Tuesday, April 19, 2011

In case ya missed YA Lit Chat...

So, a week ago I participated in YA Lit Chat on Twitter! There were so many people there, it was almost impossible to follow even while it was happening, so I thought I'd repost some of my answers to the questions. The questions have been edited for brevity/clarity/combing a couple questions into one/etc. These questions were posed to everyone in the chat, but these are just my answers obviously.

How long does it take you to finish a draft?
I've had some that took years and some that took six months.

What is the most effective marketing thing you've done?
Just being around and about and friendly. & Goodreads giveaways work well.

What do you do when you're stuck?
I either sit down and work out the problem, or let my subconscious stew.

How many words a day do you write?
I used to write 6k a day fairly often but I ended up ripping up a lot of it. 1k a day and I keep a lot more. I do edit as I go along and before I write the last chunk I stop and do an editing pass.

How do you develop your characters?
I sketch, and think about them before bed when I'm all half in a dream world. Live with them in your head. Think about them outside the story! That's what I do anyway.

Before you got the call, how confident were you in your writing?
Um...well, both very confident and very nervous about it at the same time if that makes sense!

Do you write in reaction to trends in current publishing?
Well, I do dip into collective unconscious, with a mermaid book in 2011! But I try to write a book NO ONE would write but me. If I'm worried about someone else having the same idea, I throw it out or mix it up.

How do you research characters and locations?
I am always collecting books on the topics I am or will write about. I own SO MANY non-fiction books.

Would you ever consider writing an MG?
I started an MG...I was having trouble not making it YA-ish though...I love reading MG, but I like realistic MG best and I write fantasy, that might be part of the problem too!

When you send out final proofs, is the story finished to you, or are there still things you'd rather change?
I kinda hate reading final proofs because I'm forced to think about the story this story will never be.

Do you start with plot or character?
I've actually been starting with SETTING... Maybe that's totally weird.

What books do you re-read?
Little House, Betsy-Tacy, Emily of New Moon, Jane Eyre.

Any advice on writing sequels?
I added a new POV to my sequel to give it a fresh angle.

What is most painful; brainstorming, drafting or revisions?
I really <3 all parts of writing, except the stuck parts (which pop up anywhere)

Did you start out writing YA or did it evolve into that during submissions?
I used to think I wrote adult fantasy b/c YA wasn't such a "thing", but...during subs it was always intended YA.

How many conferences do you attend a year?
Like...0-3? I'd love to do more things!

How much planning do you do before and during drafting?
I think about my books on the back burner for months or years while writing something else. I do some on paper too, but only when I write. Then I just sort of freeform ask & answer questions to myself.

Do you outline?
I used to not outline, but I never finished anything. I have to outline, personally. But not everyone does.

How nervous are you when you submit new projects to your agent/editor?
Depends on how good I feel about it, but...it's definitely never NOT AT ALL nerve-racking...

If your characters were real, who would your best friend be?
Ha! That's a great question. No one my fans know them yet... But I'd be friends with a lot of my characters.

In response to POV discussion...
I did 1 POV with first two books, 2 POVs with third, current one has 3 POVs! #proceedingwithcaution I've written in 1st and 3rd, single and multiple, but I can NOT write in present. Must be past. I can read present, but not write. I write in third more often generally even though Magic Under Glass was first. I actually like multi POV cause when I get stuck I can switch POV.

What YA novels do you think are underappreciated?
A TRUE AND FAITHFUL NARRATIVE! Love that book! Also, Hollow Kingdom trilogy, Sharon Shinn's Dream-Makers, etc.

Do you get attached to any of your characters?
I actually get attached to ALL my (important) characters. I love them! I can't write without feeling that love.

Have you ever done any screenwriting?
i would gladly write comics. I think screenwriting is too far out of my brain zone.

On books into movies:
I have a not-so-secret fantasy of Studio Ghibli adapting Between the Sea and Sky. I dream about this ALL THE TIME...

Do you read your reviews?
I do read my reviews. I like to know the general opinion and I'm not too bothered by bad ones.

Do you like happy or sad endings?
I like happy or bittersweet endings but not outright SAD.

What time of day do you write?
I usually write after lunch and then sometimes after dinner. Basically I like writing on a full stomach. I usually sleep from 2 or 3 am until 11 or noon.

All right! Hope you found the recap a bit easier to keep up with! =D

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