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Indie Author Spotlight Interview: Lizzie B. Brown

Hello my little Gremlins! This weeks Indie author spotlight interview is a slightly different, but still very much valid, kind of author. Lizzie B. Brown most notably publishes her work through a serial style using Kindle Vella, and Patreon as the delivery method of her work. She also has recently published her first novel. She was a true delight and I look forward to reading more of her work. So how about we get to know the genius behind the work.


Indie author Lizzie B. Brown
Indie Author Lizzie B. Brown

Let us get to know you:

1. Where are you from? Does that have any impact on your writing?

Originally, Florida. I moved to Seattle at 22 for a couple years. Then to southeast

Virginia for eleven years. I returned to the Seattle area in 2021 and hope to stay here. It

really gets under my skin when I read a book that uses a real locations (especially places I

lived) and gets things really super wrong. Two of the places I lived appear together in

books a handful of times and are not portrayed right. Because of this, I try to avoid using

real cities, even in my contemporary romances.


2. How old were you when you first started writing your own stories?

However old I was in 8th grade. Embarrassing story time. For some reason, when

I was in 8th grade I started writing stories with my classmates as the characters. It

was a weird way to exercise writing different genres and super cringe looking

back. On the plus side, my classmates were super nice about the whole thing,

even though it's obviously weird looking back. (Yes, they read them.)


3. What do you do to relax?

Read, write, listen to music, watch t.v., play video games, drink wine. One of my

favorite activities when the weather is nice is to walk the trail near where I live

while listening to an audiobook or music.


4. Was there any one moment in your life that made you want to become an author?

Not really. Past the 8th grade, I was always really embarrassed about my writing.

After high school, I wrote a lemon Slayers fanfic that I am pretty sure is lost to

time. After that, I stopped writing until I started playing D&D with a virtual group

during the pandemic.


5. How many unfinished novel ideas do you have lying around?

I had to count. The answer is twelve. That sounds like a lot, but some I don't

know if I actually intend to finish. The funny part is they are all different

subgenres, spicy romance being the only thing they have in common. The three I

really want to finish first are an MMFM PNR, an MFM Hallmark after dark type

holiday romance, and an MF alien romance.


6. While I love to rep all Indie Authors I like to spotlight those that are part of

marginalized communities, would you say you are a part of such a demographic?

How do you think this influences your writing?

I am bisexual. Due to the bi-erasure we see in most media and the world in

general, I didn't put the pieces together until much later in life. I just assumed

everyone was attracted to women on some level, even when straight, and never

thought too deeply about it. Coming to terms with it was strange. My husband of

over ten years knew and assumed I did. When I “came out”, he thought I was

making some clever joke. That was an awkward conversation. He knew even

before we dated. It influences my writing in two ways I can think of. Personally, I

feel it helps me write male POV sex scenes, though that could be all just in my

head. I also made a conscious effort to include bisexual characters in my writing.


7. If you could change any one thing about our world today, what would it be?

This is a tough question. If I could only pick one thing, I think it would be that

people's sense of preserving others would outweigh self preservation. The

domino effect would spark more change.


A bit about your writing:



8. How do you go about writing? Are you a planner or do you just write?

It depends on the story. Some stories I have massive character sheets, outlines,

and mood boards. Others are just brief character notes. My serials have major

events planned out, but the in between is a journey I discover as I go.


9. Do you have a preferred writing environment? Such as a Cafe, home office, or just

anywhere?

Anywhere that no one will talk to me. I get distracted easily.


10. Are you a full-time or a part-time writer? How do you think that affects your

writing?

I have a full time job, so my writing technically comes second. That's why I take

breaks during certain months of the year.


11. What do you find to be the most difficult part about writing? The easiest?

This is going to sound weird, but the actual writing. I am the kind of person who

sees entire movies play out in their head. Putting that down on paper can be

difficult. Instead of describing the moment, I’m transcribing a scene. I usually

have to write in layers. Actions, then feelings, then abstract ideas.


12. What comes first, plot or characters?

Depends on the story. In Obedience, the concept and plot came first. In The

Bucket List, Janet's Story, and Friendsgiving with Benefits it was the characters.

In my alien WIP it was how the women would end up in space.


13.  Is there any writing advice you would like to give to a writer working on their first

novel?

Find balance between believing in yourself and accepting criticism.


14. Why did you choose to self publish your book? And why Kindle Vella for your

other stories?

Nothing against trad publishing, but it's not my scene. I have read a trad

published book in years, I don't think. I wanted my book out there and I wasn't

going to wait for an agent or publishing house to decide I was good enough. As

for Kindle Vella, I actually read a few stories on there before publishing. After

looking into it, I liked their set up. I do recognize their restrictions, which is why I

also release my serials on Patreon.



Book Specific:

  

15. What was your inspiration for your debut novel “Friendsgiving with Benefits”?

The characters Poppy and Nixon were just supposed to be side characters in

The Bucket List. I was big into the Southeast con scene for a couple decades

and drew on my experiences and different personalities I met to create them.

Poppy’s nonchalant attitude about her sexuality is a reference to my own

obliviousness, though she knows. The Friendsgiving celebration is based of the

ones my husband and I hosted every year in Virginia.


16. Could you tell us a bit about your stories on Kindle Vella? Why should we read it? 

Obedience is a Professor/student romance with a 19 year age gap. Cassie is 21

and Joshua (aka Professor Grant) is 40. I wanted to write an age gap where

despite the obvious power imbalance, the older person was not in control.

Joshua willingly submits, though some of the time he doesn't necessarily

understand why. What I really like is that the premise is a great vehicle for

Cassie’s character growth. Yes, she is an adult, but she's still pretty young.

Sometimes she acts out thinking she's helping only to learn she isn't. I also love

writing a man that is willing submissive.


The Bucket List is a spin-off of Obedience that can work as a standalone. Carla

and Eddie have been completely platonic BFFs since the day they met, when

she got lost on the first day of her job. When I say platonic, I mean she has

harbored a secret crush on and off for five years. Something clicks and Eddie

catches feelings, too. The story follows their friendship morphing into something

more when Carla asks for help crossing items off a kinky bucket list. It's a friends

to lovers in an office setting with a fun cast of side characters, like a sexy

accountant named Bob. It's also where Nixon and Poppy came from.


Janet's Story is an MFM age gap that was never supposed to happen. Is is

technically a spin-off of Obedience, but very separate. Janet is Joshua’s ex and if

you read Obedience you would probably be asking me why you would want to

read about that bitch. Well, there are two sides to every story. Janet is 40 and still

suffering months later from a break up that she initiated. She’s having a

particularly bad day when a young gentleman with a southern accent comes to

her rescue. Through a series of events, she ends up dating a 28 year old and a

52 year old. Unbeknownst to her or the men, both men know each other. This

story is the favorite of my beta readers. I was only trying to map out what

happened to her in case she ever pooped up in Obedience, but my beta readers

loved it so much I kept going. It's fun because Janet end up with two men who

are dominant in different ways. There are a lot of “good girls” and “Daddy”.


17. Do you have a favorite character? Scene?  

My favorite character used to be Joshua because I pulled from a lot of my

insecurities to make him. Now it's Austin, the southern “gentleman on the streets,

freak in the sheets”. Poppy and Nixon tie for second.

My favorite scene is probably episode 4 of Obedience, Chili Dogs and Regrets.

Although, there are a lot of scenes in Janet's Story that come in close second.


18. Were there any parts of the novel you found challenging to write?

Yes! Towards the end. I knew they needed a happy for now, but anyone who is

caught up with Obedience or The Bucket List knows Poppy and Nixon don't have

their HEA yet. (They will.) I needed to end it before it got to the split.


19. You put your efforts into writing, and then managed to publish a book! How do

you feel now that “Friendsgiving with Benefits” is out in the world?

Strange. I almost cried when I hit publish. It was a similar feeling when I hit

publish on Obedience, only with Obedience I could keep writing. With

Friendsgiving with Benefits, I had to break from the characters even though I

didn't want to because their story continues in my serials.


20. Would you be willing to share a quote or excerpt that you love the most from your

novel?

“And so we continued to live together and occasionally fuck, and the only time
my real feelings slipped was when she dropped to her knees for me. It was
easier that way.”

I don't know why I love that line so much, but I do. Honestly, I

could share a lot of the scenes. When Poppy makes three different people melt

with her Joey impression is another part I love.


21. And lastly, what are you currently working on? Can we expect to see more books

from you in 2024? Possibly more full length novels or novellas?

I am hoping to release Obedience Vol 1 in novel form this year. I'm also hoping to

have one, if not two, novellas outs. (Alien romance.) Some of my longer works

will take more time because I suffer from squirrel brain. That is part of why serials

and shorter books work so well for me. I have a newsletter and a Facebook

group that are great ways to keep up with stuff like that

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