Mari Suggs is the international Amazon bestselling author of novels More Than Words Can Say & Falling For You and of the self-help book #Believe Dammit: 10 Principles for Attracting and Creating the Life You Crave. With her fiction work, she delivers light-hearted contemporary fiction reads, while her nonfiction credits’ provide fun and inspiring tips on living a positive & purpose driven life. Together, her books make the perfect home for anyone seeking some rom-com downtime, with a side of goal-setting.
Hey Mari, can you introduce yourself to us?
I’m Mari, coffee lover, and a morning person. I love writing and reading, but most of all, I love spending time with my family. I live for just hanging out with my hubby watching the best Netflix has to offer, and, for seeing the faces of my little grand-kids.
My personal growth has led me to become an author, Youtuber and motivational hacker. I’ve been on a personal journey to live my best life and to encourage others along the way.
Can you tell us a little bit about your career background?
I’m an author of two novels and one non-fiction self-help book. In 2009, I wrote my first book and in 2012 I started a blog providing motivation tips based on the Law of Attraction. I fell in love with writing and decided to go back to school to obtain my Bachelor’s in English, with a specialty in creative writing.
How has the journey been so far since starting out as an author?
It’s been fun and truly fulfilling, but a learning curve for sure. Writing is the easiest part, it’s the other stuff that’s difficult for me—marketing, building an audience, etc.
You are also the Bestselling Author of the novels, More Than Words Can Say & Falling For You, and your first non-fiction book, #Believe Dammit: 10 Principles for Attracting and Creating the Life You Crave was released back September last year. Congratulations, how has it been since entering the publishing world?
Exhilarating. I’ve always been drawn to the arts, and finally finding a place I belonged has been life-changing for me. The publishing world is just like any other industry, if you want to be relevant, be noticed and sell books, you have to learn the market, then apply it, then, rinse and repeat.
What are the common misconceptions about authors?
Hmm, maybe that we’re all struggling artists. I’ve found that a lot of writers actual hold on to their day job, rather than allowing money to a driving force for having to create.
Where did the incentive come to want to become an author?
I was deep in the Twilight Series and I was in heaven. One day, during my lunch hour, I was in my car reading the last few pages of Eclipse, and I thought, hmm, I think I can do this. And so, I did. Upon further digging of my life though, I realized that this had not the first time I thought about writing a book. To date, I’ve found notebooks dating back to 1999 with stories I wrote. I can’t believe that I never thought about making a career out of it.
Have you got any more books in the pipeline?
I sure do. I’m in the middle of finishing my third novel Between Us, and, have the complete outline for the next one, which is going to be a young adult fantasy.
Can you us what is the most seminal point in your career has been?
Hitting the international bestsellers list for my book #Believe Dammit: 10 Principles for Attracting and Creating the Life You Crave. I couldn’t believe that I’d made the list, but most importantly, I was so happy that so many people had taken the plunge to live there very best life and decided that my book would be their starting point.
Any challenging times you have had to overcome? When were they and how did you learn to overcome them?
Before I began writing, I was a very insecure person. I never even posted a single thing on Facebook for fear of looking dumb. I was always worried about the words I used, or if I spelled something correctly or not. When I decided to start blogging, my world opened up. I started posting and sharing my blog, knowing very well that it wasn’t perfect. This gave me the confidence I needed to release my novel, More Than Words Can Say –after sitting on it for two years. I knew my writing wasn’t perfect but sitting back and being an observer of words wasn’t going to make me a better writer. I would become a better writer by doing.
Have you ever had to deal with any doubts of contention or lack of support from relatives or friends? If so how did you push through?
No, my family has been very supportive in my endeavors and I feel that I’m here today, in this position, because of the encouragement they’ve always given me.
When you first started writing, did you reach out to any published/established authors to seek any guidance?
Not writers, but I did so much research I thought my head was going to explode. I had to learn everything, I had no idea what I was doing. I researched everything from formatting a manuscript to genre types to what’s a query and what is a literary agent—I was really green. I’m thankful for those days, and for Google.
What platforms have proven to be the best to sell your books on?
Amazon. I advertise on Amazon and get the best results.
Which methods are you using to build your audience and expand your network?
I recently started a YouTube channel to connect with other writers. There, I share my writing journey and give writing tips. Plus, I also share another part of my life that’s very important: adapting a positive mindset. I’m also active on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.
What is the best piece of advice you have received to date?
To be a better writer there are two things you must do: read more and write more.
What advice would you give to anyone who is looking to turn their writing into a career?
To go for it. To not wait for perfection, because perfection doesn’t exist.
What would you tell your 18-year-old self?
That you’re perfect as you are and you’re good enough. I would also tell myself to stay in school and to learn to meditate, and lastly, that you have the power to create the life you want, you just have to believe it.
Which other authors do you also admire?
Emily Giffin, Nicholas Sparks, Marissa Meyer, J.K Rowling.
What does success look like in your eyes?
A healthy mind, body and soul, and a close family.
What does #BEYOUROWN mean to you?
#BEYOUROWN to me means authenticity. You can’t be anyone other than yourself—no matter how hard you try, therefore, be the best you, you can be.
Lastly, what is next for you 2018?
This year I will be releasing my third novel Between Us, so look out for that.