The Ancient City Poets / Poet Plant Press blog is participating in the The Indie Lights Book Parade. For the entire month of February, different authors and artists will be parading past our viewing stand. Today Stacy Claflin gets her moment in the sun. Tracy loves writing and reading a variety of genres. She has been writing and telling stories as long as she can remember. When she was a child her story telling talents would get her into trouble when she would try to convince the other children that her stories were real. When Tracy is not busy writing, she spends a lot of time with her family. She runs a preschool from home and she homeschools her own children.
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Ancient City Poets: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Stacy Claflin: Yes. In Gone, the main character is a teenager who sneaks off to meet a boy she met online. After she meets him, Macy realizes that he isn’t who he pretended to be. It’s too late though, because she can’t get away.
She’s ripped away from her family and everything she loves. Though she struggles to get away, her captor has thought everything out thoroughly.
The message I want readers to get is that you should never meet with someone you met online alone. Be safe and smart about it. I also want parents who read this to realize how important it is to know what their kids are doing online.
Ancient City Poets: How much of the book is realistic?
Stacy Claflin: tried to make it as realistic as possible. I read about several true kidnappings so that I had a good idea about what the captors did and how the kids felt. Even though it’s completely fictitious, I believe the events could happen in real life.
Ancient City Poets: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Stacy Claflin: It was somewhat emotionally traumatic writing about a girl being kidnapped. I actually had to take a month or two break from writing it because I was experience physical and emotional stress from writing and researching.
After my break, I was able to finish without any more issues. It’s a sensitive subject, so it makes sense that being so close to the subject matter would be upsetting. I think it would have been more concerning if I hadn't reacted in some way.
Ancient City Poets: What are your current projects?
Stacy Claflin: I always have multiple projects going at any given time. I’m writing a story that is an offshoot of the Gone books. This one is about a side character who discovers that her life is in danger.
I’m also editing a book from another series. It’s a paranormal romance – quite different from my suspense novels!
Ancient City Poets: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Stacy Claflin: I have a lot because I've learned so much as an author. A few of my top tips:
1) Learn from successful authors. Follow their blogs, listen to their podcasts, join online groups, and do anything else you can to find out their secrets.
2) Always educate yourself on the craft of writing. Ask for constructive criticism, read blogs and books on the topic, join critique groups…use your imagination!
3) Treat it like a profession even if you have a day job. If you act like it’s only a hobby, that’s all it will ever be. I consider it my second job, and treat it as such.
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Info on books by Stacy Claflin can be found at: http://stacyclaflin.com/
Book Updates/Newsletter: http://bit.ly/10NrfMw
Many thanks to Stacy for being so gracious with her time. The best thing about the Indie Lights Book Parade is that it gives us an opportunity to learn from so many talented people. It is invigorating to see how others approach the craft of writing. Christopher Morley once said "Lots of times you have to pretend to join a parade in which you're not really interested in order to get where you're going." I hope you will check back in on Monday to see who will be parading by the Ancient City Poets window.
Thank you for all your support.
Ancient City Poets / Poet Plant Press