Our writing skills are optimized when we choose topics that we are passionate about. History has captivated me since I was a child reading nonfiction books that my friends assumed I had to read for school. At first, I was intimidated to write historical fiction, thinking that I would never compare to my own favorite authors. I was convinced to try after I received encouragement at a writing conference that I should write the type of novel that I would love to read. I have written two historical fiction novels since then and have another work in process.
What in particular fascinates you about the era(s) you write about?
I enjoy studying the late medieval period, especially the Wars of the Roses, because of the complicated family trees and betrayals, completely different way of life, and the way faith infused daily living. Everything could change for the future of a country based on one simple act or one person dying at the wrong time. We may not have the Tudor dynasty had Edward IV not died so young, and that is just one of innumerable examples.
What is your life like outside of writing?
I have three children, so my life is quite centered on them. I’m a typical mom, running my kids to school, sports, and clubs, trying to fit in some writing along the way.
What are you working on now?
My current work in process is a biographical fiction novel featuring Margaret Pole. She was the cousin of Elizabeth of York, so her story serves as something of a sequel to Plantagenet Princess, Tudor Queen. It begins with Margaret learning of Elizabeth’s death and carries on the story of the Plantagenet remnant under the Tudors. Margaret lost her parents at a young age and her brother to execution for a trumped up crime. She managed to raise her own family and witness Henry VIII’s Dissolution of the Monasteries. Her life is an astounding story.
Did anyone influence you / encourage you to become a writer?
My husband was extremely encouraging and inspired me to begin writing. He has had faith in my abilities and potential when I have not. Without his support, I never would have attempted writing a book. The difference his encouragement has made in my life has made me want to encourage other new writers and help them see their potential.
Are you like any of the characters (and how so)?
I think that writers put a little bit of themselves into every character they write. Some people have said that they think Collette’s mom in No Such Thing as Perfect is based on me. I wrote her more as the mom that I wish I could be and am flattered that a few who know me could see that in her. Elizabeth of York is the character that I have spent the most time with, and I certainly infused her with some of my own personality. I believe that part of what drew me to her as a character was that I felt we shared some traits. On the other hand, I sometimes felt that I was injecting other aspects of myself into her sister, Cecily. In writing, I can explore different sides of myself and others.
What do you do when you don’t write?
Reading is my first love, and it often distracts me from writing but also improves my writing. I spend as much time as I can traveling and have an upcoming trip to England planned that I am beyond thrilled about.
What do you like best about writing? What’s your least favourite thing?
I love exploring different times and places and the real people who experienced them. Researching and bringing the past to life is what I enjoy about writing. The feeling that comes with that first copy of a newly published book is fantastic! My least favorite thing has to be marketing. I’ve learned a few lessons but am still not very good at self promotion.
What is your advice to new writers?
Many people will advise new writers to build a platform. I agree but would add that your platform will be in place to a certain extent if you are writing something you are passionate about. When I decided to write about Elizabeth of York, I already had hundreds of friends on Booklikes and Goodreads that share my love of historical fiction and was a member in several history groups on Facebook. I have worked on building my blog and Twitter presence, but part of my platform was naturally in place. Of course, I would also encourage them to not give up. The writing community is a wonderful, supportive place.
Samantha Wilcoxson is an American writer and history enthusiast. Her latest novel, Plantagenet Princess, Tudor Queen: The Story of Elizabeth of York, is a biographical historical fiction best seller on Amazon UK and Amazon US. Her other novels, Over the Deep: A Titanic Adventure and No Such Thing as Perfect, are directed at middle grade readers. Samantha lives on a small lake in Michigan with her husband, three children, two dogs, two cats, and a large library.
|Samantha on Goodreads||https://www.goodreads.com/samanthajw|
|Samantha on Booklikes||http://carpelibrum.booklikes.com/|
|Samantha on Twitter||https://twitter.com/carpe_librum|
|Amazon US Author Page||amazon.com/author/samanthawilcoxson|
|Amazon UK Author Page||http://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B00IGVWSCI|