by Connie Ward
What made you decide to become a fiction writer?
I think authors write what they read. As a kid I read Louis L’Amour. But it was when my mom bought me a collection of H.G. Wells books that I fell in love with science fiction. The Time Machine and Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury are still my favorites.
What type of stories do you write? And why?
I started out writing short stories and still do that today. I sold eight short stories in 2013. I love to write stories set in the future because my imagination is the limit. I think the trick is to not only create a fascinating tale but one that’s entirely believable.
What do your family/friends think about your writing?
They are my best fan base. I have the most awesome friends, and their support of my writing is unparalleled.
Where do you get your ideas?
All of my books stem from societal issue we deal with today, from religion, sexuality, and even the law, just told from a futuristic standpoint.
How do you write; do you plan everything out or just write?
I have to plan. I have the entire structure in my head before I type “Chapter One.” The dialogue, character development, and idiosyncrasies of the plot develop as I write.
What makes The Balance special to you?
I am totally in love with this book. The Balance took me six years to write, and I threw a lot of work away and restarted many times as the story evolved. As I stated before, believability is key, and I think this story truly reflects the evolution of not only the physical characteristics of the human race, but the evolution of society, religion, and sexuality. And there are dozens of subtle Biblical references that might take several readings to catch. I hope readers will come away thinking, “This isn’t just a fantastic story about people tens of thousands of years in the future; it’s about us…now.”
How much of yourself and the people you know are in your characters?
A lot. I think most writers do that. In my last novel, the main character was totally fictionalized, but I was clearly the fat, funny friend. And the college professor was patterned completely from my high-school science teacher.
Which gay/lesbian authors inspired you the most? Do you have a favorite of this author(s)?
I don’t know the sexuality of the authors I’ve read, but to be honest, I had never read a gay-themed book until recently. I have had a chance lately to read Radclyffe and Malinda Lo, both very talented writers.
Do you have any suggestions for new writers?
Write! There’s no such thing as writer’s block. It’s like saying you forgot how to swim, but if you get into the pool, you’ll realize you haven’t forgotten. If you think you’re stuck, simply sit down and start typing. You’ll be surprised where it takes you.
When you’re not writing what do you do for fun?
I love taking my three dogs to the dog park. I still hit the gym five days a week to lift. I love standup comedy and still perform at least one major show a year. I love to draw and paint, and I’ve recently created a new comic strip titled Brad’s Pit, about a guy named Brad who adopts an adult pit bull.