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Chris Marie Green Interview

Tell us a little about yourself.
After teaching eighth graders for a few years, I became a full-time author who writes across the genres. As “Crystal Green,” I create home-and-hearth type Special Edition romances and hot Blazes. As “Chris Marie Green,” I write urban fantasy for Ace in my Vampire Babylon series.

When did you decide to become a writer?

Early, early on. When I was in grade school, I was writing short stories. Some of them were pretty warped, but I’ve always had my dark side. I also wrote adventures for Superman and Indiana Jones—action with the romance tied in, very much like Vampire Babylon. I also wrote an ongoing soap opera about my friends when I was in middle school. Then, when I was in college, I decided I could write an epic historical romance. Oh, it was just awful. Still, I consulted the Writer’s Market then sent it to the proper publishing targets, but I didn’t get a good education about what I really needed to be doing until I attended the San Diego Writers Conference. Soon afterward, I joined RWA (Romance Writers of America), and they really schooled me. I sold because of their knowledge.

What was your first published work?
It was a “home and hearth” type of romance for Silhouette Special Edition. I then sold a miniseries to them while I was still teaching. I wrote on weekends and vacations, which was exhausting! Then I sold to Blaze, then an action-adventure line called Bombshell. That led me to this urban fantasy career.

What is your dream as a writer?
To write less books for more money! Right now, I’m really pushing myself in the hope that I’ll get to this point. And this isn’t really a dream, but I do enjoy bringing readers into these worlds I create. It’s a trip to hear from people who ask deep questions about the characters and the plots.

What writing avenues are you currently pursuing?
I’m still writing for three different “sources.” I’ve just finished a few weeks of plotting new projects and I’m just about to take off for a conference: that puts me in “business mode.” When I get back, I’ll be diving into a Special Edition—one of my “happy ending” books. Hence, I’m still doing the home-and-hearth, hot-romance, urban fantasy shuffle.

Is there anything you wish you had been told earlier in your career?
You know, since I joined RWA early on in my career, I feel as if I had a pretty complete picture of what I needed to do and what to expect. But before I got very serious about selling, I wish I had known how to present myself to agents and publishers without looking like an amateur. I highly suggest going to conferences and networking organizations to learn the business of our craft.

What advice can you offer writers just breaking into a serious writing career?
Just don’t talk about writing—do the writing. Sit down, work hard, then relax, but you’re never going to get published unless you produce and then submit.

Anything else you want our readers to know?
For more information, you can go to http://www.vampirebabylon.com/, http://www.crystal-green.com/, and www.myspace.com/vampirebabylon.

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