Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Debby Mayne, Interview with the Popular Author

Interview with Debby Mayne

Debby Mayne (photo by Tina Bass)
One of the most joyful experiences for any new writer on the scene is to sit with a successful, established author and pick her brain. I recently had the pleasure of meeting with Debby Mayne, author of numerous Christian romance novels (complete list here) and novellas as well as the writer for's etiquette column.

I knew we would hit it off when she suggested we meet at Starbucks. During our two-hour coffee break at the local coffee shop, Debby offered insights about what she writes and how she manages her time. She also offered advice for new writers.

That's me on the left.
Debby Mayne on the right.
Question: You write such a variety of material. Tell me about that.

And she did.

Debby Mayne is a woman with many interests. Having traveled extensively with her military family she has had opportunities to explore a variety of activities, foods, and cultures.  She is both a novelist and a freelance writer. Her freelance pieces have ranged from fashion and parenting to health care, sports, and recreation.

What I learned here? Write about what interests you. Take your life experiences and turn them into publishable pieces.

Question: How did you first get a novel published?

“I had written several pieces and had been rejected several times. Then my husband asked me if I wanted to make money or get published. I wanted to get published. He told me I should pick a publisher and write a story just for them. I liked the Avalon books, so I read several of them and wrote a story designed for them. Three weeks after I mailed it, they bought it.”

What I learned from Debby?  Study the publisher you like and write for that publisher. It is true when writing articles for magazines or journals as well. Study the publication. Read through several issues. You will begin to see what the publishing house or editors like and be able to deliver a product that appeals to them.

I asked Debby how she manages her time. 

Her answer? “I get up early, I have my coffee first then I do my administrative stuff like answering emails and Facebook and Twitter. Then I write my etiquette post. It’s easier for me to write non-fiction first. By about seven in the morning, I’m ready to write fiction.”
What I learned? Establish a routine. And don’t forget the coffee.

Question: What advice do you have for new writers?

Debby describes her books as character driven as opposed to plot driven. “I go on an emotional journey with my characters,” she explained. “I recommend new writers take a class in screenwriting. It will help you create great dialogue.”

What I learned: If you want great dialogue, take a course in screenwriting.

But if you want a great conversation, spend a little time with
Debby Mayne.

Check out these books in Debby’s Class Reunion series—

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