I met Tall Poppy founder Ann Garvin in Bloom. She is approachable, super supportive of other writers, and apparently has amazing stamina. She’s astonishingly friendly and unsurprisingly witty. She’s a Renaissance woman of our times. We’re lucky to have her, really.
Describe your writing process—schedule, environment, techniques / strategies / magic spells, and inspirations material and abstract (what’s in your office? who’s in your head?).
When I’m deep into a book, it’s all I can think about. I get behind on everything. I love to write early in the AM. I get up, get coffee and start to write, and I’m astonished to see how much time passes so quickly. I like quiet, sunshine and my dog at my side. Otherwise I just need a computer and an idea.
Walk me through your publishing process, from final draft to final product: who does what when and what marketing you do as the author.
Oh Lord, it seems like the longest road. And sometimes I don’t know what is happening behind the scenes. Eventually I get the cover idea, which seems like the most fun of the process, as long as I like the art work. Usually I love it. I’ve been lucky. Then it’s a lot of fact checking and proofing and waiting. I spend a fair amount of time figuring out what I’ll do for speaking, promoting, travelling and marketing. I line up readers for early reviews and call bookstores. I dream about what dress I’ll wear to the Oscars after the movie based on my book gets nominated. I write another book. I spend a lot of time hoping and praying.
Tell me about your support system online and IRL, including the steps in founding Tall Poppies and Bloom.
The Tall Poppies are a life saver. They are my tribe, my information base, my support system and my reality check. They really are my number one support system. I have a lot of wonderful non-writer friends, and while they cheer me on, they aren’t part of the publishing world, so don’t know how to help in that regard. I like keeping them a little separate, so that I am reminded that writing isn’t the only thing in my life.
It’s been six years since I started the Tall Poppy Writers and it’s been quite the learning experience. We went from a few writers helping each other to a much more organized system of support across the board. We started with a website, a few authors and a lot of energy, and we are still here today working to lift up women writers wherever we can.
How does your life influence your writing and vice versa?
When my parents died last year I couldn’t do much of anything. My life has been so busy lately and it has slowed my writing down. This year I worked really hard to cut things out and make more room for writing. I’m hoping it worked and I’ll have more books soon.
What do you love most about your creativity?
I love that my impulse is to go kind of zany, but my style is a little more down to earth. I think that is a good place to be. Aim high, but hit a little less out of the park; it lends itself to a more balanced life and story.
Connect with Ann: