How do you decide which project to work on?
I always write the thing that I want to read most. Usually this is the project that I’ve thought out the most and at least somewhat outlined, but sometimes it’s a completely new project that I know very little about but already love.
How long does it usually take you to finish a project?
That depends on the project… I can usually do a short story in a month. Novels take about a year, (with three months of drafting and nine months of cleaning up the mess that I call a draft).
Do you have any routines to put you in the writing mood?
I always diffuse peppermint oil when I’m writing because it helps me focus, and I usually listen to either my project playlist or nature sounds.
What time of day do you write best?
Either really late at night or really early in the morning… what is sleep?
Are there any authors you think you have a similar style to?
Ummm… no. My style is my own, just like every other author’s style is their own. I honestly think that you could give three different authors the same prompt and ask them to write a story, and they would come up with completely different stories because everybody’s brain works differently!
Why did you start writing, and why do you keep writing?
I started writing because I loved reading and telling stories, and I just never stopped. It’s so much of a habit to write every day now that it feels weird to not write in a day! I’ll keep writing as long as I have stories to tell, and I’ll probably cry if I ever run out of stories!
What’s the hardest thing you’ve written?
Definitely my Shaman Novel! The number one piece of advice that you’ll hear as a writer is, “Write what you know”. I personally think that this “rule” is idiotic and hardly ever follow it, but it does have a tiny bit of value. When I started writing my Shaman Novel, I stepped off a cliff into the deep blue unknown, and that was the most terrifying moment of my writerly life! It’s one thing to create a magic system, world, characters, plot, and fantastical creatures out of your imagination, but it’s a completely different thing to combine fantasy and psychology when you know absolutely nothing about the psychological disorders at hand! Speaking from hours of experience here… Google is a writer’s best friend!
Is there a project you want to tackle someday but you don’t feel ready yet?
Nope! Now that I’ve written two drafts of my Shaman Novel, I can write anything!
What writing goals did you make for 2017 and how are they going?
Uhhhh… I’ll just skip this question! Just kidding… My main goal for 2017 was to have my Shaman Novel ready for beta readers by June, and clearly that did not happen! I have world building woes, ok?! Cut me some slack here! I still gotta name some fictional countries!
Describe your writing process in 3 words or a gif!
I absolutely positively despise gifs because gif + screen reader = BAD! So… here are my three words: messy, incoherent, somewhat insane. That turned into four words, but I’m calling it good!
This tag is so ridiculously late that it’s extremely awkward to post it now… I thought I was doing really good with getting stuff out on time and even scheduled a few things over Christmas break, but it turns out that every single post I wrote went to my drafts instead of publishing to my blog. I don’t know if something updated, something decided not to play nice with a screen reader, or if it was just an idiotic operator error on my part, but yeah… I almost took over all your inboxes by hitting post all, but I thought better of it, which explains why you’re getting a Christmas tag after Christmas. I am also very sorry to Lia and everyone else participating in Short Story Society! All of my short stories were in those posts that went to drafts. They are now for sure scheduled to post over the next few days, but I had a couple things like this that had to go out in a specific time frame.
I saw this tag floating around youTube, (it’s actually called The Author Tube Christmas Tag), and decided to do it because I had some super fun answers for my characters! It was originally created by Living Within Fiction, and the rules are simple: just answer the questions given for a character of your choosing! I’m not tagging anyone because it’s so late, but feel free to do it and leave me a link in the comments if you want!
- What would your main character’s favorite Christmas song be?
Umm… My main character would avoid Christmas music like the plague.
- Pick one of your characters. What would be on their Christmas wish list?
Nico would be quite happy with a new knife or sketchbook.
- Which one of your characters, as an adult, would still believe in Santa Claus?
Honestly probably none of them… I guess Diana would be the most likely, but she’d only do it to irritate her sister.
- Would your MC drink eggnog? If not, what would their Christmas go-to drink be?
I’m just gonna do all my POV characters!
Nico would only drink it if it was mixed with alcohol or Bliss, which is a magical drug that I made up.
Ela might drink the kind that has those weird sweet flavors like coconut and stuff in it.
Adam would be more likely to drink something like a peppermint mocha.
- Out of all of your characters, who would be the best gift giver?
Definitely Adam or Ela! They’d both put a lot of thought into the gifts for the people they cared about.
- Your MC got a gift that he/she hated. What would he/she do?
Well Nico doesn’t ever show much emotion, so you’d never know he hated it unless you really knew him well!
- Does your MC sleep in on Christmas, or wake up early with excitement?
Nico gets up insanely early every day.
Ela would be the one you’d have to drag out of bed.
Adam would be cool with whatever.
- What would be your MC’s favorite part about the Holidays?
Nico would be excited to get out of school, but he’d also hate having to go to all his family gatherings.
Adam would love all the shaman rituals and traditions.
Ela would love being out of school and getting to party with her friends.
- Your MC and his/her love interest step under the mistletoe. What happens?
Nico and his love interest, (I am not telling who it is), would just look at each other, and laugh, and look away, and then they’d probably just walk off in opposite directions because their rebels like that.
Adam and his love interest would kiss because that’s just what you do under mistletoe.
- Which of your characters would you find in the kitchen making Christmas treats?
Definitely Raquel Blackthorn! She’s kind of the grandmother of the whole group.
- Lastly, a question for the author. What are some of your favorite books to read during the holidays?
Harry Potter!!! I’ve spent the last couple days reading Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
Hey writers and WriMos! I found the NaNoWriMo Tag through Natalia Leigh’s youTube channel, and she tagged everybody, so I thought I’d do my own! Here is Natalia’s tag video…
And here are my answers…
- How many times have you done NaNoWriMo, and how many times have you won NaNoWriMo?
I did the NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program in November of 2015, and I hit my goal of 35000 words. I also did CampNaNo in April and July of 2016, and I hit both goals of 10000 words! So… Technically this is my fourth NaNo event, but my first real attempt at 50K.
- Are you a pantser or a plotter?
I totally pantsed my first NaNoWriMo, and that story is now a project that we do not speak of anymore… Since then, I’ve become a hardcore plotter. Just check out this post about my outlining process if you’re not convinced.
What was the name of the first novel you attempted during NaNoWriMo?
That novel that we don’t speak of anymore was called “Circle Of Whispers.” It was a great idea, but the plot totally died around chapter ten, and since I didn’t outline at all, it was a giant mess that I just didn’t even want to attempt to fix and make readable by the end of NaNo. Maybe I’ll pick it back up one day, but for now it can just stay in that folder of stuff that I never look at on my desktop…
Give us a one sentence summary of what you’re working on this NaNoWriMo.
A group of teens reject their royal blood and magical heritage in order to follow the path of the shaman.
What is the best writing advice you’ve ever been given?
I read this quote somewhere, and somebody famous said it I think, but I cannot for the life of me remember who. Basically it said to write the story you would most want to read. I think this is really important because if you write the thing that you really, really, really, want to read, then somebody else is probably going to want to read it too. If you write something you don’t really want to read, then you’re not going to enjoy writing it, and therefore you won’t put your whole self into it. If you don’t put your whole self into it, then it probably isn’t going to be worth reading. Or at least it won’t be as good as something you were really excited to write.
What is your biggest inspiration for figuring out what to write?
I do not know… Each writing idea comes from something different, and none of them come from one set thing. My brain is a complex and confusing place, and it can take bits of inspiration from twelve different things, mix it all together, and come up with a brilliant, (or completely insane), story idea before i even know what’s happened. I usually pick a project based on how excited I am about it, because the story I’m most excited for is usually the one i have planned out the most, and therefore it’ll be easier to follow through.
Read us the first sentence from one of your books.
Here’s the current first sentence of my current project…
His gaze is icy, cruel, and calculating as it sweeps over me, and I know exactly what he’s thinking: shaman boy.
What do you plan to do with your manuscript after NaNoWriMo?
I plan to edit this thing and publish it! I don’t know if publication will be soon, or if I’ll wait a few years, but it is going to be published one day. I’m thinking I might actually write the entire series so I can edit it all together though, because it needs to be really tightly woven together for it to work the way I want.
Are you nervous for NaNo? Are you prepared?
I am super nervous because I don’t know how this will work with my crazy school schedule, but I’m definitely more prepared this year than I have been in the past. The only thing I have to do to my outline is put it in order and get my Scrivener project all ready to go, and I think I can hopefully get that done this weekend.
There is not a tenth question, and it is driving me batty, SO… What advice do you have for NaNo Newbies?
Don’t stress over the word count thing. This is to challenge yourself and have fun, NOT to make you scream, cry, and pull your hair out because you can’t write 50000 words in a month on top of everything else you’re already doing. Don’t lose too much sleep, don’t neglect other priorities or things you really want to do. Just sit down, write as much as you can, and have fun in the process! Check out the forums, talk to other WriMos, make new writing friends, and give it the best shot you’ve got! If you win, awesome!!! If you don’t, it’s really no loss except you’ll have to tell your family and friends that you failed at your crazy attempt and hear them say “I told you so,” a billion times over… But that’s what headphones and a notebook are for! Block them out, (because their input doesn’t matter when it comes to your precious writing failure), and keep writing after NaNo is over. There are no NaNo police that say you can’t finish a project you started for NaNo in December. Of course, we all wanna hit that word count for bragging rights if nothing else, but the point is to have fun no matter what!
I can’t actually remember who is and isn’t doing NaNo, so if you’re a blogger doing NaNo and you read this post, then you are tagged!!! remember to leave a link in the comments so I can see your awesome answers!