WEBSITE: LOVE. WTHOUT YOU
AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE: Camelia Miron Skiba
When I was invited to join in on this blog hop, my first thought was, “Oh! I have to feature Camelia Miron Skiba!” Her book Hidden Heart was the first indie book I read and loved, and I have her to thank for my current passion for indie authors and their books. There are so many wonderful books out there that have been self-published, and it really breaks my heart to hear people talk badly about self-publishing.
After building up my courage a bit, I decided to contact Camelia about the blog hop, just to let her know I was doing it and to ask if she was ok, etc. She kindly provided an interview to go along with this, and I have to admit that I was terrified. Not only is this my first interview, but it’s with one of the authors I admire most. So, without further ado, here it is!
- Thank you so much for offering this interview. Your book touched my heart, and I’m so excited to be able to share it with other people. Can you tell us when you first realized you loved to write?
Hi Madge! First of all thank you so much for featuring my novel on your blog, really happy to be here. Secondly, you have no idea how incredibly happy you made me when you said Hidden Hearttouched your heart. As a writer, that’s the best compliment one can give me, and I’m humbled by your love for my book.As for your question about when I first realized I loved writing the answer is: long, long time ago. To be exact, as a teenager I used to sneak in my older sister’s room to read a young adult romance novel she was writing. I was addicted to that story. Unfortunately she caught me in her room and I never read the ending of that story nor do I know if she ever finished it. For a long time I imagined the ending of that book, but not only that; my mind began webbing other stories on its own. Fast forward to the summer of 2009 when I finally had the courage to put pen to paper and write my first novel.
- Is there any particular author you admired and looked to as a role model?
Unfortunately I can’t. There are a ton of authors that I admire and respect. If I only give you a name then I feel guilty. In no particular order there’s Margaret Mitchell, Nicholas Sparks, Christie Craig, Danielle Steele, Nora Roberts, Lauren Oliver. The list can go on.
- What made you decide to self-publish?
In part because at the time I finished my first novel Hidden Heart I was in my late 30s and I really wanted to get as many books out as possible without delay. Traditional publishing takes longer than what I was willing to wait. It’s done by sending out query letters, waiting, then waiting and when you can’t take the waiting anymore, then wait some more. My time on this earth is limited and waiting is not how I’m willing to spend it. I also like to be in control more than anything else. Self publishing offers me exactly that, plus monthly checks, 100% input for cover design, formatting, etc. How can I pass on that?
- What is your favorite book right now?
Aside from my own, you mean? Joke aside last book I read that really touched me was Shadow Falls by C C Hunter. It’s paranormal young adult which I actually don’t care for (the genre I mean) but the writing is outstanding and the story captivating.
- How did you feel when you saw your first book in print for the first time?
It’s a memory that will stay with me forever. I came home from work and there was a package on the countertop. With shaky hands, I opened it. My heart drummed in my chest, tears pearled in my eyes. Then I saw the cover for Hidden Heart. It’s a gorgeous cover not because it’s mine but because there’s something about the image that catches one’s attention: vulnerability, softness, longing. Those of you who are mothers will relate to this: holding my first novel felt as good as it felt when you held your baby for the first time. An amalgam of overwhelming feelings, exhaustion but also a great sense of accomplishment.
- In your book Hidden Heart, Tessa endured so much and her story has stayed with me over the years. Do you have a favorite character from any of your books, or one that you think about more than others?
I love all my characters. Some of them are harder to “crack.” Others don’t shut up, keeping me up all night. I learned to put up with their visits even when I take showers. LOL! If I had to pick a heroine I’d say Tessa from Hidden Heart and Jane from Me Tarzan—You Jane (my latest contemporary romance out since December 2014). For the hero I’d say David from A World Apart(contemporary military romance) and Zyraxes from Born In Sin(historical romance). David for the way he so hopelessly loved Cassandra and Zyraxes for how flawed he was.
- With Valentine’s Day coming up, are you reading (or planning to read) anything romantic?
My muse is back so I’m writing and when I write I tend to stay away from reading, for fear some of those books will influence my story in some ways and I don’t want people to accuse me of stealing from other books.
- Do you have any advice for people wanting to self-publish?
The short version would be: Go. For. It. There is no better time like this very moment, when you do not need an agent to open doors for you but you can do it yourself. Be professional, consistent, persistent and fearless. No one can take away your accomplishments, but no one will take your hand to guide you either. It’s you, your muse and a great deal of time, effort and dedication to create your next story. Also do not publish without professional editing. For my latest novel Me Tarzan—You Jane I hired two editors and the word Eiffel still was misspelled twice, enough for a French reader to give it a bad review because of it. I cannot stress enough the need for professional edits. Not your mom or friend, your girlfriend or your dog, but someone who does it for a living.
- If you could only have one dessert for the rest of your life, what would it be?
That’s so so simple: Haagen Dasz vanilla ice cream with Swiss almonds. I wouldn’t say no to be buried in it.
- Lastly, do you have anything you would like to say to your readers?
Thank you all who took the time to read what I had to say. Read a book because you love it. If it’s not what you’re looking for, put it down and move to the next one. Life is too short to waste it on books you don’t like.
I read this book back in 2011 after I won it in a goodreads first-reads giveaway. It’s been almost 4 years and this book has stayed with me. I still find myself thinking about Tessa and the things she went through quite frequently, and I’m thrilled to be giving away two copies! This book left a lasting impression on my heart and I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to read it and speak with Camelia. She informed me that she has made a few edits to the book since I read it, so now I think I’ll have to buy a new copy and compare it. You can read the review I wrote for the book here.
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You can find the giveaway post here