- Anna P.
Indie Support Sunday: Alexandra Hale
When they say that the indie author community is very supportive, they are not joking. Picking up Alexandra Hale’s debut was entirely because some of my author friends had read her book and loved it and seeing it on my feed a lot made me want to read it too. And two books later, I am a HUGE fan. As someone who comes from a small town, Alexandra’s infused all of the things that we love about small town romances into her Clementine Creek series. The books follow brothers as they navigate life and love and everything in between.
Alexandra is currently working on a novella slated for a July release—but isn’t sharing any details just yet—and the third book in her debut series just released as well, so make sure you pick it up ASAP. And if you’re someone who is good at face casting, Alexandra is open to your suggestions for who would work best for her characters (more reasons to pick up her books, folks!).
Escaping to Clementine Creek is becoming one of my favourite things and I cannot wait to see what else Alexandra has in store for us!
All three books in the Clementine Creek series are out now and available in Kindle Unlimited.
1. BEING AN AUTHOR
Who or what inspired you to write?
I’ve always loved to write, even as a small child. It’s been an escape a lot of times and seeing my vision come alive on the page always fills me with such happiness.
What’s the best and worst part about being an indie author?
The best part about being an indie author is having the flexibility to make my own schedule and to adhere to my vision. I want to be as true to myself as I possibly can on this journey. The worst part is that you have to do everything yourself—writing, marketing, social media, etc. it’s exhausting. There’s a lot of pressure to conform to certain trends and so finding your balance is essential.
Why did you choose to self-publish instead of going the traditional route?
I wanted to publish for myself so self-publishing has been the right choice for me. I like having the flexibility to do what I want currently but I’d also like to explore traditional publishing in the future. A lot more authors are able to do both and I think that’s something I’d enjoy.
When you’re not writing, what do you do to get the creative juices flowing?
I listen to music or work through a scene I know has to exist within the story and then expand from there. It’s inconvenient but I do my best thinking when I’m driving and have to wait till I get home to jot down all my ideas.
If you were to recommend books to me (in any genre), what would they be?
This is impossible to choose but I think 5 underrated books are: Charming and the Cherry Blossom by LJ Evans, Wolf Gone Wild by Juliette Cross, The Anonymous Hookup by Jax Calder, Just One Favor by Stephanie Rose, From Salt to Skye by Adriane Leigh.
What are your top 5 tips or pieces of advice for aspiring authors?
Be true to yourself and your process
Choose quality people to surround yourself with over quantity
Do everything in moderation. If you have questions - ASK - but limit them to something manageable. There’s so much information out there, it’s easy to get overwhelmed.
You won’t make everyone happy with your story and that’s okay
Have fun with your writing and your process and embrace your voice because it’s beautifully yours.
2. ROMANCE AS A GENRE
Why did you choose romance as the genre to write in? What is your favorite thing about the genre?
I currently write steamy, small town contemporary romance. I grew up in a small town and I love the community and sense of family. There’s this wonderful balance of quirky and cliche and it makes you want to be a part of it.
If not romance/subgenres of romance, what genre would you like to write in?
I have a couple darker thriller/suspense projects on my laptop that I visit occasionally. It’s something I hope to do someday under a different pen name.
What are your most and least favorite tropes?
I love grumpy-sunshine, enemies to lovers and forced proximity. My least favorites are love triangles and cheating.
What are some tropes you want to write in the future?
I’d like to do a marriage of convenience, enemies to lovers, single dad tropes.
What are some topics (sensitive and otherwise) that you think should exist more in romance?
I think this question is tough because I personally read to escape and I don’t generally love heavy topics when I’m reading. That being said, I read a story where the heroine had a miscarriage and her friends rallied around her and it was an emotional scene. A few years later, I experienced a miscarriage and I actually reached out to that author to thank them for providing such a moving scene. It helped me reach out to friends when I was processing my own experience and was definitely a part of my healing.
If you write open door romance, why did you choose that and what inspires your sex scenes?
For me, the sex scenes are usually the easiest to write. I don’t generally write a story in order so if a scene comes to me, sex or otherwise, I’ll jot it down so I can see how to connect everything. I love the on page intimacy and some of it is personal experience and some of it is building from the feelings building between the characters as they write the scene.
3. YOUR BOOKS
What inspired your published stories? How and when did you come up with these stories and plots?
In 2021, we moved into our forever home. It didn’t make sense for me to go back to work and I decided to give this a shot after writing for so many years for myself. I have a laptop full of projects in various stages of completion. Some I’ll publish in the future and others are a beautiful stepping stone that I’ll cherish privately. Inspiration is everywhere and I find that the ideas that stick are the ones that keep me up at night and wont let me go until I’ve written something down.
Can you briefly tell me about your books?
I currently have two small town romance books published and a third coming out in March. Back in the Country (Book 1) is a brother’s best friend romance, Making it Country (Book 2) is a grumpy sunshine romance and Home in the Country (Book 3) is a second chance, single mom romance.
Do you already have a favorite character from the stories you’ve written?
I love all my characters for different reasons but I truly love Isla Andrews (from Making it Country). She’s fierce and a total lady boss. Seeing her growth not only in her own book but in everything else I’ve written has been inspiring. She’s the kind of character you’d want as a friend—she’s definitely one of a kind.
If you were to cast your book for a movie/television show, who would you cast in the lead roles?
I truly have no idea. My brain doesn’t process that way so if I had options I could say yes or no but I really couldn’t offer any suggestions.
How much of yourself do you put into these characters?
There’s a little bit of me in all my heroines. They each have qualities from different seasons in my life and I love having that connection.
What is a story/stories that you really want to tell?
I think so far, the unexpected ones are the most interesting. I had a plan when I started writing but when they say that characters control the narrative—they’re not kidding. I will say that the first book in my next series will be an emotional one for me because it’s the book I thought would be my debut. I wasn’t ready for it then but I am now and I’m so excited to give them their happily ever after!
Is there one common element that readers can find in all your stories?
I love balance and I try really hard to provide that. I want my characters to be well rounded but not overdone. There’s this push right now to do ALL the things in every story and as a reader I find it exhausting. I do my best to pick the most relevant things to a scene and stick to them. An example is Fallon in Home in the Country. She’s a single mom and she’s trying to do it all. I want her to be relatable but also not such a hot mess mom that it takes away from her strength and the positive impact she has on others.
What’s next on the bookshelf for you? Anything you can tell us about a future project?
I’m writing a novella that will be released in July (wink wink on theme). I’m really excited about this because it’s definitely going to challenge me as a writer. I have a pretty full publishing schedule this year and I’m really excited to make the most of it!
When you write these stories, what are you hoping your readers will feel?
I want my stories to be exactly what my readers need. If it’s relatable or a palette cleanser or a cozy sweater or warm hug or something sweet and sexy—it’s all valid. When I published my debut, a reader reached out and said that my book pulled her out of a dark time and I’ll never forget that. I know what books those are for me so to hear someone say that about my story is something I cherish.
4. AUTHOR’S CHOICE
Paperbacks, hardbacks, ebooks and audiobooks
Contemporary, fantasy, historical or romantic suspense
Single or Dual POV
Standalones, series or standalones in a series
Open door, ajar door or closed door romances
Music or silence when writing
Plotter, pantser or plantser
Water, tea, coffee or….wine?
Cold or warm weather
Write better in the morning, afternoon or night?
Illustrated or photo cover?
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