My friend Maribeth is currently hosting a blog tour to promote and celebrate the (soon to be) release of her debut novel, Operation Lionhearted. I’ve read the book and I can tell you that it’s a great, fun read. (My review is coming out tomorrow, so watch for that!) After the interview, I’ll have some more details about the book, the blog tour, and the GIVEAWAY. But first, let’s hear what Maribeth has to say about Operation Lionhearted, her writing process, and self-publishing!
Hello, Maribeth! Welcome to the blog. ❤ Since we’re here today to talk about all things Operation Lionhearted, I thought it would be a good idea to go all the way back to the beginning of the journey. Why did you start writing Operation Lionhearted?
I was completely obsessed with Star Trek at the time, especially the original 1960’s TV show—and while I fumbled with a fantasy novel of my own, I had no problem writing Star Trek fanfiction. For some reason I didn’t get the hint that maybe I ought to be writing sci-fi rather than fantasy until I suffered a nasty heartbreak. Miserable and needing a distraction, I ditched the fantasy idea and decided to write whatever I wanted…and thus a Star Trek-inspired world and heroine were born!
Star Trek!!! What a great show! While we’re on the topic of shows, what books, movies, and/or TV shows have been your inspiration for Operation Lionhearted?
Star Trek is the most obvious answer—but I also immersed myself in The Lunar Chronicles novels, the Mission Impossible films, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and Blue Bloods while writing the first draft.
I love how other stories can inform our own, even if no one sees the influences but the author herself. Each of the stories you mentioned is filled with amazing characters–and so is Operation Lionhearted! Which character in your book do you relate to the most, and why?
Definitely my heroine, Lindy Tremaine. I originally wrote her as the exact opposite of myself—strong and athletic, straightforward, and unafraid to argue her point—but as the story developed, she ended up with many of my own insecurities and hopes. She suffers a lot of betrayal over the course of this story, but she also comes to realize that she can trust the imperfect but good-hearted friends and family who love her best.
Lindy is such a strong, wonderful main character! I admit that I got a bit choked up at one or two points in her story. Did you cry at all when writing (or editing!) Operation Lionhearted?
Out of frustration with plot holes and the tedium of editing? Oh yeah, haha!
I’ve definitely had my fair share of frustrated tears over plot holes too. Sigh. But the writing process isn’t always so difficult (thank goodness). What is the easiest part of the writing process for you?
I love writing dialogue. Sometimes I’ll (privately) act out whole conversations, complete with accents and facial expressions, just so I can make sure it sounds natural! The conversations in Operation Lionhearted, especially between Lindy and her best friend/fellow operative Jo Camrin, were the easiest and most enjoyable part of writing Operation Lionhearted.
And what is the most difficult part of the writing process for you?
Action scenes are always laborious: you have to make sure everything flows, but less is more. Short, punchy sentences tend to heighten the sense of urgency and danger, and I worked on that a lot during the editing process. But writing would also be so much easier if I weren’t such a perfectionist!
I get that! Both dialogue and action scenes can be tricky for me, but I just have to keep working on them. Before you go, I want to ask if you have any advice for writers hoping to self-publish one day!
Accept this fact: it’s very hard to get into the traditional publishing world in this day and age. Christian publishers expect certain things, “secular” publishers expect others, and your story may fall somewhere outside those boxes. But accept this fact, too: while self-publishing does require more effort on your part, especially when it comes to marketing, it is a legitimate, increasingly popular option! Don’t listen to those who only remember self-publishing as it was 30 years ago, when it was known as “vanity publishing.” Our world is far more favorable towards independent authors, and with plenty of determination and research, we can take advantage of that.
Thanks so much for answering my questions, Maribeth! It was lovely to have you here on Coffee, Classics, and Craziness. 🥰
Now for other important blog tour/book details. 😉 If you’re interested in learning more about Operation Lionhearted (and/or want to add it to your TBR shelf), head over to Goodreads! The ebook is currently on sale for only $2.99 (on October 14th it will go up to $5.99). And there is indeed a giveaway–for a paperback copy of Operation Lionhearted!
Here’s the rest of the blog tour schedule:
I hope you enjoyed reading my interview with Maribeth! We had a lot of fun with it, and I’m so happy to be a part of her book’s launch. ❤