Diva Interview: Write Diva, Janine Savage

Today we are continuing the Diva interview series and talking to Write Diva CEO Janine Savage. She’s the driving force behind the Divas. But what makes her tick? Let’s find out!

It’s tough raising a family and working, how do you balance your time between family and editing/reading?

Having it all is tough. Honestly, I’m still learning how to find that balance. For A-type personality those lessons have come the hard way, but I’ve gotten better. I have two teenagers who are in school during the day and a husband who leaves for work, so I do the bulk of my work then because as soon as school is out, I have to take off my editor hat and put on my mom hat and then the wife hat. It’s mostly about prioritizing my time. My family knows I still have to get some work in during the evening, but I try to finish up after they’re in bed or while they’re doing homework, and since my office is also homework central, they’re with me. And… I don’t work weekends.

What type of books are you digging right now? What are some of your more influential books or authors you have?

About a month ago, I was on a historical fiction kick, having read Pope Joan by Donna Woolfolk Cross, The Maid: A Novel of Joan of Arc by Kimberly Cutter, and The Pagan Lord by Bernard Cornwell. Having ridden the emotional roller coaster of The Fault In Our Stars by John Green, I think I’m ready for something less emotional and more modern books like The Third Option by Vince Flynn. I have read a wide variety of books, but a few of my favorite authors are Susanna Kearsley, Diana Gabaldon, and Bernard Cornwell. These three authors have very different styles of writing and know how to tell a story. Recently I’ve been enjoying Chuck Palahniuk’s essays on writing. I admire his ability to cut right to the chase while illustrating his point so well on writing.

How did you find that you had a love for editing? Share with us some of your background.

What else is an opinionated woman who loves to people watch and diagram sentences (not at the same time), going to do? In college I edited for people and after college still fell into the same role in the business world and through the Internet. So when I was presented with the opportunity to get paid for something I already loved to do, I jumped at the chance. There have been people along the way who’ve had infinite amounts of patience with me and have helped me learn. And I’m still learning. I hope that never changes or that I feel I’ve learned all there is to know about something. How stale would that be? I enjoy the fact that there is some little nugget of wisdom to learn each week.

What trends do you see in publishing  happening? Are these trends good or bad for indie authors?

What I see is a book industry that is still evolving, but also one that is starting settle into the new normal of publishing. E-books are still doing well, but then print books are doing well too. There is still a large demand for print. Personally I like both options, so I buy both. However, I will pay more money for a better quality product and by product, I mean the story not the format. What I see for the indie author is a tougher market to sell books in. E-books are no longer new, and what worked three or four years ago to sell a book, is no longer as effective. Much like print books, you never can tell which new authors will become the new favorite and which ones won’t. The market is a fickle place.

Can you give some advice for new authors looking for an editor?

  • Ask around. Nothing speaks louder than a great recommendation from a customer.
  • Ask for a free sample edit and what the editor will and won’t do in the edit.
  • Decide if that editor’s style is compatible with your personality.
  • Ask what style guides they use. If the editor doesn’t use one or tells you that a style guide really isn’t necessary, consider shopping around.
  • If the sample edit has very little editing and lots of praise, that person is probably a really great cheerleader, but will probably have a hard time giving it to you straight when it comes to your manuscript.

How cool do you think Diva Lauren is? Don’t lie.

She’s dah bomb diggity! No, really!

Four Divas walk into a bar, what happens next?

Lots of laughter, a few dirty jokes, and love. Cheesy, right? 😉



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