Hello again, darling deviants. Pull up a chair. Let’s chat and get to know each other a little more.
Last week, I shared a few things about myself. And I can’t thank you enough for all the comments, emails, and Facebook messages you guys sent in response. Maybe it’s my inner “millennial” speaking, but I love that we live in an era where social media enables us to connect with people from all over the world. Nothing delights me more than reading your favorite books and learning more about the people in the world who share my passions and interests. Writing is often a lonely and solitary pursuit. But the connections I’ve made with my readers in the last year are irreplaceable.
I’ve found there are a few questions that seem to come up a lot. While I’ll happily answer them every time, a fellow author-friend pointed out it might be better to post those questions and their respective answers in one easy place. Here are seven of the questions I’ve been asked the most often in the last year.
“Do you believe in ghosts/monsters/the supernatural?”
Tough question. I’m a skeptic by nature. I’ve joined my friends for all sorts of haunted tours and ghost hunting adventures, but I’ve never run into proof of anything supernatural. I’d like to believe, but the spirits seem to sense my skepticism and avoid me 🙁 In my experience, the greatest monsters tend to wear human faces.
“What makes you want to write such dark stuff?”
I don’t know. It’s probably a toss between madness and my experiences with life being a little darker than most. I’ve witnessed and experienced a lot of beautiful moments in life, but I don’t find those as interesting to write about without the somber moments surrounding them.
“What is your writing process like?”
Complicated! It’s different for every writer, but I often start with a plot seed instead of a character. I’ll spend weeks watering and nurturing this seed until it sprouts into something with a beginning, middle, and end. Once I have a rough idea of what sort of story I want to tell and what characters I need to tell it, I’ll assemble a cast and start putting together character profiles and an outline. I draft pretty quickly, but outlining and revisions often take me weeks. When it’s finished and polished, I ship it off to my beta readers for feedback before sending it off to the editor. I tend to commission my covers early in the process—it’s great motivation to finish the story and not allow new ideas to sidetrack me. 🙂
“Do any of your characters remind you of yourself?”
Another tough question. A lot of my characters remind me of people I’ve met in life. As for characters who remind me of myself, Aster probably comes the closest. I love my lead ladies (Lili and Nadia), but I’ve noticed my main characters tend to embody more of the traits I don’t have.
“Are you this weird in real life?”
Weirder. Ask anyone.
“Why don’t you publish more/faster?”
I will probably never be a “book a month” author. See the above question about my writing process. Every step in that process is crucial to me, and I don’t think I could cut any of them in the interest of saving time and still wind up with a book I’m proud of. I like to give each book whatever amount of time it needs to become the story I want to tell. Psychological thrillers and mysteries will always take me longer than a fun fantasy or horror story, and that’s okay. I can only hope I’ll become more prolific with time and experience.
“What are you writing next?”
I’m torn on what to write after the Unholy Wars series is released. Part of me wants to write the next book in the Renegade Guardians series, but I have another creepy psychological thriller kicking around in my brain. I’ll probably pitch it to the readers in my Facebook group and let them decide. That’s probably my favorite part about having such a direct connection to my readers.