A short time ago, fabulous writer friend, Kathryn Holmes, tagged me in a blog hop called My Writing Process. It’s nice to know there are other people out there doing many of the same things I do, but in different ways. I always feel less alone reading stuff like this, because writing is such a solitary process. So, get ready to learn more about me right now! (Or skip to the end if you’re tired of hearing me talk about myself, Mom.)
WHAT AM I WORKING ON?
I wish I could write everything I wanted to write….right now! I have so many ideas swirling around inside this big old empty noggin, but sadly, I can only do so much at a time. Recently, I finished up with a YA Contemporary called I ONCE WAS LOST, about a seeing-impaired boy who suddenly gets his sight back, but doesn’t tell anyone. I began this book with the intentions of making it a dark look at the human experience, but as with most writing surprises, a great character came along quite early and helped me make this book light and yet introspective at the same time.
While I wait to see what happens with this book, I’ve started working on major revisions for a YA Dystopian called ECHO CITY. I wrote this more than three years ago, when I just wasn’t ready to write something so big, so I’m taking another look at it, to see what I can do with it. But of course, revision means I’m also itching to write something new, so I opened up a word doc recently, and began plotting a new idea for a YA contemporary I don’t have a name for yet. I’ll keep the details a secret until I figure out where it’s going, but in the meantime, I’m also going to try to get back to a book I was writing last spring called MISTAKEN, that I gave up on out of sheer stagefright! Wish me luck….
HOW DOES MY WORK DIFFER FROM OTHERS OF ITS GENRE?
I write boy books. Okay, after the whole “We Need Diverse Books” campaign last week, maybe I shouldn’t say that. Maybe I write books with boycentric themes that feature characters I hope will appeal to readers of any gender. (How’s that?) I’ve been asked why I write books about boys, and I don’t have an answer. My characters just come to me, present themselves in the form of a question that must be answered, so I follow. They happen to be boys. My biggest wish is that I get them right.
WHY DO I WRITE WHAT I DO?
As with many YA writers, people often ask why I don’t try to write a “real” book. I don’t have to explain this to any of you. YA IS REAL. But honestly, this is where my voice sits. I understand these kids, these teens, better than I understand people my own age, sometimes. Maybe years from now, I’ll be able to write the 30-something experience. For now, I love to write these characters, these emotional, unpredictable, not-bogged-down-by-life characters who still have some adventure in them. I love them.
HOW DOES YOUR WRITING PROCESS WORK?
I’m a pantser. Mostly. I have an idea….an opening or a question I need to answer…..and a few spotty points I’d like to hit along the way. Sometimes, I even have an ending in mind, although as my agent can tell you, my endings leave a lot to be desired. From there, I just have to trust that my characters will get me from Point A to Point B and so on. Sometimes they do. Sometimes, they grab my hand and take me on a wild ride through unexplored territory and leave the map at home so I don’t know how to get back. But that’s part of the fun, right?
Continuing on with this blog hop, I’m tagging one of my YAB Bootcamp teammates, Amy Brashear. I’ve only just met her a few months ago when she was assigned to Team Denali, but I seriously want to know more about this woman’s work! She’s represented by John Cusick from Greenhouse Literary, and describes her work as historical, dark and funny.
Next up, I’m tagging a wonderful young writer I know in person! Gracey Patterson is still in high school, but manages to excel in her studies, hold down a job AND write in her “spare” time. She just took part in Camp NaNoWriMo and did an amazing job! I can’t wait to see what this up-and-comer, writing YA Historical fiction, is going to do with her life! You can visit Gracey here.
Make sure to visit their pages next week to find out more about them! They’re great people!
So, that’s it for me. I’ll post my regular check-in regarding Team Denali and the YAB Spring Writing Bootcamp tomorrow. A day late, but never dull. Mom, you can hop on over to Facebook now and check out my recent photos. You haven’t commented in a while. Everyone else, happy everything!