A big shout out to fellow writer Robin Korb who has included me in her writing process tour. I love the magical realism in Robin’s stories. You can check out her engaging novels on her blog Robin Writes or follow her on twitter @KorbRobin.
The idea behind the blog tour is that we writers share things informally during workshops and at conferences, but not so much through our open-forum blogs. With the hashtag #MyWritingProcess, you can learn how writers all over the world answer the same four questions.
WHAT AM I WORKING ON?
I write Young Adult and Middle Grade novels. My first book CIRCLE OF NINE-BELTANY will be released in just a few weeks.
CIRCLE OF NINE blends pagan ritual, Celtic mythology, and historical chapters into a contemporary setting. Modern-day teen Brigit Quinn’s only wish on her 15th birthday is for a normal life – an impossible dream when you live in small-town America with a mom who practices an ancient pagan religion. Instead, Brigit receives a gift that changes everything she thought was true about her world. Learning she’s descended from a legendary Celtic tribe, Brigit inherits powers she doesn’t want but others do. Threatened by those who want to destroy what she is, will Brigit fight to keep her new life or reject it for the normalcy she has always craved? Learn more about this book here. I also have a fun page that includes a pretty awesome playlist for your listening pleasure.
My completed middle grade novel, RAINFOREST RESCUE: AN AMAZON ADVENTURE, follows two preteens on an ecological adventure set at a research station in the Brazilian rainforest. And, my work in progress is also a middle grade novel that deals with the very serious subject of domestic abuse.
WHY DO I WRITE WHAT I WRITE?
For my first novel, I was inspired by traveling throughout Ireland and seeing all of the stone circles and other Neolithic monuments that have survived for centuries. Who built them? Why did they build them? What were the people like? I started asking those questions and threw in one more. What if they were still alive today? And that’s how Circle of Nine was born.
Other story inspirations tend to start out as a weird synergy of ideas. I read an article about deforestation in the Amazon and then another one about how many potential medicines we lose when each acre of rainforest is destroyed. That got my thoughts percolating on my second novel.
The third novel, my work in progress, is more difficult to pin down. I was SUPPOSED to start writing the sequel to Circle of Nine and all of sudden two chapters about a little girl and her mom who had to flee an abusive home life popped out onto my keyboard. Seriously, it was the easiest and possibly best writing I have ever done. This character had been living in my thoughts for a while, and I guess it was just her turn to come out. I don’t mean to sound weird, but if you’re a writer, you understand that sometimes you just have to let your creativity take over and have its turn at the keyboard without using logic to steer what you are supposed to be writing.
HOW DOES MY WRITING PROCESS WORK?
As you’ve just read, it is not at all a linear process. Maybe it never really is a linear process, but I tend to be an organized person and try to create some organization within my work day.
It is difficult for me to begin writing a new section in whatever I’m working on without some sort of transition. Normally, that transition for me is editing what I wrote during my previous session at the keyboard. That gives me a portal back into the world I’ve created and gets me back in the head of my main character.
I work best in the morning through early afternoon. If I’m really going strong, I write right through lunch and then I know I’m in the groove. I tend to stay up late reading so when I talk about writing in the morning I DO NOT mean early morning. I’m talking about a civilized time – like 9 a.m. This is after I’ve read my e-news, played around on Facebook, and possibly challenged myself to a couple of games on Sporcle.
And let’s be VERY honest here. While I want to write every day and while I mean to write every day – I DO NOT write every day. If I can get 3 writing sessions in per week, I’m very, very happy. Right now, I’m immersed in the process of indie publishing and there’s a lot to learn. That type of learning curve and the marketing work I will be doing to promote Circle of Nine eats in to my writing time A LOT! It’s something all authors have to contend with whether they indie publish or not -- how much time is logical, healthy, necessary to spend on promotion, social media, and generating a buzz about your book(s)? I already know there’s no one specific answer. You do what has to be done when you need to do it and hope for more writing time the next day!
NOW, it is my great privilege to introduce you to a member of my four-person critique group whose writing I admire very much. In addition to writing fiction, Silvia Acevedo is a journalist and nationally-ranked speed skater on top of her super-woman mom duties.