I am filled with utmost gratitude and privilege as I present an exclusive interview with Lacie: Waldon, whose remarkable literary works captivate readers with her depth and emotive storytelling.
I am deeply grateful to Lacie: for devoting her time to this exclusive interview. Lacie: Waldon is not only an accomplished author but also a dedicated flight attendant, whose unique experiences in the aviation industry greatly influenced her debut in the bookish world, “The Layover”. With a passion for storytelling and a deep understanding of the human experience, Waldon seamlessly weaves her firsthand encounters with passengers from diverse backgrounds into her narratives. With a unique ability to craft vivid and engaging narratives, Waldon’s writing transports audiences to worlds both familiar and extraordinary. Her keen observation and understanding of human nature shine through in her characters, who are imbued with authenticity and complexity. Waldon’s prose is both elegant and evocative, painting vivid images in the minds of her readers. Whether she is exploring themes of love, loss, or self-discovery, Waldon’s writing resonates deeply, leaving a lasting impact on those fortunate enough to experience her literary creations. As an author, Lacie: Waldon has undoubtedly made her mark on the literary world and continues to inspire and enchant readers with her captivating storytelling prowess. Her time spent in the skies has gifted her with a keen sense of observation, allowing her to craft authentic and relatable characters that resonate with readers. Waldon’s ability to capture the essence of human interactions, both on the ground and in the air, adds a distinctive layer of realism to her stories. Whether she is exploring the intricacies of love and relationships or delving into the complexities of travel and adventure, Waldon’s writing beautifully combines her talents as an author and her unique perspective as a flight attendant, resulting in compelling and thought-provoking literature that both entertains and enlightens.
C.A: Could you please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about your writing background? What inspired you to become a writer, and how did your writing journey begin?
Lacie: : Hi! I’m Lacie: Waldon, and I’m a flight attendant-turned-author. I’ve always been an avid reader, but I really started tearing through books when I was on the road. Eventually, I found myself dreaming of writing something of my own. I’d love to say my journey to that first book (The Layover) was filled with scenes of me gazing out the window of a plane, thoughtfully contemplating my many artistic thoughts and visions. But it was actually more like a montage from Rocky. I had no idea what to write or how to actually turn my words into a book, but I kept working on it – in hotel rooms, in the back of the plane, or surrounded by delayed, irate passengers in the C gates at the Denver airport. And then, one day, I looked down and I was halfway to a completed novel.
C.A: Could you share a glimpse into your creative process? How do you approach developing ideas and turning them into stories? Do you have any specific rituals or habits that help you get into the writing zone?
Lacie: : I approach turning ideas into stories in a way that is so haphazard that my agent has repeatedly encouraged me to tighten up – in her very tactful, gentle, agenty way, of course. Outlining is something I both recommend and aspire to. As for rituals, I used to write alone in my home and would have to unplug the router (so as not to be distracted by internet access) and have my husband imprison my phone in a sealed envelope that couldn’t be opened until he returned from work. Now, I live in LA and am surrounded by writers, so my work life has become way more fun. I meet a friend at a coffee shop every morning at 7:00, and other writers trickle in as the day goes on. I’m almost always with someone who’s working on something creative, which is incredibly inspiring and helps keep me on task.
C.A: Who are some of your favorite authors or literary influences, and how have they shaped your own writing style? Are there any books or works that have had a profound impact on your writing career?
Lacie: : I think I’ve been most influenced by Marian Keyes, Sarah Dessen, and Liane Moriarty. I know those authors don’t have similar writing styles or even write in the same genre, but it was their books that I studied exhaustively when I was learning how to write. All three of them are so talented at transporting their readers into a story, and each of them do it in a completely different way. I will never come close to Marian’s wit or Sarah’s heart or Liane’s insightfulness, but their books set my bar for creating an immersive reading experience.
C.A: What challenges have you faced as a writer, and how did you overcome them? How do you handle writer’s block or periods of self-doubt?
Lacie: : Self-doubt is so real. I constantly questioned my ability to write a novel before I got published, and my fears have only gotten worse with success. I don’t know how you’re supposed to overcome the doubt, but I do feel like I’ve managed to bypass it by refocusing on craft instead of results. For the last six months, I’ve just been working on projects for myself with no real pressure on where they’ll end up, and it’s been a game changer. For me, writing started out as a discipline, but it has become my greatest passion.
C.A: How do you approach developing compelling and relatable characters in your stories? Are there any strategies or exercises you use to ensure your characters feel authentic and three-dimensional?
Lacie: : I’m a character girl. Forget the plot or the stakes or the resolution. For me, the characters are what keep me reading and writing. I love them and end a day of writing feeling fully socialized-out because we’ve spent so much time together. So, no. While I probably should do more strategizing and exercises to make sure they’re equally three-dimensional to my readers, I don’t. Instead, I forget that they’re not actual human beings and just do what I can to capture them on paper.
C.A: Where do you find inspiration for your stories? Are there any specific themes or topics you enjoy exploring in your writing?
Lacie: : The Layover and From the Jump both borrowed a lot from my own adventures, while The Only Game in Town was my imaginative effort to entertain myself during the pandemic. I think I tend to focus a lot on living the life that best suits you instead of the one that would look best on paper. I know it’s a pretty basic concept, but it’s one I think about so often that it does tend to drive my writing. There are so many societal expectations that give no consideration to the fact that we all have different personalities and needs, and I am endlessly fascinated by that.
C.A: Is there a particular book or project you are most proud of? Could you share the story behind it? What is the most rewarding aspect of being a writer for you?
Lacie: : think I’m most proud of The Only Game in Town. The Layover is my baby, and I’m truly in love with Deiss from From the Jump, but The Only Game felt like my biggest swing. I wrote exactly what I wanted to, and it brought me so much joy. That makes me proud.
Editing and Revision:
C.A: How important do you think the editing and revision process is for a writer? Could you share your approach to editing your own work? Do you have any suggestions for writers on how to improve their editing skills?
Lacie: : I think editing and revisions are super important. Translating a story into tens of thousands of words takes a lot of time, and there’s no way you can approach each writing session from the same exact mental place. So, going back over it and smoothing it all out, and giving it all the same tone and pacing is a crucial part of the process. Editing is actually my favorite part of writing because the story is all there and now you get to play with it.
Publishing and Marketing:
C.A: What has been your experience with the publishing industry? Any advice for aspiring authors on finding agents or publishers? How do you navigate the world of book marketing and promotion? Any tips for authors looking to build their audience?
Lacie: : If you search “top literary agencies,” a list of 100 of the top-earning agencies pops up. That was my key to finding an agent. I started at the top and went to each of the agency’s websites to see if they had an agent with a wishlist that matched my books. Once I found matches, that’s who I queried. Basic, I know. But if there’s a better way to get started, I didn’t figure it out.
Advice for Budding Writers:
C.A: What advice would you give to aspiring authors who are just starting their writing journey? How do you handle rejection and criticism in the publishing world?
Lacie: : My answer is to “just keep writing.” The only way to become a writer is to write. And, for me at least, rejection and criticism of something I’m done with don’t matter when I’ve moved on to something new. It’s so easy to get caught up in the outcomes, but the outcomes are almost always out of your control. Our job is to focus on the writing.
C.A: What’s your favorite quote that keeps you going in life?
Lacie: : “If you’re gonna be a bear, be a grizzly.”
I don’t even know what it’s supposed to mean, but in my mind, it’s become synonymous with jumping in and going hard, and I say it to myself all the time.