Briana is the definition of busy and go getter. She sees what she wants and goes for it taking no prisoners. She is a mom, wife and a writer and many other things. You want her on your team and I am so proud that she is an author for Stitched Smile Publications. If you haven’t had the chance to get to know her make sure you do. Her storytelling is amazing. Please welcome Briana…..
1. How old were you when you wrote your first story?
Fairly young. Eight, I think. It was a fantasy reversal of the Sleeping Beauty story, though I wouldn’t have thought to label it as that at the time. It was based loosely off a dream I’d had about a boy I was friends with and was—kind of—crushing on.
2. How many books have you written?
I guess that depends on what your specific definition of book is; I have self-published a collection of poetry entitled “Was, Is, Yet to Come,” and an anthology of short stories called “Breaking Out.” Regarding unpublished work, I have an erotica manuscript of about 60,000 words that needs some heavy editing, and I currently have four novels in my work-in-progress queue. I am also finishing up a second anthology of dark short stories for Stitched Smile Publications, entitled “Reaper,” which will—barring any complications—be released this October.
3. Anything you won’t write about?
Haven’t found anything yet. I’m aware there are a number of issues in our world today that get shied away from because authors—and audiences—are worried about them becoming tropes, and therefore diminished. Rape, for example. But I am of the opinion that, as an author, as long as you are acutely aware of what you’re writing about, and writing about it with a specific purpose in mind, you have the opportunity to open up discussion on issues that don’t usually like to be discussed. That’s a powerful thing, and speaking for myself, it’s a power I feel obligated both to respect and utilize.
4. Tell me about yourself.
29. Married for six and a half years. Three kids, all girls, ages 6, 4, & two months. One cat. I’m a stay-at-home wife and mom. Diehard Chicago Bears fan. Love football in general. Dr. Pepper addict. I love taking my kids to the St. Louis Zoo and the Science Center. Love musicals. I love music in general, actually, and sing with my church choir, and play hand bells. I can play piano—sort of. Patrick Rothfuss is my literary idol, and I’ve met him! Total fan girl moment. I’m a sucker for old romance movies—the ones where there isn’t much (if any) kissing, but there are tons of long, across-the-room glances, and tons of tension. I cross-stitch. One of my favorite things to do is have hours-long discussions regarding books I’ve read.
5. What’s your favorite book you’ve written?
That’s kind of rough, since I haven’t finished a novel yet. My novel “Watcher,” which I’m currently working on and planning to submit to SSP, is my favorite WIP (work-in-progress). I’m a huge fan of the characters, and I’ve been working on it the longest, so I’ve had plenty of time to fall in love with it. “His Boys” is probably my favorite short story I’ve written (it’s available in “Breaking Out”) because it was prompted by a first line writing challenge, and ended up being so totally different from anything else I’ve written.
6. Who or what inspired you to write?
My eighth grade literature teacher, Sarah Chapman-Wiser. She told me over and over again that I had talent, and I was meant to write. That I’d basically be wasted doing anything else, though she never phrased it that bluntly. She was right.
7. What do you like to do for fun?
Play games; video games, board games, tabletop games. Binge-watch “Grey’s Anatomy” on Netflix. Get tattoos. Line dance at the local country nightclub. Have sex with my husband. Read. Discuss reading with other people. Take my kids to the zoo.
Disclaimer: Those are not listed in any particular order.
8. Any traditions you do when you finish a book?
I’ll let you know once I finish one.
My assumption would be something along the lines of a stiff drink and shipping the kids off to Grandma and Grandpa’s for the night so my husband and I can…well, you know. Like I said, I’ll keep you posted.
9. Where do you write? Quiet or music?
Home. Bedroom. Instrumental music.
10. Anything you would change about your writing?
I don’t think so. I think that’s like asking “would you change anything about your past?” and my answer to that is always, if I changed anything about my past, I wouldn’t be where I am now. And I like where I am now, for better or worse. I feel the same about my writing. It’s part of me, it’s part of who I am, it’s developed over the years to what it is based on who and where I am. And I’m happy with who and where I am.
11. What is your dream? Famous writer?
Don’t we all have that dream? I mean, seriously, who doesn’t want to be Stephen King? Or J.K. Rowling. Or George R. R. Martin. But I think my dream is more to be a voice for people who don’t have one. Or don’t feel like they have one. Sure, I want to make money off my writing, but more, I want people to read what I write and feel something. I want them to think it means something. Not philosophically or anything like that; I want to write what is real, what is honest, and I want that to be blatantly evident.
12. Where do you live?
Granite City, Illinois. Twenty minutes from St. Louis.
A Maine Coon named Bagheera.
14. What’s your favorite thing about writing?
My favorite thing about writing is getting to talk about real life while hiding behind the façade of storytelling. It’s fiction. It’s not real. Except it is. I love walking that line.
I am living with Fibromyalgia, a chronic pain condition, as well as clinical depression and anxiety. Those issues tend to color my writing. Writing is also how I exorcise the demons that accompany those conditions. It is my hope to one day get to a point where I can be a known voice for the “invisible illnesses” community and help raise awareness for conditions that have no visible symptoms, yet plague millions of people worldwide.
You can connect here:
Facebook: Briana Robertson
As always Briana, I wish you much success and happiness. Proud to know you!