BIW Member Interview
Glenys O’Connell fell in love with the written word when she was four years old. She became a journalist and has been published in everything from hypnotherapy scripts, web content, and a travel guide to Ireland; to children’s fiction, non-fiction and, of course, romantic suspense novels (with Red Rose Publishing). Her two one-act plays have been produced on stage to good reviews. Glenys has recently returned home to Canada after living and traveling in Europe, and now enjoys watching the wildlife from her back porch in very rural Ontario.
Moe: When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
Glenys O’Connell: I’ve always loved the patterns words made on paper, even before I could write. I think I was four when I fell in love with words, five when I wrote my first non-fiction piece!
Moe: Describe three lessons you have learned about writing?
Glenys O’Connell: Gosh, I have to keep it down to three? I’m always learning. Let’s see:
- DO keep writing, even when it seems futile, keep believing in yourself. If you’re really a writer, nothing can stop you writing. If you stop, you’ll be miserable.
- DO believe in yourself, share with and enjoy the generous community of writers on groups like BIW.
- DON’T have a hissy fit because an editor who wants to buy your baby suggests a few changes. A little humility can improve even the most literary piece of work.
- DO have a plan for your writing career if you want it to be more than a hobby (okay, I know, that’s four).
Moe: What are you working on now?
Glenys O’Connell: I’m starting a new romantic suspense with the working title Dark Revenge, while waiting for an editor’s decision on a previous one, Resort to Murder. In non-fiction, I’m working on an information book on depression, and hoping that a proposal for a ghostwritten autobiography will go ahead. Oh, and my first three-act play is nearing completion.
Moe: Do you have a favourite writing related book?
Glenys O’Connell: Oh, they change, all the time. Current one I think is probably Donald Maas’ Writing the Breakout Novel.
Moe: What is your favourite writing website?
Glenys O’Connell: There are so many… probably Charlotte Dillon’s site for romance writers…that’s CharlotteDillon.com. She has lots of articles, links, etc. that are aimed at romance writers but are useful for all writers.
Moe: Do you have an important BIW tip you’d like to pass along?
Glenys O’Connell: Prepare ahead of time, even if it’s only a brief outline. If you can sit down at the keyboard already knowing what the next scene is going to be about, it’s easier to get back into a writing frame of mind. Even if you don’t generally use an outline, I’d strongly recommend drawing up even a one page list of critical events/scenes before starting BIW.