How to be a writer  By Lea Steuri She works as a financial director by day and is a very successful writer by night. Valerie Clarizio is a USA Today Bestselling author, college teacher and financial director. After obtaining a Master of Business Administration from Lakeland College, Valerie went on to work for the City of Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin as a financial director and teaches accounting classes at the Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. As a writer, her intriguing time travel or contemporary romance novels are distinguished by irresistible characters and unique storylines. Valerie manages to balance the creativity of being a writer with the precision and diligence of a financial director and teacher. What inspired you to become a writer, and how did you get your start as one? I had just finished the coursework for my Master of Business Administration degree, and, suddenly, with no classes to attend and no homework to complete, I found I had time on my hands. An avid reader friend handed me a Janet Evanovich book and said, “Here, read this.” I had never read for pleasure and had had my fill of booking it in college. But she persisted. I finished that book in two days, and moved on to every book Evanovich penned. Then I moved on to Leanne Banks. I logged more than fifty books in the first year. One night I dreamt up Detective Nick Spinelli and thought he would be an interesting character for Evanovich to write. I mentioned this to the friend who had urged me to read for pleasure, and she replied with, “Or you could just write him up yourself.” That day, my Ni [...]

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