IWSG Question of the Day: Besides writing, what other creative outlets do you have?
Um…well, you see, that’s a slightly complex question with a simple answer: I don’t have one thing I regularly stick to. I enjoy a variety of crafts, though have given up on anything to do with yarn. I wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t really for me.
I want to get back to drawing and perhaps get into some digital work. Then there’s 3D modeling that I haven’t done in forever. I’d say time is against me, but really, I’m scared of failure. And it’s something that holds true in my writing. The fact I get anything out is somewhat impressive.
But getting back… Um, I’ve started doing some publication layouts and while that’s writing-related, I’m not the one generating the content. I really enjoy seeing things come together.
I’m hoping I can get back to a couple of things soon and create some additional items to accompany my writing. Pretty vague response, but I don’t want to give up anything just yet.
NaNoWriMo is going on and you know what that means…
My head is buried in whatever new novel so I’m going to be pretty quiet this month. I’m really nervous with this one because I spent through the end of October getting Conjured Defense to beta status and didn’t get to spend much time thinking about book 5.
Don’t get me wrong, I have a concept, but typically I’ll have a decent sized playlist and a few key scenes I’ve been working on in my head. Usually battle sequences.
I entered November with a pretty sad excuse for a playlist and my concept. We’ll see how this goes. I’m a notorious pantser anyway. Should be fine, right? Right?
IWSG Question of the Day: How has your creativity in life evolved since you began writing?
Um… I’ve been writing for so long I’m not entirely certain.
One of the things I will drive people nuts with is coming up with a variety of scenarios when the news reports something, but gives little or vague information. I don’t do this all the time and only with select people. It’s a fun exercise to come up with both logical and closing in on far-fetched scenarios. And of course everything in between.
Other than that, I tend to draw ideas from around me all the time without actively thinking about it. I never intentionally trained this, but it’s what I do. Most ideas or concepts that I keep end up in the “someday” pile. Some sneak their way in while I’m writing. It never has to be something large. Often times it’s a small moment in a larger story.
IWSG Question of the Day: How do major life events affect your writing? Has writing ever helped you through something?
Yes and no. Some of you know my history and I’ll try not to get too personal here.
The yes part is that I’ve been writing to make it through life in general. There have been many times that I didn’t write for extended lengths of time and let life take over. Sometimes it was due to specific events, sometimes things just got crappy. Not exactly the smartest thing I ever did at that time, but that was also a time period that I was hiding the fact that I wrote.
Now for the no. Writing used to be enough, but more recently it hasn’t. I’ve been reluctant to post about medical issues and I will continue to be for a bit longer. If you’ve caught me in person, I may speak about it, but I’m not quite ready to post it on social media.
IWSG Question of the Day: What publishing path are you considering/did you take, and why?
I am indie/self-published (whichever term you prefer). It wasn’t an easy choice to make given that everything falls on my shoulders. I did consider a traditional path, but it didn’t fit in with my goals and situation.
My main goal is to tell a story. I could lose creative control going a traditional route. I certainly would have little to no say on the cover art (though admittedly I’d have a hard time having a problem with a little Silver on the cover XD). Also, the trend for marketing seemed to fall to the writer rather than the publishing house for most and I have to manage that anyway being indie.
Does it come across as being a bit of a control freak? Probably, but at the end of the day, Shadow Phoenix Publishing is mine, my books are mine, and, most importantly, I’m getting to tell my story. I’m still navigating my way through the realm of being an indie writer and learning whatever I can while trying to help others out when possible. I have had quite a few awesome neighbors at events.
Would I consider a traditional deal if it came my way? Yes, I would certainly give it a look and re-evaluate. All paths, and I guess you could say sub-paths (because at least with indies, there can be great variation from one to the next), are viable options, but it is up to the individual to decide how they want to proceed when it comes to publishing. Consider your goals and where you hope to go in the future and try to match it to the best path you can find.
Well, that felt a bit heavy. On a side note, I announced at BCAF that the title for book 4 is Conjured Defense.
When you realize 4 books later that you’ve written your main character with a particular mental health issue. 4 books in I’m not about to change it because it is so much a part of her personality and her background does support this particular disorder.
The part I’m concerned about is that eventually this will have to be dealt with. People can live with undiagnosed disorders for decades, but things will come to a breaking point with her. Now that I am fully aware (and have done far too much research) I have to figure out what I’m going to do going forward. I’ve been adjusting my mental road map of the overarching story to be able to support this, which admittedly, hasn’t taken much altering.
And here people are probably wondering if they missed a book. No, book 4 is in editing. Fully written, but I still won’t release it until next summer the earliest.
Have you ever realized something about one of your characters long after you’ve been writing them?
Twice Cursed is coming and this month’s IWSG question made me both smile and want to slam my head on my desk.
IWSG Question of the Day: What’s harder for you to come up with, book titles or character names?
Book titles. Without a doubt it’s book titles. Rarely do I have a problem with naming characters. Sometimes I forget to name them, but eventually I do. But book titles…
Twisted Magics and Shattered Illusions both went through changes before I settled on the final title. Twice Cursed I agonized over before starting as a project (had I think 3 or 4 I was debating between) and I was lucky it stuck. Book #4 I keep staring at the title, wanting something else, but right now it still fits. I’ve got a temporary title for a different book that I slapped on there because it amused me, but it’ll change. It better change. It’s too silly for what that particular book will contain.
I also try to use the title somewhere in the book. I’d have to look back again, but I think I left in something of the original title I had for Shattered Illusions. Not the actual title, but a nod to the path I thought the story was going to take. Twisted Magics had placeholder titles for a while because I hadn’t planned on publishing it initially. I was using it to try and flesh out the world and some side characters for a different story and then I found that this was the story I actually needed to tell.
Since I try to get a full draft down during NaNoWriMo, I will come up with a title, using it to at least attempt to keep myself on track knowing that the title could very well change. I didn’t get a full draft of #4 finished until last month (finished NaNo, just not the story), but I went from looking at the title as annoying to it fitting better. Not enough for me to release it though. Also while I love the path it took, I’m concerned about the path it took (hello darkness, my old friend). If I have to go with one of my other ending ideas, it might not fit so well.
If you follow me on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, you’ve seen the cover reveal for Twice Cursed. If not, here it is again:
Release date is June 21st and pre-orders are live on Amazon for ebooks. I’ll announce when I have print versions. Speaking of, my proof copy should be in some time this week. I may be found staring out the window of my office watching the delivery drivers go by.
I’m always unsure about how a book will be received. This one so far is my favorite, though #4 is gaining ground there as I actually finish the story. It’s a little weird for me not to have the whole first draft written by this point, but I also remember Shattered Illusions got a major overhaul to its end about this time.
Part of me is worried each time that I won’t be able to release on time. I have concepts jotted down for the next few books in this series. I know where the thread that continues through each book is going. I just need to get there. Though lately, my characters have made things a little harder to figure out how to get there. If only they’d stop getting ahead of themselves…
IWSG Question of the Day: It’s spring! Does this season inspire you to write more than others, or not?
No, though I do like picking seasons/holidays to write in for a particular book. Twisted Magics lead up the the Winter Solstice. Shattered Illusions lead up to (and through) the Summer Solstice. Twice Cursed is in the fall (mid to late October) and #4…I’m not sharing yet. No idea where #5 is going to land, but it’s too early to be putting much planning into that one (hi, next NaNoWriMo project).