Interview with Writer Friend, Peg Strand

Today I’m featuring Peg Strand, a writer I’ve known for nearly twenty years. We met in the mid 90s when I started a local romance author’sPeg Strand group and Peg joined. We’ve seen each other through illnesses, deaths, moves, pitching books, and finishing books. We’ve been to conferences together and met new members who’ve joined our group. Right now I’d have to say Peg and I are the charter members of the Chippewa Valley Romance Authors, which is part of the Wisconsin Romance Writers of America. Because of her deep love of dogs, Peg incorporates canines in all her romantic suspenses. It’s my pleasure to have her on my blog today.

Thank you for having me, Tina.

Peg, who or what inspired you to write? Kathleen Woodiwiss and the book “Shanna.” I went to a Romance Writers of America (RWA) and got Shannaher autograph. I was so tongue tied, I could hardly speak. In all the years I’ve known you, you never once mentioned meeting and getting her autograph! When Peg mentioned this at our last meeting, there was dead silence. How could she not have ever told us? Kathleen Woodiwiss played a big part in many of our journeys to reading and writing romance.

How long have you been writing? During my sophomore year at college, I became a journalism major at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. I worked for five years at the Chippewa Herald Telegram as the Women’s Editor. I’ve had a lot of starts and stops over the years writing my first book, “Deadly Scents,” which, even though done, I consider a work-in-progress (WIP).

Have you submitted any manuscripts? Not yet. I finished Book 2, “Roll Over, Play Dead,” this last August, but am still editing it. Both books are romantic suspense. I recently retired, so I hope to be able to get more writing done.

How do you handle rejection? Does anyone handle rejection well? You just have to move on.

Who are your favorite authors? Kathleen Woodiwiss, of course; Dick Frances; LaVryle Spencer, Janet Evanovich. You read a lot of the same great authors I do.

What will you do to celebrate when you get a contract? Scream. Yell. Call my writer friends. I did that when my first magazine article was published.

DSC03889Where do you like to write? What does your writing space look like? What do you wear when you’re writing? I like to sit on my recliner in the living room or stand at the kitchen counter. I’m old-fashioned in that I write long-hand with a notebook and pencil. As you can see, my dog, Miss Ellie, likes my chair, too. I do have a desk, which is full of papers. I need to toss and organize. Since I don’t have job outside the home anymore, I tend to write in my sweats.

What happens when you get a story idea? I write it in a notebook, that I usually can’t find later. I get a lot of my ideas while in the shower, which makes it difficult to write down.

Do you attend conferences? I’ve been to several national Romance Writers’ of America conferences in Chicago, New Orleans, New York, and Atlanta. Our state association has a conference every year, and I go to those with my writers’ group.

Do you belong to a critique group? My writers’ group helps with this. If I have a question, I’ll run it past them, or have them read what I’m working on. This is where learn the most. I’d never heard of ‘disembodied body parts before.’ Thanks, Tina. I know what you’re talking about, Peg. This group of writer’s is supportive and extremely helpful.

Do you have any goals? Thanks to my writers’ group, I have a list of goals. My first priority is to finish the edits of “Roll Over, Play Dead.” I had a request from a publishing house for the first three chapters. I need to get them sent off. I’m embarrassed to say Deadly Scents has no conclusion yet. I’ll seriously return to it after edits are done on Roll Over, Play Dead. I know once you do,

Peg's dog, Miss Ellie, likes to take over Peg's writing spot.

Peg’s dog, Miss Ellie, likes to take over Peg’s writing spot.

you’ll get a contract. I’ll help you celebrate.

Thank you, Peg, for joining me today. Good luck with your writing. And, as we always tell you, submit, submit, submit.

Thanks for having me.

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