SARA Café Welcomes Jo-Ann Power/a.k.a. Cerise DeLand

cerise_biopic-150x150 (2)SC:  When did you join SARA and for what reason?

JP/CD:  I’ve been a member of SARA for 19 years this month! Yes, 1996 was my date I came to Texas, but I’ve been a member of RWA since 1982!!!!

SC: What sub-genre of romance stories do you write?

JP/CD:  WOW. I’ve written in nearly every sub-genre from historical Regency and Victorian to Gothic and contemporary. As Cerise, I started to write erotic romance in 2009 and loved it. Now I am back to Regency with my newest box set with 5 fabulous others in THE INCOMPARABLES, a box set for only 99 cents!

SC:  What about the romance genre appeals to you?

JP/CD:  Happy endings and millions of readers who love them!

SC:  What are your ultimate goals as a writer?

JP/CD:  Creating any other goal than writing the current book that inspires you is a false goal, destructive to your psyche and your creativity. That includes wishing for prizes, best seller lists and MONEY.

The purpose a writer is to write. Constantly and with the goal of writing the finest work one can achieve. Money? Is the root of all evil when considering why one writes. Avoid it. It creates heartache and misery. Write for the joy of perfecting your art.

My words of wisdom hard-won by me over nearly 4 decades of writing fiction and non!

SC:  What is the best book you’ve ever read about the craft of writing?

JP/CD:  Too many of them. All of them good. Why? Because all the principles are the same, the success of how you use them varies with your mind set at the time!

SC:  Do you have a writing routine?  What does it involve?

JP/CD:  I go to work every morning. Every. Morning. And I am usually there until cocktail hour! I set a goal of 1000 new words a day, and sometimes, many times, do not make it for all the PR I must do. Still. 1000 words a day is healthy and useful because I cannot edit a blank page.

SC:  Do you have any writing superstitions?

JP/CD:  One warning more than superstition. Dare I repeat this sentence?  1000 words a day is healthy and useful because you cannot edit a blank page.

SC:  What do you do when you’re not writing?  Do you have any hidden talents?

JP/CD:  No talents. No skills. No hobbies. I do however have a few good rules: End by cocktail hour. Shut off the computer. Enjoy dinner and the evening with my hubbie. Do as little house cleaning as the house can stand. Always do the laundry. Read lots. Laugh more!

SC:  What would happen if you didn’t write?

JP/CD:  I would die. I walked away twice in my professional life. I was VERY unhappy, irritable, envious of those who did write.  My understanding is that if God gave you a talent and a desire for this profession, humor yourself. Obey Him.

SC:  Good advice. How do you know when your research is done?

JP/CD:  Garrr. NEVER!

SC:  Name one thing you absolutely can’t write about.

JP/CD:  Head injuries. My oldest son suffered and died from one incurred in an auto accident and he lived for 20 years with the side effects. I know more than heaven about TBI and massive brain injuries and I cannot write about them. I have tried. I failed.

SC:  Jo-Ann, I’m so sorry for your loss. Thank you though for taking the time to share with us a glimpse into your creative life. Keep writing!

Article by Mary Brand