My fellow Pelican Book Group author LoRee Peery asked me to participate in this blog tour, and of course I had to say yes. What other answer could I give to the chance to talk about my writing?
For those of you who may not be familiar with me, I mostly write sweet and inspirational romance. My first YA novel comes out at the end of this month (yay!).
The writing process is what this blog hop is all about. Each person who participates answers the same four questions, giving readers a glimpse into the minds of writers. Here are my answers to the questions:
1. What am I working on?
I’m always working on multiple projects, but the one I’m spending the most time on these days is a currently untitled inspirational romance. The hero is a veteran of the war in Afghanistan, and even though I’ve written several romances with vets for heroes, this one is unlike any I’ve ever written.
2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
My writing isn’t always what you might expect for sweet or inspirational romance. Difficult topics regularly pop up in my stories, including PTSD and autism. The plots don’t always go in the expected direction, but that’s half the fun. It can also make writing the stories an interesting experience as the characters take unexpected turns and throw new obstacles in the path to a happy ending. And despite always having a happy ending, the problems faced by the characters aren’t magically cured by the end of the story. Autism and PTSD don’t go away just because you fall in love. I write to reflect that reality while also giving the characters hope for a happy future in spite of the challenges ahead.
3. Why do I write what I do?
Honestly, that’s something I wonder from time to time. No matter how many times I might wish I wrote lighthearted, humorous stories, I always end up writing stories with a more serious tone. I can only assume that the reason I write what I do is because that’s what I’m meant to write. It’s difficult writing some of the situations my characters end up in, but that just makes writing their happy endings that much sweeter.
4. How does my writing process work?
I’m a diehard pantser, which means I never outline. I write by the seat of my pants. An idea for a character or a situation will pop into my head, and then I start down the path of “What if…?” Then I start writing. Sometimes I’ll have a vague idea of where the story is going before I write the first chapter, but I usually just follow along and watch the story unfold as I write it. There’s nothing quite like learning about my characters the same way readers will, one page at a time.
Thanks for taking the time to read about my writing process! Check out these blogs next week (July 15, 2014) to learn more about three more authors’ writing:
Here’s an example of a book I didn’t know where it was going when I started writing. I learned a lot about Josh Teague (the hero) through writing Trust of the Heart (Veteran Hearts, Book 2), and I love him even more now. Readers apparently love him as well. Trust of the Heart is a finalist for the 2014 Readers’ Crown Award.
Josh Teague has dark memories from his time in Iraq. While he longs to share the burden of those memories with someone, he is afraid they will scare his girlfriend. Unwilling to risk losing her, he keeps the memories to himself and tries to keep a cheerful attitude despite the holiday season threatening to bring his mood down.
Leann Robak has her own set of memories causing trouble. Abandoned by her father when she was ten, she is devastated when her mother announces she’s taking a month-long trip to Europe over Christmas. Although Josh’s invitation to spend Christmas with him at his parents’ house holds exciting prospects, Leann can tell he’s hiding something from her. That knowledge leaves her wondering how well she truly knows him and whether he even wants to be in a relationship with her.
Can Josh and Leann learn to trust each other fully, or will their insecurities drive them apart?