Author Highlight * Iannah Roberts

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Q & A with Iannah Roberts

Can you tell me a bit about yourself and how became an author?

I'm an early childhood educator by day, mama and wife full time, and author by night. I am obsessed with coffee and drink it like it's water, and am an avid reader.

When I was younger, I used to write poetry (not very well, but I tried), and when I reached high school, I started to write fanfiction. I've always wanted to write a novel, but never thought I could--my spelling can be atrocious, and my grammar even worse. A year prior to quarantine, I caught the bug to write my story. Just for me, no one else, but never had the time to do it. I just wanted to find a way to heal a little bit more; to be a better mother, a better wife, but most importantly, to love myself and see me in a different light. Quarantine allowed me to do just that. My best friend and husband encouraged me to, and then a few other authors I became close with encouraged me to publish. What is your writing process like? It's a hot mess...ha-ha. I try to plot, but I don't. Can't? My mind goes in too many directions and then my characters basically say, "Here, hold my beer. I got this." I always have a general idea though. Where it'll take place, basic information of my main characters--their jobs, some personality quirks, typically what sort of trauma they've endured...etc. Then I just let it unfold from there. I'm so thankful for my alphas and editors, because without them, my books definitely wouldn't be what they are. What do you like to do when you are not writing? I read. A lot. I also work a lot. Then spend as much time with my tiny human and husband as I can. We play a lot of board games, video games, card games, and love long walks, experiencing life, and building couch forts. How do you celebrate when you are finished writing a book? Depends on the book. Sometimes I drink--I did that with FS and ArTF. Sometimes I cry--okay, I always cry. And I immediately share the news with those I'm closest with. How do you celebrate when one of your books is released? Take the day off work and party online in some way. A couple drinks are usually involved, though with ArTF I spent half the day at the dentist... What is the most challenging part of writing? Intimate scenes, though I am getting better with those. I've always struggled personally with intimacy due to my past, but writing and even reading has been a big help with me finding a connection there, so they're not as daunting as they used to be.

And then time. This last year has been a challenge with finding a good balance between being a teacher, a mom, and an author. What part of writing is the most fun for you? The dark scenes...but they're also the easiest scenes for me to write, so that might be why. What Authors or other books have inspired you to write? So many. Laurie Halse Anderson is my main. After reading Speak in school, while the experience was different than my own, I had a huge connection. That book to this day still helps me get through some dark spots of life.

Brittainy Cherry and LJ Evans are two other big ones for me. Brittainy Cherry is my all time favorite author and my ultimate author goals. Her writing is so captivating and the emotion. You can't help but fall in love with her stories.

And LJ. She's one of the sweetest and most amazing people I've ever met, especially in this author journey. Her writing is not only phenomenal, but always leaves me craving more.

What is your favorite passage from one of your books? This is so hard to decide. Ha-ha. I'm going with this one, but there's one in Stand by You that I absolutely love, but SbY doesn't release until January 2022, and it's from a scene I don't want to spoil.

From Fight Song -- Others may see me as a survivor, but I'm not. I've endured and suffered, punished and hated, felt guilt and shame, but I'm not a survivor. I'm a warrior.

If you could meet any of your characters, who would it be and what would you say to them?

Juniper -- it's not your fault.

I know, that's a little vague, but if you read A Reason to Fight, you'll understand why and how much meaning is in those four little words.

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