be too spoilery. Let’s just say it was the death of a character. I can’t say I regret it because it was necessary, but if I could go back I’d try harder to find a way around it.
4) What’s your favorite thing about being a writer? What’s your least favorite thing?
Writing for me is an escape, a place to work through whatever emotions I’m going through at the time. I have a tendency to write everything out of order, whatever scene comes to me. It’s very cathartic. My least favorite is probably the editing process. The times I look at a scene and wonder what the heck I was thinking and what a terrible writer I am. Self-doubt creeps in on a regular basis.
5) What’s a good writing day like? What helps you get over writer’s block?
For me, every day is different. I used to have a full time job (up until January 2017) so I would write every free chance I could. Now I write full time, but life has gotten in the way a lot. It’s hard to find a balance and a schedule. So, now I write whenever the mood hits me, and force myself to write when I’m on a deadline. If I can get up and write for a solid eight hours, I’m a happy girl. But most of the time other authorly duties get in the way, like marketing and social media interaction and graphic designing of teasers and promos. There’s just so much to balance. Writer’s block is a funny thing to me. A lot of times I get blocked because I’ve taken the story in the wrong direction, so I go back and reread what I’ve written so far and see what I can tweak or scrap completely. Other times, I turn to music and Pinterest and reading. I go to anything and everything for inspiration. Anything that can spark a tone for a scene or emotion I need to evoke in my characters.
6) What’s the one thing about writing that you feel has changed your life in some way?
It’s opened a new world of friendships I never imagined. Being able to connect with readers and other authors who share the same passions, endure the same trials, experience the same frustrations. It’s comforting to be in a world of such passionate people and to feel their love and support.
7) What interests you, other than reading and writing?
I love being with my family. I have two sisters and we live across the country from each other, but there’s no place I’d rather be than with them whenever I can. I’m also passionate about music. It’s on more times than not in my day.
8) Could you describe one person you admire, and why?
Trying to pick one person is so difficult. I think my one person changes with the seasons of life and what I’m going through at the time. I admire different people for different reasons. Right now, I would say one of my sisters. She’s been to Hell and back, and strives to remain positive and strong and lifts everyone around her up as much as she can.
9) Any advice for aspiring authors/writers?
Don’t let your feelings of inadequacy keep you from pursuing your dreams. That feeling never goes away. Only you can keep you from reaching your full potential. Just keep writing what you love. Don’t let anyone take that away from you. Also, make friends in the industry. Read their books. Show an interest. Share insight. Those genuine relationships will help you in a world that can feel really lonely when behind a computer screen all the time.
10) Can we expect more books/series from you?
So many more! I have two more Faylinn novellas coming. And I have two other works in progress––a contemporary romance that is the final installment in my Willowhaven series and a standalone romantic suspense––I switch between depending on my mood. And I also co-write with Michele G. Miller, and we’re in the middle of three different stories right now. So many stories, so little time!