Kristie Leigh Maguire, is owner and operator of Star Publish LLC. She is also "multi-published, award-winning author" best known for romance/erotic novel: "Affairs of the Heart: Desert Heat and Cabin Fever (Collector's Edition)," and a non-fiction memoir, "From the Far Side of the Sun: A Friendship that Spanned the Distance."
Interested in learning the secret of her success, I emailed Kristie Leigh Maguire requesting an interview. Garden Sheds LeighOf course I wanted to know a few other things.
Here's what Kristie Leigh Maguire had to say:
Q: Kristie, as prolific author, and owner/operator of your own publishing company, please share, what is the secret of your success?
A: Hard work and determination. I began my writing career when I was living in Japan in 1997. I couldn't find books that were written in English. Since I love to read, I started writing my own books, just to have something to read. I discovered that I loved writing. After a few years of dealing with publishing houses that kept screwing me over or going out of business, I started my own publishing house, Star Publish LLC. I wanted to help other writers avoid some of the pitfalls that I had been through with publishing houses.
Q: What about a personal life, Kristie? Are you married? Do you have children? Any pets?
A: My husband, Stan, and I have been married since 1983. I had one daughter, Tammy, prior to our marriage. Stan adopted her after we married. I have one cat name Guryl. I named her Little Bit when I got her as a baby but she grew up. The only name that seemed to fit the prissy little thing was Guryl (girl).
Q: Are they supportive of your writing?
A: My husband and my daughter are very supportive of my writing. It is a different story with the rest of my family though. My mother supports my writing but not the genre in which I write. My father was a preacher for over 50 years. Even though he had passed away before I became published, I could hear his voice in my head telling me that he didn't approve of me writing erotic romance. I tried to stifle my voice and write the way some of my favorite romance authors did. It just didn't work for me. I almost quit writing before I decided to ignore Daddy's voice in my head and let my muse have the freedom it wanted.
Q: How do you keep the energy going? How do you stay motivated?
A: After I started Star Publish in 2004, I had to put my own writing on hold because I absolutely didn't have time for it all. This year though (2007), I am concentrating on my own writing again. I have some stories running around in my head that are screaming to be let out.
Q: How has owning your own publishing company influenced your writing career? If at all? Has it helped? Has it hurt? In what way? How do you make it work for you?
A: (As I said in your earlier question), I've had to put my writing on hold. So in that respect, it has hurt my writing because of lack of time for everything. On the other hand, reading the manuscripts that writers submit to me has made me look at writing in a different way than I did before I started Star Publish. I know what I look for in a manuscript that I am evaluating for possible acceptance. This is going to help me in my writing career.
Q: What advice do you have for aspiring writers/authors who may be interested in pursuing the dream to own their own publishing company?
A: Think very carefully before you take the plunge to start a publishing house. It is a lot of hard work and there are days when I wonder if I can continue with it. I hate hurting a writer by telling them that their manuscript just isn't ready for publication. I hate when books that I have accepted and published don't sell like the author thinks it should. They seem to blame the publishing house for this even though they don't do anything to market their book. After I got a stable of authors, I feel responsible for them and their books and must continue on with the business so their books won't go out of print. On the other hand, the elation and joy of getting a writer published is beyond measure. I feel as though I am the stepmother for each and every book that I publish through Star Publish LLC. I am proud of them all.
Q: Where do your ideas come from?
A: I get my ideas from my fantasies and letting my imagination run wild. In Desert Heat, some scenes are set in Las Vegas and Laughlin, Nevada...both are gambling towns. The desert played a huge part in the setting for Desert Heat. Cabin Fever is set in the mountains of northern Nevada with some scenes in Reno...another gambling town.
Q: Do you have a favorite writing tip?
A: Don't stifle your voice. Give it the freedom it needs and the stories will write themselves. Let the characters take on their own life. Sometimes they will just not do what you want them to do but they seem to have a way of knowing what works for them in the long run.