Today we are talking to Lee and Paul Reyes-Fournier from CoupleDumb. They write a daily blog on relationships and have published a self-help book. They have also written novels (separately) and are working on another book (together). Enjoy this interview.
Tell us a bit about yourself. Where are you from and how long have you been writing?
Paul and I were born in Southern California. Paul and I went to the same high school but never actually met there. Los Angeles County is a big place but somehow I found him on my doorstep in 1987. In January of 88 we started dating and we married a year later.
Paul has been writing since he could hold a pencil. Even though he possesses the penmanship of a serial killer, he had always seen writing as an avocation which is weird for a man who studied engineering and physics. I always wrote. For years I depended on my writing skills through reports and grant writing to obtain funding for my psychotherapy practice but I left the entertaining writing to my husband. A year ago, I woke up with a story in my head and have not stopped writing since. Paul recently completed his first novel now writes daily for CoupleDumb.com. I completed two novels in the last year and contribute to CoupleDumb.
What types of writing do you do?
Paul and I can write just about anything. We started with grants and technical writing which forced us to be focused with our words. We have both completed novels that we would categorize as commercial fiction. We both tend towards the other worldly since we have a fascination with religion and spirituality. Since we refuse to be pegged and due to our blog, we have also completed a book of Dysaffirmations and are writing a non-fiction book based on our blog that deals with the stupid thing people do to screw up relationships (CoupleDumb).
What’s the best thing about writing?
The best thing about writing is making stuff up. The creative process is fun and being able to work with your best friend and partner is perfection. Also the ability to do it semi-nude and while drinking coffee or scotch is a big plus.
Is there a specific time of day you like to write?
I don’t have a specific time of day or ritual behind my writing. I have learned to write by inspiration and let my fingers fly over the keyboard. Whereas Paul likes the whole tortured artist approach and feels he needs to be suffering, drinking and banished to some dark room with one single source of light. As his faithful wife, I try to provide as much torture as I can without warping the three kids.
Our favorite authors are Kelly Armstrong, Isaac Asimov, Harlan Ellison, Christopher Moore and Lee and Paul Reyes-Fournier.
Do you believe in writer’s block? If so, how did you get past it? If not, why not?
I don’t believe at all in writer’s block. As a psychotherapist, I try to remember my education and experience which tells me that the only block you can have to creativity is caused by yourself. Staying in touch with your emotions, having good resources to maintain good mental health and not forcing it will always yield a better product. Paul sometimes wishes he could be blocked since it would help with the torture.
Share some of your writing goals.
Our writing goals are easy, world recognition through publishing and sales that would make J.K. Rowling envious. Then we can afford a cool cabin in Vermont where Paul could pretend to be tortured, drink lots of good scotch and enjoy each others company while being semi nude and writing. But then again, isn’t that what every writer wants.
Where can we learn more about you?
You can learn anything and everything about us on our website. We write and post 6 days a week. If you are interested in a healthier life and a good laugh, check out our book “Dysaffirmations: Because this kind of stupid takes work” available on our site and Amazon. Or email us and we will answer any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Writing has been the biggest blessing in our lives. There is also a lot of power in expressing yourself. I believe that neither of us has been this emotionally healthy in our lifetime and I attribute that to our writing in combination with therapy. Our happiness is paramount and having a partner, spouse and friend who can be honest with you and give you great feedback is crucial. It also helps that we have a liquor store down the street and live in Miami where it’s hot and clothing is optional.