Welcome Letitia L. Moffitt to Plain Talk Book Marketing and thank you for participating in 10Qs.
What is your writing process?
An idea will come to me and I’ll get excited about it for a few minutes and then instantly reject it. I’m not kidding—I’m the queen of self-doubt. But then I’ll usually come back to that idea again and again and again, and if there’s another “again,” I’ll start writing about it. I’ll go through bursts of writing activity interspersed with periods of mulling it over, liking what I wrote, hating what I wrote, giving up on it, starting back up with it, and on and on. Eventually, somehow, the thing gets written.
Describe your journey as an author so far.
I confess that when those “30 under 30” lists come out, I feel a moment of sour grapes, but that quickly passes and I’m happy with my writing life. Yes, I wanted to be a young phenom, hitting the best-seller list in my 20s, a movie made out of everything I wrote, Oprah, all that. That didn’t happen, but here’s what did happen: I continued to write my entire life. I’m still writing, and I’m trying new things with my writing all time. That’s the part that truly matters, and it’s not a grand rationalization to say that. The journey isn’t about movies or sales; it’s about the writing.
How do you stay motivated?
I am also a long-distance runner, and the motivational aspects of running and writing are similar for me. I don’t have to do this. I want to do this. I enjoy it, even the bad parts, the parts where the run isn’t going well and I’m in massive pain, the parts where I can’t get the story to do what I want it to do. If I remember that this really is about the experience more than the end result, I can keep going even when the experience isn’t ideal. Non-ideal experiences are some of the most interesting, after all.
What has been your biggest obstacle while writing and how have you overcome it?
I am my own biggest obstacle. I can be hugely self-defeating and can talk myself out of anything! How I overcome this me-obstacle is remembering that every action can be funneled toward a different purpose. The energy I expend telling myself I suck can easily be used toward creating a piece of writing that doesn’t entirely suck. So there’s that.
Why did you write Trace?
My first novel was very autobiographical. After that, I decided I was tired of me. I wanted to write something fun again, something imaginative. I wanted to play “what if,” the thing kids play when they just let their creativity go. So I thought, “what if you could sense the energy of the human body—but only when it is released from the body?” And I just went from there.
What do you hope readers would take away from Trace?
I hope they get immersed in the world I’ve created and enjoy the experience.
How long did it take you to write your books?
The first book took about ten years; the second and third each took a few months! Go figure.
What’s next for you?
I’m working on a YA sci-fi novel about genetically altered human beings. I’m also writing a memoir about going on road trips with pets—lots of them. I want to write more nonfiction.
What genres do you read?
I try to read everything, though I mostly read fiction. I love sci-fi fantasy, but I also really like literary short stories.
What do you know now that you wish you knew as a teenager?
This is a question I’ve been thinking a lot about lately because there is so much I wish I’d known back then. I guess the number one thing I’d love to tell my teenage self is that your path isn’t going to be the way you want or expect—and that’s OK. It’s more than OK; it’s going to make your life interesting and different and, yes, wonderful.
There you have it, wise words from Letitia L. Moffitt.
Letitia L. Moffitt was born and raised in Hawaii. She received a doctoral degree in English/Creative Writing from Binghamton University. Her first novel, Sidewalk Dancing, was published by Atticus Books in November 2013. Her novel Trace—Book 1 of the TraceWorld series—was published by Cantraip Press in March 2015. Vibe/Sync, Book 2 of the series, will be released by Cantraip Press in April 2016. In her spare time Moffitt runs ultramarathons and blogs about her experiences at http://letitiamoffitt.blogspot.com.
She knows what happens when you die.
Nola Lantry is a tracist: she can sense the particles of energy that are released when the human body expires. It’s a somewhat gruesome ability, but Nola uses it to bring some meaning to her otherwise drab life in upstate New York by assisting the Redfort Police Department on missing person cases. When the richest man in town, Culver Bryant, disappears, Nola finds herself in the middle of a case that is both baffling and increasingly dangerous, the danger appearing in the form of death threats as well as the missing man’s brother, Grayson. Does Grayson Bryant pursue Nola to seduce her or to stop her—and why does Nola feel a connection with him despite her mistrust?
Purchase Trace on Amazon
Barely a week has passed since she solved her last case and Nola Lantri is already involved in several new mysteries—with a couple of people who may be just as unusual as Nola herself.
Part 1: Vibe
Eric Lafferty has returned to Redfort City a little too late for his father’s funeral but just in time to get mixed-up in a mystery that involves Nola Lantri, Grayson Bryant, a dead girl and a missing woman. Eric’s ability to read the vibrational changes in brain waves should be an asset, yet it only seems to make life more difficult for him—and given that he and Nola might be the next victims, things are difficult enough.
Part 2: Sync
Emjay used to steal things—nothing big, just enough to get by—but after a terrible accident changes her life, Emjay has only one thing on her mind: revenge. Suddenly private investigator Nola Lantri appears and questions Emjay about her past—and informs her that the mysterious man she works for has a complicated past of his own. Emjay must figure out the best use of her odd ability to “sync,” a technique intended to help people heal—but one that also can cause a lot of harm.
Purchase Vibe/Sync on Amazon.