Would you please introduce yourself and tell us what made you decide to write romance?
My name is Susan Sizemore, and I guess I've always been a romance writer. I was telling stories before I could write, and writing them down since I learned the alphabet. My stories have always had romances in them, even when they've been primarily science fiction or fantasy. Romance might not always be the main element in something I write, but it will be part of the story.
How did you decide to write about such areas as fantasy, science fiction and romance? What gives you the ideas?
It's impossible to describe where ideas come from because an idea can be sparked by anything. Writers are always asking themselves, 'What if -- '' and everything comes from trying to answer that question, because there are an infinite number of answers to it.
I suppose I come by my love of science fiction and fantasy genetically. My grandfather read science fiction, and passed a love of it on to my mother, who passed it on to me. I've read voraciously all my life, and I've always loved stories with romance in them.
What was the inspiration for creating your vampire romance series the 'Primes'?
Okay, here's the truth: The X-Men are the inspiration for the Primes, especially the Clan Primes. I wanted to write about superheroes that protect humans but are reviled and hunted by those who fear them as monsters.
Do you do research for the books you write?
Oh, yes. Doing research is a wonderful reason buying books and going on trips and talking to experts on really interesting subjects.
To date, which book has been the most difficult to write? Of all the books you've written do you have a favorite?
Scandalous Miranda was the hardest to write, because I was working on it while my mother was dying of cancer. Laws of the Blood: Deceptions was also difficult, because it takes place in Washington, D.C., and was being written on 9/11.
Do I have a favorite book? That's like asking a person if they have a favorite child. Gates of Hell, which is a science fiction romance is probably my favorite book overall, Autumn Lord is my favorite among the time travels, my favorite historical is Nothing Else Matters, Companions is my favorite Laws of the Blood book, and I Thirst for You is my favorite of the Primes series.
Do you usually outline your stories before you write them, or do you "go with the flow"?
I always do a five to ten page outline to get down the overall plot, then I go with the flow. Stories have a way of changing once the characters become 'real'. Frequently I'll get to a spot where I'd intended to do one thing and the characters will find an easier or more interesting solution for whatever that plot point is.
How long does it take you to write a book?
Every book has its own pace. Some books take a couple of months. Some books take years. On average I'd say that a book takes six to ten months to write.
What is the best thing about being a romance writer? Do you have any fears about writing?
I love being a storyteller. I love being able to work at home.
Every time I start a book I go through a panic attack ' 'I can't do this! Whatever made me think I could do this'? which I get over, and then I write the book. I've written a lot of books, but that initial fear never goes away. It's countered by the adrenaline rush I get every time I write 'The End' on a manuscript.
What are you working on next?
I am currently writing the sixth book of the Primes series. Then I'll be writing a novella set in the Primes universe for a holiday anthology. I'm also working on a fantasy novel.
What do you consider the highlight in your writing career?
I think being nominated for a Rita award from the Romance Writers of America for The Price of Innocence made me the proudest.
What books do you enjoy reading? Do you have a favorite?
I read most genres and plenty of non-fiction. I could name about 100 'favorite' books, but among the ones I never tire of rereading are Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, A Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton Porter, The Lord of the Rings, Dorothy Dunnett's Lymond Chronicles, Liaden Universe books by Miller and Lee. My favorite books that I've read so far this year are Dark Protector by Alexis Morgan and Old Man's War by John Scalzi.
When away from writing, What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I knit. I read a lot, I love movies, am addicted to several television series, and recently I've gotten into several anime series. Oh, and I spend too much time on the Internet.
Any tips about writing and getting published?
Whenever I'm asked this, the answer I give is, 'Finish the damn book'. Then send it off to agents/publishers, and write the next one. Then send it off. And always write the story you want to read.
Thank you for taking the time to answer a few questions for We Really Dig Romance Novels.
Check out the Susan Sizemore books we have.