Monday, January 13, 2014

Writing Process Blog Tour


I've been invited to take part in a "My Writing Process" blog tour, which is an ongoing thing each Monday. Sherry Gloag, the person who invited me, blogged on January 6, (here's her post) and it is my turn today. My three blogging friends who have agreed to take part will all blog on Jan 20th.

The blog tour asks four questions – so here they are, with my answers:

1) What am I working on?
I tend to have several projects going at once! I suppose that's handy for when I'm stuck, because I can always shift to something else and then come back to it. Right now I'm concentrating on a historical novella set in the Jersey Shore during the Depression Era. It's for an anthology one of my publishers is putting together, and I'm very excited about it! I'm also trying to finish another Stitching Post novel, this time about a very busy single mom and a real estate tycoon.

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?
I'm not sure. When I started writing I was focused more on historical romance, especially Asian history. But now I've shifted more to American contemporary. I like to write about places I've been—since I've retired I've gone on a major trip every other year! So the settings for my books are, for the most part, places I've visited.

3) Why do I write what I do?
I guess I like to write what I'd like to read. I like a "happily ever after" because it gives me a sense of satisfaction, or optimism. People tell me I'm a happy person – so I guess in order to stay happy I focus on romances, because there's almost always a happy ending!

4) How does your writing process work?
I have to know what the conflict is first. What is it that the hero/heroine has to overcome? What is it that's going to make me care about him/her? Once I have a clear idea of the conflict, then I go on to create characters who are deeply affected by that conflict. From there I plan a general plot, with major turning points and obstacles that keep them from achieving their goal. And THEN, I start writing.

I've persuaded three of my writing friends to continue the blog tour! Here are the three authors who will tell you about their writing process on January 20:

Nancy Gideon, author of paranormal and romantic suspense
Felicia Rogers, author of sweet historical romances
KatherineBone, author of regency action/adventure/romance


24 comments:

  1. :-) Thanks for sharing, Patty. I love learning how other writers structure their wip.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for inviting me on the tour, Sherry!

      Delete
  2. There's nothing like a happy ending. That's one of the reasons I write romance too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Happy ends are so much more satisfying, aren't they Kathleen? Thanks so much for stopping in.

      Delete
  3. Great blog, Patty. Interesting that you have to know the conflict first. It's fascinating to read how other writers work. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've heard that my approach is different from most people, Karen, but this is what works for me. I tried starting with characters, but then I got halfway through the story and discovered I really didn't care much about them! That's why this works for me.

      Delete
  4. It's always fun to get a glimpse of how authors work. Some start with an intriguing line or title that pops in their heads. Some get inspired by the history of a particular place. I'm sure many are inspired by a character. I like that you need a conflict (or set of conflicts).

    Happy writing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Happy writing to you too, Stephanie! I am inspired by places or situations, but then I have to figure out what problems might have taken place there or then.

      Delete
  5. Me too --- as far as SEVERAL projects at once. I have over six dozen "starts" for novels or novellas. Some are concept only, but many have several thousand words.
    I start with a situation and then figure out who would be the most interesting characters to deal with that situation. Not sure if that's the same as working out the conflict.
    I believe I arrive at the main character's conflict after I see how they're going to get out of their opening situation.
    maybe I write backwards!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If it works for you, stick with it! In light of your recent successes, I'd say your process isn't backward for you.

      Delete
    2. well, let's wait and see if I break into one of the bestseller lists ...

      Delete
  6. Very interesting reading about another writer's process. Best wishes on all your projects.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Diane! And thanks so much for stopping in.

      Delete
  7. I love finding out more about other authors. I do like to have several things going at once. It keeps things fresh and exciting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, Melissa. If I stayed with one project from start to finish I'd probably never get any of them done.

      Delete
  8. I agree with Diane. Lucky you to be a plotter. Best of luck with everything you have going.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Margo! Sometimes it is a pain in the neck to do all that work beforehand, but it saves time down the line.

      Delete
  9. I wish I could write more like that! I never know what's happening next, which makes it super easy to get stuck, but I guess that just means it's that much more fun when I figure out what happens next. Thanks for sharing! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kristen, even though I have an outline, the characters often surprise me. For example, in Christmas Wishes I had no idea the twins were going to end up in as much trouble as they got into! But I knew how the story was going to end.

      Delete
  10. I'm like Kristen. I usually have no idea what's happening next and tend to write out of order. I get my kicks trying to fit all the puzzle pieces together later. But I wish I could be a plotter--I envy you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, the process works for you, so don't even try to change it! Thanks for stopping in, Alyssa.

      Delete
  11. It is amazing and so interesting how every writer's method is a little different, and yet we all end up with stories. One of the most valuable lessons a writer can learn is that there is no right way, only what way works for you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's absolutely true, Lucy. We all have our own way of doing things. Thanks for stopping in!

      Delete
  12. Love hearing how other writers work. Give me a chance to possible add a new tool into my tool box. Good luck with all of your projects.

    ReplyDelete