Fridays 5 with Robin Raven

Robin Raven is the human who once belonged to the greatest dog that ever lived. "Next Stop: Nina" is Robin's debut novel. She has several other works of fiction that she hopes to share in the near future.

Born in Mobile, Alabama, Robin grew up in a nearby town called Saraland, and her hometown is a lovely place that still inspires her. As an adult, Ms. Raven has mostly lived in Los Angeles and New York City, so she also considers those cities to be home.

Robin blogs at If she's not reading or writing, you can probably find Robin daydreaming about adopting a rescue donkey. Delicious vegan food rocks her world. So does effective altruism. In addition to being an author, Robin has worked as a professional actress.

1.) When did you first get serious about writing?

A.) I wanted to be a writer for pretty much all of my life and always felt quite serious about it. I completed my first novel when I was seven years old. I wrote it by hand on notebook paper. I dated it and still have it. So I've been serious about writing for a long time, but sharing my writing was more difficult for me. I was a screenwriting and film directing major in college, and I worked as a professional actress. I finally decided to start sharing my writing only recently. My first novel, "Next Stop: Nina", was published in July 2015. My first children's book is being released by a publisher this winter.

2.) What is the hardest part for you about writing?

A.) I think staying focused on one project can be challenging for me. That's the hardest part. I tend to come up with a lot of ideas, and I want to work on many stories at once. It takes all the self-discipline I can gather to focus on one idea at a time.

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Synopsis: There's something different about Nina; she never felt comfortable in this world. As she struggles to cope with the pain of her present and past, the young girl's life is changed through the beauty of art. When Nina grows up and winds up in over her head in a dark place, she finds herself somehow transported to another time when nothing is quite what it seems. She must fight the horrors of her past all over again. Along the way, she faces greater challenges than she imagined and enjoys sweet surprises when she discovers true love. This is a character-driven novel with a heroine who faces suicidal depression on her own terms, and that's just the beginning. At its heart, Next Stop: Nina is a love story that takes on the types of love that change us and allow us to discover the truth in ourselves.

3.) How did you feel upon publication of your first completed project?

A.) I was excited and terrified at the same time. I am so thankful for the way that readers have responded to it so far.

4.) What is more important to you, story, or character? Why?

A.) While they are both really important, I tend to think that characters are more important to me when I read a story as well as when I write one. If you don't care about the characters, I don't think the story can really draw you in no matter what.

5.) What is a typical day like in your world?

A.) I typically write for clients and for myself every single day. I usually have vanilla-flavored coffee or a diet soda to start the day. Right now I am coming close to finishing my second novel, so a lot of my time is focused on that. After a day of writing, I love going out and seeing a movie, grabbing some yummy vegan food, and hanging out with family and friends. I keep a diary and enjoy working on it in lots of ways. Sometimes I create covers for my diaries or do artistic things within them. I am taking a couple of classes, so I enjoy that a few times per week. I like playing the piano, but I don't make enough time for that. Some days I do. I often write at night, too.

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