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  • Anna P.

Indie Support Sunday: Brit Benson

A fellow bookstagrammer, Brit stepped into the indie author scene in 2021 with her stunning debut Love You Better. She went on to release two more books in the series, following a group of friends in college as they navigate life and love, while also tackling real life problems. From the minute I started Ivy and Kelley’s love story, I was obsessed. Her writing is smart and witty, her characters are captivating and altogether, Brit’s created a series of books that once you start reading, you won’t be able to stop.


The Love of My Next Life is her upcoming novel—the first in a duet—releases on September 8th and promises to feature lots of delicious tropes and things that we’ve all come to enjoy from Brit. And if that’s not enough, she’s got something special yet to come in her Better Love series later this year.


What inspired you to write—was it another author or books you read as you grew up?

Since childhood, I’ve always been a reader, and even from a young age, love stories captivated me. Author Sarah Dessen was among my favorites, and I reread Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech more times than I could count. That love of reading grew into a love of writing stories of my own, and being an author was my “dream job.” It wasn’t until I experienced several lifestyle changes that I decided to take the plunge and try my hand at writing professionally.


Why did you choose romance as the genre to write in?

I love absolutely everything about the genre.


Why did you choose to self-publish instead of going the traditional route?

I like control, and I’m impatient, so I like the immediacy of it versus the prolonged, delayed gratification that is traditional publishing.


What’s the best and worst part about being an indie author?

In a lot of ways, it’s a double-edged sword. I like having control over every aspect of my book, but with that comes a lot of responsibility, and it can be extremely stressful. You can’t be successful without hustling your butt off and shelling out a lot of money upfront.


I also love the interaction I can have with readers, and the interaction I’m able to have in indie romance communities like Bookstagram, but sometimes people can be mean or disrespectful, and that can be disheartening.


Ultimately, the good outweighs the bad, and I’m so grateful to have found a place as an indie author.


Do you write full time or is this something you do on the side? And would you want to write full time?

If I could write full time, I would love it. I’m still relatively new to the scene, having published my first book in July 2021, so I am learning the ropes as I go. If I could turn this into a lucrative, full-time job, that would be amazing. For the time being, though, writing is a passion project.


Other than writing, what is something you enjoy and are really good at?

I’m so lame lol. I’m not remarkable at anything, and that’s not just me being humble. I’m legit painfully average, but I’m cool with it.


If not romance/subgenres of romance, what genre would you like to write in?

YA Fantasy. I’m not sure if I’m creative enough, or have the attention span/memory capacity to successfully create an elaborate world that spans multiple 400+ page books. It’s daunting, and I am in awe of anyone who has done it. Side note: The Ember in the Ashes series by Sabaa Tahir is YA Fantasy GOLD.


What are some of your all time favourite books—ones that you recommend to people or can reread multiple times?

Oh, you’ve done it now lol. Contemporary YA: I love Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech. It’s a middle grades chapter book that I still enjoy as an adult. Like a Love Story by Abdi Nazemian is one of the best queer YA books I’ve ever read. Love from A to Z by SK Ali is also brilliant.


YA Fantasy: I also love The Ember in the Ashes series by Saba Tahir, the ACOTAR and Throne of Glass series from Sarah J Maas, and the Legend series by Marie Lu.

ROMANCE: Anything by Ilsa Madden-Mills. She’s my unicorn author and if I could be half as good as she is someday, I’d die happy. The Fall Before Flight by LM Halloran. The Cask by Danielle Allen. This by CG Blaine. Work for It by Talia Hibbert. Anything step sibling, fake dating, or enemies to lovers. Honestly, I could go on all day.


What are your top 5 tips or pieces of advice for aspiring authors?

  1. Soak up as much information as your brain can handle. Talk to people. Join author groups on Facebook. Ask questions. Take free seminars. Read articles and books and blogs by reputable sources. The learning curve is STEEP, and you will fuck up at some point, but learning what you can, when you can, will hopefully soften the impacts of your mistakes.

  2. Surround yourself with a team of supportive, honest people. You might be doing this independently, but you don’t have to do it alone. Honest, thorough BETA readers are a MUST. It might take you a few tries to find your people, but when you do, keep them. They make a huge difference.

  3. Join bookstagram and be active in the community. The best thing I did before deciding to dive into indie publishing was make a bookstagram. I learned a lot about the industry, about my fellow readers and authors, and I’ve made wonderful relationships. It’s like my own little home in the indie romance community.

  4. Do you. Take all advice with a grain of salt, and follow your gut. You know what will work best for you, and you know the kind of books you want to put out into the world. Ask for advice, sift through it and take what fits you, then trash the rest. Stay true to yourself above everything else.

  5. Prioritize your mental health.

Can you briefly tell me about your books? Currently, I have three books published. They are interconnected standalones in the New Adult subgenre (college aged) that follow a close-knit friend group. I like to say that these books are sassy, sweet, and sexy. I like dirty talking men, strong women, and a good blend of humor, heart, and heat.


Of your books, who is your favourite character?

There’s a little bit of me in each of my heroines, but I think my favorite character right now is my current FMC in my WIP. You’ll meet her later this year.


What inspired your published stories? How and when did you come up with these stories and plots? So far, all of my plots have been inspired, at least in part, by personal experiences that I’ve embellished, and my heroines have all been a little bit “me.” I joke that I’ll run out of material soon because there’s only so much more of myself I can lay bare before I’m totally exposed lol.


How much of yourself do you put into these characters?

Depends on the character. It varies, but I would say as of right now, my answer is “quite a bit.” I’ve got a few characters waiting in the wings of my imagination that will be wholly new to me, though. I’m excited to experience them.


When you write these stories, what are you hoping your readers will feel?

Everything. My favorite stories to read are the ones that touch on every emotion, so I’m always striving for that outcome with what I write.


What is a story/stories that you really want to tell?

There is a side character from my book Better With You whose story I’m itching to tell. She’s been patient, which is true to her character, so it won’t come out until next year. But I already know her story is going to be a beautiful one.


What’s next on the bookshelf for you? Anything you can tell us about a future project?

Currently, I’m writing a duet that starts in high school. It’s a brother’s best friend, forbidden, hate-to-love story that's full of angst. There’s also some serious toxicity that’s been difficult for me to put on paper, but I really think this is going to be my best work yet.


What are your most and least favourite tropes? Most Fave: Step siblings, enemies to lovers, fake dating, anything taboo or forbidden.

Least Fave: Secret/surprise baby, cowboy or military, small town

What are some tropes you want to write in the future?

Step siblings for sure, fake dating, romantic suspense. I eventually want to try my hand at many.


What are some topics (sensitive and otherwise) that you think should exist more in romance? I like when mental health is addressed and things like therapy and medication are normalized in books. I like characters with real bodies. I also think there can never be enough diverse romance, and we need to actively work to amplify and promote the wonderful diverse romances that already exist.


What is your favourite thing about the romance genre?

I love that it’s primarily by women for women, that is empowering and feminist, that it’s hella sexy, that it tackles real issues, that I get that desired HEA, and that there is something for everyone.


THIS OR THAT

  • Ebooks or audiobooks

  • Historical romance or romantic suspense

  • Single or Dual POV

  • Standalones or series

  • Music or silence while writing

  • Plotter, pantser or plantser

  • Tea or coffee

  • Cold or warm weather

  • Morning person or night owl

  • Illustrated cover and photo cover


You can find Brit on Instagram, TikTok and stay updated by joining her author group on Facebook.

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