For the Artists Who Like to Remain Strictly Out of the Box
About Faith DeVeaux
Faith DeVeaux was an Army brat, living in Germany as well as in several different states in the U.S. She graduated from Loyola Marymount University, and has worked a variety of jobs in public relations. She has produced two short films. When Duty Calls is her first novel.
1) When did you know that writing is what you were called to do? What is it about being a writer that you love the most?
I knew that writing is what I was called to do from elementary school on. I enjoyed writing stories, and my stories were frequently picked to be read to the class when we had writing assignments.
What I love most about being a writer is the response I receive from people – reactions, their experiences, their brainstorming.
2) Can you tell us a little about your book(s) and where our readers can find out more about them and you? What projects are you currently working on?
“When Duty Calls” is a contemporary historical fiction novel based around the actual letters my parents exchanged when my father fought in Vietnam from 1969-1970. Readers can find out about “When Duty Calls” from my author pages and blogs at http://www.authorsden.com/faithndeveaux, and a radio interview at http://authorstalkaboutit.com/?s=Faith+deveaux.
Currently, I am working on revisions for a YA novel featuring a year in the life of military kids based on my own (and friends’) experience, and I am developing and researching a non-fiction book on parental care.
3) What has been your most significant achievement as a writer thus far? How have you dealt with rejection within your writing career?
One significant achievement for myself as a writer thus far is that my book was used as a direct source for someone who wrote his doctoral thesis on the topic my book covers – chaplains serving in Vietnam. I never saw that coming.
I have dealt with rejection by going ahead anyway, and kept writing, promoting, and looking for opportunities. Keep going, everyone!
4) Do you have a schedule for when you write? Do you outline your novels? How long does it generally take you to finish a novel?
I do not have a schedule for when I write- I wish I did! Some of that is because I was working and taking care of my parents, plus the way material comes to me. I do somewhat of an outline, and have plenty of notes from which to work when I get started. I usually cannot get started until I have a feeling for the ending.
5) Where do you see yourself within your career in the next five years?
I see myself continuing to write, speak, and travel, while also helping others to get the word out about their writing. I have also been working in film, and am learning about adapting novels into screenplays.
6) Do you believe that there is ever a point in life where it’s too late for an aspiring writer to become successful in this industry? Do you feel a late start would hinder their chances?
I certainly hope there’s not a point in life when it’s too late to become successful in this industry, as things are just now happening for me! From what I’ve seen from taking care of relatives, it’s too late when you are too far along with a debilitating disease or age and you can’t put in the work to pursue this career, unless some able-bodied person is willing to somehow help you. Other than that, your chances are as good as any, no matter when you start. Success will still depend on all the weird and wonderful things it always does, including timing and the timeliness of your material.
7) What’s the first book you ever read that really touched you emotionally and moved you? What’s the first book you read that made you know that you could do this for a career? What book are you currently reading?
Wow, I think the first book I ever read that emotionally moved me was “Where the Wild Things Are.” The first book I read that made me know I could do this for a career was “Great Expectations” by Charles Dickens, because we learned in school that his writings called attention to the conditions of peoples’ lives, and actually changed laws.
Currently, I am reading — I should actually say listening to — The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens.
8) So many writers say that they hate reading their own work? Do you ever just sit down and curl up with your own book?
I don’t hate reading my own work, but I have to admit that by the time I have worked and reworked it, then done readings and promotions, I don’t look at it much. However, I give it a good read when it is first published before it goes out!
9) What are your thoughts about how the publishing industry is drastically changing? Are you more of an e-book person or a traditional book person?
I have so many thoughts about the drastically-changing publishing industry, but mostly it’s a good thing. Many different people are getting their voices heard without being ignored or diminished by the past usual gatekeepers. I also think that different types of stories and writing forms need different formats and platforms. Some things are meant to be done in a certain way.
Personally, I still like books, but I have read an e-book or two, particularly on business topics, and I just admitted that I’m listening to a novel now, but mostly because I have to multitask so much lately.
10) I feel like so many of us writers, us artists in general, are made to conform to other people’s idea of what we should be. I think we creative types should be unafraid to be whoever it is that we feel we have the right to be. So what is your write 2 be? What unique quality is there about you, about your art, that you feel represents your authenticity?
I think mywrite2be has been to bring up and write about topics that I see missing in in the world. I like being able to say “yes, there is something about that” when someone out there repeats the same old same old about “something has to be done” about this or that. I like moving stagnant conversations forward.