NOTE: I don't post to this blog super-duper often anymore, because I'm busy writing, well, books. (Read more about that here.) For more up-to-date, day-to-day ramblings, visit my Facebook page.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Four Questions For Writers

Thanks so much to Jennifer Ann Mann, author of the marvelous Sunny Sweet Is So Not Sorry and the sequel, Sunny Sweet Is So Dead Meat, for tagging me in this blog tour! If you haven’t read the Sunny Sweet books, you’re in for a treat—funny, heartwarming, and ultimately revealing, Sunny and Masha are my favorite literary sisters. The idea of the tour is to take you from blog to blog to see how different writers answer the following four questions. You can read Jen’s answers to the four questions on her blog post here. And when you come back, read on for my own responses.

1. What are you working on?
Right now I’m working on revisions for The Wand & the Sea, which is the sequel to The Key & the Flame. It’s been a long time coming, but it looks like The Wand & the Sea will be published in the summer of 2015. I’m also working on another book, but it’s too early in the process to talk about it. Suffice it to say it’s a middle-grade novel with some supernatural elements to it.

2. How does your work differ from others of its genre?
That’s a tough one! I think my stories have interesting plots but also delve quite a bit into character. People have told me that my writing style is a bit old-fashioned, which I consider a compliment.

3. Why do you write what you do?
I write fantasy and sci-fi for kids mostly, but not exclusively. I love writing that stuff because it’s just fun. I’ve written angst-ridden, serious fiction before, and it can be a drag on your emotional state after awhile. I write the kind of books I love to read and have always loved—books about ordinary kids who have that once-in-a-lifetime chance to live through an extraordinary, magical experience. And hopefully, they grow and change in the process.

4. How does your writing process work?
Before writing paragraphs and chapters, I spend a lot of time taking notes, brainstorming, and doodling (as much as what I do can be called doodling; it resembles nothing you’d recognize). I outline my books loosely, and then when I can’t stand the suspense anymore of wondering what will happen, I start writing to find out. I always end up deviating from the initial outline, but I always pin down the end of the story before beginning, and I do like to outline more specifically what’s going to happen in the next chapter as I go. Otherwise I’m likely to get stuck having the characters stand in a circle and stare at each other.

image by Mummelgrummel (own work) and used with permission according to this Creative Commons license via Wikimedia Commons

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