Everyone’s first time can get a little sticky.

In my attempts to build a better network of authors with whom to commiserate, I met a woman named Niamh Murphy.

This is her game; I’m just playing it.

Q&A TAG: The Debut Novel

Niamh set the rules for this game. It’s a Q&A Tag about your debut novel, which for me was Maladaptation.

This is a Tag post, so if you’re an author yourself, check out the end of the post to see how you can get involved!

Maladaptation 3d

What is the title and genre of your debut novel?

Maladaptation was my first published novel.

A thriller, Maladaptation is the story of three very different women – but all of them survivors – whose lives converge after one of them finds herself in the crosshairs of a very dangerous man.

What gave you the idea to start writing it?

As someone who had dealt with multiple forms of abuse in my life, I knew I had to write a triumphant story of a survivor.

I got my initial spark of inspiration for the characters from a strange place, and I talked about that in my suspense Constant Readers Group earlier this month.

How long did it take you to finish?

I started the first draft of the story in 2011!

That first draft was a vastly different story than the one I finally settled on. It was released in 2015 after years of false starts, plot changes, sweat and tears.

What was the biggest challenge you had when writing it?

I had never written a full-length novel before, so I had no idea what I was getting myself into. The biggest issue I had was actually getting it all written. After that, it was a matter of wrangling the story into something better than before.

How did you get it published, Indie or Trad?

I self-published. As soon as I realized I could be an indie-published writer, I knew that was what I wanted to do!

That’s how all my books have been published so far, though I know that I want to try to be traditionally published at least once just to know what it’s like.

What was the most important thing you learnt from the process?

I learned that no matter how much passion you have for a plot-line or character, it’s more important to make the BEST story you can… even if you have to cut out some of your favorite parts to get there.

Cluster B 3dWhat are you working on right now?

  • Eager Observer – The third in the thriller series that Maladaptation started, I’m letting this one simmer a while before I head back and start making changes. It’ll be out in October, but you can pre-order it now.
  • [Untitled] – This is a new novel I’m not ready to talk much about yet; it’s in the outlining phase. All I can say is that it’ll have a strong romantic plot-line. Whether it’s true romance remains to be seen.
  • Debate the Case – If you’ve been following for a long time, you might be familiar with the first part of this, in which the main character, TV host Donna Lee Handy, learns about a woman on trial for the murder of her wife. I’m planning on expanding this into a longer work.


I really hope you enjoyed this quick Q&A, if you have any other questions about my writing, just ask me in the comments.

If you’re an author, why not play ‘Tag’?

Cut and paste these questions into your own blog with a link back to me, and provide your own answers to the questions! Then drop me a comment below with the link to your blog and I’ll check it out!

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