Take a look at this interview with the Lesbian Talk Show: http://www.thelesbiantalkshow.com/publishing-and-social-media/
For some writers, it comes in waves. Others keep a schedule. Some are called pansters and others plotters. I think, I come somewhere in the MIDDLE.
I’ve been known to add a paragraph, just a line, or even a full chapter to a book that I know won’t get written for years. The last time I counted (I try not to do that TOO often) I had over 160 Novels, novellas, and shorts in various stages of completion on my computer. I try to combine ideas whenEVER possible.
Sometimes, I can write MADLY for days, literally. I’ve been known to trot out coherent stories or novellas or even the rest of a novel in a weekend…I think my personal best in a weekend was 40,000-50,000, no kidding. I don’t tell you this to brag, far from it. The pain my body gets into from doing that mad typing isn’t funny. My arms go numb, my fingers tingle even, and my joints…let’s not go there. My point is, if you feel the NEED to write, then WRITE.
The sad thing is, trying to turn off a creative mind. I can’t tell you how many ‘all nighters’ I am the victim of. I keep a tape recorder by my bed so I don’t turn on the lights or the computer for my ‘ideas’ or entire scenes…I hope to transcribe them later…god knows I won’t remember it otherwise!
The hardest thing for a writer is feeling that NEED and being unable to fulfill it, for whatever the reason, your REAL job, or LIFE, or a million and one things that prevent you from doing something you feel the NEED to do…write!
When those stories call, and yes they do that…you have to respond. I’m fairly ‘retired’ so I’m able to indulge…but holy cow, some days I’m just so sick of typing/writing/creating my head feels like it’s gonna EXPLODE.
Fortunately, then you hear the other voices too…
My WEBsite come on, join the madness….READ!
Coming this week:
My name is K’Anne Meinel.
I am an author of Lesbian Fiction. I’ve been invited to answer these questions by Dawn Carter, author. Her current title coming out is called: Out of the Mist. Her past titles are The Crossroads, Heart of Fire, and Heart of Vengeance. Her books are listed on her website at: http://Dawncarterbooks.com and can be purchased from Amazon in both paperback and e-book form.
ABOUT ME: I am a prolific author with 65 published works currently available through my website at www.kannemeinel.com and on Amazon which includes Novels, Novellas, and Short Stories. I am a typical Type A personality where I feel the need to overachieve and in this case ‘create.’ I used to run companies for years for myself and others the same way, overachieving and doing my best to be successful at them.
What am I working on now? I have over 150 books in various stages of completion including Novels, Novellas, and Short Stories. I can randomly finish any of these if I can just get past writer’s block or working on books for other through my publishing firm: www.shadoepublishing.com. The life of an ‘artist’ isn’t exciting either and A.D.D. seems to be getting worse as I get older. Although I’ve never been officially diagnosed I do get a bit of it when I’m writing a lot. Oh look…something shiny.
I am working on a pirate book set in the 1700’s, a lot of research went into that one, called PIRATED LOVE. An aristocrat from England is sailing from her home to the Caribbean to marry her father’s duly appointed choice of a husband when they are captured by a pirate who happens to be a woman. They fall in love and actually marry. Their many adventures are addressed in this book as well as their many years together.
I am also working on a modern day book set in Montana about a woman with no choice but to make a go of a sheep ranch her in-laws left her deceased husband. It is called SHEEPISH and goes through the trials and tribulations of a hard-working woman raising her four children by herself as well as eventually falling in love with another woman.
I am also working on novel called SMALL TOWN ANGEL about a woman that gets on a bus and off it at a small town in Door County, Wisconsin. She refuses to talk about her past, she only lives in the present, and she intrigues many people.
I’m also working on several novella’s about murder and mayhem (my Malice Series) as well as odd little things like one I call, MUSKRAT LOVE) so there should be a lot of diverse stories coming out for my many fans.
As I mentioned there are many and I’m never sure which will get finished first.
How does my work differ from others in its genre? I think I take the time to insert a bit more detail than others. Sometimes this slows down the story but the fans who really love my work tend to love the feeling of actually being a part of the story and ‘seeing’ it as well as I describe.
In my romances you fall in love with the characters instead of merely observing what is happening to them. You end up with a vested interest in the women whose lives you are ‘participating’ in. You might feel yourself a part of that character or the book itself.
Why do I write what I do? They say to ‘write what you know.’ I’m a lesbian so I started with Lesbian Romance. Then I ventured into a murder mystery (also lesbian) that became a series, for the challenge of it, not because I knew about murder or mystery. I’m also working on fantasy (about a Mermaid which is tentatively titled: Under the Sea) and science fiction (Amazonia Galaxia and Final Frontier) so we will see how the fans receive these works when I finally get them finished.
Also, when I got started at this there weren’t too many lesbian fiction novels available. Nowadays there are so many I’m always surprised at finding new authors bringing their work to the masses. The variety is astounding.
How does my writing process work? Usually I randomly come up with storylines which I then quickly write (type) up with a title (even calling it work in progress if I can’t think of one). Then I can ‘randomly’ come back to it as the feeling for it comes to me. I can typically sit down and write 30-40,000 words in a book over the course of a few hours but as I’m getting older it gets harder to do that. It’s why I work on the various works in progress randomly, as the feeling strikes me. Sometimes I seem to get out a lot of stories in a short period of time and other times months can go by and I have been working on something but not publishing anything.
At night when the mind doesn’t seem to shut down I used to keep pen and paper next to the bed but that was time consuming and I didn’t want to turn on the light. So these days I keep a mini-cassette recorder and transcribe my ‘notes’ and ‘ideas’ the next day so I don’t lose these precious gems. We all say, “Oh I’ll REMEMBER that…” and we don’t so the tape recorder has come in handy.
Who’s next on the blog hop? I would like to introduce Jennis Slaughter; she is a relatively new and respected Lesbian Fiction author with three fiction books out presently and a cook book due out shortly. You can find all her novels on www.jennislaughter.com or visit her publishing website www.shadoepublishing.com.
I would also like to introduce Lauren Shiro. She also writes Lesbian Fiction with fourteen books out. Her fifteenth, Candles on the Spinet is due out shortly and they all can be found at www.laurenshiro.com.
1) WHAT AM I WORKING ON?
Currently I’m finishing up OUT AT THE INN a contemporary romance that takes place in one of my favorite places on earth, the Central Coast of California. A woman finds an abandoned house in San Simeon California and remodels it with the help of friends and crews of workers. She meets various women until finding the love of her life. There is mystery, intrigue, and love, always the love… as well a few more ominous characters, ghosts, and possible death…
2) HOW DOES MY WORK DIFFER FROM OTHERS OF ITS GENRE?
I tend to write whatever I feel like but the fans have been terrific as they have really responded to whatever I write and seem to like my detailed realism. The characters feel and act real not like someone who you would never want to know but possibly someone you would strive to be like or know. Some of what I write puts the reader in the place of the character and I like that, it makes them feel a part of the story.
3) WHY DO I WRITE WHAT I DO?
Because some of my favorite authors weren’t writing fast enough for me that I felt the need to write my own stories and as an avid bookworm my entire life I had to jump into the fray and found my creativity overflowing. I have over 100 different stories on my computer at any given time to work on in various stages of completion so the creativity is always there.
When I first started writing Lesbian Fiction also known as Lesfic I knew of NO OTHERS who wrote it. In the decade plus since I first wrote SHIPS, I have found many many new authors coming forward in this industry and I welcome quite a few of them. I continue to strive and improve as my writing has developed over the years and I hope my fans like that as well. I still get compliments on SHIPS and as that was my Freshman attempt at writing I am amazed, I no longer write like that but it is an old favorite of both mine and my fans.
4) HOW DOES MY WRITING PROCESS WORK?
I may start a story and do the outline or just the idea. Sometimes that is all that gets written for some time. Other times bits and pieces, scenes, funny lines, whatever comes to me randomly for that story will get put into these various stories. I try not to repeat myself from book to book but I also incorporate some common themes. Two reoccurring characters are the dogs or cats names and I find this humorous when my fans capture that theme as it is deliberate. The familiar names in the pets but the absolutely unfamiliar characters blend beautifully in my stories. I may work continuously on a book for weeks on end only to stop because I get burned out. Other times I can finish a short story or a novella in a relatively short time and get it out to my fans who are waiting for more. Some books take years to finish and others, not nearly so long depending on how fast I can exorcise it from my mind and onto my word processor.
When OUT AT THE INN is released it will be my 54th book and already I have ideas for #55, #56, and #57….
A GOOD EDITOR
One of the hardest things as a writer is finding someone or someone(s) who can help us be better writers. No matter how much self-editing we do we will always miss something. After a while we won’t ‘see’ our errors however obvious they may be to the rest of you reading the book, the novel, the novella, the short story or whatever it may be that our writings come out in.
For one starting out the idea of hiring an editor can be scary, overwhelming, or a matter of ego. After all they are going to take your creation and judge it. Some editors even alter it to their own egos, their own satisfaction, their own agenda, perhaps to their own frustrated writing abilities. Not all editors are like that of course, but I have heard enough stories from other writers about an editor who ‘destroyed’ their work or made it into something they never intended.
Another thing is that editors can be expensive. It varies of course and you can shop around to find a ‘cheaper’ editor whose abilities you must question. Having beta readers (for those who don’t know what a beta reader is, it is a (hopefully) unbiased second reader of your work who can catch some of the errors) helps but isn’t always as productive as you would like. Let’s face it you are hiring them for their skills in grammar, spelling, and proper form, not for their personality or agenda’s.
I personally know about form and feel in a story. I’m not the best story writer and certainly can’t ‘tell’ one verbally to save my life, but I do know how to create worlds that people relate to and can enjoy. I am not however always grammatically correct and without a good word processor it would be worse with other errors which would drive this A type personality crazy. I cringe when I’ve tweaked and edited my own stories to death and think I have a finished product only to go back after it was published and find errors. Worse yet when I get a review that ‘tells’ me of my errors. Some readers do not care, some find the anonymity of the internet too much not to say something and become arm chair editors and critics.
Let’s face it; even the great works of art still have errors in them and as a prolifically published author who reads just as voraciously I get a thrill out of spotting said errors. If they made them then perhaps my own errors aren’t so glaringly obvious.
I battled with the cost of hiring an editor much less finding one that would understand my works and not alter them but still bring out the best in my stories. I finally found one editor that I will heartily endorse and recommend here:
I met Nikki Busch through one of the various writing groups that I am a member of. I believe in Kismet, Fate, or a few other titles you can give such a ‘meeting.’ She and I discussed what I wanted, what I needed, and what she could do for me. I believe I have found an editor not only for my works but the authors I associate with and I think I can heartily recommend. It’s not easy to trust someone else with your ‘baby’ and to find someone that does an honest critique, honest editing, and treats it with the respect it deserves is difficult. I believe I may have found said person and I’m letting other’s know since I too know how hard it is to find this person.
Take a moment, check her out, don’t just take MY word for it, but give her an inbox, give her a trial, and you may be pleasantly surprised at the work she does for you.
Some may ask why give away this secret, well, because I believe in paying it forward. If someone is good they should be known, I’m making her known here and I will probably regret it when she doesn’t have as much time for my own work but hey, if she is that good, she will find the balance needed to do not only my work but yours as well…..
I would like to thank EVERYONE who participated in our FREE giveaway of author’s books, novels, and novella’s. I hope everyone found a new author that they loved. Be sure after you have read the work that you go back and leave a comment, good book, didn’t like, whatever, it does help the author and the book, good and bad! You don’t have to wax poetically to let them know you liked it and why or hated it and why. Constructive criticism is a good way to let them know, rave about it if you loved it, but show your appreciation that they took the time to write it!
We were thinking of doing this again, many of us writers got favorable impressions, increased ‘friends’ on Facebook, twitter, blogs, etc and that’s the whole point, exposing other authors, readers, etc. I myself found a couple I enjoyed!
To most, reading a book is just a delightful time, hopefully from an author they enjoy that can take them to places and times they might not visit any other way. Have you considered leaving them a little word letting them and others know how much you enjoyed their work, their idea, their creation? It’s certainly not mandatory but it is polite. Even a bad review now and then can be taken by most authors and put to good use. We are all human and need some of this feedback to know that we are ‘doing a good job’ and that our readers appreciate us. It also helps the next person who might not know this author but the topic sounds good, lets go read the reviews and see what others are saying. No reviews, no feedback, and they might pass on what would have been a good fit for what they were looking for.
Now I wouldn’t BEG for a review, if you hated what I or others wrote certainly pass on this invitation but if you truly liked the book, think of the work and time the author put into it. I know I have a loyal following of readers, I frequently chat with them on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites. They tell me they love my latest offering and let’s face it, I’m human, I’m stoked that they appreciate it. I frequently ask that they go back and write a review. Some are shy about it, I get that, it’s not like you are going to be tested on what you say. A simple ‘I liked it’ or ‘I loved it’ or even a ‘I would recommend this’ and maybe why would help the next reader enormously.
Another thing that it does do, depending on where the review is left is the ranking that an author gets. This is important to get more readers, fans, and eventually money. Believe me when I say if you went into writing for the money, you were deluded. I do it because I have stories in my head to share and fortunately people want to READ said stories. The awards I get are rewards, monetarily are nice, but the accolades, the reviews, the emails, the ‘atta girls’ are what does it for me. Knowing I took you out of time or place and you enjoyed it, that does it for me. So if you’ve got a spare minute after you have read mine or other’s stories, think about giving them a pat on the back to let them and future readers know, it was worth the read!
K’Anne Meinel www.kannemeinel.com