Welcome to the Limitless Library Lounge where I interview fellow authors from Limitless Publishing. Today, I am chatting with Taylor Brooke from Bend, Oregon.
Thanks for joining me, Taylor. Please take a seat and make yourself comfortable.
I understand you have a novel that is just being released by Limitless today. Can you give me some details about it?
I signed my contract with Limitless for the Isolation Series, an urban scifi trilogy, in early October of 2015. The first book in the trilogy, Omen Operation, is my first published title. It is being released today, January 26, 2016.
How exciting. Can you tell us a little bit more about your books?
Right now I’m focused on my science fiction trilogy and I’m currently writing the sequel to Omen Operation. I like to dabble in a bit of everything and other than ECHO Campaign, the second installment in The Isolation Series, I’m also fleshing out a contemporary fantasy novel that I plan to have ready for publication in 2017.
Would you describe your goals as a writer to us. What do you hope to achieve in the next few years? What are you planning to do to reach these goals?
Being 24 years old and having your first book published is a big deal. I keep telling myself that it’s okay to take a break and catch my breath, but at the same time I find myself falling over my own ideas. I’m constantly day dreaming about my next project, my next mile-marker, and I’m always looking for ways to better my writing. The next goal I have is to complete ECHO Campaign, hopefully achieve a USA Today Bestseller title and then continue working toward a contract with Harper Collins or Penguin. I’m looking forward to my 2016 reading goal — 100 books in a year — and I’m also taking my time and learning the ropes when it comes to communication between author and author, as well as author and fan. I’m driven to put out the best books I possibly can and I hope that drive is what continues to grow my success.
Sounds like you are very goal-oriented. That’s great.
What type of reader are you hoping to attract? Who do you believe would be most interested in reading your books?
I don’t want to settle into a genre just yet. I’m writing Urban Scifi, but my purpose in writing The Isolation Series was to give people characters they could relate to. I wanted young women to see other young women fighting for their freedom, and not losing a sense of themselves as they did so. I want young men to see my young male characters and learn something from them, resonate with them, and feel for them. I wanted to raise the bar for myself and for other writers my age, to be inclusive, self-aware, and practical in their writing. Heternormativity is something I’ve extinguished in my writing and something that I’ll stray from for as long as I’m a writer. Cultural diversity and representation in all categories is important and I’m not going to back away from it. I’d say my type of reader is the adventurous type, someone who wants to see their passions and causes reflected in the characters they read about.
Nice. I’m having some issues right now with trying to pin myself down to the “right” genre, but maybe you have a better idea that the genre is not as important as the characterizations and what you want readers to get from your writing.
Do you have any advice to other authors or those still trying to get published?
Don’t give up. Keep writing. Stay focused. Learn from your mistakes. Find a supportive but critical writing group who you trust to point our your weaknesses and help you build them into strengths. It takes time, it’s a pain in the ass, and sometimes it’s heart breaking, but being a published author is my dream come true. I wouldn’t be where I am today if I would’ve given up, and the only reason I didn’t is because of my huge support system — my family, my brother, and my beta readers. Two days before I heard back from Limitless I was down on myself, ready to scrap Omen Operation and start on a new concept all together. I’d received an abundance of rejections, so many that I kept a folder of them in my e-mail to look back on if I ever made it. But I didn’t give up, and after those two days I signed a contract for a trilogy, and a month later I was offered another contract (which I politely declined since I’d already found representation) and now I look back on that folder titled ‘rejections’ and I smile.
Very good points, Taylor. I just gave a publishing talk at my library, and the number one tip I gave the group was to be persistent and keep writing. I am also starting a writer’s club at the library in response to patron requests. You are also absolutely right about support from family and fellow authors, and I’ve found suggestions from beta readers extremely important, as well.
What do you like to do in your spare time besides writing?
I’m a traveler. My brother and I take off at least once a year to another country and immerse ourselves in unfamiliar culture for a few weeks. In 2015 we were in Thailand, climbing mountainside trails to ancient temples and eating an unhealthy amount of Pad Thai. In 2016 we’re going to Star Wars convention in London, and hopefully we’ll be adventuring in Peru in 2017 on a wildlife campaign. Besides being a budget backpacker, I’m a fantasy and scifi enthusiast. I frequent yearly comic conventions, collect books, trinkets, and nonsense, and devote my time to learning about other artists and authors.
Wow! Sounds amazing, and a great way to get book ideas.
What do you like most and least about being an author? What is your toughest challenge?
I think my toughest challenge is not being too hard on myself. I’m constantly texting my brother asking him for advice (he’s my beta reader and first draft editor) but usually I’m searching for guidance and strength instead of quick fixes. He’s the first person to tell me to chill out, and the last to tell me to give up. I can’t really pin-point what I like most about being an author. It’s been my dream since I was a little girl. I remember a year or two ago driving in my car, the music was on, I was day dreaming about receiving an offer on one of my books, and I was crying. It seemed so distant back then, something I’d never really reach, but here I am. A published author. I guess that’s the best part, being able to say “I did it” and knowing that I made my own dreams come true.
I think writing is a dream that most authors have from childhood. I know it was one of mine. Achieving a dream, like we have, is an awesome feeling but, like anything worth achieving, it takes hard work, effort, and a lot of time to accomplish.
Can you please list your social media links, website, blog, etc. so readers can connect with you.
Amazon Buy Link: http://amzn.com/B01AKKLKT4
I’m also active on Goodreads and Facebook under my pen name of Taylor Brooke
Thanks for visiting the Limitless Library Lounge on your release day, Taylor, and I wish you all the best with OMEN OPERATION and your future books. It’s been a pleasure to chat with you.