Tell us a little about yourself – Where you grew up, your spiritual background, family.
I am originally from the island of Jamaica, and I migrated to America at eleven years of age. I lived in New York City most of my life before relocating to Florida about 10 years ago. My family is close-knit and most of my siblings live in the same town. My father is a minister, so I am highly involved in ministry from a child.
Are you single, married or engaged? Children?
I am a single mother of two teenage boys.
What inspired you to become a writer?
I have always enjoyed writing, and began writing songs from a teen. I love words, and telling stories. I was inspired to become a writer because I love to read. I also know that this is a ministry that God has given me to draw others to Him and His word.
What hurdles did you have to overcome through this process?
I have overcome 12 years of rejections to get here, but God sent me on a trip to a Faith & Fiction retreat in Florida where I learned, pitched my work and was offered a book deal. I also had low self-confidence, though I was capable. Because I realized that I needed to write, and that writing was my passion, I have begun learning to self-promote, to believe in myself and to am learning how to market myself.
Who are your favorite authors and why?
Michelle Lindo-Rice: I have so many, and the lists are growing. I have read every single Victoria Christopher Murray book because her books were the first I read that showed characters I could relate to. She has amazing writing skills. I also love work by Shana Johnson Burton, and Rhonda McKnight because their characters never fail to make me laugh and root for them.
Tell us a little about your upcoming novel. Who is the protagonist and what is the premise?
WALK A STRAIGHT LINE looks at the lives of two best friends and how the dynamic of their friendship changes in the course of a year. Colleen, a newlywed, is the protagonist who has rededicated her life to the Lord and learns how much God is needed to sustain her marriage. She has to fight some serious battles, including an interfering mother-in-law. It also has a juicy story-line, of her best friend, Gina who is dating one brother while falling for another, which makes for a delicious, entertaining read.
What do you believe is the take away message?
I believe the take-away message is that friendships are to be valued and treasured and a good friend will stand in your corner. I want readers to see God as the main ingredient for a successful marriage. Colleen and Terence are flawed, human, but they have a perfect God who will help them overcome even the most trying circumstances.
What advice would you give to those who have a desire to write a book?
My advice is one I am taking now, which is to continuously work on improving your craft. If you want to write, it requires learning from the best. I also urge someone who wants to write a book to believe in yourself and work consistently everyday on writing, and developing your writing. I also strongly recommend working with an editor – one who has been working with authors in the genre you desire to write.
What is your greatest challenge as a writer?
Michelle Lindo-Rice: So far, my greatest challenge as a writer is time management. Making the time to write and juggling that with other commitments – having a full-time job and being a mother. So balancing priorities
What was the best advice you ever received?
My best advice was to attend writer’s retreats and workshops. My second best was to hire an editor.
What is the greatest lesson you’re learning from your experience as a new author?
The greatest lesson I am learning is the importance of promoting your work and having a sharp, quick answer to “What is your book about?” That is a work in progress. Someone once said that if no one knows you, they won’t purchase your book. I am learning marketing skills. From my actual book, I have learned that my words do impact others. I have had people cry and share their stories with me because of my book.
Are you working on any other books? If so, can you share any details?
I am working on third novel, MY STEPS ARE ORDERED which is the second installment of what I call the On the Right Path series. It is in the revision process and is scheduled to publish next August 2014. It continues with the lives of Keith, Gina and Michael over several years chronicling Keith’s and Gina’s path to salvation.
Tell our audience how to purchase your book and share any upcoming information.
Michelle Lindo-Rice: WALK A STRAIGHT LINE is available online through Amazon as a paperback, Kindle. It is also on Nook, and eBooks. Barnes and Noble and Books-A-Million as well as many local bookstores have it in stock.
Visit Author Rice: www.michellelindorice.com