Kev’s Author Interviews Presents:
:D Joy V. Smith :D
from Lakeland, Florida
Kev: In a generalized way Joy, tell us a little about yourself. Where you grew up, siblings, family life, education, and how you got to where you are now.
I was born on my grandparents’ farm in Wisconsin–as were my two sisters, though my father was overseas (WWII) when I was born. We moved a lot–from Wisconsin to Florida and back again… My parents worked hard to send us all to college. (My father had dropped out of school to support his family when his father died. He got his GED later and valued education.) I went to college in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. (which I enjoyed more than high school, btw.)
Kev: How long have you been writing for, Joy?
Since I was a kid and made my own little books, but I was first published in college, where I often, uh, sometimes spent more time reading and writing than studying.
Kev: Why do you write?
To share my stories. I appreciate the money, but I love sharing my stories. The more a story is reprinted, the happier I am! Since many of my early stories and articles were published in the small press, I want them to have a wider audience, which is why I have two collections of my reprints: The Doorway and Other Stories and Aliens, Animals, and Adventure. (There is some overlapping in the collections.)
Kev: What is your genre?
Mostly science fiction, but I’ve written westerns, fantasy, romance, and children’s stories.
Kev: Who would you say are your favourite/most influential authors and why?
I teethed on Andre Norton. I enjoyed reading about females having adventures and saving worlds instead of waiting to be rescued. I love James H. Schmitz’ heroines too, especially Trigger and Telzey. (Baen has reprinted his stories, bless them.)
Kev: What is your latest (published) book called and what is it about?
Strike Three is a post-apocalyptic novel, but without rabid zombies and crazed mutants. I enjoy world-building–on planets, as in “Cold New Planet” and Velvet of Swords–and on the frontier, as I did in Detour Trail.
Kev: Who or what influenced you to write it?
Well, I worry about what’s happening to the planet–the waste, pollution, extinctions–and people ignorant or uncaring about what happens when we run out of clean water–and air. I wondered what would happen then. People would really miss what they hadn’t appreciated, including other people.
Kev: What challenges did you face while writing the story?
The research. I looked things up online and bought survival manuals, including, When All Hell Breaks Loose: Stuff You Need to Survive When Disaster Strikes by Cody Lundin; Just in Case: How to Be Self-Sufficient When The Unexpected Happens by Kathy Harrison, and the US Army Survival Manual.
I ordered some freeze-dried food to check that out and queried people about MREs, planes, and fuel. I learned they weren’t making Hummers any more. Ack! But they’re still around. (Just passed a really big one on the street the other day.)
Kev: Is your book part of a series?
No, little scenarios keep popping up in my head though, but there’s nothing cohesive yet.
Kev: Which of your works do you like best (feel most proud of) and why?
Strike Three, I think. I enjoyed the realistic details and the funny parts–fantasy actually–about politics and taxes. I loved writing about how President Jenson handled the politicians who wanted to take over the reins when they finally emerged. And I gave the women important and dangerous work to do too.
Kev: Is there anything you would like to say to your readers at this point?
I hope you enjoy my stories. I really do. I want you to love them! And if you do, authors always appreciate an enthusiastic review–with details about what you liked.
Kev: What are you working on now?
I have to edit Velvet of Swords (the first part has been published) and Well Met By Water (again the first part has been published)–I finally wrote the sequels to them–and submit them.
Kev: What new challenges are you facing?
Well, I’m waiting to hear back from an editor about Taboo Tech. It’s in limbo, and I fret about it. I have to decide how long to wait.
Kev: Could you give us a little spoiler?
I love creating intelligent machines and space ships! I’ve got some fun intelligent machines and ships in Taboo Tech–oh, I can’t wait to see that published!–and there are AIs in “Cold New Planet,” which is due to come out in an anthology soon.
Kev: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Get your history and facts right! Do the research. My editor caught at least two mistakes which would have been embarassing. I had these cool ideas in mind, but didn’t check the facts on them.
Kev: Is there a question I haven’t asked that you would like me to ask?
What do you think about the current trends that are being repeated endlessly?
I never thought zombies and vampires would be around this long. (I think werewolves are a distant third now.) Write something new!
I love the vampires, zombies, werewolves, witches, and Igors in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series!
Is there anything else you would like to add, Joy?
I have three blogs, but here’s the link to my writing blog: http://pagadan.wordpress.com/
Here are my book links:
Strike Three: For the print edition of Strike Three, go to Createspace: https://www.createspace.com/4876544
If you prefer eBooks, go to Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/452298
Detour Trail: http://www.amazon.com/Detour-Trail-Joy-V-Smith/dp/1612355706/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&qid=1364491553&sr=8-8&keywords=Joy+V.+Smith
Joy V Smith, everybody!