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Welcome, today we are talking with Susan Crawford! I would like to thank you for taking time out of your busy writing schedule to answer a few questions.

First, I think it’s important for readers to get a little insight on an author that they don’t necessarily get from your professional bio. You’d be surprised at what readers connect to, and sometimes the simplest ‘I can relate to that’ grabs their interest where nothing else can. Don’t answer anything you feel uncomfortable with.

**Can you share a little something about Susan Crawford that’s not mentioned in your bio on your website?

Sure, I’m happy to share some things about myself that aren’t on my website. 

I wanted to be a veterinarian. When I was a child, I had a bird hospital set up in the garage with cardboard boxes for the different wards and birds languishing in various states of recovery. I found a family of baby skunks when someone shot their mother, and I fed them until they were old enough to give away or fend for themselves. One of the adoptees was de-odorized and on TV. And then there were the pet lizards I trained to do tricks and the dog we had when I was in elementary school that was always in trouble. About once a week, I let him escape, knowing he would follow somebody in the neighborhood to school. I would get summoned down to the principal’s office and told that I would have to walk my dog home. I always looked very penitent, the dog would hang his little brown and white head, and then we’d both be out of there with the morning off. It was a mile and a half walk home and then there was the walk back – plenty of time to grab something to eat and read the comics with the house to myself. Eventually it ended. I guess someone called my mother, but it was great while it lasted.

Favorites:
Animal – Cat
Food – Chocolate
Movie – Many, but fairly recently Silver Linings Playbook and Room
TV showAmerican Crime
Author – Margaret Atwood
** What are your pet peeves?  Judgmental people, 75-degree Christmases, Daylight Savings Time (the springing forward part), Garmins that get confused
**What would readers find surprising about you?
Readers might find it surprising that I am extremely disorganized.
**If you could go to heaven, who would you visit?
I would probably have to search long and hard for my dead friends and relatives. J
**Any bad habits?  Many. I procrastinate, I eat way wayyy too much chocolate, I leave incredibly long telephone messages that make people roll their eyes and delete them halfway through, I drive long distances on fumes, I’m almost never on time . . .

Now that our readers know a little bit more about Susan Crawford, let’s get down to the business of your book, The Pocket Wife.

How long did it take you to complete your novel, and how did you decide on the topic and title?

It took me six months to write the first draft, but then there was a lot of rewriting and waiting for feedback and more rewriting and more waiting for feedback. It took about a year and a half from beginning to end.

I wanted to write a story from Dana’s point of view. Instead of the world looking in at and judging a bipolar woman, I tried to switch things around and show the world from her perspective so the reader could experience her confusion and fear.
I came up with the title when I was about midway through the first draft. I called my husband at work about something important, something pressing, but he was busy. I kept saying, “This is really important,” and he kept saying, “I’m really busy,” and finally he just stuck his phone in his jacket pocket, leaving me with an earful of rustling silky-lining sounds. I hung up, grumbled that I was nothing but a pocket wife, and then I thought, that’s it! That’s the title.

At the time of this interview you have a 4-star rating on Amazon with 285 customer reviews, congratulations on the success of your first book! Please tell us a little bit about, The Pocket Wife.

Briefly, Dana Catrell is on the brink of a manic bipolar episode when she awakens to a bad hangover and patchy memories of an argument with her murdered neighbor. Knowing she is the prime suspect in her friend’s killing drives her to prove her innocence, but she is hindered by increasing mental instability. Her husband's lies, fears of her involvement in the murder, and the probing of Detective Moss create further complications as she searches for answers. The Pocket Wife is a story of murder and madness that examines the lives of a handful of people connected by a woman whose death threatens to expose their secrets.

What was your hardest challenge writing this book?

I had many challenges. I think the hardest one was streamlining. I tend to write lengthy description.

I see that you have a second book due out in April, The Other Widow.  Can you give us a sneak peak on that story?

The Other Widow is the story of a man’s death and the questionable events surrounding it. It is told from the points of view of his widow, his girlfriend, and a young insurance investigator, an army vet with PTSD. Reality shifts with perspective as all three women are pulled together in a web of lies and secrets. It will be out on April 26th of this year.

Any advice for aspiring authors?

  • Write from your heart. Put your passion into what you’re writing but be prepared to cut a lot of it out in the editing process.
  • If what you’re doing/writing isn’t working, try something different, even if it’s something you never thought you would do.
  • Find an agent/publisher you really want and whose work you respect and admire. If they turn you down, try to find out why if you possibly can and ask if making changes to your work might get it another look.
  • Set goals – a certain number of words a day, a certain amount of time – whatever works for you.
  • Think about turning off your phone while you write, although people find this really annoying.
  • Don’t worry too much about the particulars on the first draft. Get the bones of the story down and then go back and fiddle with it.

Final words?

Writing can be a lonely business. Network. It helps in so many areas. Other writers understand what you’re going through. Chances are they’ve experienced the same problems and might have words of wisdom for you. And they can be a great support system. Most importantly, they don’t think you’re crazy if you suddenly call them in the middle of the night and say, “I know! How about if he was stabbed by his stepmother when he was five and that’s why he . . .?”

 

 

 

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