Palm Beach Florida, USA
55 yrs old
Romelia: WHAT IS THE MOST DIFFICULT PART OF YOUR ARTISTIC PROCESS?
Maribel Roman: Convincing myself that someone wants to read what I write.
Romelia: DOES YOUR FAMILY SUPPORT YOUR CAREER AS A WRITER?
Maribel Roman: Yes.
Romelia: IF YOU HAD TO DO SOMETHING DIFFERENTLY AS A CHILD OR TEENAGER TO BECOME A BETTER WRITER AS AN ADULT, WHAT WOULD YOU DO?
Maribel Roman: Probably write more.
Romelia: HOW LONG ON AVERAGE DOES IT TAKE YOU TO WRITE A BOOK?
Maribel Roman: I wrote my most recent book, “Joy in the Midst of Pain” in 6 weeks.
Romelia: DO YOU BELIEVE IN WRITER’S BLOCK?
Maribel Roman: Absolutely, I experienced it.
Romelia: AT WHAT POINT DO YOU THINK SOMEONE SHOULD CALL THEMSELVES A WRITER?
Maribel Roman: I believe that’s an individual choice. However, I only considered myself a writer after I published my first academic publication.
Romelia: WHAT DIFFERENCE DO YOU SEE BETWEEN A WRITER AND AN AUTHOR?
Maribel Roman: For me, I considered myself a writer when I was writing academic articles during my employment at the Universities. My first publication as an “author” was when I published my dissertation. Now I published my second book, so I feel comfortable referring to myself as an author.
Romelia: HOW DO YOU PROCESS AND DEAL WITH NEGATIVE BOOK REVIEWS?
Maribel Roman: My previous writing was strictly academic so if someone commented, most of the time was to question or challenge the academic findings. I recently published a non-fiction book and as of today have not received any negative reviews.
Romelia: WHAT IS THE MOST DIFFICULT PART OF YOUR WRITING PROCESS?
Maribel Roman: Getting started.
Romelia: HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN WRITING OR WHEN DID YOU START?
Maribel Roman: I began writing academic articles about 15 years ago and published my dissertation 8 years ago. I recently published my first non-fiction book.
Romelia: WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO A WRITER WORKING ON THEIR FIRST BOOK?
Maribel Roman: Just start! Write your ideas and thoughts as they come. Worry about grammar and flow later.
Romelia: WHAT, TO YOU, ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT ELEMENTS OF GOOD WRITING?
Maribel Roman: For me, what I write must be relatable to my reader.
Romelia: WHAT COMES FIRST FOR YOU – THE PLOT OR THE CHARACTERS – AND WHY?
Maribel Roman: My writing has been academic or non-fiction so I would say, first the idea or problem, second the analysis or research and lastly the findings and recommendations.
Romelia: HOW DO YOU DEVELOP YOUR PLOT AND CHARACTERS?
Maribel Roman: For my self-help book, I recognized the need, surveyed the population then wrote the “plot”.
Romelia: WHEN DID YOU FIRST CALL YOURSELF A WRITER?
Maribel Roman: About 15 years ago after I published my first academic article while working at the university.
Romelia: HOW DO YOU USE SOCIAL MEDIA AS AN AUTHOR?
Maribel Roman: I have a Facebook and Instagram Page for my recent book that links to my website. I post regularly using quotes from the book.
Romelia: WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE AND LEAST FAVORITE PART OF PUBLISHING?
Maribel Roman: No favorite and least favorite it is deciding the best publishing option.
Romelia: WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO AN AUTHOR WHO WANTED TO DESIGN THEIR OWN COVER?
Maribel Roman: I think that it depends on the writer. I designed the cover for my recent book, “Joy in the Midst of Pain”, since it was very personal to me.
Romelia: HOW MANY BOOKS HAVE YOU WRITTEN AND WHICH IS YOUR FAVORITE?
Maribel Roman: Although I written many articles, I only written two books. One was my dissertation and the second a non-fiction book. It took me 6 years to write the dissertation including intensive research. So I have to say, writing my latest book was the most fun.
Romelia: WHAT PART OF THE BOOK DID YOU HAVE THE HARDEST TIME WRITING?
Maribel Roman: I dedicated a lot of time to my introduction. I wanted to make sure that it captured the essence of my book.
Romelia: WHAT PART OF THE BOOK WAS THE MOST FUN TO WRITE?
Maribel Roman: I loved sharing the stories of the individuals interviewed for the book. I felt very close to my survey participants as I shared their stories of pain and challenges.
Romelia: WHICH OF THE CHARACTERS DO YOU RELATE TO THE MOST AND WHY?
Maribel Roman: My participants’ identity was kept confidential and they were assigned fictitious names. However, there was a gentleman who moved using a wheelchair who was heroic in how he joyfully dealt with his pain and limitations. I really admire his perseverance.
Romelia: IF YOU’RE PLANNING A SEQUEL, CAN YOU SHARE A TINY BIT ABOUT YOUR PLANS FOR IT?
Maribel Roman: I actually wrote a workbook, “Principles of Joy” to use as a tool to perform small groups classes. I am not sure when I will write another book. I am waiting for the next big idea.
Romelia: TELL US SOMETHING FUNNY ABOUT YOUR ADULT LIFE.
Maribel Roman: Someone else may think this is not funny, but I had to find humor in my life’s turn of events. After 34 years of teaching and working in academics I had an auto accident that led to me having to retired. I now dedicate my time to consulting and lots of volunteer work. I had plan to retired at 60 and dedicate my time to volunteer work but God had another plan and I was forced to retired at 50 due to permanent injuries. Life is Funny and full of surprises so we must be adjustable.
Romelia: describe yourself in a few sentences. Tell us something we do not know about you and something you hate about the world.
Maribel Roman: I refuse to let life’s problems bring me down. I believe that for every problem there is a solution. But it is important to focus on finding the solution and not focusing on the problem. I hate that so much attention is given to negativity and problems, especially in social media and television. I wish more time would be spent on finding solutions and focusing on the positive.
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