Thank you Michael Fedison for inviting me to the Writing Process Blog Tour. This is my first blog tour and I’m really excited to be part of it.
Michael is the author of the ‘coming of age’ book, The Eye-Dancers. This is the story of four young boys who slip into another world and must find a missing girl and their way home. Each boy faces his greatest weakness and finds a chance to shine as their metal is tested. I really enjoyed the characters in this book, the young and innocent love story, and the focus on friendship. You should check it out! Michael also authors the Eye-Dancers blog, which I adore. His articles are well written, insightful, and beautiful. I’m honored to join him on this Blog Tour.
So about me:
What am I working on?
I am working on four separate, yet connected projects. My blog is my outlet to the world with articles ranging from religion/theology, movie and book reviews, to writing journals and advice. On my blog, I also featuring two different series. One is about my nieces and nephews, which I hope to publish someday as children’s stories. Most of them are about the silly things they do and say, while some are longer ‘moralistic’ stories. I alternate those with a Secret Agent series featuring my older, twin nieces. Someday, I would like to publish the series as a MG (Middle Grade) book.
When I’m not working on those, I’m working on my fairy tale for Young Adults. The story takes place in a fantastical/steam punk setting with an economy based on child labor and children soldiers. It’s a dark story about the seventh son of the seventh son and the lost Arts.
I generally alternate between the two every two weeks.
How does my work differ from others in its genre?
This is always a hard question to answer. I guess the main difference between my work and others in the young adult field is my Christian worldview and my focus on the ideas of the undeserved rescue. This means I have bad people being saved and living in light of that salvation. Like Hunger Games, I don’t steer away from darker concepts, but like Tolkien, I have copious amounts of hope mixed in. I write in a more poetic voice than is typical for the YA genre and don’t focus so much on the teenage drama typical of YA fantasy.
Why do I write what I do?
I write my blog to encourage my church. I write my children’s stories to capture this precious time in the lives of my nieces and nephews. I write my fairy tales because much of my previous work was too dark. Changing it to YA Fairy Tales helps me control the darkness and increase the light. I write because I love stories. I especially love heroic stories about warriors, the women who love them, brotherhood in battle, and mercy shown to monsters. I’ve been telling stories since I was a little girl and I’ll do it until the day I die.
How does your writing process work?
Strangely enough, I usually daydream during the few minutes before I fall asleep. From the seeds of these half-done stories, I discover the trees of my fairy tales. Some stories take root and some don’t. Either way, my daydreaming moves on to different worlds, different characters, and different plots. Many of these ‘between-sleep-and-awake’ stories feature the same characters over and over again in a new and fresh circumstance, which gives me a lot of familiarity with them when I go to type.
I don’t outline. Usually, I start at a point of high emotion and work towards another scene of high emotion really giving the characters room to grow and move. As the story unfolds, I take notes and document important side characters and places within the world. Editing happens after the basics of the story are complete. If I do enough proper world building the rest of the series tends to flow nicely out of the first book. Because I’m more of a pantser, I will never publish a series until all the books are finished. There’s just too much back and forth editing between each book in the series to publish one before the others are done.
My blog posts are usually inspired by something I’m feeling fired up about, or something someone has asked me about. I try to keep them to a 1000 words or less and can usually crank one out each morning unless I’m working on one of my children’s stories. Those take a little longer. I read the blog posts out loud to check them and then give them another going over on the morning they go up. I like to be ahead on my blog in case real life invades my writing time.
I’m an early morning writer and do most of my work between 530 and 730 am while the sun rises.
Heather Fitzgerald is a dear friend and soon to be published author. Her blog Tethered Together has been a great blessing and challenge to me. Heather writes YA fiction with a CS Lewis style and is currently going through Madeleine L’Engle Walking on Water on her blog. I trust you will find it a refreshing and thought provoking place to stop and read for a bit.
Rob Akers is a fellow writer/blogger and also Iraqi War Veteran. His blog charts his time spent in the Middle East and other adventures along with some opinion posts and sports articles. Rob is a fellow contributor to the Magill Review and has recently sent me his novel with copious promises to appreciate all the red I’m pouring on it. I’ve loved and loyally read Rob’s blog for a couple years and always enjoy our extended comment conversations.
Raelea Hiller is a young writer fresh on the college scene. She has always focused on her poetry, but recently she has started to dip her toes in the deep pool of novel writing. I’m excited to see where she goes! Raelea is also a fabulous artist and a wonderful fashionista. The poetry you will find on her blog is beautiful and sometimes haunting.