For the 160th week of "7 QUESTION SUNDAY" we shine the spotlight on another influential individual from the PNW. Anna E. Collins is a published author from Washington. Pick up Love at First Spite and These Numbered Days at your favorite local bookstore now!
4EVRGRN: Hey, AEC! Tell us a little about yourselves.
ANNA E. COLLINS is a Seattle-area author who writes stories about the lives and loves of women. Once upon a time she was a teacher with a master’s degree in educational psychology. Nowadays, her main pursuits are plotting fiction, raising teenagers, and hanging out with her eternal canine sidekick, Archie. She is a dual 2022 debut author with romantic comedy, Love at First Spite, and contemporary fiction novel, These Numbered Days.
- What made you fall in love with books?
AEC: As an introverted kid, I loved nothing more than to escape into the fictional worlds available at my local library. My parents were both teachers and avid readers so books were also abundant at home. Anything is possible in books, you can go anywhere, experience anything, and I think I've always enjoyed living vicariously through fiction. It's escapism and learning in one.
- What was the biggest surprise when changing careers to being an author?
AEC: My change in careers was sort of accidental. I always intended to continue teaching, but several big moves got in the way of that, and I found myself in need of a new purpose. I started writing more or less on a whim, and it took several years before I allowed myself to view it as a pursuit of a new career. Now that I am, I'd say the two biggest surprises are how important my writing community is to my well-being as an author, both as friends and as professional sounding boards, and also how big of a production it is to put a book in the hands of readers. As lonely as the writing process can be, publishing is definitely a team effort!
- Favorite family friendly PNW activity?
AEC: My family loves everything scenic, so taking a ferry over to one of the islands, visiting a beach, or enjoying the view from Discovery Park would be at the top of our list.
- Who are some of your favorite PNW authors to read?
AEC: There are so many, but some of my favorites with local ties are Kristin Hannah, Rachel Lynn Solomon, Garth Stein, Alexandria Bellefleur, and Julia Quinn.
- How does the PNW inspire your writing?
AEC: I like to visit the places where I set my novels so local readers shouldn't be surprised to find their hangouts featured in my books. Love at First Spite is set in Bellevue, and These Numbered Days in Snohomish, for example. But the PNW is also a mood to me - the abundant green canopy that's both peaceful and at times enclosing, the awe-inspiring views of water and mountains that can make you feel so small, its friendly but also somewhat reserved people. All of these things inform the characters in my stories - how they feel about their surroundings and how they interact with people they meet - in a different way than were the books set in say the Midwest.
- Favorite local product?
AEC: I love, love, love the Malicious Women Candle Company in Snohomish. Great scents, funny and poignant messaging, perfect gifts!
- Favorite place to go with your dog in the PNW?
AEC: Unfortunately, as much as Archie loves going in the car, he struggles with motion sickness even on very short rides, so we can't take him far. But local nature walks are always a hit!
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