Interview with Jo Rodrigues
(also writing as Jo Roderick)
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
Grow up? Don’t be ridiculous! What a preposterous idea.
What’s the story behind your latest book?
I decided that I should immediately stop writing books that people didn’t want to read, and opt for something a little more commercial. The truth is that I had not written a romance novel before, so it was a good time to do so.
The novel came about from a conversation with a friend on Facebook late one evening. One joke led to another, and an escapism romantic comedy was born. It’s been a protracted labour, and it is still being finished — by the magic elves.
Would you say your books are more about escapism for the reader, or to address social issues?
All my earlier books were about social and environmental issues. Now I’m writing more fun topics, so there definitely a leaning toward escapism. Bermuda Phoenix is an entertaining novel about sun, sea, delicious cocktails, and an unexpected island romance.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
In one short sentence: the lack of options.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Being in complete control, and crafting something from nothing more than a thread of my imagination. As far as non-fiction goes, I love making people think. We definitely need more of that in our troubled times.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The inevitable approach of midday.
When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?
Promoting my books and helping other with their own publishing.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Lately, I am asked to review books. In a sense, books now find me. I’ve been reading some absolutely astounding books by some new authors.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Nope. I tend to forget what I write. Yes, I know … I’m decidedly odd.
What is your writing process?
Sit down at my desk (or tablet and Bluetooth keyboard) and write. I never make excuses for writer’s block. If I’m not in the mood to write, I generally don’t. Having said that, I’m never really feel like writing, so I sit down and write anyway. There is no secret to writing as all you need to do is put words on the screen. Worry about making sense later if you are battling to write. Even if you write utter rubbish, it is better than making excuses not to write.
How do you approach cover design?
Since I do all my own writing, formatting, and covers, I tend to work on them as I go along. When I don’t feel like writing, I will work on the covers. Often, I will choose the fonts for the book, and begin with that. I use them in the manuscript, and it places me into the book, so to speak. For the most part, I have an idea of what I want, and it is just a matter of the execution. A perfectionist’s job is never done.
What do you read for pleasure?
I refuse to read anything about war, dull courtrooms, or dreary medical drivel. Everything else is great. Essentially, I enjoy a good story and if it makes me laugh, all the better. There is enough murder, crime, and abuse in the world. I see no point in also writing about so much negativity.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
My E-ink book reader made by a small company called Bookeen.
Describe your desk
It has been described as ‘grand central’. I have two large, widescreen monitors (yes, I use both of them continually), and a small TV on the right side. I never switch it on. The rest is a jumble. There is my camera and often a few lenses, a sprinkling of crystals, telephones, backup drive, and a Mickey Mouse with old-fashioned flying goggles, poised on the right edge of my main screen as if about to jump off.
When did you first start writing?
At school. Exciting heh? I was told I wasn’t very good. I can’t be that bad if I’m writing my sixth book under my own name.
What do your fans mean to you?
Oh, I would love to have one! Please come visit me on Facebook; be my first!
Official Website: http://www.jorodrigues.com/
Facebook Profile: https://www.facebook.com/JoRoderickAuthor
Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/JoRodriguesAuthor