Who’s That Indie Author? Pat Spencer

Author Name: Pat Spencer

Genre: Thriller, Historical and Literary Fiction

Books: Story of a Stolen Girl (international thriller) and upcoming Golden Boxty in the Frypan (Historical Fiction) to be released in 2023 by Pen It Publications, and Sticks in a Bundle: The Early Years (Literary and Historical Fiction).

Bio:  Besides six states in the U.S., I lived in Canada and Germany. I love traveling and getting to know people and their cultures. When not writing or traveling, I golf, read, walk the beach, hang out with family and friends or frequent book clubs

What got you started as a writer? My second-grade teacher pinned my Christopher Columbus report on the bulletin board for parents’ night and then bragged about what a good writer I was. I was hooked. But then my career counselor in high school shared reports about how little money the average writer earned, so I went into education.

What is your writing routine? I write almost every day. I carve out time in the mornings and then again after lunch when I am home all day.

What route did you take to get your books published? I was pretty successful with my nonfiction writing. I published a textbook with the first and only publisher that I queried. Imagine that! I also served as a columnist for a large newspaper and as a columnist, reporter, and editor for a tabletop magazine. I also freelanced for a trade journal. I self-published my first novel, Story of a Stolen Girl. For my second novel, Golden Boxty in the Frypan, I sent out queries and accepted a contract offer from Pen It Publications.

What things do you do to promote your books? My favorite promotional activities are events: signings, book fairs, book club meetings, public speaking at community and service groups. I also post on my website, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

What is your favorite genre to read and why? My favorite genre is generally a crossover of literary and historical fiction because these books typically provide the depth of character development and insight into the past that I enjoy.

Do you prefer to write dialogue or description? I prefer to write emotions and the six senses. Both can be conveyed in either dialogue or description.

Have any of your characters ever surprised you? Did this change the plot of your book The main character of my Sticks in a Bundle Trilogy surprised me by revealing more than I expected about her life and coming-of-age under the oppressive rule of apartheid. I thought she would tell me enough for one fairly thick novel, but her life was far too complex for that.

What is the most difficult thing you have accomplished in your life? Earning a Ph.D. at the University of California, Riverside while being a wife, mother, and full-time professor at Riverside Community College.

What three events or people have most influenced how you live your life? Many people and experiences have contributed over time, too many to list here.

What would you tell your younger self? Finish college while you are young. I completed my Ph.D. when I was 50 years old and that was hard. Then go out into the world and be bold—travel, see the world, meet people different than you.

Have you ever met up with a bear on a hike? If so, what did you do? If not, are you looking up what to do right now? I have not met up with a bear, but if I did, I would toss all my food to him or her, and back away quickly.

You’re locked in your local library for the night with no dinner. Thank goodness you have water, but you only have enough change to buy one item from the vending machine. Choices are limited to: Fudge Pop Tarts, Snickers or Doritos. Which would you choose and why? If I only have water, I’d chose a candy bar, but not necessarily Snickers. I prefer a Heath Bar, Payday, or $100,000 Bar. If I happened to have a beer in my backpack, I’d choose Nacho Doritos. Why? Because I don’t like to eat salty things while drinking water. It reminds me of all the water I swallowed when I surfed and snorkled.

What’s the largest number of people you’ve had in your kitchen at one time? Probably 6 or 7. I like small kitchens and eating out.

Closing thoughts: I thank Book Club Mom for allowing me to share with you. Writing can be an isolating endeavor, so I appreciate opportunities such as this to talk with other readers and writers. If you would like to receive the traditional recipes my characters love to cook, log on to my website and send me a note.

Website and social media links:
Website: patspencer.net
Twitter: @DrPatSpencer
Facebook: Pat Spencer
Instagram: drpatspencer

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29 thoughts on “Who’s That Indie Author? Pat Spencer

  1. That is so funny about drinking water while eating salty things. It makes sense. Best of luck to Spencer on her upcoming Golden Boxty in the Frypan. Great Who’s That Indie Author!

    1. Hi Priscilla – thank you for reading about Pat Spencer and her writing career. I’m glad you enjoyed the interview. I hadn’t thought about drinking water with salty things – as you say, makes sense!

  2. There’s so much to love about how you got started writing. Even if teaching won’t make you rich (I should know!) at least you have a steady income.

    The genre I like most about your array of writing is literary fiction. Congrats on your award-winning book, and best wishes as you continue with the writing (and marketing) life, Pat!

    1. Hi Marian – thanks for stopping by to meet Pat. I am impressed by all the ways she promotes her books. It’s great to learn about authors and how they’ve launched their writing careers!

    2. Thank you Marian. What do you teach? And I agree with you. My favorite is also literary fiction.

    1. Thank you so much. That, and raising awareness of trafficking in the United States, was my goal for using this writing style and genre.

    1. I checked out your books and they look interesting. Seems you are having the same problem most of us indie authors have–getting reviews. I “Followed” you on your author page and would love it if you would visit mine and do the same. Have you participated in any ebookfairs? I run one every couple of months. Your books look like they would fit in the same type of fair as mine. Send me an email and I will notify you of the next one. spencerp04@verizon.net

    1. Clive–I appreciate all the support you have given me and my writing for all these years! pat

  3. HI Barbara, it’s lovely to meet Pat and learn about her writing. Interesting that her guidance counsellor shared information about how little writers earn. It is a strange thing that writers generally do earn so little for all their hard work, it’s never made sense to me.

    1. Hi Roberta–Why most writers earn so little has many explanations. For example, I earn a penny for approximately every 3 pages read on KDP. I also heard, can’t verify so I don’t know if it is true, that there are something like 33 million books listed by Amazon. With all those choices it is difficult to let readers know our books even exist.

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