Marilyn Holdsworth

Broken Pieces - Rachel Thompson

Friday, June 6, 2014

Meet & Greet with Leah Rhyne #AmReading #Horror #Fiction

Where do you get support from? Do you have friends in the industry?
My family is sooooooo supportive. My brothers are always among my first readers, as is my husband. My parents, too. I also have made some great writing buddies through the years. Twitter and LitReactor have created some fabulous writing communities and if you can be a part of some of them, well, you’re probably a step or two ahead of the game…at least in terms of finding people to encourage you and help you along the way.
How much sleep do you need to be your best?
I’m an insomniac. Anything over 5 hours a night is CAKE.
Is there anyone you’d like to acknowledge and thank for their support?
For sure my family. Everything is because of them, and for them.
Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you?
My husband and I made a deal last year…I’ve got about two years to start making enough money writing to help support the family. If I can’t do that, I’ll eventually have to get a “day” job again. Luckily freelancing is really helping there. So long as I can keep writing as my job, in almost any way, I’ll be pretty thrilled. I love writing, and I love my job, so I want to keep it. 
Also, I’d love to sit on a panel at a Con someday.
It is vital to get exposure and target the right readers for your writing, tell us about your marketing campaign?
I’m so bad at marketing. I’ve done some zombie-themed events with this book, which is always fun, and I’ve connected with tons of writers and readers via Twitter. But this is NOT my strong suit, and I have a TON to learn here.
Tell us about your new book? What’s it about and why did you write it?
Undead America is a zombie series with heart and soul. I stumbled into this world by accident….picture this: it was a time before The Walking Dead was on AMC (yes, there really was such a world). I’d grown up watching horror and sci-fi flicks with my dad, but when I sat down to write my first novel (it was NaNoWriMo 2010), I planned something more YA Contemp, along the lines of Juno. But I floundered fast, and when my husband jokingly suggested I write about “zombie cows,” something clicked. I added zombies to my little world, and the rest is history. 
It wound up not being YA exactly…or at all. There are lots of really adult themes going on (sex, torture, abuse) and really heinous people causing all sorts of trouble. There are also tons of literary and historical references throughout the story. A member of the podcast, Books and Booze, called it a “literary zombie book,” and I felt like that was about the best compliment I could receive.
If you could have a dinner party and invite anyone dead or alive, who would you ask?
I have this weird obsession with Anne Frank, so it would probably be here. I mean really…she was a teenager, locked up for years, and the work of literature she produced was just so wise beyond her years. I’ve read her diary dozens of times, and I still discover new things about the way she viewed the world, or the hope she never entirely lost. And that blows my mind. How could you not lose hope when your world has fallen apart around your ears? I’d love to ask her that.
When you are not writing, how do you like to relax?
Relax? What’s that? I have a five year old, a husband, pets. I don’t know what this relaxing thing is. :D BUT on the off chance that I have some time to kill and nothing imminently due, I’ll go for a long run or take a hot bath.
Do you have any tips on how writers can relax?
A long run or a hot bath is always nice. Also, as a writer, here are your two must-have vices: coffee and wine.
How often do you write? And when do you write?
I write something every day. It may be a freelance project, it may be a short story, it may be part of whatever novel I’m working on, but it’s a daily thing. I try to write less on weekends so I can spend more time with my family, but chances are I get something done. 
I write best first thing in the morning, with a cup of coffee by my side. It seems to be when I’m least inhibited, least likely to call myself dumb and put my computer away. That said, I edit best in the afternoon.
Do you have an organized process or tips for writing well? Do you have a writing schedule?
Since writing is my full-time job, I do it every day. Otherwise I don’t get paid. It’s no longer an optional thing; I always have a freelance column or three due. 
My weekday schedule is this: wake up, help husband get out the door for work, take the kiddo to school, then home to write, exercise, and keep the house reasonably free from too much clutter. Cleaning is definitely the thing I let slide. I do get less done in the summer (summer vacation anyone?) but that’s to be expected.

Millions died when the zombie plague swept the country. For the survivors, the journey has just begun. Jenna, Sam, and Lola are still alive. Jenna avoids human contact, traveling East Coast backroads with her boyfriend, a dog named Chicken, and a Louisville Slugger. Sam escapes to the mountains, where he’s conscripted into a zombie-slaying militia sent on nightly raids to kill the undead…and innocent civilians. 

Lola’s imprisoned in the “safety” of a zombie-free New Orleans hotel, but life grows more dangerous when her brother gets bitten by a zombie. Jenna arrives in the French Quarter, lured by the false promises of New Orleans’ drunken leader. There, she’s ripped away from her boyfriend, drugged, and dumped in a death camp after refusing Franklin’s sexual advances. Jenna and Lola’s lives collide there, where the dead live and the dying are victims of gruesome medical experiments. Escape isn’t easy: release the genetically-enhanced zombies from the lab to create a diversion, slip away, and don’t get eaten. When Sam arrives, will he join the right side of the battle?
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – NA-Horror, Sci-fi
Rating – PG-13
More details about the author
Connect with Leah Rhyne on Facebook & Twitter



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