Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Blog Tour: My Writing Process
A few friends tagged me in this blog tour about my writing process. I apologize for the long-ish post but I hope you'll read it all: I'll celebrate those who tagged me, then tell you a little about my process and tag two writers I'd love for you to meet, if you haven't already.
All-righty then. On with the show.
I was tagged by my friend, Susan McCulley, who has a wonderful blog, Focus Pocus. Susan is a Nia instructor and writer and all around beautiful person who I love. She writes insightful posts about the mind-body connection in a style that is, both, humorous and profound. Her posts always make me stop and think about how I move through life and how I create.
My friend Becca Rowan, who I've never met, but who I've known in this blogging space for many years. As the title would suggest, her blog is made up of Reflections On Life In General. She a lovely and elegant person who always teaches me about slowing down to reflect and I know we are kindred spirits because we both share the only-child connection and a love of piano, books, bicycles, and savoring quiet.
And my friend Amy Sonnichsen, who is a trusted critique partner and who I've celebrated on this blog for the upcoming release of her gorgeous novel in verse RED BUTTERFLY. She also writes at her blog, The Green Bathtub, and she's a super awesome person who is beautiful inside, out, and on the page.
What am I working on?
I'm deep in the trenches of a first draft right now. I wander through first drafts, so it's hard to say what it is, and part of me likes to keep it a secret, close to my heart, until it is more fully formed. I'll say I'm really, so excited about it. I'll say it is a young adult novel about two sisters I've wanted to write about for years. It takes place along the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn and centers around a rare and beautiful tree.
How does my work differ from others of its genre?
This is a hard question. I don't know how to answer it. I think, maybe, my stories are more dreamlike than others.
Why do I write what I do?
Characters and a sense of place guide my fiction. I follow them wherever they take me. I think I've said this on the blog once before but I write realistic fiction because I think life is strange and magical and I want to write about people who, like me, have complicated feelings about the people they know and the world they live in. There's a lot of gray in the world and that's where my stories live.
How does your writing process work?
To be honest, I learn every day how to write and every day it's different. As I said, I like to wander through a first draft. By the time I near the end, I think I know what has to be done. I make huge revisions. I send it to trusted friends/readers. I revise again and again. Then it goes out into the world. Past experience has taught me that once it goes out into the world, I'll probably have it returned to me and have to rewrite it at least three times.
And, finally, I'm tagging two people whose work I admire:
Sylvie Morgan Brown, a friend and colleague I work with in children's media, who I just learned has the most beautiful, beautiful blog about food and life. Like the best food writers, she has a lyrical writing style that makes me feel like I'm in her kitchen sharing delicious food and conversation.
Melissa Middleman Firman, who I have come to know through her blog and through her passionate Facebook statuses. Along with thoughts on life, writing, autism, politics, Pittsburg and more, she also posts insightful book reviews on her blog. The girl doesn't mess around, shares her thoughts with urgency and heart and I love it.
So, please, go forth and read all of these women and their work.