Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Voices of Fiction – From Idea to First Draft – Part Three

Welcome to Voices of Fiction. Again, we have a wonderful group of authors to answer your questions concerning ‘From Idea to First Draft’. Let’s begin the introductions.

Barbara Ehrentreu, a retired teacher with a Masters degree in Reading and Writing K-12 and seventeen years of teaching experience lives with her family in Stamford, Connecticut. When she received her Masters degree she began writing seriously. If I Could Be Like Jennifer Taylor, Barbara’s first YA novel, published by MuseItUp Publishing was inspired by Paula Danziger. Her novel is also available on Amazon for Kindle and paperback, Barnes & Noble for both paperback and Nook, Smashwords, Omnilit and of course The Muse Bookstore. In addition, Barbara has a story in Lavender Dreams, a memorial anthology for which all the proceeds go to cancer research. She has three poems in Prompted: An International Collection of Poems by the Anthologists for which all the proceeds go to Literacy research. Her blog, Barbara’s Meanderings, http://barbaraehrentreu.blogspot.com/, is networked on both Facebook and Blog Catalog. She hosts Red River Writers Live Tales from the Pages on Blog Talk Radio every 4th Thursday. In addition, her children's story, “The Trouble with Follow the Leader” and an adult story, “Out on a Ledge” are published online. She has written book reviews for Authorlink.com. and several of her reviews have been on Acewriters and Celebrity Café. She is a member of SCBWI. Writing is her life! Blog, Facebook, Twitter 

Catrina Barton is a reader and writer of YA and Paranormal Romance, who enjoys being surrounded by the stark beauty of mother nature - whether it's a moon lit starry sky, or a picnic by a peaceful waterfall cascading from the mountain side. She is a proud member of Nano, RBRU, SheWrites and PNRWriters. She is an active participant at Critique Circle and several other crit groups. Blog, Facebook 

Cara Marsi, an award-nominated author, is a former corporate drone and cubicle dweller who is finally free of her fabric-covered cage. She craves books with happy endings and loves to write about independent heroines and the strong heroes who love them. Cara is published in romantic suspense, paranormal romance, and contemporary romance. She’s also published numerous short romance stories in national women’s magazines. Cara and her husband enjoy traveling and she loves to write about the places they've visited. They share their house with a fat black diva of a cat named Killer. Website, Twitter, Facebook

Pembroke Sinclair - I write fiction under the pen name Pembroke Sinclair, and I have had several short stories published. My story, “Sohei,” was named one of the Best Stories of 2008 by The Cynic Online Magazine. I have novellas and a short story collection forthcoming from Musa Publishing and eTreasures Publishing. I have two novels, Coming from Nowhere (adult, sci fi) and Life After the Undead (YA, horror), that are available from eTreasures Publishing, as well as Death to the Undead (YA, sequel to Life After the Undead), which is forthcoming. Under my real name, Jessica Robinson, from March 2008 to January 2011, I wrote scientific articles for Western Farmer-Stockman. I have a nonfiction book, Life Lessons from Slasher Films, scheduled for release in July 2012 from Scarecrow Publishing (an imprint of Rowan and Littlefield). Blog, Link, Link

Welcome Authors! It’s wonderful to have you here.

Now, the question is: What steps do you take to move from idea to complete first draft?

Barbara Ehrentreu: Usually when I get an idea, it rolls around in my head until I have a good first sentence. I write down the first sentence and then if it's worth anything, the sentence will propel me to write at least 2000 words. I'll look up and realize I've written that much and then go back and read the work. Sometimes what I've written is a short story. When it turns out to be a longer work, during the writing process, I do go back and develop characters and plot. As you can see, I'm a "pantser" and rarely go by an outline.

Catrina Barton: I usually jot them down in a note book or a file on my PC and allow the ideas to percolate a while before I even think about starting a first draft. If after a few weeks the idea still won't leave me, then I start the research and type up an outline for the basic plot. After that I brainstorm different possible scenarios and work on getting to know my characters, and then I start writing the rough draft.

Cara Marsi: I write character sketches of the main characters in longhand. Do an outline (most of the time), brainstorm plot with my critique group, then sit down to write. I hate writing the first draft. It's like pulling taffy to get it out of me. I love revising.

Pembroke Sinclair: Mostly a lot of brainstorming. I don't do an outline or anything, just plot the story out in my mind before putting it to paper.

Thank you all for sharing your process with us.

Readers feel free to ask questions concerning this topic in the comments or send questions to chergreen@chergreen.com Subject: Voices of Fiction Question, and have them answered by the participating authors in later editions.

  (Disclaimer - Bios and answers have been posted as submitted by author) 


Cherie Reich said...

I'm enjoying learning more about these authors. :)

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi Cher! Enjoyed your post. It was nice meeting the authors and learning a bit about them and their work.

Cher Green said...

Cherie and Susanne,

Thank you both for stopping by. Glad you are enjoying this as much as I am.

clarbojahn said...

Thanks for sharing these author's comments with us. They are so interesting to hear.

Cher Green said...

Clara, you are very welcome. Glad everyone is enjoying the series.

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