When did you start writing books?
In November 2010, I joined the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWrimo) challenge of writing a 50,000-word novel in one month. My first book was a pseudo-autobiographical preteen novel with a great lesson about accepting others and fitting in. Unfortunately, I’ve yet to come up with a suitable title. The original title involved the Fab Four, referring to the four friends in the book. You can tell the Beatles craze was a bit before my time as it took me a while to realize where I’d picked up that name!
What is your writing routine?
Since then, I’ve been hooked on writing. I try to make progress each day. I learn by reading good writing; studying about writing and publishing; and, of course, writing, researching, and revising. My writing technique varies. NaNoWrimo encourages writers to “turn off your inner editor” and just get out the first draft, then revise. This has helped me overcome my perfectionist tendencies to edit as I go. It has also allowed unexpected twists to come out as I write, since the characters start saying and doing things that even I do not expect.
After typing up each draft on my laptop, I print it out and make edits. It’s amazing what I can catch in print that I overlooked on the screen. I like to have others read printed copies and give me feedback. Then I go back to the drawing board—many, many times. I have discovered that I write quickly and edit slowly. I am constantly seeking to improve my craft and feel I will pursue this for the rest of my life.
What are you working on now?
In addition to polishing Missing You, Finding Me, I have several other novels waiting for final edits. Vicariously Yours involves an aspiring travel writer whose twin sister takes on her identity following a car accident—which becomes complicated when she falls in love with her editor through their correspondence. Facing Reality is the story of a young woman searching for her identity who risks losing herself in reality show fame. In The House on Depot Hill, a woman from the 1800’s reveals the truth behind her tragic past with the help of a modern day woman who is restoring her Victorian house. I hope to have several of these ready for publication by 2016.