Interview with Arlene O’Neil Author of Broken Spokes

Q: What is the ideal recipe for a good novel?

Add words written from the heart, just a dash of adverbs and adjectives, combine with a scoop of intrigue and fold in cliffhangers. Shape characters into believable people and mix in one spectacular editor. Yields a pristine novel eventually.

Q: What was the turning point in your life when you decided to start writing?

When I was young I remember writing stories and plays. I loved the English language and the power it can have. In 1986 I wrote “Moments,” which was my first published piece. People always told me that I had talent and should be a writer, and years later I started to believe it was possible. Writing became my passion, and since the dawn of the Internet I have posted many articles. The response was phenomenal and I began to write seriously. “Broken Spokes” took approximately 3 years to complete and I find writing to be cathartic.

Q: What is or are the genres of your book or books?

“Broken Spokes” is the story of my life. The title refers to broken bones, broken bike and broken spirit. Currently I am writing “Army Life and Deployment through the Eyes of a Mom,” which will detail my son’s twelve years as a Soldier. I hope this book serves as a guideline for all parents of military personnel.

Q: What made you decide to write in your particular genre?

Several times I have tried to write fiction and I find that my real talent resides in writing reality, writing what I know, and have personally experienced.

Q: When you write do you take notes, organize your characters and plot, or you write freely as you go?

When the writing bug bites, I sit for hours writing freely. Occasionally I take notes, but mostly my brain and fingers join as one to create. I have already lived the story; all that remains is to pen the words.

Q: Where does your inspiration come from?

Motivation comes from a variety of items. It can be a song, a simple phrase, a scent, a feeling, a single word, that floats by and grows with intensity as time passes, nagging at me. When the mood strikes, I can write an entire chapter without stopping once. I cannot force myself to write. The true emotionalism of my work comes through when it is spontaneous.

Q: Do you write about your personal life experiences in your stories?

There are two full briefcases of my personal life experiences just waiting to grow up to be books or novellas. After all, I have almost 60 years of incidents to draw from so I will never run out of material.

Q: What is your favorite scene in your story?

As a six-year-old, I was a patient in a children’s hospital during the holidays. I had a dream that I was home on Christmas Eve with my family opening gifts and singing carols. This one scene was important to me to be able to visually take the reader along. I’ve been told that this portion of my book brought out a lot of strong emotion from my readers, and that was my intent.

Arlene, you are a wonderful guest! Please share your bio and links where readers can connect with you and find your book!

Biography of Arlene R. O’Neil


“Writing is what lights me up,” states Arlene R. O’Neil. “Being a visual writer, I love seeing my work come to life: to take the reader with me on a journey word by word: to touch a reader whether through laughter or tears.” Her current book, “Broken Spokes,” refers to broken bones, broken bike, and broken spirit. It speaks to the reader of determination, of survival, of inspiration.

Born and raised in Connecticut, Mrs. O’Neil moved to South Carolina to work on her second novel, which will relate the roller coaster life of being the parent of a Soldier on active duty. O’Neil says, “My son, SGT Tanner O’Neil, is a member of the United States Army and the joy, pride, and love of my life. After five tours of duty to active war zones, I feel the need to share my experience with other parents in hope of lessening their fears.” SGT O’Neil recently returned from his 5th combat tour.

Currently Arlene lives with her two Labradors, Holly and Bruno, and her adorable pet goats, Paxton, JaeJay, Rupert, Patches, and Frosty. “These amazing characters have helped me through some incredibly difficult times and I love them dearly.”

Aside from writing, supporting her son while deployed, and caring for her animals, Arlene lives on 3 ВЅ acres of land that her and her beloved animals enjoy.
An author, editor and proofreader, Arlene R. O’Neil may be contacted at

Broken Spokes by Arlene O'Neil



Facebook page

Litflix Video

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *