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What things does she find challenging?
- Publishing her books.
- Selling her books.
- Finding a publishing house.
Interviewer: There are so many of us who want to be writers. Some of us want to have careers as authors, and some want to pursue the art in our free time. But in our day and age, the publishing industry is incredibly competitive. Abigayle Claire is the 19-year-old author of Martin Hospitality, which won Honorable Mention in 2017’s Readers Favorite Awards, and today she’s here to answer questions about her writing life. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Abigayle Claire: I’d love to! I’m nineteen years old and live at home with parents and seven younger siblings. Purple is my favorite color, and reading dramas are my favorite pastime. I’m currently pursuing creative writing and freelance editing through self-education and experience. As a writer, it’s also quite important that you know I’m left-handed.
Interviewer: Can you give us a bit of an introduction to your book?
Abigayle Claire: Martin Hospitality is my debut novel. It was inspired by a crazy dream, and while it was by no means the first story idea I had, it was the only one I completed with the intention to publish. The book follows a teenager who is taken in by a homeschooling family and follows how their lives are impacted as a result. People say “write what you know,” but I only half did that because my personal experience is as a part of a large family, not the harder experience of the main character.
Interviewer: When did you start writing?
Abigayle Claire: This sounds cliché, but I have honestly written stories for as long as I can remember. At first, it was movies and books that would inspire me. So I was quite the plagiariser in the beginning! I’ve gotten away from that, but my spontaneous inspiration process is still much the same. Even then, I only finished two stories when I was little.
Interviewer: How did you come to the decision to try and publish as a teenager?
Abigayle Claire: Growing up, I always assumed that I’d be an author. It never even crossed my mind that I wouldn’t publish something, even though I have dozens of partially completed stories to suggest otherwise. When I got the idea for Martin Hospitality, it was my first idea in a while, and unlike all my serious ideas so far, it really came together when I sat down to plan it out.
Interviewer: What are the challenges you’ve come across as an author?
Abigayle Claire: Marketing is hard. That’s something I really wish I could hand over to a publishing house! Publishing is just the first step. Having my books sitting on Amazon doesn’t sell them without work on my part. As I look into traditional publishing with a publishing house, though, I’m realizing that even publishing houses are getting tired of the work it takes to market a book no one has heard of or read. Even though I’ve only done publishing so far, I started a blog before I published which helped me find a community and build one of my own.
Interviewer: What have been your most helpful resources as writer?
Abigayle Claire: Other writers have been the most helpful. Making some close writer friends who have already done what I’m doing, write what I write, or are figuring things out alongside me has been amazing. I mean, let’s face it … “regular” family and friends are terrific, but they’re not going to have any idea what you’re talking about. Writer friends are incredibly supportive and helpful. I wouldn’t have made it very far without them.
Interviewer: What is the best thing you’ve experienced so far in your author’s career?
Abigayle Claire: Okay, the one specific thing was when Martin Hospitality won a Reader’s Favorite honorable mention in Fiction for Youth. That made me realize just how far my writing could take me. But it always comes back to the people. The ability to touch their lives with my writing and to help them with their own stories is such a privilege.
Interviewer: I want to say a big thanks to Abigayle Claire for doing this interview, and I wish her all the success in her career.