Denise Moncrief is a Southern girl, who’s lived in Louisiana all her life. And yes, she has a drawl. She’s been writing off and on since she was seventeen. She has a wonderful husband and two incredible children. They not only endure her writing moods, but also encourage her to indulge her passion.
Her first “novel” was seventeen handwritten pages on school-ruled paper and an obvious rip-off of the last romance novel she read. The urge to write wouldn’t let go of her. In her twenties, she started another novel, only to abandon it after Chapter Four or Five. She started writing seriously about eight years ago and has already published several stories.
An author photo (jpg format only) attached to email
Book cover art (jpg format only) attached to email
Facebook link https://www.facebook.com/DeniseMoncriefAuthor
Twitter link https://www.twitter.com/dmoncrief0131
Blog link http://www.denisemoncrief.blogspot.com
Website link http://www.denisemoncrief.com
Answer these questions in paragraph form:
How much time are you able to devote to writing?
I try to spend one to two hours a day writing or self-editing. A writer friend has been writing every day for over 1,000 days. I admired her dedication, so I challenged myself to write something every day, if only a few sentences.
My favorite all-time character is Tess from Crisis of Identity. I wanted to create a character that was fearless, capable, sassy, and self-confident. Tess faces so many situations during the story, that her character developed right along with the situations she needed to handle. Her motto is necessity is the mother of a good con. She can handle just about anything. She says what she means and isn’t afraid to do what needs to be done to survive. I think Tess embodies those bold character traits that sometimes I wish I had.
Why do you write and what struggles have you had in publishing?
I write because I have to. It’s a compulsion and a large party of my personal identity. I once said if I couldn’t write I might as well not breathe. Okay, that might be a bit of an exaggeration, but writing fulfills my need to create and gives me a safe outlet for my overactive imagination.
My first fiction manuscript was rejected in 2004. The publisher was kind enough to offer me some very good advice. He said to hone my writing skills and continue to polish my craft. He even suggested attending a writing conference. I did and the experience opened my eyes to what I didn’t know about writing. I’ve been learning everything I can about the art and craft of writing ever since.
I’ve collected countless rejection letters over the last ten years. Sometimes an editor would offer some insight into why my manuscript wasn’t quite ready for publication. My favorite rejection was from an agent who simply said in her email, “Pass. But may God bless.” I smile every time I think about that rejection.
In 2011, a publisher accepted my short story, Snow White and the Seven Dogs. Getting that contract opened up the world of publishing to me. I was so excited when I got the email I squealed, and my family thought I’d seen a snake in the house. I’ve since signed contracts with four other publishers, and still get excited every time I sign a new contract. Being published has not ended my determination to continue fine-tuning my skills. It’s just made me want to work harder to make my writing the best it can be.
What is the biggest reward you’ve gotten as a published author (i.e., personal satisfaction, monetary gain, networking)?
There is no greater satisfaction for me as a writer than when someone contacts me and tells me he or she had a hard time putting my book down. One reviewer wrote that she stayed up until four in the morning to finish my book, The End. Those are the kind of words that keep this writer writing.