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Indie Author Interview: Samantha Picaro

Hi My Bookish Gremlins! It's Wednesday and you know what that means! Time for another indie author interview. Where we get to know some of the amazing indie authors out here publishing some of the most underrated books. This week's Indie author is Samantha Picaro a YA author who's latest book is all about taking failures and turning them into their own kind of success.

Get to know you Section

A simple question to start, what are your pronouns? We don’t want to assume.


Can you tell us a bit about your background? How does this affect your writing?  I ask because we like to support Indie authors from diverse backgrounds here and it is not polite to assume one’s identity.

I have a Master’s in Social Work but am going back to school to become a librarian. I can still help people as a librarian, plus I’d be surrounded by books and spread the love of reading. I’m autistic and aroace. I live in New Jersey.

Have you always wanted to be an author? If not, what made you want to be one?

You probably hear this a lot but I’ve always wanted to be an author.

Are there any authors who inspired you to become an author?

Too many to count!

What is your favorite Genre to read? What are you currently reading?

My favorite genre to read is YA, which one is never too old for. I’m currently re-reading Let’s Talk About Love by Claire Kann.

Audio, Physical, or E-book, which do you prefer?


Is there anything you’re passionate about outside of writing?

Lots of things: sweets, trying new foods or beverages, social justice, and TV.

You’re stranded on an island, what three people and three items are you bringing?

Three items: ebook filled with books, my favorite tumblr to gather water, and a blanket for when the nights get cold. Three people: my mom, brother, and sister.

Have you ever felt like giving up? How did you overcome this?

I’ve felt like giving up but I remind myself success if what I make it out to be, nobody succeeds all the time, and I make a gratitude list.

On Writing in general

How do you find the time to write?

I write when I can, whether it’s at night or early in the morning. I take advantage when I have at least an hour of nothing to do. If I have free time, I remind myself to write rather than play a video game.

What do you find the most challenging about writing?

Organizing the plot and chapters.

How do you push through writer’s block?

I find inspiration through music, video games, books, anime, news, etc.

Are you a planner or a pantster?


What comes first? Plot or Characters?


How do you measure Literary success?

Whatever I want it to mean. Even though I may not sell hundreds of copies, I remind myself of reviews or comments when someone tells me how much the story and characters mean to them.

What part do you feel reviews play in an author’s success? How do you handle the bad reviews? Do you even read your reviews?

Reviews make a book seem more legitimate. Bad reviews aren’t fun but everyone is entitled to an opinion, plus a balance between positive and negative reviews add to the credibility of a book.

How do you feel about the Publishing industry today?

I think self-publishing is becoming extremely popular.

Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?

Tell the story you want to tell, not just what you think people want to read. Read books in the same genre, Follow reader or author accounts online, and subscribe to some free writing newsletter or magazines.

Book Specific

Describe your book in One sentence.

An aspiring graphic designer teen uses her skills to help her peers and her aunt’s new bakery.

Who do you think is your ideal audience?

Teens ages 13 and older.

What was the inspiration for this book? When do you get your best ideas?

I use some graphic design skills for my current job and to market my book, and I enjoy baking. One of the themes of the book is challenging the pressure to succeed in our society.

Who is your favorite character? Or a favorite scene from your book?

My favorite character is Lana, the aunt to the main character Bryn.

When you were writing your book did you make a pinterest/mood board for your book? If so, would you share it with us?

No, I did not.

If you were to have your book turned into a movie, who would you cast?

I’d rather be surprised!

Did you have to do any research for this book? What exactly did you need to research?

I had to research how bakeries operate and what graphic designers do.

Are there any scenes you edited out but saved for later?


What is the key theme or message in your book?

As stated in an earlier response to a question, one theme is challenging society’s pressure to succeed and not to be devastated by failure. A key part of the book is the Setback Cakes that the fictional bakery makes.

What do you hope readers get from your books?

That success is how you define it and not to let mistakes discourage you.


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