Starr Atkins loves being a writer living in Long Beach. From the eclectic venues from which to write, to all the memories she’s made growing up here, she believes that the best inspiration comes from home.
Atkins has two books currently available on Amazon.com: The Heart of a Woman, a collection of poetry; and Tpolemos, Means War, the first book in a fantasy series about the Greek gods living to today’s world.
Carma Spence: What types of genres do you like to write?
Starr Atkins: I like to write all kinds of things fiction. However, I don’t think I would do well in non-fiction or mystery. I’m mostly a sci-fi, romance, drama, poetry and fantasy kind of girl.
CS: Where do you get your ideas?
SA: I get my ideas from dreams and sometimes the human experience in movies. For instance the first poem in my poetry book The Heart of a Woman named “Life after Death” is about women that go through abuse. In a weeks’ time I saw What’s Love Got to Do with It, Where the Heart Is, and Sleeping with the Enemy. It made me feel like I needed to give the women a voice. It’s a very real thing for some people some that still can’t talk about it. I’m glad to have given them that outlet.
CS: Did you always like writing?
SA: Professionally? No, I didn’t always like writing. However, I’ve always loved to write. In the 5th grade, I wrote a five-chapter book that I kept to myself. In middle school, I loved to write free-style poetry with my best friend. It wasn’t until I was in my mid-twenties that I decided to embrace what I love and use it professionally.
CS: Do you have a set schedule to do your writing?
SA: Yes I have a set schedule to write. I drive school buses full time and I’m a single mother of two young children. I find it’s a lot easier and quieter to write on my two-hour lunch break than at home. It also helps me stay disciplined because I know I have to get back to work. I often write after the kids are sleep, too.
CS: How do you feel about the current state of writing? Is this a good time for writers?
SA: I feel like writers are now more imaginative than ever. Hollywood has been making movies from books proving that the imagination is a wonderful thing.
It’s a great time for us. To me there has never been a better time to write. We have seen over again that no matter how big or small the idea and no matter what genre, there is always an audience.
CS: What is the best advice you’ve ever received as a writer?
SA: The best advice anyone has ever given me came at a point in my life when I believed I was a small rock trying to make too big of a splash in a lake. I was told over again to never feel insignificant because everyone starts somewhere. At one point even Dean Koontz himself was where I am. It gave me perspective and carried me through writers block.
CS: What is the best advice you can give as a writer?
SA: As a writer, the best advice I can give is to follow your heart. Be the optimism your motivation needs. A lot of people will try to tell you what to write and how to write it. Your mind may even tell you to fall in with the crowd. If you desire to be a part of what’s trending, do it. If you dare to be different, do that. Always be yourself, that’s where the magic happens.
CS: What’s next for you and your writing?
SA: What’s next? I have a plan to write five more books in the Tpolemos, Means War series. I plan on the Olympians going through changes and fighting more intense battles, while trying to forge new identities on earth. After that, I want to write a romance and drama novel.
CS: What do you like about living in Long Beach?
SA: I’ve lived here my entire life minus a trip to Moreno Valley for four years. I’ve always come right back home. I love downtown, the beach, the Pike, Shoreline Village, and so much more.
CS: What do you like about being a writer in Long Beach?
SA: I love that I grew up in Long Beach. Going out to write at a coffee shop, restaurant, or skyline is great because I have a memory tied to so many of the places here. To me some of the best inspiration comes from home.
If you would like to learn more about Atkins and her work, visit www.StarrAtkins.com and www.thisishowimommyhood.com. You can purchase both The Heart of a Woman and Tpolemos, Means War on Amazon.com.
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