Spotlight on Changeling Press: Gale Stanley
Changeling Press turns 20 in 2024. To celebrate, we’re featuring Changeling Press authors all month at TRS.
Meet Gale Stanley
Gale Stanley grew up in Philadelphia PA. She was the kid who always had her nose in a book, her head in the clouds, and her hands on a pad and pencil.
Some things never change.
An Interview with Holly Hewson at TRS
HH: What inspired you to start writing and how did your journey with Changeling Press begin?
Gale: I’ve always read a lot and I had a whopping big imagination. I started writing my own stories, sometimes illustrating them, as well. But as the years passed, real life intruded and writing was put on the back burner. I worked full-time as a surveyor and CAD manager, but I still wrote book reviews for RT magazine.
After a series of personal tragedies, I turned to writing for comfort. It was very cathartic and I sold three short stories to the Cup of Comfort Anthologies. It was then I started writing my first book, a paranormal romance about wolf-shifters.
Sometime later, I made a decision to switch publishers. I’d heard good things about Changeling Press and was thrilled when they accepted a submission. Working with them as been a joy.
HH: Can you walk us through your creative process? How do you go from an initial idea to a finished manuscript?
Gale: A character or a plot idea can come from anywhere, a newspaper article, a dream, or a situation I see on the street. Then I use the ‘what if’ method, asking myself questions about the person or situation. I write everything down and let it percolate. Sometimes it all coalesces overnight and I wake up with a chapter in my head. At this point, I might jot down a loose outline, add conflict, obstacles, etc.
As I’m writing, I do research, and I get to know the characters better. Eventually, they take on a life of their own. I begin to realize what they will or won’t do and adjust their story. All this takes some time. I might even work on something else and then go back to this draft.
Eventually, I get the whole story written, but then comes revisions and edits. Then the book goes off to the publisher where it will be professionally edited.
HH: How do you develop your characters? Do you draw inspiration from real-life experiences or pure imagination?
Gale: Sometimes my characters are inspired by a celebrity or someone I know. Sometimes they’re inspired by a plot idea. Once they’re in my head, I give them descriptions, backstories, good qualities, flaws, and conflict. I throw obstacles in their way and try to make them relatable. At some point, they take on a life of their own and will often object to the way I want to portray them. Then I’m forced to rewrite.
HH: Of all the books you’ve written for Changeling Press, which one is your favorite and why?
Gale: That’s a tough question. When I’m writing a book, it’s my favorite, then I finish and the next one is my favorite. But I have to say that “Party Animal” is one that I had so much fun writing, that it’s become one of my all-time favorites. The idea for the plot came to me quickly and the story flowed from there.
HH: What have been some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced in your writing career and how did you overcome them?
Gale: Writing while taking care of a family and working a full-time job was a huge challenge for me. The time constraints made it very difficult to focus on my story. Most of my writing took place during lunch or breaks at work. It was frustrating to say the least. My first book took me three years to complete.
HH: Can you share a memorable experience or feedback from a reader that particularly touched or surprised you?
Gale: I have to say I was especially touched by the reviews and feedback I received for “’Tis the Season.” It’s a story about bullying and antisemitism, subjects that are very important to me and I’m grateful for the support I received.
HH: Changeling Press is known for its diverse genres. Is there a genre you haven’t written in yet but are curious to explore?
Gale: I write paranormal, sci-fi, adventure, BDSM, etc., but the main theme is always romance. When I read and relax, strangely enough, it’s usually with a psychological thriller or a horror story. Stephen King and Jonathan Demme are two of my favorite authors and one day I hope to write a psychological horror story.
HH: Do you have any unique writing rituals or habits that help you stay focused and creative?
Gale: In Stephen King’s book “On Writing” he says “if you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the tools to write.” I believe that’s true and I always carry a book with me.
Having my own space is important to me. Fortunately, we have a spare bedroom that I use as my office. When I enter that space, my brain automatically shifts into writing mode.
HH: What advice would you give to aspiring authors who dream of being published by Changeling Press?
Gale: Read a lot. Keep a journal and write every day. Take writing classes and build a library of reference books or go online for research. Above all maintain your passion for writing and never give up.
HH: How do you see the future of digital publishing evolving, and what role do you think Changeling Press will play in it?
Gale: The future of digital publishing is booming. Readers have immediate access to the books they want to read. They can download hundreds of books to their eReader and still save space at home. And eBooks provide key environmental change.
Changeling Press has been a popular publisher for over twenty years, providing readers with the best in romance, suspense, fantasy, paranormal, and so much more. Their books are carefully edited and sent out into the world with beautifully designed covers.
As publishing evolves, Changeling will evolve with it; writers and readers will benefit from their expertise.
Happy Birthday Changeling Press!
Gale @ Changeling Press: https://www.changelingpress.com/gale-stanley-a-199
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/GaleStanleyBooks
QueeRomance Ink: https://www.queeromanceink.com/mbm-book-author/gale-stanley/