Please welcome Author Cindy Lou Hernandez to THE KATY today!
C. L. Hernandez is the author of the series The Complicated Life of Deegie Tibbs (Winlock Press), and the novel The Curious Case of the Tuscan Plague Doctor (Barking Rain Press) which will be released in 2016. She also writes the self-published series Horror Story Six-Packs (Cobwebs, vol. 1, and A Half-Dozen Horrors, vol. 2) She has stories featured in the anthologies Happy Little Horrors: Freakshow, Dead Harvest: A Collection of Dark Tales, and Deathmongers: Where the Light Dies. She lives in California’s Central Valley, and her life is a constant work in progress.
How did decide to become an author? Any books, movie, or people that inspired you to pursue your dream?
I decided to become an author after I became disabled and was no longer able to work at a “real job.” I suddenly had all this time on my hands, and since I’d already been writing for years as a hobby, I figured I’d give it a shot. As for being inspired, I’ll give credit to the people who told me I’d never make it. I hate it when someone tells me “You can’t,” or “You’ll never,” or “You shouldn’t.”
Tell us about Winlock Press. How did you get signed by them?
Winlock Press is awesome! Monique Happy (manager) goes out of her way to make her authors feel comfortable, valued, and important. She does an amazing job. I got signed when I submitted the first book in The Complicated Life of Deegie Tibbs series.
Are you a plotter or a pantser?
I’m a little of both, I guess. Sometimes I’ll write out a complicated outline with plots and sub-plots, then wind up tossing it aside and just letting the characters do what they want.
What draws you to writingabout witches as in “The Complicated Life of DeEGie Tibbs” series?
Witches have always fascinated me, and since I’ve studied Earth magic, gem and mineral magic, and magical herbalism, writing about witches just comes naturally to me. I like the versatility of the fictional witch character. You can give them just about any power, have them perform the most outlandish spells, and it’s okay, because—hey, they’re witches!
If you could use magic to change one thing, what would it be?
I would magically reprogram the minds of all humans so that they would focus on healing and renewing our broken planet rather than continuing to destroy it. Wouldn’t that be nice?
Are there any genres of literature or movies that you won’t read or watch? What’s your favorite genre to read/watch?
I can’t stand romance novels/movies! Those novels with the flowy-haired woman and the bare-chested hero on the cover? Barf. I guess it’s because I’ve never been much of a girly-girl. I’d rather have my books and movies full of guts and blood and horrifying creatures. My favorite genre is horror fiction, but I also enjoy mystery and crime novels and documentaries on history and nature.
Do any of your characters represent you as a whole or someone you know? Or are they qualities you admire in others?
There is a little bit of me in almost every leading character I create, particularly Deegie Tibbs. Deegie doesn’t really fit in, but she doesn’t really care, either. She has a disability that makes her unique, and she’s a bit misunderstood. That’s me in a nutshell. If I need a villainous character, I just think of one of my ex-husbands. (laughs)
Do you have an advice for aspiring writers?
Develop your own voice; don’t try to emulate another author, because eventually someone WILL notice. I’ve seen this happen a couple of times. Be honest. Don’t get involved in social media drama. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, but don’t be insulted when someone points out your flaws. Read every day. And never give up. Never.
Any upcoming projects you’d like to share?
I’ve started working on a new novel called Zuri. It’s a werewolf novel—with a twist. (sorry, no spoilers) I’m also working on another of my short horror story six-packs, which I self-publish. This one will have a zombie theme, also with a twist. (I like twists) I will be participating in Blood Moon Rising 2, which is an online event that promises to be tons of horrific fun, and I have another novel coming out in January 2016 with another publisher. This one’s about a ghostly plague doctor who torments a lovely young antiques dealer.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Thank you for the interview!
Thank you for joining me on THE KATY today, Cindy!