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Interview with Stevie D. Parker
August 31st, 2023
Stevie D. Parker is the author of Wounds of Time, a romantic suspense and My Significant Nobody, which is contemporary romance/rom-com. Switching gears and tackling supernatural/paranormal, Stevie’s new release is the sequel to 542 Days: Recollection, which is so unique and original, I absolutely loved it! It is personally unlike anything I have ever read. I had the opportunity to read an advanced copy of 542 Days (Book 2): Ramification and it does not disappoint. I had the pleasure of sitting down with Stevie via Zoom for a one-on-one interview with her on her new release. Here is what she had to say:
After reading all your books, they’re all very different from one another, but even Ramification was much different from Recollection. Can you let our readers in on a little of what to expect as far as differences between the two books?
Sure. The first book is definitely more informative than the second. There is a lot of groundwork to cover as far as explanations and definitions as to what things are like astral projections, lucid dreaming and twin flames; it’s more of the foundation of the series. The second book is definitely more of a paranormal romance, I think. Enemy to lovers, second chance type book.
Is the number 542 significant to you? Is there a reason you chose that number for the series?
This is a crazy, and very true, story. The number 542 literally came to me out of nowhere. But, it made sense with the book. Added together it equaled eleven, which fit in perfectly with the numerology theme, but it always kind of drove me crazy where the number came from, and being a somewhat spiritual person myself, I knew one day I was going to find out what it meant myself. Anyway, one day, long after Ramification was in preorder, something brought my mind back to Wounds of Time. Now, when I originally wrote that book, I had already had the last page written and on January 1st, 2020; I had made a New Year’s resolution that I would write the book. It took a while for me to actually publish it after it was written, due to my own experiences with grief. A lot of what Josh goes through in Ramification was based on that time period, and Wounds of Time ended up being published on June 26th, 2021. You guessed it, 542 Days after the New Year’s resolution. And I swear on anything sacred to me, that is a true story. At the time, there was no significance to the title. Now, it’s the most significant title of any of my books.
So, considering the grief in the book, you touch on some hard subjects, such as death and suicide. Did you have a hard time writing those scenes?
Somewhat. I think a lot of it also focuses on healing and moving forward.
What genre do you enjoy writing the most? Since you tend to blur the lines in genres in general.
I like the idea of jumping around; I never wanted to be boxed into a specific genre. Although I did have a lot of fun with the 542 Day books, they were a lot harder to write than the other two.
Of all the male main characters you’ve written, which is your favorite and why?
Oh, that’s tough. Josh was never intended to be a main character, and I fell in love with him the second I wrote his first line, so he really wrote both 542 Day books himself. James from My Significant Nobody is definitely more my “type” of guy, the arrogant playboy alpha a-hole, but I think Vince from Wounds of Time will always be my favorite.
You’ve mentioned in prior interviews with us that you are an outliner. I imagine 542 Days must have been an insane outline, having two books and a third in the pipeline. How do you keep track of it? Is it merely a pad-and-paper type thing or do you have sticky notes all over your workspace?
Neither actually. I have a huge, color-coded whiteboard in front of my double screen computer that blends in perfectly with my OCD brain.
On the subject of workspace, I was going to ask where is your favorite place to write? Does the whiteboard make it difficult to move around?
My office is typically where I do my writing, but if I do move around, I will just unplug my laptop and take a picture of the whiteboard.
In your author bio, it’s mentioned that your stories are based on real life experiences. Are any of them based on your life?
No, not directly. They all are stories from my life, things I’ve encountered or shenanigans I’ve been involved in. Many scenes are based on real life experiences all wrapped up in one fictional story, but the books themselves are not based on my actual life, if that makes sense.
What’s next for you? What can your readers expect and when?
I have a few things I am working on aside from the third installment to 542 Days… when and what, that I can’t elaborate on right now.
What’s the hardest part of breaking out as a new author?
Is there anyone you’re dying to meet?
A few people, but one of my favorite authors is Sara Louisa. I was supposed to meet her this summer and unfortunately due to unforeseen issues, I had to cancel my trip to Canada, but hopefully soon!
Any upcoming events where readers can meet you and pick up some of your books?
Yes! I will be at Getting Witchy with It on Sept 17th in Salem!
Do you ever seek advice from anyone when you get stuck, or how do you handle internal conflict when writing?
With Ramification specifically, this book just would not follow an outline, no matter how hard I tried. I came to a place about three quarters in where the story just took a complete turn, and the outline just went completely off the rails. So, I had two alpha readers, and I wrote three really polished “what could happen” chapters and sent it to them for their feedback. Now, if they said they liked the concept better, mind you, I’d have to go back and do rewrites to the entire thing to get to that point. Well, the verdict was they did like option two better… so… I rewrote. But I have a very good team of alpha readers and editors who help me with the process.
Along with the Zoom interview, Literary Dreams did an interactive Q& A with readers, where they got to submit questions after reading both 542 Days: Recollection and 542 Days (Book 2): Ramification for Stevie to answer. Check out what they had to ask!
Questions from our readers:
Reader 1- I am curious; what inspired this book? How did the Twin Flames come to fruition? I'm a new reader of the author, and it's been a fantastic experience for me with 542 Days.
Stevie- To answer the first question, a lot of the story was actually “inspired” by dreams I’ve had myself. I’ve always experienced lucid dreams, and as a matter of fact, the story of Cali writing The Broken Meadow was a true story of how I wrote my first book, Wounds of Time. I had a dream that I was writing the last page of a book, and when I woke up, I had remembered the entire page and wrote it down word for word. A few months later, I wrote the book, backwards–from end to beginning.
The idea of Twin Flames was always something that fascinated me. I am a strong believer that everything happens for a reason, and obviously I am intrigued by the metaphysical aspects of the universe. The irony with 542 Days specifically pertaining to Twin Flames is that Josh was never intended to be a main character. The second I had written his first line; however, he took over the story. So much, in fact, that by book two, I couldn’t even follow an outline–he was in complete control!
Reader 2- How much research went into the 542 Day series? You provide an enormous amount of knowledge on healing practices and crystal properties etc., how much out of your day is research versus writing?
Stevie- Now most of this stuff I have researched for years already, the healing practices specifically, I’m actually a certified Reiki master and I also practice Pranic healing. But, the witchcraft, astral projection, psychic attacks, things of that nature took a lot of research, more so in the first book. If I’d had to guess, I’d say forty percent was research and sixty was writing.
Reader 3- How do you come up with your characters, plots and storylines in general?
Stevie- A lot of it, as mentioned above, actually comes to me in dreams (shocker right, considering Josh and Cali meet so much in a dream state). The characters are typically molded around people I know in real life, and the plots… well, I guess I just have a crazy imagination.
Reader 4- You get very detailed about a lot of things, crystals and healings, descriptions and such, but you don’t describe any of the actual spells they are doing in detail. Any reason why?
Stevie- Yes, there is a huge reason why. That’s my DON’T TRY THIS AT HOME warning lol. I get a lot of readers who reach out to me and say that they’ve tried things in the book, like cleansing their house with sage or meditating, like Josh taught Cali. We don’t need anyone conjuring up anything they don’t know about haha.
***QUESTIONS WITH SPOILERS BELOW***
Reader 5- My question is more for book one if that’s okay. Cali starts off very unlikable and you (well, I) ended up loving her. Was that done on purpose?
Stevie- Yes, that was my intention; she’s a brat! And she has a spell on her. So, if she can’t love, then empathy would be hard, right?
Reader 6- 542 Days: Recollection seemed so final with the ending; I was shocked to see there was a sequel. With that being the case, why not leave her in a coma and introduce Britney in book 2? Was this done intentionally?
Stevie- Not entirely. 542 Days: Recollection was meant to be a standalone. It was only a few days after when Josh literally came knocking on my brain for a sequel (guess he wasn’t happy with how things left off lol). This made Ramification incredibly hard to write, because once the seed was planted, it wasn’t only a sequel; it was a trilogy. So now, I was backing into a book that there was a definitive ending to, and writing knowing there’s going to be a third, as if the material wasn’t hard enough. The good thing about that is you can read the first book without reading the second. The bad thing, though, is you can’t read the second without the first.
That’s it from Stevie D. Parker; I personally had a blast Zooming with her. 542 Days (Book 2): Ramification releases today! Make sure to grab your copy!