IndieView with Maegan Cook, author of Secret Gold

When did you start writing the book? Even with the mass production of a luxury magical device called a Soul Tracker explicitly designed to assist hopeless romantics, the odds are still stifling. About Writing
Do you have a writing process? I do usually try to work from a loose outline, but like to give the characters room to grow. Then I’ll retool as I go. Was it a particular event or a gradual process? Are there any particular authors that have influenced how you write and, if so, how have they influenced you? Write your story, set it down for a minute, and then re-read it as a reader. Then, have someone you trust or hire a beta reader with an NDA to review the story. I write for me, and just hope someone else enjoys my work. Are your characters entirely fictitious or have you borrowed from real world people you know? If so, do you do so extensively or just chapter headings and a couple of sentences? Like, 9 times.  
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For more from Maegan, visit her website and like her Facebook page. Do you outline? I don’t usually focus on a target demographic when I craft stories. My process is to write when the muse strikes, and hope she hangs around long enough for me to finish something. About You
Where did you grow up? Yes, I try to listen to playlists that match the mood of the current story I’m working on, and usually I stick with music without lyrics like classical or new age, but occasionally some K-pop or metal is warranted. I’m fairly active online with my writing and art, from Wattpad to Instagram. Did you get your book cover professionally done or did you do it yourself? The middle was hard, I’d established some witty banter and warm moments between the characters and wanted to develop their relationship as much as possible, but I had to transition into the finale without dragging the story. They’re the authors whose epic series enraptured me most as juvenile and teen reader. About Publishing
Did you submit your work to Agents? For example, with Secret Gold I knew that I had to progress fairly rapidly to keep the page count down, so I planned out the pace in three acts: the meeting, tutoring, and eventual romantic conflict. Do you have a target reader? I can pick how my book will look and I don’t have to answer to anyone else about it. A fresh set of eyes is crucial. If so can you please describe it? About the book
What is the book about? Where do you live now? I don’t usually focus on a target demographic when I craft stories. About 6 months, I finished the first draft in October 2017. Add to this that one’s level of magic is genetically set, and Margerie Krietz’s hopes of ever meeting her soul-mate are slim to none. Yes, I found a really good editor that helped me with structure and grammar. I started writing the book in late 2016 after finding a couple of story prompts on Tumblr. Margerie Kreitz struggles to live up to her prominent family name in order to get into a prestigious magical academy as part of an inheritance deal, so she enlists the help of a tutor, who winds up being the heir to a rival magical family. No, I have not utilized an agent yet. Did you hire a professional editor? This is the quickest way to start editing small or major problems out of the first draft. I wanted to craft strong characters and large worlds like they did. What made you decide to go Indie, whether self-publishing or with an indie publisher? I write for me, and just hope someone else enjoys my work. I loved their interaction through the story. Were there any parts of the book where you struggled? Haha. I was born in North Carolina, but my dad was a marine, so we moved around a lot when I was growing up. Get your copy of   Secret Gold from Amazon US or Amazon UK. Like most things in life, I’m totally winging it. Where did you get the idea from? After that editing round, you’re ready for an editor or an agent. So, I knew no part could take up more than a third of the story as a whole, which kept me on track about focusing on scenes that moved the plot. Lewis. I merged these ideas into crafting a romance short story that ran away into a novelette. Maegan Cook – 6 October 2018
The Back Flap
Secret Gold is set in a world where magic is the lifeblood of society and the fantastic is just as accessible as modern technology, finding your soulmate should be as easy as flicking a wand, right? What would you like readers to know about you? Do you have a marketing plan for the book or are you just winging it? How long did it take you to write it? We all know how important it is for writers to read. I usually edit after I’m finished, unless I read over a chapter and it’s just not working out. If yes, what gets the fingers tapping? Any advice that you would like to give to other newbies considering becoming Indie authors? They’re fictitious, but I find some elements of real world people make it into their personalities. Margerie’s magic aptitude test scores are abysmal, and as the potential heiress of a rather large and influential magic device business, she finds herself at risk of losing her birthright. I like the freedom, both creative and fiscally that indie publishing offers. I set it down to focus on another project and picked it up again in 2017. I’m afraid my list would be fairly long, but I’d say the two biggest influences are Ann McCaffrey and C.S. Desperate to boost her grades her senior year, Margerie reaches out to her professor for help — but when her tutor turns out to be the handsome heir to a competing conglomerate, it becomes apparent that her path to success is more convoluted than ever. Do you listen to music while you write? I hired an artist to do a portrait of the main character, but I designed the cover myself. The book is about two high school students in a world where magic exists. I found a couple of writing prompts on tumblr, one was the idea of a world that used magic as currency, and the other was the concept of a device that used magical ink to find your soulmate. You learn something new every day. What came easily? Do you edit as you go or wait until you’ve finished? Upstate New York, in the Finger Lakes area. Writing any scene with Danny, Margerie’s older brother. Apparently, I have a bad habit of run-on sentences.