Interview with Author Fran Lewis

You can buy Fran’s books (here)

About Fran

I
am the author of three hidren’s books and have written a fourth one. I
would like everyone to check out my books Bertha Speaks Out and My Name
is Bertha on Barnes and Noble. GoodReads. Bertha FIghts Back is my third
book in my Bertha series & on B&N. My other three books are
Bertha Fights Back, Memories are Precious and Sharp as A Tack or
Scrambled Eggs which describes Your Brain. I am an educator, book
reviewer, talk show host on blog talk radio, online interviewer and
author. My next book is a three in one handbook on
Caregiving/Volunteering, Traumatic Brain Injury and Eldercare abuse.I am an educator, writer, author, book reviewer and favorite aunt,
sister and more. I am the vice president in charge of cemetery affairs
for my family and their family circle secretary. I am a reading and
writing specialist.I review books for authors all over the world. I host
two radio shows on blog talk radio/red river writers for adult and
children’s authors and I am the author of five books and soon to
complete number seven. Because we care if number six.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

1.       What made you decide to start writing?
I have been writing all of
my life. As a reading and writing staff developer I worked with students that
were reluctant writers and encouraged them to join me as I wrote along with
them. I loved writing short stories and poems as a child and decided when I
retired early from teaching to write my first children’s book. I was encouraged
to write my first children’s book by my aunt and my third grade teacher who
still remains a close family friend. I love sharing my real life experiences
growing up and helping children that have been bullied, overweight and low
self-esteem deal with these issues and more after reading my short stories.
 
2.       How did you come up with the characters of your
books?
 
The characters in my children’s book are people in my family. I am
Bertha. My sister Marcia is Tillie and the rest are family and friends. My
sister, passed away last year and she provided a lot of the fuel for Tillie’s
character. She thought this was great and we shared many fun times together and
discussed each story and each event before I writing the book.
 
3.        Do you use any real life experiences in your
books?
All three of my children’s
books are based on real life experiences growing up in the South Bronx.
 
4.        You have multiple job titles, which one do
you find the most fun?
I loved being an educator
and working with students that needed help in reading and writing. Words cannot
be expressed to tell you how proud and excited I felt when students that were
first learning to read succeeded. I worked with students in grades one through
six. I taught groups in the morning, on my time, to help older students that
required more instruction in reading comprehension and the basic reading
skills. I enjoy reading and reviewing the work of other authors. Reading and
reviewing the work of so many talented authors has helped me in my writing and
enriched my life. I have learned a lot about writing in many different genres
just by reading the mysteries, historical fiction, memoirs and many other
wonderful books that I have been honored to be asked to review. My favorite
title is still educator but reviewer is a close second.
 
5.        Which of your books was the hardest for you
to write?
My latest release Faces
Behind the Stones was difficult to write. The stories are told from the point
of view of the person who lies beneath or behind the tombstone. They are seven
stories based on real life events.
 
6.        Where is your favorite place to write?
I love to write sitting up
in my bed with my wedge pillow behind me.
 
7.        How do you enjoy living in New York?
New York is a special
place to live filled with amazing people of all different races and
nationalities. I love living here even with the snow and the cold weather. New
Yorkers have a friendly and great spirit. I lived in the Bronx all of my life
and I learned the true meaning of friendship, kindness and understanding from
my parents and all of the people that I have met.
 
8.        What is your favorite thing to do to when
your upset?
Growing up my favorite
thing to do was play my piano and let me emotions flow in the music. Now, my
favorite thing to do is read and let my mind flow into the plot and enter the
world of the author, the characters and the story.
 
9.        Do you read a lot?
I can read up to ten books
a week depending on my eyes. Eyestrain hits ever so often that is why I never
read PDF, Nook or Kindle.
 
10.    What is your favorite type of books to read
and your favorite author?
I love murder/mysteries
and legal thrillers. I don’t have one favorite author but I enjoy medical
thrillers like Michael Palmer or Robin Cook. Mystery thriller writers I love
Joseph Finder and Steve Berry and the late Beverly Barton.
 
11.    Would you read a new authors books?
I have read and reviewed
about 600 books in the last two years. I would say half are new authors.
 
12.    Do you have any hobbies?
I love to walk or jog in
the morning. I love to read. I love collecting coins and Occupied Japan.
 
13.    If you could go anywhere in the world where
would you go? 
I would love to see my family in England and in Florida. 
 
14.    If you could spend the day with anyone who
would it be? (Dead or Alive) 
If I could spend one more day with anyone it would
be my sister so she could tell me what really caused her to collapse last year.
 
15.   What advice would you give to other people who
want to become authors?
Write about what you know
about and what you are passionate about. Never let anyone tell you that your
writing is not worth reading and that your work is bad. Always get your
manuscripts edited by more than one pair of eyes to make sure that you have no
typos or grammar errors before publishing it or sending it to a publisher for
consideration. 
Do not get discouraged by
a poor review. Never stop writing because someone does not like your book or
did not give you a five star review. Remember, that reviews are just someone’s
opinion and they are entitled to theirs. However, a review that is constructive
and summarizes the plot and explains the strong points that the author presents
in his/her writing and what could be done to make the writing getter or the
story line stronger is really not a bad review. I never pan a book nor will I
review a book that deserves less than three stars. I will summarize it. Know
your subject and if you are writing about an area that requires research make
sure your facts are right and that you site your sources. Most of all keep
writing.
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