Q&A With Amanda Flower

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Q&A With Amanda Flower 

I have the opportunity and honor of doing this Q&A with Agatha Award Winning & USA Today Bestselling Author of over fifty mystery novels, Amanda Flower. Her mysteries range from Amish Mysteries, Contemporary Mysteries, Historical Mysteries, Magical Mysteries & Children Mysteries. 

Q: Amanda, I enjoy reading mysteries and I know you love writing them. What do you enjoy most about writing mysteries? 

A: I love figuring out who committed the crime. This is the most difficult part of writing mysteries but the most rewarding. I like following the clues with my sleuth.

Q: In your opinion, what are the important ingredients to writing great mysteries? 

A: The most important ingredients are suspense, good character motivations, and interesting characters.

Q: Would you like to talk about any upcoming releases, and stories you are currently writing now?

A: My upcoming release is To Slip the Bonds of Earth. It is the first novel in the Katharine Wright Mystery Series. Katharine was the real-life young sister of Wilbur and Orville Wright of aviation fame. She played a huge role in this success to fly and has been lost to history in many ways. I wanted to showcase her. She was a brilliant woman so she makes an excellent sleuth. The novel comes out March 26th.

I also continue to write the Amish Candy Shop Mysteries, Amish Matchmaker Mysteries, Farm to Table Mysteries, and Emily Dickinson Mysteries. My most recent Emily Dickinson Mystery, I Heard a Fly Buzz When I Died, is an Agatha award nominee this year for best historical mystery. Book one, Because I Could Not Stop for Death, won that award last year.

Q: How long does it take you to write a book? Would it be fair to say that the characters and worlds within your novels are loosely taken from bits and pieces of real people and places?

A: I am on a very aggressive writing schedule, so I’m writing a new novel every three months. And as far as the characters being real people, that’s certainly true for my historicals since they center around real historical figures.

Q: Does Hollywood have the rights to your work? The entertainment industry needs original content again.

A: I would love that but no. I got close once but nothing came of it in the end. It would be so exciting if it ever happened.

Q: What’s it like having your novels in the USA Today Bestsellers Lists? It sounds like a dream come true. 

A: It was a dream come true. I was beside myself. I was so excited. When you think of all the books that are published every year to make any best seller list is a huge achievement.

Q: Your novels have received starred reviews from Library Journal, Publishers Weekly & Romantic Times. What was that experience like?

A: That was a great experience because it was acknowledgement from professionals in the industry that my books are well-written. It meant a great deal to me.

Q: What was it like being featured in USA Today, First for Women, & Womens World?

A: Experiences like that are fun and very much pinch me moments. I never thought I would see my name in the magazine for anyone to pick up at the grocery store. I always go to the store and grab a few copies when that happens.

Q: Have you ever dealt with self-doubt when it came to writing, & if so how did you deal with it that might help an aspiring or new author deal with their own doubt? 

A: I deal with self-doubt with every book I write. I wish I could say writing gets easier, but it doesn’t because there is this internal push to be better than before. I deal with it by working on my garden and taking breaks outside. I also remind myself that I have over fifty books in print, this latest one isn’t going to be the one to break me.

Q: What is your advice for anyone dealing with criticism from negative reviews, online trolls & family and friends who might not be supportive of their writing goals and talents?

A: That’s hard. I have a rule that I don’t read stuff like that. Of course, I see it sometimes. Very early in my career, I got a horrible review and was crying to my agent. She said, “Thinking about what this reviewer said, would you have written the book differently?” My answer was “no.” “So it doesn’t matter,” she said. She was right and it completely changed my perspective on bad reviews. 

As for unsupportive friends and family, that’s hard. I have been very lucky with family and friend support, but the toughest thing for me is protecting my writing time. Since I work from home in sweats most days, people tend to think I am constantly available to do this or that. It’s hard to say “no” because I tend to be a helper. I’m working on it every day!

Q: If you were to write in another genre that wasn’t the mystery genre, which genres would you explore writing in and why?

A: I think I would like to write straight historical stories because I have a passion for history. I just find it so fascinating.