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Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Chris Kuhn, author of The Muse Unlocked, has invited me to be a part of #bloghop2014. I am truly privileged that she has tagged me.

Blog Hop Q & A 

1. If you could achieve anything with your writing in 2014, what would it be?

My main goal for 2014, is to finish what I start. I have about 6 open projects at this time that range from Romance/Erotica to Young Adult. I have a few short stories also that I don’t know what to do with yet. So far, one of them has morphed into a full-length novel that I tinker with when the mood strikes. I don’t think the others will take on the same life, but I am excited to see where that project takes me as I go.

2. What are the top 3 demons you must slay to achieve your goals in 2014?

I would have to say that my first “demon” is time. I have a full time job, two kids, and many community obligations that usually take up most of my time. I typically have a hard time saying, no, to people and generally spread myself too thin. I have a very full schedule up until June, so I am hoping that I will have much more time to focus during the second half of this year.

My second, “demon”, is editing. I HATE editing. Not to mention I am a terrible editor.  I have the misfortune of not being able to go back and pick out my mistakes as well as I should. I don’t often read what is on the page, but rather, what is supposed to be on the page. Therefore, it takes me far to long to edit.

Third, I find that my writing makes me vulnerable. I don’t do vulnerable! Each one of my characters has a small piece of me in them. Whether it is a physical trait, or a funny thing that happened to me, or something I’ve gone through personally; every character gets a piece of me. If they didn’t I wouldn’t be able to write them as passionately as I do. That being said, having other people read these characters I have created, allows them a private view into my mind and what makes me tick. That scares the bejesus out of me. I am not so much afraid of criticisms, in fact I welcome them, but I find it hard to share pieces of myself with the whole world when I don’t share the same pieces with the people that surround me.    

3. Name three things that inspire you to write.

Three things that inspire me…three things that inspire me?

Hummm. That’s an easy question, but a hard one at the same time. I don’t think I could pick just three. I think the world itself is inspirational. The music I surround myself with, the people I interact with on a daily basis, the experiences I have had in my life, are all inspirational.

I don’t think I write like many people do. I definitely don’t write in order, from start to finish. I get an idea and I let it fester and consume me. So much so, that I can’t function until I get everything I need to, of my head. As strange as it makes me seem, it is as if the characters I write are real. They have a voice, I feel them, I want to know more about them; and the only way I can do that is by developing them and making them come to life.

When I wrote, Sweetness, I actually wrote the ending first, two years ago. At the time I was feeling angry, and sad, and lonesome so I wrote a scene that conveyed those feelings. As my finger hovered over the delete button, I decided to save the piece instead. I thought about those characters and I desperately wanted to know what brought them to that point. I wrote multiple scenes with those same characters and eventually, strung the story together.

So, yeah. Life definitely inspires me.

4. What advice do you have to give a new writer who is considering writing fiction?

Write because you feel passionate about what you are writing. Don’t get caught up in wondering if anyone will like what you write. Just write! Write what you feel and your passion will shine through. That is what people relate to. And if you can get people to relate to what you are writing, you’re golden.  It doesn’t matter if you have 1 view or 1000. As long as you are happy with what you produce, that is all that matters. Your writing should reflect you, no one else, so say what you want and don’t worry about anything else.

I would also encourage you to pay it forward and stay humble. We all started somewhere. Be patient with new writers that may have questions. I have had the great fortune to meet wonderful authors who I am pleased to say are now my friends.

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Oleander Plume

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