I'd like to extend a warm welcome to Laney Smith, author of The Time Capsule Series! She was kind enough to join us for an interview today :)
Tell us a bit about your books. What do you like writing about?
I like writing about things that inspire reactions from the readers. I want to make them feel like they’ve had an experience when they step out of one of the worlds I put in pages. No one wants to read a book and walk away feeling as though they gained nothing. I want the readers to walk away from their time with me and feel like they really experienced the story. So, I like to write about anything that will “check in” with the reader and remind them that they are having an experience, not just killing time. I want them to crave more. Therefore, I write about things I would want to read.
Do you have a favorite book you’ve written or a favorite character?
This is tough. I love all of the books for their own reasons. Each one has pushed me in some way that made me better than the book before it. I like One Year’s Time because I did it! I finally finished a book. But, I also love that one because it is falling in love. I wanted to write it so that the reader could get to fall in love, right along with the characters. I like In Their Own Time because there are several clever revelations in that book that are so much fun, I envision the reader to be laughing, smirking, feeling surprised, and definitely feeling amused. That one feels like so much happens that it makes me realize this whole journey has been a gift, handed to me. I’m so proud of how well that all came together and answered so much, yet opened so many doors at the same time. By the time readers make it to the end of this book, there is a definite passion for this story and these characters. I absolutely love this book for that bond it has afforded for me to share with the readers. I love Derrick’s Time because it is almost like sitting in a confession booth with Derrick Decker, the main male character of the Lock Creek: Time Capsule Series. He’s not perfect, but he’s loveable. He’s made mistakes, but he’s learned from them. This book shows that we almost lost him to the wild side, but he found his way back to us. Then, the fourth one, Time of Death… There are no words to express the passion I feel for this book. I have never experienced anything like this in anything I’ve ever written. It is a darker look at Lock Creek. There is a scene in this one that I thought would kill me. I cried for two weeks. It may sound crazy, but if I think about it too much, I cry still. It pulled my heart out of my chest. I love it because this was the most challenging book to date, for a number of reasons. It was emotional. It was intense. It was daring and bold. The writing process for this one was entirely different than any of the predecessors. This one is my pride because I know the torture it put me through in every way. I love it and this one is just unreal. I can’t wait to see what the follow up for this one will be. But, I have a hunch that it will be a more relaxed, less emotional sequel this time.
As far as a favorite character, I love Derrick Decker with all that I am. I laugh as I say that. But, he’s an amazing character. I use this metaphor all the time because it’s the best way I can relay how it works for me. When I write, what happens in my mind is like a vacant room with a desk by a window. There is a door to the room. Beyond the door, there is a hallway where people mingle and pass in transit from point A to point B. Every now and then, one of those “people” sticks their head in the doorway to talk to me. They are a character with a story to tell. So, I listen to them, and write what they want to tell. Sometimes, they butt in front of each other, interrupting the story in progress. So, I work with whichever story has the pushiest character. When Derrick Decker wants to tell a story, he’s far more subtle and polite about it. He’s got a cockiness about him, I’m pretty sure that is because he knows he’s my favorite. He doesn’t have to push and shove. He’s the king of my character world. So, he strolls up with a cocky smirk, he usually leans against the doorjamb and I stare at him for a second, excited that he stopped by. He says some random, ornery comment and then we get to work. I love those days because I don’t have to try to fight for a storyline. After Derrick Decker makes his grand entrance, the story starts playing in my head like watching a movie. So, the struggle, then, becomes capturing it all as fast as I can. I love when I see Derrick in my metaphorical doorway. I know that sounds nutty. But, that’s why he is my favorite character.
Where do you find inspiration for the next story?
Honestly, it usually just happens. My mind is like a stack of papers that got placed in front of an opened window on a windy day. They just swirl around all the time. Some play out, and some are short lived. Sometimes it is a great idea today. Tomorrow, I may roll my eyes and try to figure out what I was thinking. I just try to grab what I can and let go of those things that just don’t develop. But, I think you feel it when it’s something tangible and I think you know when it happens.
What/Who influenced you to write?
My friends and family have told me for years that I need to write. I usually shook my head and went on about my business. I love writing. I just never thought writing a book was anything I would ever do. There were signs all throughout my life, trying to tell me I should be a writer. I just ignored them. It is kind of surreal when everything lines up just right and you finally get all the things you had missed before. You feel something unlike anything else. I felt it and I wish that feeling off on every person that walks the earth. It’s pretty amazing!
Do you listen to music while writing? If so what kind of music inspires you?
A lot of times I do. I can’t say any particular type of music inspires me. I can be anywhere in the world and hear music from various sources. Sometimes it happens where I hear a song somewhere, somehow and mental images start popping in my head. I try to capture the song that inspired those flashes, and I listen to that song over and over again until I’ve written the scene that song inspired. In terms of picking a song, or songs to listen to while I write, it doesn’t work like that for me. If there isn’t a song inspiring a scene, I’d rather have silence.
What are you reading right now?
This week I’m reading Ebony Sea: Origins by Marc Meiner and Elderberry Croft The Complete Collection by Becky Doughty. I was looking for a passage in one of my favorite Stephen King books a couple of weeks ago and ended up watching the movie and now, I’m also re-reading that book, too. So, my eyes are going to fall out pretty soon.
If you could travel anywhere in the world—without worrying about the cost—where would you go?
My friend lives in Canada and she posted a picture of Banff, Alberta. I’d go spend a snowy weekend there. Seems like it would be a beautiful place to sit by a cozy fire, watch the snow and feel small in the big old world. I’d also go to Keystone in Colorado for the same reasons. Then, I’d probably round out the trip on a warm, sunny beach where I could listen to the earth breathe.
Is there anything you’d like your readers to know about you or your novels?
I hope you’ll all check out the Lock Creek: Time Capsule Series. I look forward to hearing from you and meeting you when I’m out there, signing your books. I hope reading it is as much fun for you as writing it was for me.
Where can readers find you online?
Buy the series here
About the Author
Laney Smith has enjoyed writing her entire life. She had her first poem published in 1995. Since then, she has written multiple stories for local newspapers. She is the proud mother of two wonderful, brilliant and talented young men and has two younger brothers. Though she currently resides in California, she has lived in places such as Arkansas, Texas, Mississippi and Colorado. This has given Laney an exciting opportunity to experience aspects of life that she uses to create settings, characters, and even ideals. Through the encouragement of friends and family, Laney has now decided to pursue her hobby on a more serious level. Thus, “One Year’s Time” was born (the first book in the Time Capsule Series) and it is with great pride that she brings this fun story to you.