We're back, again, with Linda Wood Rondeau, today...
THE OTHER SIDE OF DARKNESS
(see Lilly's Book Club page for info and review)
and ready to talk about her experiences in theater, and how it has helped her writing career. Welcome back, Linda. First of all, what kind of productions have you been involved in?
I love this question since I met my husband doing a community theater production of the play Juno and the Paycock by Sean O'Casey. I have played a wide variety of roles from the elderly mystery writer/murderer in A Talent for Murder, to a madam, a transsexual, a mother, a ghost, a very evil witch, and very confused wife. A few of the plays I have done are: Steel Magnolias, Under the Brooklyn Bridge, Night Mother, God's Favorite, Blythe Spirit, The Rutherford House, The Canterbury Ghost, and The Wizard of Oz.
I have also directed plays such as Bleacher Bums, You Can't Take it With You, and Babes in Toyland just to name a few. Over my thirty plus years in Community Theater, I have found acting to greatly enhance my ability to create believable characters. When I write, I "become" that character, much as I would if I were portraying the character on stage.
That's amazing, and quite the literal version of "jumping into a character's skin." You wouldn't happen to have any pictures of yourself in costume, would you?
I did bring a couple along to share, because as I say over at my website, if I were not a writer, I'd be an actress. Here's one of me on stage as Sister Hubert (on the left) in Nunsense, during my solo, "The Biggest Ain't the Best." And the other is one of me as a Temperance missionary in a Western spoof called Scorching Saddles, that I did for a dinner theater.
I can see how much fun that would be, and it looks like a great time. However, I am very glad that you decided on being a writer! Now that THE OTHER SIDE OF DARKNESS has been released, are you working on any new manuscripts right now?
The Other Side of Darkness is actually novel number eight for me, and my ninth book, overall. I recently revised my first novel and that is currently being looked at, as well as my current manuscript, which is a romantic comedy. I am also working on another romantic suspense set in the Adirondack Mountains. It is not a sequel, but will have similar elements.
All of those sound good, and I will really be looking forward to reading them. When you read for pleasure, what is your favorite type of reading material?
I read most genres. What I look for in a book is a story that is character driven rather than plot driven. I am more interested in people rather than exotic setting or exciting plot.
Which definitely shows, considering the amount of people you are involved with in your "real" life. Not to mention the social networks. Last time I looked, you had over three thousand friends on Facebook alone. Even so, you jumped out and started a very active writer's group of your own (there's that courageous stuff working for you, again, Linda). What gave you the idea of starting Pentalk Community?
I have a dear friend from Malone who is not a Christian but was hungry for a writing community to help him develop his writing skills. He attended the local writers group comprised of mostly Christians. In the meantime, I noticed that most of the on-line writing communities were specialized either by belief system or genre or even sub-genre. It seemed that the Lord directed me to start a group that would encompass all belief systems and writing backgrounds as well as experiential level so that people like my Malone friend could find a safe and loving support group in which to learn their craft.
That's a wonderful idea, and I have really enjoyed being a part of it over the last couple of months, myself, and met some very interesting people there, too. Social networking on such a large scale seems to take an amazing amount of time. How did you handle it all, especially having a job that entailed so much paperwork every day?
I retired on the day God called me to write professionally. I started my website a few months later and a few years later I started blogging. I joined Facebook about two years ago. It certainly has been a process and a lot of hard work. I'm the sort of person that learns as I go...sort of on-the-job training.
Which seems to be working great for you. I have to say you have a tendency to leap into new things in ways that would scare the socks of most of the rest of that. Take your recent move to Florida, for instance. What a drastic change that had to be. How has it effected your writing life? Have you noticed a drastic culture change? What do you like best about it, now that you've been there for awhile?
Culture shock? Big time. My former town of Malone had a population of 17,000. Jacksonville is a city of nearly one million. But it is energizing. I don't miss the cold climate at all, however, and I find the warmer climate has energized me as well. With improved health, my writing stamina has also improved. The larger population base provides a multi-ethnic base in which to study characterization, too.
|Find out more and read the review |
over on Lilly's Book Club Page.
Well, you definitely seem to have never let change scare you off from anything you truly wanted to do. I call that the spirit of adventure, myself. But whatever it's called, it takes courage to take those kinds of a "leaps of faith" in the first place. Which in turn makes you an encouraging example to others who also dream those kind of dreams.
Thanks so much for sharing your heart with us this week, Linda. It's been a real inspiration. Here's wishing you all the best with THE OTHER SIDE OF DARKNESS, as well as your new books we will be watching for in your future!