1. What does “WYCTM” stand for? When You Come to Me
  2. Where are you originally from? Winston-Salem, North Carolina 
  3. How old are you and when did you start writing When You Come to Me? I am 24 now. I started writing this in 2007, at the age of 20. I was a junior in college.
  4. Are you Natalie? I get this question more often than all the others. The most simple answer is: no. Natalie and I share many qualities: we are both natural caretakers, we are both extremely focused in terms of our present and future goals, we are both extremely loyal to our friends and family, we both aren’t very affectionate and often are seen as cold and impersonal, our birthdays are both in October and we are both left-handed Libras 😉 There are some major differences between us, however:
  • Natalie is very stubborn. Without revealing too much, Natalie had a tendency to hold onto things that upset her or pissed her off and she dwelled on them. Growth for her seem to manifest itself in her actions more so than in her willingness to apologize and accept her own faults. I, on the other hand, tend to forgive and forget. I’ve been told that I’m way more resilient than I should be.
  • Natalie is very analytical and rational. Almost to a fault. I am much more idealistic.
  • Natalie is much prettier than me.  But I’m serious.

5. Who is Brandon? Brandon is obviously a guy who stems from a composite of my guy friends. He’s not really like one person that I know. He is often perceived as blond because of his personality. But I wanted to give him the type of presence that Natalie would not ignore, both with his physical appearance and with his personality. Therefore, I thought that stark black hair, a 6’4″ athletic frame and striking blue eyes was the best way to go. I did have an experience with my own “Brandon” around the time that this was written, but to respect his privacy, I won’t say much about it. Does he know that that the origins of this story circulate around him? Probably not. But he is still one of my good friends so he’ll probably figure it out.

6. Are you working on anything else? Yes! After a lot of pressure from my inner conscience and my closest friends, I’ve successfully put out one more novel (Kiawah) and three short stories (Amber, Painted Leo, Rusted Halo, respectively). Later this year (October 1, 2012, actually), I’ll be releasing a novella entitled The Trail’s End…my most daring literature to date.

7.  How long have you been writing? I know the cliched response would be to say: “Since I was a kid”. But I seriously have. Ever since I read my first crappy story in the “Young Author’s Program” in the first grade, I have been hooked. I have the crappy Mead notebooks and stapled notebook papers of chicken scratch to prove it 😉

8. What do you do for a living? I previously worked at a Publishing company in Raleigh, North Carolina. I’m now a MFA candidate for Creative Writing.

9. Who designs your cover? I do them all myself. But, the cover for The Trail’s End will be done by a very talented illustrator.

10. Who are you major literary influences? Isabel Allende, Sebastian Faulks, Nella Larsen, Judy Blume, Stephen King…the list goes on…

11. What was the last great thing you read? Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks

12. Is Kiawah a real place? Yes! It’s an island about 1 hour away from Charleston, SC.  I visited it in 2008 and fell in love.

13. What genre do you most enjoy writing? I don’t like to typecast what I write. I usually write what I feel.  If I’m in an amorous mood, I tend to lean toward romance; if I’m angry or hurt, I tend to incorporate more violence and suspense.

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