Nights meant sleep and dreams—my archenemies. The Crowley to my Dean Winchester, the Green Goblin to my Spider-man, the list of superheroes and their opposites was long, and so became the analogies I used on a daily basis. My lack of sleep began with Dad and his conditions for me to continue my art. Then came my parents’ deaths. Those took a toll on me because I mixed dreams with realities and hopes. Not once did I have a nightmare, all of them were sweet and real. Seeing Mom and Dad on those nights filled my gut with nails, and my head pounded with the reminder that they were gone the next morning. Those had been merely fantasies that would never become a reality.
For the past three months I had been evading sleep and working overtime, over the overtime. The dreams of elevators, trips to sophisticated-secluded spots after a week of work and delicious nights with a man who I was required to forget in order to move on, came daily— nightly. They not only hit me with vengeance, but they came tangled with what humans liked to call hope. The urge to crawl inside myself to avoid the need of his touch, kisses and whatever it was that we had not long ago, consumed me. If I had the powers to morph into an animal, it’d be a sea turtle and I’d stay inside my shell for the next hundred years. Past the stage of melancholy and into the real world, I pushed my body outside of the bed and into the shower, where I got ready to face the Clements and the house next door.
Q: Did you use an outline or do you just wing the first draft?
C.B.: I just wing for the first draft. My stories start with an idea and the first words are a scene…any scene. From there I start sculpting it.
Q: If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
C.B.: Modern: I’d say it’s a tie between Sophie Kinsella, Meg Cabot and Nora Roberts. Classic… I’d like to think that throughout the years I have learned from Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Cervantes, Wilde, Asimov, Dickens and Austin. Let’s not forget Shakespeare, who wrote about Italy without ever visiting the country.
Q: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
C.B. My friends, and also my social media friends. Members of Facebook I met five years ago and now from twitter, the community of indie authors is amazingly supportive. Not only with my writing, but on a personal level too.
Irene: Why did you start writing, Claudia?
C.B: I read a lot when I was little, since I lived with my grandmother, I was privy to my grandfather’s books. [No one told the adults I needed age appropriate literature] There I was, a six year old reading Cervantes, Dostoyevsky, Marquez and encyclopedias. From there I began writing, trying to imagine a different life—a fun life.
Q: Who designed the cover for Getting By?
C.B. The team at Damonza, they are amazingly talented.
Q: What was the hardest part of writing Getting By?
C.B. Writing Jake’s POV, it is the first time I attempt to write from the male perspective.
K.M.: What can you offer them in the way of information or entertainment?
C.B: I like to think I’m bringing witty, neurotic, human characters that, although they want to be perfect they live their lives with flaws like everyone else, yet they handle it the best they can. I try to add some humor to the mix with the promise that’s there’s always a better tomorrow –or at least something nice on the next page.
Stephanie Neighbour: I’ve decided to out you as a gadget junkie—Apple in particular. What is your gadget of choice for writing your manuscripts?
CB: Hardcore apple, however my computer isn’t…something about software and other gibberish that the IT man of the house keeps telling. When I’m not typing at my desk, I’m using one of my three iPad to write a scene. After I email it and fix it.
S.N.: Your number one guilty pleasure is??? (I already know it isn’t Taco Bell)
CB: Any and all carbohydrates, chocolate, candy, pastries, real tacos…overall I’m a foodie.
S.N.: Do you decide the path of your characters or do they take on a life of their own as the story unfolds?
CB: They take their own path and I just have to watch them behave, there’s been a few times when I have to erase several chapters because they don’t care about closure. One of the reasons why I have 7 first drafts of Getting By stored in my computer.
S.N.: Have you always considered yourself a writer? If so, when did you begin writing? If not, at what age did you begin writing?
CB: Definitely a storyteller, age…fairly young. A few times I wrote the stories; that began around middle school. During high school, my best friend who had an ongoing Telenovela with her boyfriend suggested that I documented it and make myself famous with it. One day I might out her, as soon as I find my notebook I’ll get her. Six years ago I retook the idea of writing what the voices in my head tell me. Last year is when I found the guts to share them.
S.N.: If you could write in a different genre, what would it be?
CB: Sci-Fi… in middle school I seriously made my boyfriend believe I was an alien. Mothership and all explained in detailed. I was raised in a house of Assimov lovers, Star Trek geeks and overall nerds. Fantasy and paranormal too, that comes from the fairy side of my family and my grandfather who always told me I’m good with ghosts—he died before I was born.
S.N.: Who or what inspires you?
CB: Music inspires me, it sets the mood of how the book will go. Who…the people I observe.
S.N.: Early bird or night owl?
CB: Night Owl? I work Australia time, which usually is when we sleep here in America.
S.N.: Your dream vacation is….
CB: Depends on my mood, I love to walk and discover new places, but if I’m tired a good sun tan in front of the ocean is perfect.
S.N.: Name something you are really horrible at. (Doesn’t have to be related to writing)
CB: Crafts, I have two left hands. I can’t use a thread and a needle even if my life depends on it. *useless, the voices in my head scream in unison*
S.N.: What can we expect from you in the future? New projects? Other ventures?
CB: This book I’m releasing, Getting by, is the first installment of series A Knights Tales. Following Jake, Mitch and Liam three playboy brothers who have a playboy life but a knight in shining armor complex. Their world collides a bit with the world of Where Life Takes You—the Life series. There’s a cameo from one of the characters of WLTY here.
The second project is Next To You, book number two of the Life series. I teamed up with Damonza and we have a gorgeous cover, which should be reveal in the near future. On this book, we’ll not only listen to Becca, but also Dan’s side of the story. This is not a rehash of the first book from Dan’s POV though. There are a few cameos from the characters of Getting by here. And the precious is already with my Editor extraordinaire, Karen.
I’m doodling with the second book of the Knights Tales series Standing By, that’s Mitch and Hayley’s story. Meanwhile, in the other side of my brain; I’m pondering about a third book of the Life series, with Buddy’s life—Dan’s foster brother. There’s another book which at the moment is a skeleton trying to stir up the usual protocol and bring a different kind of theme to what’s been written lately. There’s a twist on it and I’m hoping to pull something fun.
About the Author
Claudia lives in Colorado with her family and three dogs. Two beagles who believe they are human, and a bichon who thinks she’s a beagle. While managing life, she works as a CFO at a small IT Company. She’s a dreamer who enjoys music, laughter and a good story.enough.
Get in touch with Claudia!
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