This post is in place of my usual Writerly Post Wednesday.
1. How many years have you been writing? When did you officially consider yourself a ‘writer’?
I guess I first started calling myself a writer when I was twelve, and I was writing my first novel. But, really, I can’t remember a time that I haven’t been writing — even if it was just small, kiddish stuff, you know?
2. How/why did you start writing?
It wasn’t until I was twelve, had just started high school that I sat down and wrote my first novel. I’m not sure why I wrote it, so this probably isn’t going to be a very comprehensive answer. All I knew was that I loved reading, had a story idea to tell, so I opened up Word Document, and didn’t stop writing it until it was done. (Spoiler alert: the novel was awful.)
3. What’s your favorite part of writing?
There are 26 letters in the alphabet. And there are fourteen punctuation marks in English grammar. Think about the most amazing and / or emotional novel you’ve ever read: that novel was created from forty characters. All placed into an individual, clever order to form words, then sentences, then paragraphs — and then, entire novels are created. So I think that is my favourite part of writing: creating something big from something so very small.
4. What’s your biggest writing struggle?
Self doubt. Every writer feels it, and somehow, every writer needs to find a way to overcome it. Which I still haven’t managed.
5. Do you write best at night or day?
Let me introduce you to one of my favourite quotes EVER (and yes, this is from Modern Family; I don’t know where the saying originates from): “Life is just more interesting after 2am. The liquor taste better and the woman more beautiful. There is a saying; the night belongs to the poets and the madmen.”
So yes, I am a nightowl. Which is also when some of my best writing is done.
6. What does your writing space look like?
I write at my desk, in my room. I’d show you guys some pictures . . . buuuuuuuut it’s a mess. It’s also filled with books. They are literally everywhere. I can’t help it! Pretty much all I need to write is a quiet atmosphere, some music (usually), my laptop, and my desk.
7. How long does it typically take you to write a complete draft?
Anywhere from five days (I did this is NaNoWriMo last year) to a whole year. For me it just depends on the story.
8. How many projects do you work on at once?
One or two at the same time — but I try to do no more. Sometimes, though, I will jot down a few lines / paragraphs for a novel idea that pops in my head, but usually I will only try to focus on the one project.
9. Do you prefer writing happy endings, sad ones, or somewhere in between?
I like realistic endings. So in answer to the question… I guess it just depends on the story, right? I mean, if I’ve written a sad novel which is sad all the way through then it’s not going to make sense to give it a happily-ever-after. Just like it would be weird to give a fluffy, light-hearted novel a sad ending.
10. List a few authors who’ve influenced your writing journey.
Where do I begin!? Okay, here we go… and these are just some of them: Rae Carson, Leigh Bardugo, JK Rowling, George R.R Martin, Sarah J. Maas, Laini Taylor, Sara Shepard, yeah… You get the point.
11. Do you let people read your writing? Why or why not?
Yes, I often post my work online. It’s a good way to see what people think of your writing — as well as meeting other people of a similar age who share the same passions as you.
12. What’s your ultimate writing goal or dream?
I want to be a published author; I want someone to be as crazy about my books as I am with my favourites. (I dream big, okay!?)
13. If you didn’t write, what would you want to do?
Professional… Chocolate eater? Please tell me that’s a thing. Kidding. Kind of. But in all honesty I literally have no idea. None at all. Which is scary because I’ve now finished school.
14. Do you have a book you’d like to write one day but don’t feel you’re ready to attempt it yet?
I’ve had an adult thriller-ish idea floating around my head for some time, but I’m not going to write it yet. Maybe not for years to come. I’m terrified I’m not going to pull off an adult voice well. So yes, I just don’t feel as though I’m ready to attempt it yet — but will. One day.
15. Which story has your heart and won’t let go?
Actually, I have two. The Empire of Stars and The Sweetest Sorrows of Ava Hale.
Both for different reasons, I guess. Ava Hale was a novel I started back in ’12 which I wrote during NaNoWriMo. It’s changed heaps since then, but I love that story dearly. It was on my first successful novel that wasn’t a fantasy.
And The Empire of Stars… Well, this is The Novel that Just Won’t Behave. Still, it’s kind of a fairytale retelling, and I love it. And it has my heart by its steely little talons and will not, no matter how hard I shake it, let go.
It also needs to be revised. A lot. But I’ll work on that later.
So… There you have it!