Interview with author Lori Verni-Fogarsi!

Hey everyone! I told you earlier this week that I’d have a guest and here she is! Lori Verni-Fogarsi is an author, speaker, and small business consultant. Her latest novel, Unexpecting, just released on April 18th. She’s doing some wonderful promotions this month to celebrate, so stop by and get in on the fun!

Onward to the interview!

1. What got you started writing?

Strangely, it wasn’t even planned! Back in my early twenties, I owned a dog training school and started a monthly newsletter to market to my clients, vets, etc. I was surprised when I began receiving requests to write for other publications, too! Over the past twenty years, my writing career has progressed to include many articles in magazines and newspapers, a weekly syndicated newspaper column, one nonfiction book and two novels, my blog, and more! (Who knew?!)

2. Do you have any rituals (music, quiet house, computer vs. pen/paper) you use to help get you ‘in the mood’ to write?

Not really. I do prefer quiet and I get the majority of my writing done during the day when my kids are at school, or I work at the library while waiting for my daughter who is in dance classes, or when we’re up at our lake house. However, overall, my best writing is done when I don’t pressure myself. Sometimes the words just fly, and if they’re not I try not to stress about it and just work on other things instead, like editing, other projects I’m working on, or even just clearing my head with a little fun time on social media!

3. Do you outline your stories, or do you write by the seat of your pants?

Initially, I write by the seat of my pants. Then, when I’m “done,” I create an outline from what I’ve already written. This helps me identify weak areas that need to be built upon, and redundancies than need to be chopped. Finally, I print a hard copy and use a different color highlighter pen for each character, which allows me to go through and make sure their personalities, speech patterns, and habits are consistent throughout.

4. What was the most surreal moment for you once you were published?

I can’t narrow it down to one… I have to name two! First, it was my launch party for “Momnesia,” when over 100 people showed up and everyone was so excited about my book! Additionally, I still have surreal moments every time I receive a letter from a reader saying how much they enjoyed it and/or a glowing review from an industry professional or perfect stranger!

5. What mistake do you see new authors make the most often? How can they avoid making it?

Without question, it is not investing in a professional editor to ensure that their book is just as cleanly edited and proofread as any traditionally published book. If one’s goal is to be a professional author, it’s important to provide quality material that people will enjoy reading, feel good about recommending to others, and will make that person want to look for your other/future works. How can it be avoided? Easily! Hire an editor! (By the way, people often worry that this is going to cost thousands of dollars, but it doesn’t have to. I welcome writers to contact me if they’d like to be put in touch with my editor, Clarice Joos, who is fantastic, reasonably priced, and has done a great job on all of my books!)

6. Is there a genre you would never write, or one you want to try?

I don’t have the imagination for science fiction—neither as a reader nor a writer. As for writing in a new genre, I anticipate that I will stick with nonfiction and women’s fiction, but hey, ya never know!

7. Most new authors don’t have much of an idea on how to market their books. What advice can you give them from your experiences?

My best advice is to be genuine as you develop relationships. You want to “build your social media presence,” but it needs to be done in a quality way. Rather than just going around liking things and asking people to follow you, take the extra step to get to know the person behind the blog, take the time to make interesting comments on blogs, Facebook posts, etc. Get to know other authors and bloggers, and identify ones who have quality material you will feel good about helping promote… then do it, just like you would want them to do for you!

8. Tell us some about the new book! What inspired you to write it?

LOL! I basically started with my worst nightmare as a base idea, then just ran with it from there! With my daughters being 12 & 15 and my stepsons being 18 & 20, there has been much (uncomfortable!) discussion in our household about safe sex, staying out of trouble, responsible behavior, not doing drugs, etc. I thought about what a story it would be if I were to imagine somehow getting “stuck” raising an unexpected baby “from scratch,” and as the story progressed, I integrated other things that would be real dilemmas if I were ever to be faced with them. (Hopefully not!) It’s been a real eye-opener because, as I wrote the story, I had to think about how I myself would handle such things if they came up, whether or not the main characters would handle them that way or differently, etc.

9. What can readers expect from you in the future? 

I have several ideas on the fires. I’m considering another novel, “Dadnesia,” which would be written from the perspective of a driven guy who is so caught up in being a husband, dad, and family provider, that he struggles with “who he is” as a person. (Kind of like “Momnesia” but completely different because it would be from a man’s viewpoint.) I have a giant list of men dying to be interviewed and for me to write this book! I also have two different ideas for nonfiction books, which I’m not sure whether I’ll pursue. One would be a compilation of life experience advice from people of all walks of life. Another is a handbook series for teens, beginning with “The Party Animal’s Guide to Beginner’s Party Animalism,” which would provide suggestions of how you can be a “real life” teen or twenty-something who has fun, but knows how to do so in a way that doesn’t ruin your life. Not sure whether I’ll do this, but it’s an idea that’s been forming in my head lately!

10. Which do you prefer? Coffee, tea, or something else?

Coffee all day, pinot grigio all night. Although I do force myself to drink water in between!

Thanks so much for stopping by, Lori! Wishing you the best with Unexpecting and your future!

3 thoughts on “Interview with author Lori Verni-Fogarsi!

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