Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Meet author Anne Kelleher

Welcome back to Anne Kelleher! She has been featured here on Andi's Book Reviews a couple of times. Now, she sits down with us to let us get to know her a little bit better.

What is your latest book about?
My latest book is a collection of short stories that I mostly wrote last winter in Hawaii. Since being sick, I’ve found that writing short stories helped me regain my confidence in being able to write a story….while I was sick, and especially before I was diagnosed, I found that my ability to think was seriously compromised – and to think creatively even more so.

A couple of the stories in the collection are older: I wrote “Conjuring Johnny Depp” as a Christmas gift for my friends one year in lieu of a holiday newsletter. “Finding Southside Johnny” is a very special story for me, personally; it was co-authored with my husband as we were in the process of reconciling from almost being divorced. Don and I also co-wrote “Raising Jerry Garcia.”

For the most part, the stories in the collection examine ideas we take for granted (parents are forever; the end of civilization is a bad thing) and stand them on their heads, posing such questions as – what if you could put your parents up for adoption, and what if the end of the world as we know it turned out to be a good thing, after all?
What first motivated you to write?
I sat down to write my first novel at the age of 8. It was going to be about a young girl named Sheila who was a Pilgrim. I only got as far as a few sentences when I realized I’d bitten off more than I could chew and I would have to wait a few years. I always loved books, but mostly what I loved were stories, read or told aloud. My father told wonderful stories and my mother loved to read. And I think storytelling is a human trait, and so I think it was only natural that at some point, I would sit down and try to do it myself.
Describe your writing schedule?
I like to write first thing in the morning, when it’s quiet and still dark. Even though I am not a morning person, four kids, two step-kids, and three dogs have made me into someone who gets up early. And here in Hawaii, Don works east coast hours, so he is awake and out of bed by 4 AM. I also like to write later in the afternoon – not a time I had when my kids were growing up.
What do you enjoy most about being a writer? 
I LOVE creating the stories. It’s like watching little movies in my head – what I manage to capture on the page is only an iota of the stuff the characters are doing in my mind.
Do you write first and edit later, or do you perfect your writing as you go along? 
I try to do a combination of both. After my cancer, I realized that I was much harder on myself as a writer than I needed to be, that I had a tendency to analyse and think things to death. And I realized that I did this not because I wanted to or enjoyed it, but because I believed that this is what you did when you were a “good” writer. And then I realized that maybe I didn’t have to agonize quite so much, and I tried writing faster. That’s how the short stories in Free To Good Home were born: I challenged myself to just write, not to labor so much over every little period and paragraph.
What has been the best achievement in your writing career? 
Selling my first novel was probably the biggest achievement. It is so difficult to publish traditionally and while I wouldn’t do it now – unless highly incentivetized – I do feel it was and is a major accomplishment. It was the publishing industry putting its stamp of approval on my work and I very much appreciate having that imprimatur, those eleven novels, on my resume.
What advice would you give to authors who are struggling to find enough time to write? 
Break it up in small chunks. Carry a notebook or use the recording function on your phone. I wrote and sold five novels in as many years while working full time outside the home as the single mom of four kids. I’d write five hundred to a thousand words every morning before everyone else got up, and would edit that work on the weekends. On the way to work, I’d envision whatever I needed to think about in the novel and write that down as soon as I got to my desk.
Fiction writers: Have you ever thought of writing non-fiction or for Non-fiction writers: Have you ever thought of writing fiction? 
I’m starting work on a book about how to use the Tarot to enhance your writing.
What’s next for Anne Kelleher? 
A new Tilton Chartwell mystery around Halloween…. The completion of my Wickedly Wickham erotic romance at Christmas – in both eformat AND print version…and a children’s story, written for my grandchildren… The Changeling Princess… and definitely another Celebrity Supernatural… or two!

About the author:

Born and raised at the South Jersey shore, Anne Kelleher has been writing from the time she could read. Her first novel, about a pair of pirate sisters who sailed the Carribean looking for love and adventure, was completed when she was in high school. Annie's been looking for the same ever since, mostly recently on the shores of the Pacific in Kailua-Kona, HI.

Reflecting Annie's own eclectic interests, her work ranges from historical romance (The Highwayman) to her contemporary series of celebrity supernatural short stories - most recently "Walking with Elvis." Although her first love is sf/fantasy, Annie is most proud of her "David" series - How David Met Sarah and When David Was Surprised - which was inspired by her youngest brother, who has Down Syndrome. Written at an elementary reading level, the stories appeal not only to developmentally disabled adults, but to anyone who seeks to understand what it's like to be differently-abled.

The mother of four, and the grandmother of two, Annie holds a BA from Johns Hopkins University. Find Annie online at or on Facebook at

No comments:

Post a Comment

Due to tremendous amounts of spam, all comments are moderated and will be approved and published throughout the day.