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Cheryl Yeko Interview Published on: 21, Oct 2016

Tell us about your life, your struggles, your passion.

I'm a multi-published, award-winning author, and live in Wisconsin with my husband Patrick. I love to read, play piano, and spend time with family and friends. I enjoy novels with fast-paced action and steamy romance, protective alpha men and strong heroines. I can also be found under the pen name of CiCi Cordelia, with my writing partner and BFF, Char Chaffin.

How long have you been writing and what inspired you to become a writer?

My writing career began in when my wonderful husband bought me a Kindle for Christmas and changed my world. I started reading romance novels, and fell in love with them. I decided to write one myself in 2011, and disappeared into my room over a long Wisconsin winter and wrote my debut novel, PROTECTING ROSE. I submitted to a few publishing houses and was offered a contract with Soul Mate Publishing, which I quickly accepted. PROTECTING ROSE went on to win the 2012 Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence in the romantic suspense category. Well, I was hooked.

While choosing a name for your character, what aspects do you consider that determines what you finally call them?

I just choose names I think are pretty or sexy, and go with it.

Do authors in general and you in particular plan series beforehand or do they just happen?

I’m pretty much of a pantser (writing by the seat of my pants). But since I started writing under the pen-name CiCi Cordelia, with my BFF Char Chaffin—who is most definitely a plotter—I’m plotting more. We are currently plotting out a paranormal series. It’s easier for me to plot when I have another writer to bounce things off of. Char and I are also both senior acquiring editors with Soul Mate Publishing, and we brainstormed a series, The Soul Mate Tree, that involves 13 novellas by Soul Mate authors that begin releasing in 2017, one per month. Our novel, Realm of The Dragon, the first in the series under CiCi releases in January. Enjoy this book trailer I created for the project: I also created one for Realm of The Dragon:

How do you choose which stories to tell?

I just have a good imagination, I guess. When I was a kid, I called it daydreaming. Who knew I was an author at heart? lol.

Do you have a “reader” in mind while writing?

I write what I love to read.

How do you get reviews? Which was the best review you ever got?

Reviews are like candy to an author. We want them…lol. The best way to get reviews is to write the best book you can. I recently received a review for my latest release Between Midnight And Dawn that I loved. It started out with: “5***** Edge-of-the-seat thriller, scorching hot romance. If you like your steamy romance with a large dose of nail-biting suspense, you can’t miss Between Midnight and Dawn. It’s got plenty of both...” and it only got better from there and went on for paragraphs. Thank you!! But a good review doesn’t have to be lengthy. My favorite review was short and simple. For my novel, A Man To Trust… “Wow. I really want the writing of Cheryl Yeko. Her stories have suspense, romance, excitement and sex. What more could you want in a good read.” Loved that one!! Then of course, there are the ones that hurt. I once received a review for my novella, Mountain Hero, that said, and I quote… “in my opinion writing this book took little talent…” Ouch. lol. It helped when that book went on to win the International Digital Award contest (IDA). Took some of the sting out of it. One of the hardest things I had to learn when I became an author is to not let the bad reviews get to you. We can’t please everyone, we can only write the best book we can. Although reviews are important in the success of our books. I’d really like to learn the secret of getting hundreds of reviews when a book releases, but so far, alas, I haven’t figured it out.

What does the word “story” signifies for you?

I love, love. Every time I write a story, it’s like falling in love all over again. But I like excitement with my story, and write my books like an action movie. When I wrote Protecting Rose, Bruce Willis was my muse. I’d think to myself, ‘what would Bruce do?”

Are you currently working on anything?

Yes, yes…and yes. Lol. I have so many balls in the air that it’s sometimes hard to keep everything straight. Besides working on The Soul Mate Tree, which means editing all the stories, with the help of my BFF, co-acquiring editor, and co-writer, Char Chaffin, I’m working on the 3rd novella in my Hero series, and also the Paranormal Series Char and I are writing under CiCi Cordelia. So, very busy.

Do you have a special time or place for writing?

I have an office in my bedroom, and pretty much get up in the morning and get to work. I try to squeeze in some exercise somewhere along the way. Then around 8:00 p.m. my husband comes up from his garage (he’s a car guy and restoring a classic Mustang) and we watch a show together. Then off to bed, where I plot in my head as I fall asleep. I know, everyone says I shouldn’t do that, but it actually helps me relax and fall asleep.

How do you promote your work? How will QuotesRain help you in your book promotion and sales, would you like to refer this platform to your author friends?

I love QuotesRain, and feel it’s an excellent platform for promotions. I’d definitely recommend it to others.

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