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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

REVIEW & Author Q&A : Bleeding Heart by Lauren Bishop

Bleeding Heart by Lauren Bishop
4 out of 5 Stars
Self Published
Debut Novel

An impressive debut novel by Lauren Bishop - a fast paced psychological thriller that will keep you turning the pages!  Continue past my review below to see my Q&A with this beautiful writer from Michigan. 💖

Suffering a traumatic loss growing up, Simone shuffles from place to place. She just wants to fit in or be loved but keeps falling into the wrong crowd or being the victim of her foster siblings abuse. Neil is a controlling narcissist who is looking for that perfect woman. Setting his sights on Simone, he holds her captive for two years before seeking out new blood. He sets his sight on Vanessa, who promising her friends would date "outside of the box", makes the wrong decision in accepting a date from Neil. Can Simone save Vanessa from becoming a captive like she is?

The chapters bounce back and forth between Simone at various ages of her life, Neil and Vanessa. I flipped to the first page not knowing what to expect and the next thing I knew, I was halfway through the book. I couldn't wait to get on my lunch break and then home to finish it yesterday. What a thrilling debut! Completely fast paced! Kept me wondering, why didn't Simone just leave? What the hell was Vanessa thinking? How is Neil getting away with all this shit? WHAT?! 100% impressing with this debut novel. I can only see Lauren's writing getting better and more cohesive with every book she writes... and I most definitely will be reading them! Like psychological thrillers that read quickly and keep you turning the pages? Jump on the Bleeding Heart!

Let's learn a bit about Lauren Bishop and what makes her tick 😊


Lauren Bishop (1992 - ) was born in Southfield, Michigan but raised in Detroit, Michigan. After graduating high school she moved to East Lansing to attend Michigan State University. While in college she studied Apparel & Textile Design and Studio Art with a concentration in Photography, putting her passion of writing on the back burner. Years later Lauren became stagnant and revisited her first love, which produced her debut novel, "Bleeding Heart." 

Lauren recently relocated to Charlotte, North Carolina where she is currently working on her second book, an adrenaline pumping, twisty thriller.

Stalk here here: 

What does your writing process look like?
When an idea comes to me I first create an outline. It’s really just of all the big plot pieces. Then I think of my characters’ names and what type of personality they’ll have. This makes it easier for me to make the story flow and fill in the details to lead to the next big plot piece. (I used to just wing it and it was torture lol).

What is the most difficult part of your writing process? Your writing Kryptonite?
The most difficult part is definitely keeping my focus and concentration in tact. My short attention span, aka my kryptonite, is something I have to actively fight against.

How many hours a day do you write?
I try to write at least two hours a day, broken up into increments. However, some days get away from me and I may only write a few sentences.

Do you have any strange writing habits?
Well, when I find myself stuck with writer’s block I listen to Prince and Lana del Rey. Somehow they magically get me inspired and out of my rut every time.

What is your least favorite part of the writing / publishing process? Favorite part?
My least favorite part in my last experience (also my first) was trying to find an agent that would get me in good with a big house publisher. I admit that I was pretty impatient with the whole process. I was so anxious to release “Bleeding Heart” that I didn’t play the pitching and waiting game long enough, which led me to the self publishing route. I’m happy with how everything has been so far but I still have that dream of getting a deal with a publisher and becoming a NY Times best-selling author. So I’ll try again with my next novel. My favorite part would have to be tied between getting that first spark of inspiration for a story and finishing that story. They’re both very exciting.

Is there one particular subject you would never write about as an author? What is it?
I could never see myself writing an autobiography or memoir. Being the center of attention was never something I enjoyed and writing an entire book about myself would just be weird.

Is there a type of scene that's harder for you to write than others?
It’s hard for me to write murder scenes. To have to think about what goes through someone’s mind doing such a terrible act takes a lot. I have to use my imagination as best as I can while still making it believable. I also find some difficulty in writing from a man’s perspective. I have to be conscious about not making him too feminine.

Does a big ego help or hurt writers?
I would think it hurts more than helps. I think a big ego would be harmful in many situations though. It’s great to have confidence in yourself and your work but it’s never good to feel superior. Your work may suffer from thinking you know best at all times. Everyone has room to learn and grow.

What was an early experience where you learned that language had power?
I’ve enjoyed reading for as long as I can remember but the book that sticks out the most as one of my first favorites is “Don’t Look in the Mirror” by Larry Weinberg. It’s such a great thriller for kids. I began writing my first story after reading it in one of my school notebooks. “The Lake of Dead Languages” by Carol Goodman is one of my eye openers as well. It welcomed me into the world of mystery with complex story lines. Even outside of books language has power. I remember in high school I had an assignment to write a persuasive letter to a company of my choice. I chose to write to Sprint about how unhappy I was with my phone and they wrote me back and let me pick out any brand new phone I wanted. That teacher used my paper as an example for years lol.

How many unpublished/half-finished books do you have?
I have two unfinished books but only one I plan on moving forward with. But if you ask me how many story ideas I have, that list is a lot longer.

How long does it usually take you to write a book?
I’ve only ever finished one book and it took me 10 months. If I wasn’t so busy working two jobs I’m sure I could’ve finished it sooner. I’m looking forward to seeing how long the next one takes.

What are you working on now? What is your next project?
I’m currently writing my next book, “Unit 527.” I’m over the moon about this one because it’s a thriller, my favorite genre,  about a girl that unknowingly becomes a serial killer’s next target. I won’t give away too many details just yet. “Bleeding Heart” was more suspense, so I’m ready to get people’s adrenaline racing with this one.

If you could cast the characters of Bleeding Heart for a movie, who would play your characters?
This is something I think about often but can never really be definitive lol. I would like for Simone’s character to be an unknown actress. I would like her mom to be played by Kerry Washington, Daniel Craig as Neil, Morena Baccarin as Vanessa, Amber Heard as Amber and Michelle Pfeiffer as Stephanie.

Do you read your reviews?  Do you respond to them, good or bad?  Any advice on how to deal with the bad?
I have read my reviews on Amazon. I’ve been lucky enough to have received good feedback from the readers that shared their thoughts. I haven’t responded to any but I’m very thankful for them. I’m always nervous about a bad review but I try to stay positive. I haven’t been in that situation yet to give advice about getting bad reviews but as of now I would say to stay positive and to not let a bad review break your spirit. There are going to be people that don’t like your writing but there will also be people who love it.

If you didn't like writing books, what would you do for a living?
I would love to be a nature and landscape photographer.

What's the best money you ever spent as a writer?
That would have to be the money spent on my college writing courses.

Have you ever gotten reader's block?  How did you get out of it? (and yes, I meant reader's) :D
I don’t get reader’s block often but when I do I switch things up and start a different book, even if I’m halfway through my current one. Something more fast paced and in your face to get my brain back going.

Do you google yourself?
I have in the past just to see if I’m anywhere to be found but not so much now.

As a writer, what would you choose as your mascot/avatar/spirit animal?
A peacock for sure. They symbolize infinite possibility, self expression, beauty and dreams. I have a creative brain and I’m constantly daydreaming, too much sometimes.

What literary character is most like you?
I’ve read so many books that it’s hard for me to pinpoint one. I’ll just keep it recent and say Nicolette from “All The Missing Girls.” Not everything about her relates to me but what does is that she was fiercely loyal to her family even if they didn’t speak everyday. She tried to take a new route in life but found her roots suited her better.

What authors have inspired you?
I have plenty of favorites but I’m going to have to go with Carol Goodman. Her novels were the first experience I had with mystery literature and she just stuck with me. I also haven’t read anything by her that I didn’t enjoy.

What's one piece of advice you have received that has always resonated with you?
To stay true to yourself. It sounds so simple but it’s really important. You won’t truly enjoy life until you live it as only you would.

What's the funniest thing that has happened to you recently?
I don’t know if this is traditionally funny but it’s definitely ridiculous. I recently moved to Charlotte, NC and my cat, Nomi, was traumatized from the long ride and being in a new place. The first morning after moving in I couldn’t find her anywhere. I looked everywhere I could possibly think of. I started to panic and swore someone broke in and stole my cat. Not the tv, not any jewelry, but my cat. I even went to fedex and made missing cat signs. (I’m so dramatic.) By the end of the day I was hysterical and told my mom I wanted to go back home and lo and behold little Nomi comes crawling out from under the cabinets as I’m on the phone. I had to go around town and take down all the missing cats signs lol. From now on I’ll be checking under cabinets for crawl spaces in any new place.

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