Robin Badillo came into the M3 Coffee Shop with an armload of books. Red grabbed the prolific, and very funny, writer to nail her down on what drives her to create and how she manages to get it all done.
M3: Tell the M3 readers what you agent sends out as your professional bio clip.
RB: Robin Badillo is a multi-tasking mother of four and new author from deep in the heart of Texas. Her novels stretch across genre lines, covering everything from contemporary hometown-themed stories to thrilling paranormal romances.
M3: Who is it you want to thank before we get to the nitty gritty?
RB: I owe a great deal to my best friend, Kim Esparza. She believed in me and was just as passionate about my writing as I was. She introduced me to the right people and did a lot of research while I spent my time writing. Without her, this trip wouldn’t have been near as much fun.
M3: It is best to have a friend along the way to help open doors. How is it you got started in the publishing industry?
RB: My entrance into the world as an author wasn’t filled with instant glitz and glory. In fact, it may be better categorized as uneventful. I started where most writers do, at the bottom and scratched and clawed my way up. I’ve only managed a foot or two in elevation, but the view is already pretty darn nice. Considering my profound fear of heights, making it this far has been a miracle.
M3: Have you been tuned into the Fear Series? Does that play into what advice you would give newbies to the business?
RB: When asked this question in the past, I’ve suggested for new writers to toughen up their skin. The publishing world can be rough and it doesn’t become easier after your published because painful rejections are replaced by the inevitable bad review. Now though, I can’t stress enough the importance of never giving up. Adversity should just be seen as a stepping stone, taking you to wherever you want to go.
M3: That is excellent advice. In never giving up, how do you make time for all the writing you do?
RB: In the beginning, creating worlds and characters was done with a whirlwind of enthusiasm and energy. I could easily write five thousand words a day, so as you can imagine, I practically slept with my laptop. Time was a valuable commodity and I did my best to write while still trying to spend quality time with my kids. Fortunately, they haven’t totally disowned me because of the neglect.
M3: I am sure you have made some acquaintances and friends along the way. What have you to say of your colleagues?
RB: I must say that I have met some truly awesome authors on this journey and I have discovered that writers are a tight nit group who rally around and support each other’s successes like no other breed of people I have ever encountered. One would be hard pressed to find another group of professionals who truly rejoice your successes and aren’t afraid to cry with you when things go south. I can’t say enough good things about them.
M3: So, do you have something exciting in the works at the moment?
RB: At the moment, I enjoying a brief hiatus. After releasing eight full-length novels and two novellas in the span of fourteen months, I’m worn out and the old muse needs a breather. I do have a couple of works in progress that I dabble with from time to time, but I’m in no hurry. They should hit the digital ebook world sometime in 2012.
M3: Everyone truly needs a break now and then. Should the M3 Readers care if you have a day job?
RB: Probably not, but since most readers like to know about the authors of the books they read, it’s always nice to share the personal details. I write full at the moment, so my “day job” is all about being a writer and mom. Thrilling stuff, I know.
M3: You are preaching to the choir! Has the dismal state of the economy changed the way you handle things as an author?
RB: The economy has an impact on everyone, writers included. The biggest way it’s changed the way I do business is with promotional ventures. Most authors must purchase their own promotional items, or swag, if you will. This means that those fliers, refrigerator magnets and postcards you may possess depicting your favorite book, was probably paid for by the author. We remedy this by doing what most folks do, look for bargains and do some rather clever budgeting.
M3: Still a lot of hoops for authors to jump through, no matter the money. Do you have a particular bone to pick with the industry?
RB: I don’t necessarily have a bone to pick with the industry, per se, but it would sure be nice to see more attention paid to authors who actually write their own books, as opposed to celebrities making the top ten best seller’s list just because they’re famous. If any celebrities should write a memoir, it should be someone with a true tale to tell like Regis Philbin or other iconic figures, after so many years in show business, not Snookie from the Jersey Shore. It’s an insult to serious writers and readers alike.
M3: I agree wholeheartedly. Considering the state of the Best Sellers List, do you think the traditional industry looks at self-published material as inferior?
RB: Yes, I do. I’m not sure how long that will last though, considering ebooks were at the bottom just a couple of years ago. Times, they are a changin’!
M3: I think it is for the best. Let’s talk about your writing. What makes this work close to your heart?
RB: Writing is close to my heart because it allows me to express my love of romance and happy endings on a daily basis. It also provides an avenue to tackle everyday issues in my story lines and has even allowed me to explore important issues such as autism, depression, alcoholism and single parenting. Issues common people are faced with all the time, no matter who they are or where they are from.
M3: What makes this type of work different from other fields?
RB: This field is different because most people get to leave their work at the office, writers usually work at home and often times live, eat, drink and sleep with their books. Saying writing isn’t work is like telling a stay-at-home-mom she doesn’t have a real job.
M3: Be your own best ad agent. Tell the M3 Readers in fifteen words or less why they should by Midnight Beckoning.
RB: You should buy my book because: I’m just a regular gal who turned the voices in my head into romantic stories.
M3: I love it, Robin. Secret time. What is the one thing you certainly do not want me to share with the M3 Readers?
RB: I hope you don’t tell the readers that I am really a Victoria’s Secret lingerie model and that all of the heroines in my books are based on my modeling colleagues. They would never guess who’s who, and it’s really a hush hush secret anyway.
Darling M3 Readers,
Thank you, once again, for your fantastic support of the talented M3 Coffee Shoppe authors. When you tweet and +1 this post, please use the hashtags #authors, #books and #WW.