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Monday, March 31, 2014

My Writing Process

I was tagged by the incredible Ilima K Todd, author of the REMAKE series coming out this fall from Shadow Mountain. You can check out her post here.

What am I working on?

Growing baby number five! Release date: September 20th, 2014 

Yes, folks, this is an announcement--and the reason I'm so absent online right now. 
I am thankfully into my second trimester, so I hope to be writing and maybe even blogging again soon. We'll see.

If I wasn't in preggo H-E-double hockey sticks, I'd be:

*Revising my first draft of VOICES, my 2013 NaNo project, so I can get it out to first readers

*Rewriting (for the millionth time) GUTTER GIRL based on latest beta reads.

*Researching for my super secret project

*Playing with the voice of  twelve-year-old Ruby, from LIFE IS A TONGUE TWISTER

How does my work differ from others of its genre?

All of my books, whether YA or MG have contemporary settings and tons of humor. About half of my books are in the magical realism genre. All my (YA) MC's are athletes. Sports is a huge part of my life, so it's no surprise that it trickles over to my stories. Another way I differ? Don't expect lots of kissing. I'm much more likely to write an awkward scene with an almost kiss, burp, instead of a make-out session. Again, probably because that was my HS life. Plenty of yearning, but enough awkward nervousness to keep me from getting much action. 

Why do I write what I do?

Because I have so much fun answering the question "what if." What if a girl could smell real love? What if a girl started hearing voices when she kissed boys? What if an introverted, stuttering twelve-year-old lost the protection of her mother and had to start speaking for herself? 

How does my writing process work?

One of those "what if" questions knocks me over and doesn't go away. I'm a pantser, so depending on where I am in other projects, sometimes I just jump in and try her out for a test drive--1 or 2K and see if I like what I'm creating. Sometimes, like with VOICES, the story percolates on the back burner for a year and I know more than the beginning and the ending point. These draft up faster and still give me plenty of discovery/surprises along the way. 

Unfortunately I'm an extremely messy first drafter. I word vomit all over the place and have to do a ton of clean up and sometimes complete rewrites before my stories are ready for any eyes. Then it goes out to one or two readers and based on their feedback I revise. That means I do a decent amount of rewriting, flush out parts that need more attention, combine secondary characters, and change my many characters names starting with the letter M. Once the MS goes through enough revisions and betas to be as good as I can get it, I send it to my agent. She sends me feedback and I revise like crazy all over again. 


I'm tagging the lovely Katy White. You can find her post next Monday and learn about her writing process.

Best of luck to everyone doing the A to Z challenge starting tomorrow. I'm using the month as an excuse to not blog, except for my review and giveaway of THE EIGHTH DAY by Dianne K. Salerni (spoiler: it's brilliant and I LOVE the "what if" that inspired the book.)

15 comments:

  1. Congrats on the new baby! So excited for you!

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  2. Congratulations! Wish we were closer!

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  3. Congratulations!! That is wonderful news!

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  4. Congratulations! Wow. Five. You are one busy lady!

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  5. You're working on the biggest project of us all...way to go! And I love your messy drafts, just sayin'. :)

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  6. why hellloooooo dolly!!! congrats on the "baby project"!! so darling. it sorta by passes everything, doesn't it?

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  7. Yay! Sounds like you get a lot done with baby-energy, amazingly enough. I came by to see if you were doing a-z, but what you're planning sounds just as great. I love the sound of every one of your projects.

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  8. Congratulations. And that is a great reason why you're away from the blogging and writing scene. :)

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  9. Ah! You have a new header! I totally missed the transition. (And a new everything else too.) Very nice.

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  10. Congrats! And good luck with writing! :)

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  11. Motherhood is the most important work--even more important than blogging. Love you keep growing!

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  12. I've really enjoyed the Writing Process blog tour. Thanks for sharing your insights!

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  13. CONGRATS Robin!! What a blessing. I love that you write awkward romance scenes. They are more close to the truth. At least for me. Ha.

    Much love to you and your family!

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  14. Huge congratulations, Robin! Baby number five is a big project. I can't write when I have placenta brain. I'm mush. :) I hope your pregnancy gets easier!

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