Indie Support Sunday: Katie B. Wright
When I learned that Katie’s debut was set in a fictional town in Italy, I immediately picked it up. Rich with delicious food, sweeping landscapes and intriguing characters, the story wraps you up nice and tight as you go on a journey with the female lead, Rosalie. Katie’s working on her second book right now and I’m eager to see where this story will take us; especially since the male lead apparently is a dog dad! I also absolutely loved Katie’s five tips for aspiring authors, because those are the five things I would tell anybody who wants to get into this world!
Bella Rosa is available in Kindle Unlimited right now. And if you’re a fan of the book, Katie also has some pretty merch that you can order through her website (links are mentioned at the end of the interview).
BEING AN AUTHOR
Who or what inspired you to write?
I actually didn’t get into reading until around 2 years ago. The pandemic was in full swing and I had just moved to a new state, so I needed a new hobby. I ended up reading a book a day for a few months. I loved it! My husband kept asking if I would be interested in writing my own book, but I always declined. I didn’t think I was capable of such a monumental task. I ended up seeing Elsie Silver answer some questions on her Instagram stories about how anyone could be an author if they were willing to put in the work. I started outlining my debut the next day.
What’s the best and worst part about being an indie author?
I absolutely love getting to write the stories that I want to read. I get to make all the decisions and write a story that I love. Meeting other authors and watching a story develop from the outside looking in is also so fun! My least favorite is probably marketing! When you’re an indie author absolutely every step of the process falls on your shoulders, that includes marketing. Don’t get me wrong, I love making all the reels and graphics, but it can be so difficult to figure out what scene of the book to use or what pictures to use that will draw the correct audience in.
Why did you choose to self-publish instead of going the traditional route?
Long story short, I didn’t want to go through the process for traditional publishing, I didn’t want to be on someone else’s timeline, and I want to be in charge of my publishing journey.
When you’re not writing, what do you do to get the creative juices flowing?
Singing in the shower seems to lead to the best scenes in my books popping in my head! That also leads to me rushing to get out so I can write it down before I forget 🤪
If you were to recommend books to me (in any genre), what would they be?
A Curse of Shadow and Ice by Catharina Maura, ‘Til You Came Along by Lorissa Padilla, Black Ties and White Lies by Kat Singleton, Hooked by Emily McIntire, Frayed by Laura Pavlov, and The Masked Fae by Shari L. Tapscott
What are your top 5 tips or pieces of advice for aspiring authors?
Write for yourself, not the market. Make sure you love your story.
Take your time. Don’t rush the process. If you need to take a few weeks off from writing, do it! Your work will still be there when you return.
You’re going to think your work sucks. Some of it might, but it can always be fixed with the right editing!
Don’t cheap out on editing, a cover designer, and good formatting. Good editing keeps readers immersed in your story, a good cover is the first glimpse of your story, and good formatting shows how professional you are.
Don’t just look at the end goal. Set small goals along the way to keep yourself motivated. It may take months or even years to reach the end goal of publishing your book, but it will only take a few hours to finish a chapter.
ROMANCE AS A GENRE
Why did you choose romance as the genre to write in? What is your favorite thing about the genre?
Honestly, I didn’t even consider anything else. Romance is what I like to read, so that’s naturally what I like to write.
What are your most and least favorite tropes?
Most: grumpy/sunshine, forced proximity, touch here and ☠️, who did this to you?, dial POV, open door, next door neighbor
Least: surprise pregnancy, bad communication, second chance
What are some tropes you want to write in the future?
Next door neighbor romance for sure!
What are some topics (sensitive and otherwise) that you think should exist more in romance?
I recently got diagnosed with ADHD, so I would love to read more about that in romance. My husband is my rock, especially when it comes to my various health issues, so I would love to see that dynamic on page.
If you write open door romance, why did you choose that and what inspires your sex scenes?
Sex is an important part of relationships. Sometimes various insecurities are resolved during sex and I think that’s important to see as a reader. I also think it adds to the realness of a couple.
What inspired your published stories? How and when did you come up with these stories and plots?
My travels in college inspired the location of my debut series. My relationship with my husband also inspired a few scenes here and there! For the most part though I just saw these characters in my head and let them direct the story. So much of Bella Rosa was a surprise for me as I wrote. I didn’t know the ending of the book until I was literally writing it.
Can you briefly tell me about your book(s)?
Bella Rosa is my debut novel set in the fictional Eden Valley of Italy. The Eden Valley represents a place of new beginnings to the locals as well as the American Food Journalist Rosalie. She’s on a three week trip to write her first solo article for Foodie Magazine that will hopefully secure her a promotion. Along the way she meets a very grumpy Italian Head Chef, Matteo, who’s willing to endure her presence to ensure his family restaurant makes it into her article. Along the way they learn their similarities run deep when they’re forced to confront their past trauma and find healing within each other and the beautiful Italian countryside.
Do you already have a favorite character from the stories you’ve written?
I will always love Rosalie and Matteo from my debut novel, but right now my heart belongs to Julianna as I dive into her story for book 2! Readers meet Julianna in Bella Rosa, but they will learn so much more about her in book 2!
How much of yourself do you put into these characters?
I see myself in all my characters, but I don’t think most people, apart from my husband, would see it because it’s so subtle.
What is a story/stories that you really want to tell?
Julianna’s story is what I’m itching to dive into!
Is there one common element that readers can find in all your stories?
So far I would say creating new beginnings. That’s a theme throughout the first book and it will be in the second book as well. After all, The Eden Valley represents new beginnings.
What’s next on the bookshelf for you? Anything you can tell us about a future project?
The only thing I can say about book 2 is that the MMC will be a dog dad 🐾
When you write these stories, what are you hoping your readers will feel?
I want readers to fully feel the emotions of my characters and feel their growth as they work through those emotions.
Paperbacks, hardbacks, ebooks or 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?