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Monday, September 14, 2015

A Conversation With Annie Noblin!

Today I am very pleased to welcome author of the recent release Sit! Stay! Speak! - Annie Noblin!

I am reading Sit! Stay! Speak! and it is fantastic so far, Annie was kind enough to treat us to a look behind the story, and behind her writing life!

1.) Where did the idea for SIT! STAY! SPEAK! come from? 
A) I lived in the Arkansas Delta for a year while teaching developmental English for the University of Arkansas. I loved living in the Delta, and was inspired by the people I met and the places I visited.

2.) How did you get started working with rescue organizations? What part of it have you found most rewarding?
A) I bought a dog in 2006. It turned out that I bought a dog with many chronic illnesses, and through research I discovered the world of animal rescue and the reality of many breeding operations across the country. Although my dog didn’t come from a bad breeder, many dogs do. I live in Missouri—the puppy mill capitol of the United States, and there are always dogs needing help. I think the most rewarding part of animal rescue work is seeing a dog you rescued from an awful living situation begin to thrive in their new home. There is nothing in this world like the love of a rescued animal.

3.) We all know having a pup can be a struggle; do you have any dog tales that still makes you laugh?
A) When I was in graduate school, my Boston Terrier puppy ate the flash drive with my master’s thesis on it. She also ate a Lazy Boy couch. At the time I didn’t find it amusing, but now I can look back and laugh. She’s much calmer now that she is almost 10 years old.

4.) What does a typical writing day look like to you?
A) I still work full-time, and I have a four year old son. I also have three dogs and two cats (plus a husband) to take care of. My days are pure insanity until I get my son to bed about 8 o’clock at night. After he’s in bed, then I can settle myself onto the couch, pour a glass of wine, and try to get a bit of writing done. I also sneak writing in whenever I have a break at work or a second or two to gather my thoughts.

5.) How long did it take you to write SIT! STAY! SPEAK!? 
A) I wrote the first draft in about six months. Then it took another year to get it shaped up into the book that people will be reading. I do my best work under pressure, which means I’m very deadline driven. Give me a deadline, and I’ll make it happen!

6.) How do you deal with writer’s block? 
A) I eat. I nap. I read a book. I play with my son. I try to keep myself busy enough that I’m dying to come back to that laptop or notebook. Absence makes the heart grow fonder. ;-)

7.) Do you have any advice for aspiring writers? 
            Never. Give. Up.
I mean it. I don’t care how many times you’re rejected. I don’t care how many people tell you that you won’t make it. I don’t care how long it takes to get that novel (or work in progress) written. If you don’t sell the first book, write another one. If you don’t sell the second, well, get started on the third. The only possible way for you to be a failure as a writer is if you stop writing. As long as you’re putting the words inside of your head on paper, then you are a writer. And don’t let anybody tell you differently.

Annie England Noblin lives with her son, husband, and four rescued bulldogs in the Missouri Ozarks. She graduated with an M.A. in Creative Writing from Missouri State University and currently teaches English full-time for Arkansas State University in Mountain Home, AR. Her first novel, STAY, was inspired by the year she spent teaching developmental English in the Delta of Arkansas, a place she says still has her heart. Her poetry has been featured within publications such as the Red Booth Review and the Moon City Review, and in 2006, she co-edited and co-authored a coffee table book entitled, Gillioz: Theatre Beautiful. 


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