what is your name?
how would you describe what you do?
I work as a freelance writer for various internet websites while working on my career as a novelist.
what are you currently working on?
Currently finished writing a query for my novel Nemesis and I am working on one last full edit of the manuscript and synopsis before sending it out in January/February.
Prince Charming was a putz.
Prince Charming number two was even worse.
After the last prince ran off without any notice, breaking her heart and their engagement along the way, Nemesis Mussolini swore off men and passed the time kicking ass and slinging drinks, something her mafia father would never approve of. But, when her boss Clancy ups his flirtations, it’s difficult to remember she’s not interested, especially when he gets that delicious evil glint in his eye that has her melting. Just when Nemy starts to think all men might not be bad, she hears whispers about Clancy’s less than legal past, and wants to run like hell from the idea that he could be just like her father.
Great … Prince Charming number three may possibly be on FBI’s Most Wanted.
what has had the greatest influence on your work?
It’s more like who: Shakespeare, Poe, Stephen King, JR Ward, Patricia Briggs – these authors have had a great deal of influence on my work for various reasons. As far as “what” is concerned, life has been the biggest influence on my work. I hear writers talk about their muse all day. “The muse isn’t talking…” or “The muse won’t shut up.” That muse is a fickle bitch, isn’t she? This tells me that they sit around waiting for their inspiration, waiting for the story to talk, waiting for the muse to get out of her bad mood or whatever, before they can write a single word on the page. Really, I just learned how to write without a muse. Inspiration has nothing to do with a muse whispering in your ear, but then, some would say that Inspiration IS a Muse. I’ve stated before that Life is my inspiration. It could be anything I experience: a conversation, a child’s smile, walking through a room. For instance, I walked into my bedroom one night and a scene with dialog started in my mind. It’s a scene from my second demon hunter book, Dawn of Life. There was Lucius, lying on the bed in all his yummy goodness. A nice clear image, like watching a movie, that came out of nowhere. Perfectly clear dialog to the point that I could hear his voice. It makes me sound schizophrenic, but I’ve already discussed writers and their schizophrenia in my post on The Fourth Wall. When I returned to my laptop, I wrote the short scene down. I don’t know if I’ll ever use it, but it’s there in the file. I have several notebooks and folders jammed with ideas like this that come in a constant barrage of sparks. Some light up my mind while others fizzle out, but I write them all down because I never know when I’ll need one of them. On my nightstand, there is a book of the week I’m reading, a journal, a small notebook that is nearly full, a composition notebook, and I usually bring my large spiral-bound notebook to bed with me. The large notebook has everything in it, from my To Do list to poetry to ideas to actual scenes for whatever book. In essence, it wasn’t a Muse’s voice I heard whispering in my ear that night when I walked into the room. I heard Lucius, and if that makes him my muse, then every single character I’ve ever written down is a muse as well. That’s a lot of damn muses, if you ask me. I have several characters across many books. And no offense to them, but I’m not going to wait around for them to start talking. They’re going to talk when I need them to talk. And life doesn’t stop for you to write something down. You have to write it down at that moment, or it’s gone.
what is the greatest misconception about you or your work?
That what I do isn’t a job. That I’m wasting my time spending so much of it writing. Or that it’s easy. Writing a novel is never easy.
what do you see as the main strengths and weaknesses of the medium you work in?
For me, my main strength is dialog. Weakness is sensory detail, and I’ve been working on that with the help of my critique partner and reading more.
how has technology impacted upon the work you do?
Technology allows me to write and edit faster, but it can also distract me from doing my work if I have certain tabs open. Self-discipline has become a major factor when working on a story, and staying away from Twitter.
what’s the greatest piece of advice you would like to pass on?
If you’re serious about writing, writing is a job. A discussion I had recently with other writers went into the fact that “it’s not a job until it pays me.” I have to disagree with that. I think it’s like starting your own business. You have to put in a lot of hours before you’ll get paid for the work. Writers have a lot to learn about writing during the process, just like you learn how to do your job when you first start. There’s a lot of practice and study involved. And then we have to learn how to write a query letter and a synopsis, both of which are completely different from writing a novel, and both of which are a dreadful process in my mind. There are books on writing to read, workshops and conferences to attend, and also learning how to critique properly so your writing group doesn’t have you drawn and quartered. Stephen King once said something along the lines of you have to write a million words before you’re any good at it. Wise words, I think, and correct. Writers never stop learning. I’ve watched my writing improve greatly over the years, and I’m somewhere close to that one million words now, but that doesn’t mean I’ll stop learning at any given point. Every day I learn something new in the world of writing, and I love it. So my advice to you is to keep writing. It doesn’t matter what it is. We’re all going to write a lot of crap before we write something worth sharing with the world. Your job is to keep writing until you reach that point, and then your job is to keep writing.
where can we find you online?
what are you reading at the moment?
Here’s my current reading list:
- Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison
- Obsidian Butterfly by Laurell K Hamilton
- On Writing by Stephen King
- Sabriel by Garth Nix
- The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
- The Black Tattoo by Sam Enthoven
- The Insider’s Guide by JR Ward
- The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
- The Reptile Room by Lemony Snicket
- Wizard and Glass by Stephen King
- Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
what are you listening to at the moment?
Was listening the Heresy by Nine Inch Nails
anything else we should know?
If you want to know anything else, just ask.