Creative Commons License for photo
I’ve been tagged by A.G Henley (http://www.aghenley.com), author of the Brilliant Darkness trilogy and a member of the Infinite Inkling authors collaborative (infiniteinkauthors.com), to participate in this blog hop about my writing process. Check out A.G’s blog to read about her writing process. And if you love dystopian, check out book one in her series (The Scourge) it’s got ZOMBIES and an unconventional story with an MC who is blind. AMAZING book!
Well here is a little insight into my writing process…
1) What am I working on?
I’m in the final stages of putting my agent submission package together for Her Only Escape, a Young Adult suspense novel, and looking forward to finishing the last third of the draft for Crossing Angela, a YA psychological thriller. I was extremely fortunate to find fabulous critique partners and an incredible content and developmental editor, for my first novel. I can’t wait to get my new project to beta readers for the revision process this summer.
Numerous project ideas have bubbled up over the past two years. I track them with a two-page synopsis, so I don’t lose an exciting story when I’m working on another manuscript. The shiny new project idea for writers is always the enemy because jumping around can stall you from finishing a novel. I keep my little babies in check this way, as hard as it is to ignore the story building in my mind.
2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?
Sometimes it feels like everything has been said or done already regardless of the genre. The projects I enjoy writing about are Young Adult suspense, thrillers, and psychological stories, which seemed abandoned in the market with the rise of dystopia, vampires, and other strange happenings. Fortunately for me, I think lovers of YA are finding their way back to the genre I love the most.
A notable difference with my work is, my characters are diverse. Their diversity is not intended to be the storyline, just an additional depth to the story often left out of novels today. It’s surprising how empty this space has been for authors/publishers to consider, especially with the diverse generation of young people growing up.
In regards to suspense and thrillers, I weave stories that aren’t just one dimension. They’re fast paced, exciting, and have you flipping through the pages. They also have to have mystery, friendship or love interest, and characters with depth that make you care about who they are.
3) Why do I write what I do?
I write my genre because I love plotting and solving mysteries. I’m the one in front of the screen or book who solves it before most people do. I thrive on figuring it out all out, and breaking down bad plot lines or analyzing how a writer made it all come together. This obsession makes it difficult when I write as new ideas always creep up.
I’ve had a creative mind since I was little. My dreams play out like epic stories. For years I’ve woken up in the middle of the night to think, dang that dream would be a good movie. About two years ago, I wrote down my dream before I could forget. This led me to think about it for days, and how Her Only Escape was first created.
I let all my new ideas marinate this way before I write a quick synopsis. With each story, I know the major twist or plot point for the end, although not all the details. Then, I take my synopsis and make up sections for chapters to build the skeletons of my novel. Some are full chapters; others are a sentence or two. This keeps me motivated when it feels like I’ll never finish a draft. This happens fairly quickly.
Once I have my draft, I send it to my younger sister. She’s always the first to read my work. Someone who I know will get back to me quickly, and keep my positivity up. It’s important to find someone in your corner for the early development stages. When I get it back, I edit, revise, edit, revise and then send to beta readers. Revise, edit, beta readers, and repeat till I’m satisfied.
One of the challenges with a writing process is; it often changes based on life. I write my best work when I can dedicate time almost every day or do binge writing a few days in a row. And coffee, lots of coffee. This is hard to manage with a full time non-writer job. Now with a newborn baby, I have to reset my strategy. Leading up to having the baby, coffee went out the door and was replaced with six months of morning sickness. My little angel is here now and she sleeps, eats, and poops all day long. I have to choose between, eating, showering, taking a nap, and manage to care for my family. For the first 6 weeks I was in disbelief that I could ever fit in any writing time. I’ve recently found that I can put my baby in a baby sling and write at the same time. In fact I wrote this entire post with her in my sling!
Well that’s my writing process
Up next on the #mywritingprocess blog hop for April 16, is a wonderful author I met at the Willamette Writers conference in Oregon last fall.
1) Fonda Lee, the author of ZEROBOXER, an upper YA science fiction novel being published by Flux in April 2015. She lives in Portland, Oregon (land of rain, hipsters, and Powell’s Books). When she is not writing she can be found training in kung fu or searching out tasty breakfasts. You can find Fonda’s Writing Process at www.fondalee.com and on Twitter @fondajlee