Ask the Author: Kelly Simmons

What would you like readers to know about you?

I’d like them to know that none of the characters in my books are based on any of my enemies or ex-boyfriends. Even though some of their qualities show up here and there! I’ve always been a bit of a magpie; saving bits and pieces of dialogue and descriptions for decades until they are of use somewhere.

What is your book about for those who haven’t read it?

My current book, my fifth, is titled WHERE SHE WENT, and it’s about a mother searching for a daughter who goes missing the first semester of college.

What has been your inspiration for writing it?

I have three daughters, all recent college graduates, and I was inspired by the bazillions of college visits we went on!

What was your favorite scene or part of your book to write?

There is a scene in which the main character, Maggie, confronts her dead husband’s mistress. The dialogue in that scene I’m particularly proud of.

What books or authors inspired you to become a writer?

I love the work of so many female authors, but especially Sue Miller, Ann Beattie, Anne Tyler, and Ann Patchett. Their work has definitely been an influence. And I am always inspired by my re-readings of F. Scott Fitzgerald, who wrote so simply and so well.

What advice would you give to aspiring authors who want to write a book?

Make sure you read deeply in the genre you’re interested in. Take some fiction writing classes to get you started, try to go to some conferences if you can, and try to join an online or in-person writer’s community to stay motivated.

My website is  and my newsletter includes reading recommendations, news, and contests — on Instagram I’m @kellyasimmons and on twitter @kellysimmons

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