Monday, May 12, 2014

Blog Tour: My Writing Process

Today I’m posting my first ever blog tour post, and since I’m out of town, I had to figure out how to schedule posts. WHICH I DID! Go, me! EDIT: My scheduled post didn't work, and now this post is a day late, so BAD ME! Anyway, this blog tour is all about individual writing processes. Pretty cool, right? My friend Holli posted hers last week, so first things first. I will tell you a bit about her, then you go check out her blog, okay?  Okay!

Holli is a novelist, a world traveling journalist, a kick-butt kickboxing writer, and an all around cool person. You will love her, and her writing style, so go check out her writing process here: A Life Less Ordinary

I was also tagged by my wonderful fairy friend Kathleen about a month ago, but I didn’t see it! *Hangs head in shame.* It's pretty impossible not to love her, so check out her wonderfully whimsical blog here: Finding Faeries

Okay! On to the questions!

Yes, I do have an amazing Gryffindor scarf!

What am I working on?

I am still tightening up the writing in LOGIN (which is my excuse for not sending out any more queries just yet!). Hopefully my debut, LOGIN is a YA speculative fiction in which children are manufactured and purchased like commodities in an internet addicted future.

Editing feels like a never ending process, but I know the story gets better with each pass, so I guess I will keep going through! Aside from that, I'm working on RESTART, which is the sequel to LOGIN! I haven't worked on it in a few months, but I'm really excited to finish that story, and complete the journeys of those particular characters.

The Dead and the Dying is a YA Paranormal. It was my NaNoWriMo project, and although I didn't get very far in it during NaNo, I'm going to finish fleshing out ideas so I can get back to work on it. It's about a ghost who haunts the Hotel De'Tour in the New Orleans French Quarter, and finds someone worth un-dying for.

Simulated Silence is my newest project, and I am really excited about it! I've had a blank spell for months this winter--the cold-weather blues, or maybe I was just concentrating more on my owl shop? Whatever it was, it lasted a long time, and I was beginning to think I'd never be able to write again. ...Is that a violin I hear?  Anywho, the idea for Simulated Silence came to me a couple of weeks ago, and I was able to bang out the first chapter pretty quickly, and ideas keep coming to me about it. It will be a YA spec-fic, that blends together science fiction fantasy (like: The Matrix, Inception, .hack//, and Sword Art Online), and current affairs. I'm still deciding on characters, names, and trying to come up with a basic structure to follow. 

How does my work differ from others of its genre?

I've been an artist for as long as I can remember (linklink!), and I'm also a huge fan of graphic novels. I think that translates into my writing. The artist in me likes to first and foremost approach stories as a visual progression through scenes, rather than relying so heavily on dialogue or narration.

Why do I write what I do?

I write YA because I love reading YA. Original answer? No. But everyone says that because it's true. YA is amazing. I don't think anyone really escapes those awkward teenage years (especially us writers! *wink*), so the situations our YA heroes/heroines find themselves in, are easy to empathize with, and relate to. That aside, there are just so many good ideas in YA!

How does your writing process work? 

I have to admit, I'm a sporadic writer. I can't get myself to write all the time, but when I'm inspired, or motivated, or an idea hits me, I can't be stopped.

I'm a discovery writer. Once I get an idea that jolts me, or a specific picture stuck in my head, I just go with it. I write a chapter or two based on that idea, then I brainstorm and try to come up with some building blocks for the world of the story, for the characters,  where the story will go, and what it will actually be about. I always have a vague idea of how I want the story to end, but it changes as I go along; characters I thought would be important slip out of the story, while others appear from nowhere; old ideas are forgotten, or new ones take their places.

Discovery writing is a very strange thing. I always get the feeling that I'm not really the one in control; that my characters only find out about their next task at the same time I do. It's a very weird feeling, seeing twists come out of my keyboard, and not knowing they were going to be there. I'm sure my writing friends know what I'm talking about. I feel like I'm just an observer in the process!

I'm a discovery writer, but I'm trying to awaken the outliner that must exist somewhere deep within me. I want to be a better writer, and although I doubt I will ever be a complete outliner, I really want to work on plotting out the endings to my books. The best piece of advice I ever stumbled upon was from Brandon Sanderson's online class videos ( I'm going to paraphrase, but basically he said that: "discovery writers know how to end each chapter with an explosion, and make it interesting, but plotters know how to end their books well."

So, as much as I love the journey of discovery writing, I'm trying to incorporate more planning, to make sure the overall endings are more satisfying.

The End!=)

See what I mean about planning out the endings?
Was that really a satisfying ending to this post?

Okay, well, that's the end of my first blog tour! I hope any visitors enjoyed their stay here! Make sure you check out the ladies I tagged. Their posts go up next week.

NEXT WEEK: May 19th Posts!

Rachel Scott: Rachel is an amazing person, and I am so lucky to have gotten to be her friend. I love her like my cat loves naps. ...Oh, should I be talking about her writing? Well, Rachel is just leaping into the query trenches for her first series, a YA historical fantasy that takes place in ancient Rome! Already sounds cool, right? She is also writing a steamy YA romance based off of her time as a lifeguard. She has a Pinterest board for that particular project, which is awesome to check out (if you love shirtless guys and puppies)!

Debey : Debey is a writer of fairy tales, which you can find here! Her 3 stories all connect to one another, so you're going to have to read all three! They are constantly going on sale too! Debey also writes MG, with some really neat ideas for contemporary boys! What little boy doesn't want to read about video games?

Folks who already did this tour!

Rena Olsen: Follow her on Twitter (that's how we met!) @OriginallyRena. She is totally original, and absolutely hilarious! She is one of the coolest people I've never met, and she is also the CP who whipped the beginning of LOGIN into shape (I'm sure she will find some errors in this post too! ";;;"). She writes just about anything you could ever imagine being interested in: from Above Eden (a  beautifully written YA sci-fi with some totally cool concepts)--to Remembering Diana, about a woman rescued from a human trafficking ring, trying to overcome stockholm syndrome to remember who she once was. Rena is like a kindly ice-cream vendor. You don't need to pick just one flavor. She will give you a scoop of everything!

FiFi the Ninja: An amazing ninja writer I met on Twitter! I will update this once I'm back in town! =-)

Paula: Paula is a super talented fellow Louisianian who also runs a blog for the fictional high school in which her debut science fiction series takes place. Check it out for her characters' views on the latest gossip! Paula has a very humorous voice, and she loves exclamation marks! So you are going to laugh, and be excited at the same time! You are going to love checking her work out!


  1. Thanks for taking part in this, Tana! Better late than never, I always say. ;) Damn Blogger!

    I love your post. Your enthusiasm shows through in every line, and all of your projects sound insanely interesting and completely unique, just as you are.

    So glad I met you. Keep writing and drawing and making those owls--never change.

    1. Thanks for asking me too!
      Haha, I guess this time it was my fault, instead of Blogger's, but I want to blame it anyway!

      Aw, thanks so much, Holli!!!!!!! That means a lot to me! So glad I met you too!!!!!

  2. Discovery writers unite! I don't think I will ever be an "on paper plotter." But I do a ton of plotting in my head. I like to think of myself as a hybrid. But not like the kind in LOGIN. :) I'm so glad we connected! And you can have whatever flavor ice cream you want!

    1. Woohoo! Club Discovery!

      Yeah, I plot certain things in my head too, but I usually forget them!=p

      Can I have all the ice creams?

  3. Poor Holli! She tagged me for this hop, too, and I *JUST* today was able to get my post to go live. My server & internet have been down for the past 3 days, so I am just now making the rounds.

    I enjoy learning about other writer's routines. Your projects sound quite intriguing. The title alone, LOGIN, really grabs me.

    I try not to beat myself up for being sporadic. I think that it's a bit like letting a field go fallow for a while. (Hey, I grew up next to wheat fields, can't help the farm analogies!)

    Anyway, it's nice to meet you! And perhaps, tweet you? I'm @TuiSnider if you are on Twitter. Say hi!

    1. Oh no! Forced internet vacations are the worst!

      I do too! I would love to read yours if I can figure out how to use Google +!=-) Aw, and thank you!!

      I like your analogy! I will try not to beat myself up for being sporadic either then! And if I decide I've been too lax, I will hire Holli to beat me up instead! With her kickboxing I'm sure she will do a better job (if I can convince her)!;-p

      It's nice to meet you too! I will have to log on to the Twitters again so I can follow you!!!

      <3 Tana!