Trulee V’s Spot Author Interview: Merry Farmer
Author Merry Farmer stopped by V’s Spot and of course I took the opportunity to ask her a few questions. Read below to learn more about her, as well as current and future projects.
1. Tell me how you came to love writing.
I think my love of writing was inborn. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t love words and stories. I started writing for fun and, frankly, as an escape from a pretty rotten childhood at a young age, when I was about ten. It was my favorite entertainment and a great way to block out the world when it was being unfair.
2. What other jobs have you done while working to become an author?
I have an oh so exciting day job working in the insurance industry as an admin/analyst. I am a master pencil-pusher! But I’ve actually had a lot of jobs here and there. I was a hairdresser for several years, and I worked as a teacher’s aide and special ed teacher for a while too. I would love to teach again someday.
3. Tell me about your book.
In Your Arms is a story about belonging. My heroine, Lily, is Native American, but was raised in the Carlisle Indian Industrial School and lost national identity. She has become a teacher and a strong advocate for the rights of all children. My hero, Christian, is the town justice of the peace. He feels deeply responsible for the people of Cold Springs, Montana and works to promote their welfare. Only, what Lily sees as helping people and what Christian sees as helping are two very different things. Sparks fly when they go head-to-head!
4. What kind of research did you do for the book?
I did a lot of research for this book about the way that Native Americans were treated at the very end of the 19th century. In Your Arms takes place in 1897. This was long after the era of “Cowboys and Indians” and the struggle for the west. By this point, the west was settled and well on its way to matching the economic and technological advances of the east, but the attitude toward Native Americans was still, sadly, backwards. It was a bittersweet time period to research because so many things were surprisingly modern and progressive while so many other things were archaic.
5. What’s a typical working day like for you? When and where do you write?
I try to keep myself to a pretty strict schedule of writing. I think you have to if you’re going to make a living at it. I get up at 5:30am every morning and write for about 45 minutes before getting ready for the day job. When I get home from work, I sit down and write for another hour or two in the evening. I also try to get a few hours per day in on the weekends. That includes “doing social media” too. These days, maintaining your platform as an author is as important as the actual writing. And don’t the bosses at my day job, but every now and then I get a bit of writing done in the slow periods at work.
6. What is the hardest part of writing for you?
Honestly, self-confidence. I tend to be a naturally insecure and impatient person. Always have been. Yet here I am, following a dream that takes a LOT of self-confidence and self-motivation. I have gotten to the point where I can write whether I want to or feel inspired or not, but I wallow in the misery of how badly I suck when I do! I have to constantly remind myself that the first draft of anything is going to be terrible, the real writing is in editing and revising, and I am the harshest critic of my work.
7.What’s the best thing about being an author?
Hands down, it’s being able to share the stories and characters in my head with other people. I have always loved sharing the things I’ve written with other people, because it’s like sharing the best of myself. As a published author, I have the ability to do that on a huge scale. There’s no better feeling.
8. What advice would you give writers?
When it comes to all of the publishing choices in the world right now, be sure you really, really know what you want to do and why before you commit to anything. Both sides of the Self-Publishing/Traditional Publishing argument are very loud and will insist that their way is the only way and everyone else is foolish. Don’t listen to that! But do pay attention to what is involved in each kind of publishing. I self-publish, but I will be the first to tell you that it’s not for everyone. It is incredibly hard work (if you’re doing it right)! It’s time-consuming, you have to be fiercely vigilant about the quality of your work, and you have to venture way, way outside of your comfort zone to market. If you don’t feel up to the work, consider traditional publishing.
9. What question do you get asked the most, and how do you answer that question?
The question I get the most is “Why do you Self-Publish?” My answer? Because I enjoy the challenge. Yeah, yeah, I know. I’m crazy. I’ve had writers and editors in the industry tell me my work is on par with the books being traditionally published and that I’m nuts to want to self-publish, but it’s the method of publishing that really sings to me. I actually like working my fingers to the bone and striving to write at a professional level. I like the challenge of formatting and finding the best cover designers and editors to work with. I don’t like marketing, though. It’s not in my nature. But I do like working with my publicist, who is awesome! I also have a yen to tell stories that the traditional publishing world isn’t ready to publish yet – stories with non-traditional characters and plotlines. My Montana Romance series involves four full-length novels and three novellas (so far!), and the fourth full-length novel is an m/m romance. No traditional publishing house would include an m/m romance in a mainstream series at this point in time.
10. What are you working on now?
I’ve been busy working on the second novella (fifth story overall) in my Montana Romance series, The Indomitable Eve. The heroine is Eve deLaurant, sister of Amelia Quinlan (who is the heroine of the second novel in the series, Fool For Love), and the hero is none other than Rev. Mark Andrews, who has been a minor character in all of the novels of the series. It was intended to be a holiday novella, but as I started writing it I realized the themes and issues involved (overcoming tragedy, being unable to reconcile with family after something horrible happens) are very heavy. I’ll still be releasing it around Christmas, and the story takes place at Christmas, but I’m not calling it a “holiday” novella now.
11. Are you a morning or night person?
I’m DEFINITELY a morning person! I get up at 5:30 every day. “Sleeping in” for me is 7:00! And I have a really hard time staying out past dark or staying awake after 9:30pm. Most nights you’ll find me in bed before 9:00 with a book.
12. What are your favorite hobbies?
I used to say that writing was my hobby, but now it’s my career! Nowadays I would say that my hobby is cricket. Yes, the sport that they play practically everywhere else in the world except for the US! I got involved with cricket in the Philadelphia area about four years ago and I love it with a passion. I took a scoring course offered out of England and all I need to do to become an international-level cricket scorer is to take the exam. I’m perfectly happy keeping my scoring talents with my team, though, the British Officers Cricket Club. I love the guys of BOCC so much that, well, let’s just say when I start writing a certain series set in the Regency on the high seas by the end of next year, the crew of the ship involved may just look familiar to people who know the cricketers I know.
13. Do you prefer eBooks, paperbacks or hardcover?
I prefer eBooks. I honestly do! I know there is a strong element that says they will never trade in the feel of a paperback, but I love being able to hold my Kindle with one hand, to put it down without losing my place, and to buy books the moment the spirit moves me…which is a dangerous thing, now that I think about it!
14. List five adjectives to describe yourself.
Quirky, Brainy, Curious, Adventurous, Persistent
15. Where can readers stalk you?
On Twitter – @MerryFarmer20
On Facebook –
On Goodreads –
V’s Spot wanted to give a huge thanks to Merry Farmer for taking the time to allow the readers insight into her personal life and personality. I think we all enjoy getting to know more about the authors who’s books we get lost in. I look forward to reading her novels.
Until next time……………keep reading!!!!