I was tagged for the Writing Process Blog Hop by the ludicrously talented and amazing Erin L. Schneider. Erin was born and raised in Seattle, WA, has an insatiable obsession with Haribo Gummi Bears (but only the red and green ones) and is represented by Lisa Grubka of Fletcher and Company. You can read her Writing Process post Here.
The game is pretty simple, answer 4 questions about your writing process.
What am I working on?
I'm currently working on three different projects. Each is in a different stage of the process.
My first, ISIS, a post-apocalyptic "who dunnit" of a novel. But as I am constantly reminded, it also has Naked Boy. (Really, it's not that kind of book. He's just naked in the first scene. But I might sell more copies if I just rename the book "Naked Boy") *grin*
My second project, LOVE AND OTHER CURIOSITIES is in the drafting stage. I'm about 50K into it and I think it might be my best writing to date. *fingers crossed* This MS is my element all the way. It's full of the wonder of nature, the ache of undeclared love and the quirky, sometimes comical forces that come between my main character and the deepest desire of his heart.
My third, SKINSWITCH is in the conceptual and plotting stage. This is my very favorite part of the process. And I am loving it so far! It's got chimera, it's got star-crossed lovers, it's got a bad guy that makes my skin crawl.
If you're interested, you can read more about them, including an excerpt of LOC on my Current Projects page.
How does my work differ from others of its genre?
Nothing I write fits comfortably in the predictability of genre. I think this is because I am a Very Weird Person. My dystopian has an anti-hero. My historical romance has a monkey with a slipper fetish. My fantasy has mutations that instead of bringing cool super powers, make it impossible for the people who love each other to actually be together. How twisted is that?
At least I can say, I hope it's never boring. Let's just be nice and go with "unique". Yeah. I'm sticking with that.
Why do I write what I do?
Short answer: I can't help it.
Long answer: When I have an idea seize me, it does just that. I am held captive until I write it. This is slightly problematic, because I have a lot of ideas. I've got an ideas folder that is about 200 pages of text in 10pt font. But I love this side of things. I love characters that keep me up at night. I love teasing out those "what if" questions. I love trying to take an old idea in a completely new direction.
How does my writing process work?
I am a hybrid plotter/panster. One of the first things I do is generate a rough outline. And I always want to know how the book ends. I don't want to write a book that just runs out of steam, I want the ending to work. (Of course with a series this is hard, because you're kind of left hanging out of necessity.)
My next step, I set about fleshing out my ideas. The characters, the setting, the feel of the book, the language I want to use. I spend hours just thinking about things. This is how I spend my insomniac-riddled nights...dreaming ideas. It doesn't really help with the sleep thing, but it helps with the words. I wrote the whole first chapter of LOVE AND OTHER CURIOSITIES in my head in the middle of the night. I had to jump up as soon as the alarm went off, to frantically write it all down before I forgot it.
Then I have to fit all the pieces together. This is particularly hard when I don't write things in order. But this is where panster me takes over. My characters evolve while I'm typing. The words materialize seemingly out of the ether. Things take shape that I never envisioned and I find myself wondering, "Where did that come from?"
Tools that I've found help me:
- My voice recorder on my iphone. I can "jot" down ideas anywhere. Snippets of dialogue, plot twists, etc.
- Split screen on my laptop. I can have my chapter/section outline open at the same time as my MS. Really helps with revisions.
- Downloading my MS to my Kindle. I catch different things than on my laptop.
The Writing Process Blog Hop continues...
I've tagged the amazing, ever-awesome Andrea Aten and the hilariously funny Lauren Garafalo for the next installment in this series. You can check out their blog posts and learn who they've tagged for the next blog hop here:
Andrea lives in Pennsylvania and when she isn't writing phenomenal YA and NA, she's trying to teach teenagers a thing or two about the English language. She has a wicked sense of humor and wields it with precision or a lightsaber. (She's also going to forgive me for writing this description of her awesomeness because I had to make it up on the fly.)
Lauren writes Fantasy, Sci-Fi, and Paranormal for Young Adults. She has an unhealthy obsession with exclamation points and the caps lock key, thinks going to the movies should still be an Orphan Annie style event, and fangirls like it's 1999.